Columbia University in the City of New York

Harriman Institute




Populism in Central Europe: Citizen Demand for Democratic Backsliding?
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Location Note

1219 International Affairs Building
420 W 118th Street, 12th floor

This is a hybrid (in-person/virtual) event. Registration required for attendance. Please note that all attendees must follow Columbia’s COVID-19 Policies and Guidelines. Columbia University is committed to protecting the health and safety of its community. To that end, all visiting alumni and guests must meet the University requirement of full vaccination status in order to attend in-person events. Vaccination cards may be checked upon entry to all venues. All other attendees may participate virtually on Zoom or YouTube.

Please join the European Institute, the Harriman Institute, and the East Central European Center for a discussion with Tsveta Petrova and Natalia Wunsch, moderated by Carlo Invernizzi Accetti.

Over the past decade, a number of ethno-populist parties have come to power and undermined liberal democratic institutions in Europe and beyond. Why have citizens failed to act as effective bulwarks against such democratic backsliding? How aligned with such subversion of liberal democracy have their electoral supporters been? Do they instead prefer to majoritarian conceptions of democracy that are more consistent with the emphasis populist ideology places on popular sovereignty and majority rule? Or do they have affinity for non-democratic norms and practices altogether?

Natasha Wunsch and Tsveta Petrova present experimental evidence from Central and Eastern Europe to interrogate citizen preferences about populism and democracy in the region.

Tsveta Petrova is a Lecturer in the Discipline of Political Science at Columbia University, and Faculty Advisor to the MA program in European History, Politics, and Society at the European Institute.

Natasha Wunsch is an Assistant Professor in Political Science/European Integration at Sciences Po, Centre for European Studies and Comparative Politics (CEE), and Senior Researcher with the Center for Comparative and International Studies at ETH Zurich.

Carlo Invernizzi Accetti is a Professor of Political Science and Executive Director of the Moynihan Center, City University of New York – City College and Visiting Professor at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University.

Image: Supporters of the far-right march on Polish Independence Day, Warsaw, November 2017. Via Pixabay.