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Swedish Network for European Studies – Lnu

The Swedish Network for European Studies (SNES) at Linnaeus University (LNU) conducts research on European politics by focusing on the EU as Foreign Policy-Maker, European Integration, EU Institutions and Decision-Making, the EU and a Challenged Liberal Democracy and European Political Entrepreneurship.

SNES is one of three networks within the Swedish government's initiative to promote European studies and has been active since 1997. The research environment Swedish Network for European Studies (SNES) at Linnaeus University (LNU) has existed since the mid-1990s and consists of researchers conducting theoretical and empirical studies Participating scholars collaborate with national and international political scientists, economists and pedagogues in different projects. SNES-LNU has established international collaboration with partners at University of Sunshine Coast (Australia), Harvard University (USA), Columbia University (USA), University of Central Missouri (USA), California Lutheran University (USA), Western Carolina University (USA), Webster University (USA), University of New Hampshire-Manchester (USA), North-West University (South Africa), Northumbria University (UK), Oxford University (UK), Franklin Institute Alcála (Spain), Instituto Mora (Mexico), Pristhina University (Kosovo), Syddansk university (Denmark), Høgskolen i Østfold (Norway) and Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece).

Research leader

Daniel Silander

Today, SNES-LNU focuses on the following research themes:

Theme 1: EU Foreign Policy-Making

Research focuses on the European Union (EU) as a regional and global foreign policy actor. We analyse EU's relations to EU candidate countries and the EU's neighbourhood policy, with specific interest in the eastern dimension towards post-Soviet territory. Focus is primarily on EU's foreign policy relations concerning democracy promotion, security policy, and integration with particular interest in EU-Russian relations and EU and the Eastern Partnerships. Research is also including the EU as a global actor in connection to security policy crises.

Project-Leader Natia Gamkrelidze/Martin Nilsson

Theme 2: European Integration, EU Institutions and EU Policy-Making

A second theme of research is on European crisis and the impact on integration and policy-making. The EU is nowadays facing multiple crises. The multiple crises have resulted in politicization of EU topics and increasingly support to radical right and Eurosceptic parties in all EU member states. Despite efforts to enhance harmonisation and integration at EU level, member states have become more reluctant to transfer greater power to the EU institutions. Our research focuses on the different impacts of those crises on the entire European integration process and on specific aspects of it (different EU policy fields, EU decision-making, EU law and its implementation, etc.).

Project Leader Brigitte Pircher

Theme 3: The EU and a Challenged Liberal Democracy

A third theme of research is the changes and challenges of the liberal democracy in Europe. During the last decades, we have witnessed how a global democratic expansion has changed into backsliding due to autocratization, illiberalism and populism.  The EU consists of illiberal member-states, but also autocratic institutions that together challenge the liberal democratic order in Europe and the EU as a normative power.

Project Leader Daniel Silander

Theme 4: European political entrepreneurship

The research theme European Political Entrepreneurship was initiated in 2015 with strategic support from the Faculty of Social Sciences as part of Linnaeus University's venture on the entrepreneurial university. Our overall task is to enrich established entrepreneurship research with in-depth knowledge about how the political arena can promote favourable conditions for entrepreneurship by studying political entrepreneurship. Our research has a specific focus on European political entrepreneurship and how the EU through multi-level governance and Europeanization may act political entrepreneurial to promote and protect good governance, prosperity and wealth. 

Project Leader Charlotte Silander

Selection of on-going research:

  • EU, the Eastern Partnership and the Democracy-Security Nexus

  • EU-China on Climate Change

  • EU and the Israeli-Palestine-conflict

  • EU and Agenda 2030 – Goal 16

  • EU, Kosovo and Democracy

  • Changes of member states’ transposition and enforcement of EU law in times of disintegration

  • The Council of the EU as policy entrepreneur for the internal market and enhanced deregulation 

  • Gradual rise of different modes of opposition in the Council of the EU

  • Evaluation of  implementation of different equality and diversity measures in European and Nordic academic institutions 

  • National policy for promoting gender equality among academic staff in the European and Nordic countries

  • European and Nordic research on gender equality in academic careers

  • The EU and the Agenda 2030 - European Political Entrepreneurship and Sustainable Development Goal

  • Democracy at the Crossroad


We warmly invite you to join us in seminars via Zoom to discuss the latest issues in European politics. We meet via Zoom the first Monday each month at 12–13. Contact

Active researchers