How to Study Political Parties and Foreign Policy?

Call for Papers

EISA Early Career Researchers Workshop

Ideas, Institutions, Practices: How to Study Political Parties and Foreign Policy?

Prague, September 11

Political parties are understudied in Foreign Policy Analysis (FPA) and International Relations (IR). Scholars consistently underestimate the relevance of parties in influencing state’s foreign policy). Yet, the study of parties' foreign policy adds to FPA's challenge of IR realist notions of the state as unitary actor, reassesses the dichotomy between domestic and international spheres and addresses the role of ideology. Recently, scholars have started to explore more systematically parties and foreign policy from various disciplines and with different theoretical assumptions and methods. This nascent focus on parties as foreign policy actors speaks to FPA's recognition that foreign policy contexts and decision-making are multi-factorial and multi-level.

This early career researcher workshop builds on this emerging and promising literature. It aims to contribute to the scientific understanding of foreign policy in IR, to map new research on parties and foreign policy, and to scope out future research avenues along three dimensions:

  1. Institutions and processes: The role of parties in foreign policy decision-making
  1. Relationships: Parties as links and feedback loops between society, state and international level
  2. Ideologies: The impact of ideology on foreign policy

The one-day workshop provides an opportunity to discuss research in progress on parties and foreign policy in a small group, in the presence of and with input from senior experts. We invite PhD students and early career post-docs to propose papers with a strong empirical component from different disciplines focused on and using different:

  • Unit levels
  • Party systems (one party to multi-party systems)
  • Theoretical frameworks
  • Methodologies
  • Data sources
  • Methods of analyses

We particularly encourage papers from applicants from East Central Europe.

How to apply:

If interested in participating in this workshop, please send paper title, an abstract (max. 200 words), keywords and bio (100 words) to Valerio Vignoli: by 25 March 2018.

The workshop hosts will cover parts of participants' travel costs. Please indicate your approximate expected cost in the application.

Louis-Simon Boileau, Sissela Matzner and Valerio Vignoli


Sissela Matzner

PhD Candidate Politics and International Relations

Political Settlements Research Programme (PSRP) Affiliated Student

University of Edinburgh

15a George Square


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