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Future changes in Europe’s political landscape.

001Future changes in Europe’s political landscape.

Blue sky Policy Alert 001

FP7 themes health agro ict nano energy environment transport ssh space security
ERA goals mobility infrastucture rtd institutions knowledge sharing  joint programming  cooperation 
Author(s)Ian Miles, Joe Ravetz, Rafael Popper, Thordis Sveinsdottir, Yanuar Nugroho
Contributor(s)Julia De-Clerk, Dalina Dumitrescu, Gabriele Griffin, Dirk Johann, Javier Medina, Konrad Miciukiewicz
ManifestationGradual development
Potential impacts in Europe
people's lives
legislation & regulation
economy & business
defence & security
government & politics
environment & ecosystems
science & technology
Importance for EUMajor
Strategic attentionby 2030 Major  by 2050 Moderate
Type of impactVery negative
Inspired byEC research on Social Sciences and Humanities (Conflicts, peace and human rights)
Related toFP7 projects: CRIC, INFOCON
Keywords, , , , , , ,

Future changes in Europe’s political landscape.

Thematic area(s)

Social Sciences and Humanities


Research topic

Recent electoral results in various member states demonstrate a gradual shift to right wing and nationalistic politics. Members of right wing and national parties are winning seats in local, national and EU governmental institutions. The reasons for the shift by voters to the right have been pinpointed as increasing power of globalisation (loss of the national) and increasing migration. Recent history has demonstrated the consequences of unbridled right wing extremism and research is vital to determine the cause of recent shift toward this ideology so that appropriate response can be formulated.



Research could focus on shift in public perception which gives rise to far-right electoral shift by studying the roots of right wing support. Research could, for that purpose, focus on analysing mass media and political discourse in order to understand attitudes towards far-right ideology. Research can be both backward and forward looking in that it examines past and contemporary far-right support as well as the future of far-right support in Europe. Research could focus on challenges such as poverty, inequality and immigration to determine their role in public support for far-right ideology.


Expected impact

Research should a) determine the scale of the shift towards far-right political ideology; b) determine variations and commonalities between far-right movements in Europe c) devise strategies for appropriate policy responses across EU; d) inform common legislation and regulation across EU; e) inform educational strategies that will increase democratic participation and teach the history of far-right movements and their influence on European history.


Importance for Europe

Europe has seen, in recent history, the devastating effect of extreme far-right support. It is vital that policy responses which aim to monitor and respond to this shift are informed by research which aims to understand this attitude shift as well as predict foreseeable implications these changes may have. It is furthermore important that EU forms a coherent legislative response that could guide member states in forming their legislation.


Disclaimer: The wild card presented in this brief may not happen at all or in the near future. iKNOW is a new EU funded research project aimed to explore surprising events (wild cards) and emerging issues (weak signals) potentially shaping or shaking the future of Europe and the world.