Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy
21 April 2023

Defending Democracy in the European Union: A Socio-Legal Approach to the European Institutions

A new SNSF project has been awarded to Professor Gregoire Mallard.

In the European Union (EU), some governing parties in its Member States have been accused of dismantling the rule of law at home and threatening the proper functioning of European institutions. In response to these threats, how have EU institutions defended themselves? How have supranational institutions and their staff created and enforced rules against political parties seeking to undermine their existence?

Professor Grégoire Mallard, Director of Research and Professor of Anthropology at the Graduate Institute, will lead a new research project titled "Defending Democracy in the European Union: A Socio-Legal Approach to the European Institutions" The Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) awarded the project under its SHS program.

The project will conduct ethnographic research on EU institutions, specifically the European Commission, the Council of the EU, the European Council, the European Court of Justice, and the European Parliament.

The project will begin in August 2023 and will be hosted by the Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy in collaboration with the Global Governance Centre and the Department of Anthropology and Sociology. 

It will also include Christin Tonne, a postdoctoral researcher whose PhD focused on the confrontation between EU institutional actors and the far-right in the European Parliament since the first direct elections in 1979. Tonne is currently a Research Associate at the Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy.

Applications for the doctoral assistant position are now open and will be accepted until May 30, 2023. More information can be found HERE.