The Populist Radical Right and Protectionism

Project managers:
Simon Franzmann (University of Düsseldorf)
Marcel Lewandowsky (HSU Hamburg)

Funding: Bonner Akademie für Forschung und Lehre praktischer Politik (BAPP)

This project explores the ideological varieties of right-wing populist parties in West European democracies between 2000 and 2017. To do so, particular attention is paid to the economic positioning of the parties, which has been treated as secondary in the extant research.

The project pursues two goals. Firstly, we seek to systematically identify the variation of ideological positions within the populist radical right party family across space and time. Secondly, we try to explain the existing patterns of variation of right-wing populist ideologies by socio-economic, socio-cultural and institutional factors.

The empirical basis is formed by systematic content analyses of the manifestos of right-wing populist parties in nine West European countries. The project employs a differentiated concept of populism, which is applied for the coding of party manifestos by student research groups. The result of this will be a comprehensive dataset with which the ideological transformation of right-wing populist parties can be systematically reconstructed and explained.

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