UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES)

Dr Sean Hanley

Dr Sean Hanley

Associate Professor in Comparative Central and East European Politics



Joined UCL
1st Sep 2003

Research summary

My major book publication is The New Right in the New Europe: Czech transformation and right-wing politics (Routledge 2007). As well as writing on democracy and parties in the Czech Republic and the comparative politics of the right in Central and Eastern Europe, I have also published work on the political representation of older people, the rise of anti-establishment parties in Central and Eastern Europe and the prospects of established parties in Europe and beyond.

The underlying concern of my research is extent to which East Central European democracies have come to resemble models familiar from Western Europe – and, contrarily, the possibility that the fluid, elite-centred populist politics of East Central Europe may be a harbinger of things to come in established democracies.

My work on the politics of ageing societies in Eastern Europe been supported by Nuffield Foundation and my research anti-establishment parties formed part of the UCL contribution to the FP7 ANTICORRP project

I have a strong interest in comparative methods and, in particular, the use of Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) and other ‘configurational comparative’ techniques to study political change in Eastern Europe.

I have also regularly contributed shorter pieces of comment and analysis on Central and East European for sites such as Policy Network, EUROPP, iHned.cz and the SSEES Research Blog and write for the Economist Intelligence Unit. I also write a personal academic blog Dr Sean's Diary and can be followed on Twitter @drseanhanley

I would welcome PhD and MRes proposals related to the following themes:

* backsliding and hollowing out of democracy in Central and Eastern Europe

* democracy and political parties

* new parties in Europe (especially anti-establishment parties and movements)

* anti-politics, depoliticisation, alternatives to party government

* mixed methods in comparative research

* local and sub-national comparisons

* application of ethnographic methods to political parties.


University of Birmingham
Doctorate, Doctor of Philosophy | 2000
University of Birmingham
Other higher degree, Master of Social Science | 1996
University of Leeds
First Degree, Bachelor of Arts | 1992


I studied Russian and French at the University of Leeds and worked in Russia and the Czech Republic before returning to the UK to complete a Masters in Social Science and a  PhD at the University of Birmingham. I joined UCL-SSEES in 2003 having previously worked as Lecturer in Politics at Brunel University, West London.