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Working on Europe: YUFE Academy, Session 3

22 september 2021 | 16:0018:00

| Voertaal: English

(Dit evenement is in het Engels)

Session 3: Executive Federalism and Politicisation in the European Union Before and During Covid-19

Lecturer: Dr. Alvaro Oleart | Postdoctoral researcher at Studio Europa Maastricht and Department of Political Science, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences of Maastricht University

Time and date: Wednesday 22 September (16.00-18.00)


Session details

This lecture departs from the political response to Covid-19 in the European Union (EU), and suggests that ‘executive federalism’ (see Crum, 2013) is normatively problematic. The lecture explores previous episodes of EU politicisation, such as the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations, in order to understand the institutional ‘opposition deficit’ of the EU. Throughout the lecture, we will discuss how politicisation should be seen as a symptom of the ‘normal’ politics of a democratic polity, as it enlarges the political arena by embedding European issues into national political debates. Demands for ‘Another Europe is Possible’ empower rather than hinder the legitimacy of the EU. This analytical perspective is then mobilised in order to make sense of the future of EU integration in general, and the Conference on the Future of Europe in particular.

Pre-attendance materials

  • Crum, B. (2013). Saving the Euro at the Cost of Democracy?. Journal of common market studies, 51(4), 614-630.
  • Bouza, L. and Oleart, A. (2018). From the 2005 Constitution’s ‘permissive consensus’ to TTIP’s ‘empowering dissensus’: The EU as a playing field for Spanish civil society. Journal of Contemporary European Research, 14(2), 87-104.
  • Podcast series ‘Europe after coronavirus’, available here:

Specific learning outcomes

  • Define and use the concept of ‘executive federalism’ in the EU context.
  • Apply various concepts and theories to concrete cases of EU politics and policy-making.
  • Make sense of current debates about the future of Europe and the role of politicisation.

Lecturer Profile

Dr. Alvaro Oleart is a postdoctoral researcher at Studio Europa Maastricht and the Department of Political Science, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences of Maastricht University. He is the author of the book “Framing TTIP in the European Public Spheres: Towards an Empowering Dissensus for EU Integration”, published by the Palgrave series in European Political Sociology. Previously, he worked as a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer at the Department of Political Science and Public Administration of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in the Horizon 2020 project ‘RECONNECT: Reconciling Europe with its Citizens through Democracy and the Rule of Law’. He holds a PhD in political communication from the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), and he is an active member of the Jean Monnet Network ‘OpenEUDebate’. The core of his academic research has been the interactive relationship between national and European politics, both from a public sphere and an institutional perspective. His main fields of interest are political communication, the European public sphere, the role of civil society in the EU policy-making, transnational social movements, EU trade policy, populism and democracy in Europe, and the analysis of discourse and narratives. His research has been published in international peer-reviewed journals, such as the Journal of Common Market Studies, the Journal of European Integration, the Journal of Contemporary European Research, Communication & Society or Politique Européenne.

What is the YUFE Academy?

Working on Europe YUFE Academy is a series of student-based, research-centred lectures jointly organised by the Maastricht University and Studio Europa Maastricht under the Young Universities for the Future of Europe (YUFE) alliance. Even though the program was developed with students in mind, you do not have to be a student to participate in the lectures, everyone is welcome to join!

The upcoming lecture series aims to provide unique and interdisciplinary research on Europe and European integration. Fostered through a proactive and critical debate, students will be engaged in exploring the most relevant concerns of the European Project and discover their role in shaping its future.

This year’s programme will feature five interconnected, two-hour sessions. The aim of the academy is to introduce the students to the topics of European inequalities, citizens’ participation and heritage, executive federalism, migration, and welfare. Enrolled students will be able to attend all lectures or participate in individual lectures that are of interest to them.


Students must register to individual lectures using the following button


Participation is free of charge.

The registration portal will be open until September 10, 2021.

The number of participants is limited to 150.


22 september 2021


Studio Europa Maastricht