Articles by James F. Downes

June 4, 2024

How real is the threat of the populist far right in the European Parliament elections?

James F. Downes
James F. Downes argues that elections to the European Parliament will likely lead to record representation for populist far-right parties. Lack of unity and ideological divisions, however, will make it difficult for the far right to wield any real power
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April 29, 2024

China’s Belt and Road Initiative: re-evaluating the economic impact

James F. Downes
James F. Downes and Mathew Wong re-evaluate the impact of the Belt and Road Initiative by examining important macroeconomic linkages between China and other economies. Combining statistical analyses of 163 countries, alongside EU case studies , they find that the economic impact of the BRI is limited, and determined largely by pre-BRI economic factors
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July 28, 2023

Spain’s electoral gridlock and the road ahead

James F. Downes
Sebastian Contin Trillo-Figueroa & James F. Downes argue that the recent 2023 Spanish general election is likely to lead to further volatility and fragmentation in Spain on both the left and right of the political spectrum. In turn, this will make governing in Spain a very difficult task ahead in the future
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June 5, 2023

EU-China relations: a growing global rivalry

James F. Downes
James F. Downes, Mathew Wong and Man Hoo So argue that the European Union-China relationship has evolved considerably over recent years into a growing global rivalry in 2023. The EU has become more interventionist towards China, but there exist large divisions within the core EU institutions and member states towards relations with China
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November 22, 2022

The disunity of the Italian centre-left opposition on Ukraine

James F. Downes
Russia’s war on Ukraine has split the Italian centre-left opposition between pacifists and those arguing in favour of arming Ukraine. Disunity on how to respond to the crisis, write Valerio Alfonso Bruno, James F. Downes and Alessio Scopelliti, will likely weaken these parties and strengthen Meloni's right-wing coalition
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June 22, 2021

Why centre-right parties adopt hardline positions on immigration at their peril

James F. Downes
To guard against vote loss, parties of the centre right are taking a tough stance on immigration. James F. Downes, Matthew Loveless and Andrew Lam argue that such parties risk bringing far-right ideology into the political mainstream, and undermining the very tenets of liberal democracy they profess to uphold
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photograph of James F. Downes
James F. Downes
Assistant Professor (Senior) & Head (Programme Leader) Politics & Public Administration Programme, Hong Kong Metropolitan University

James researches the rise of populist radical-right parties in Western and Central-Eastern Europe, alongside the key issue of immigration (right-wing party competition).

His current research investigates the macro-economic effects of China's BRI, alongside EU-China Relations and EU-Governance within the fields of comparative politics and international relations.

James is also a Research Fellow at the Global Europe Centre (University of Kent/Brussels School of International Studies) alongside the Far-Right Analysis Network (FRAN) and for the Center for Research & Social Progress (Italy).

His recent research publications have appeared in the Journal of Common Market Studies and Electoral Studies, among others.

With Valerio Alfonso Bruno and Alessio Scopelliti, James is currently writing a book entitled The Rise of the Radical Right in Italy (ibidem Press/Columbia University Press).

His recent media interviews relating to European politics and Brexit have appeared in international media outlets including CNBC, CNN and South China Morning Post (SCMP).

He tweets @DrJamesFDownes

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