GEM PhD School

Globalisation, Europe & Multilateralism

Erasmus Mundus Joint Doctorate

CITRINE RESEARCH AGENDA & QUESTIONS

The CITRINE Joint Research Project will study the interplay of any combination of forces that come together in struggles over the scope and character of contemporary regulatory interests.

Research Agenda

The CITRINE Joint Research Project is coordinated and managed by the Department of Politics and International Studies (PAIS) at the University of Warwick. The department boasts a cohort of academic staff in excess of fifty for academic year 2013/2014, making it one of the largest Politics departments in the UK. This represents an increase in staff numbers of around one-third over the last two years, which is an indication of the type of ambition that the University of Warwick has for the department. PAIS also regularly features in the upper echelons of all teaching and research league tables in Politics in the UK, and both it and Warwick are rising quickly in global league tables of research excellence. Indeed, Warwick has recently been designated the third best university under the age of 50 anywhere in the world.

Each member of PAIS staff should be considered available to undertake supervisory duties for GEM School Fellows, and so the ever expanding numbers in the department is an indication of the breadth of expertise which the University of Warwick brings to the consortium as a whole. This is further indicated by the fact that it currently has over 80 full-time PhD students enrolled on the programme into which the GEM School Fellows will be integrated.

The research specialisms of PAIS staff members and their associated existing PhD students cohere around four groupings, which taken together provide the department with its collective research culture and its specific profile of research outputs. They are International Political Economy (IPE), International Relations & Security (IRS), Comparative Politics & Democratisation (CPD), and Political Theory (PT). PAIS is also home to three specialist research centres: the Centre for the Study of Globalisation and Regionalisation (CSGR), the Centre for Studies in Democratisation (CSD), and the Centre for Ethics, Law and Public Affairs (CELPA). We welcome applicants to the CITRINE Joint Research Project who wish to undertake doctoral studies on topics related to any of these areas in which the department has expertise. Given that we are a department of Politics and International Studies you will fit best with us if your background is in those disciplines, but we are definitely open to the idea of supervising genuinely interdisciplinary PhDs on issues that are of interest to political scientists and/or international relations scholars.

Regulatory interests in the European Union and beyond are constantly being redefined under the twin pressures of globalisation and multilateralism. The political economy of contemporary world order plays out against the backdrop of both a major global banking crisis, the real possibility of a fracture within the eurozone and the ever-present contestations that surround international trade politics. These are issues that have been studied in great detail and to widespread acclaim by members of our IPE Research Group. The national and international security context of contemporary world order is situated against the backdrop of a permanently changing set of assumptions as new threats come to the fore and overlay historically-rooted social and political tensions, coupled with a new wave of democratisation enacted in recent months.

These are areas in which the reputation of the department is growing rapidly thanks to the work of members of the IRS Research Group, often undertaken in conjunction with members of the CSD. Public policy decisions are likely in the near future to become increasingly prone to challenge at a variety of spatial scales, as public spending cuts take hold across Europe and beyond. Here the members of the CPD Research Group continue to be at the forefront of scholarly debates through their high profile work. Every member of the Department, at one level or another, focuses their research on the significance of regulatory interests, whether that is in terms of theorising shifting forms of legitimacy within everyday politics or through assessing the relative efficacy of policy-making conducted domestically, regionally and/or globally.

 

Research Questions

More than ever perhaps, the EU’s relationship with its inside and outside is open to question. Within this debate sit quite different narratives of: (i) the regulatory role that different legal jurisdictions should have over economic, security and public policy issues; (ii) how these different legal jurisdictions should constitute themselves as actors within the increasingly global domains of production, finance, trade, the environment, national security, governance, etc.; and (iii) what sorts of values, preferences and norms should be represented – and by whom – in each of these fields of public policy and many more besides. At every turn, these narratives spark alternative technical and normative arguments, with each being enveloped by potential sources of political controversy and struggle. The quality and intensity of these debates vary within and between European states, as well as between European states and a range of differently situated social forces located in the rest of the world. In some cases the use of formal political authority is seen as an interventionist threat to neoliberal growth strategies. In others this view is inverted and the use of formal political authority has merely cemented neo-liberalism and should thus be seen as a threat to social progress, cohesion and developmental growth strategies designed to exit recession. These are also contests about legitimacy and the extent to which the economic, social and security governance beyond neo-liberalism can continue to rest upon currently existing political foundations.

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