The Anglo-German Research Fellowship Lecture Series for 2012/2013 - Hilary Term
The Anglo-German Research Fellowship Lecture Series for 2012/2013 - Michaelmas Term
Third Conference, Anglo-German State of the State Fellowship Programme, 'Transformations of the State', 11 May 2012
Functions of the modern state have disintegrated, power has shifted to other actors, supra-state constitutional polities and political systems have emerged, and citizens even adhere to legal rules that are not backed by the classical notion of state power. This conference brought together lawyers and political scientists to identify and discuss functions and transformations of the modern state with reference to the applicable normative frameworks and the relevant socio-political developments.
Keynote speaker: Professor Desmond King (Oxford)
A podcast of the key note speech by Professor Desmond King (Oxford) is now available HERE.
The ‘State of the state’ lecture series, Hilary term 2012
This term four talks have so far taken place. On 19 January, Jiri Priban (University of Wales) spoke on, 'The EU, post-sovereignty studies and their systems theoretical critique'.
On 25 January, Professor Simon Hix (London School of Economics) spoke on, 'The Effect of Transparency on Legislative Behaviour: Report on an Experiment in the European Parliament'.
On 26 January, Professor Antje Wiener (University of Hamburg) spoke on, ‘Constitutionalism Unbound or Scrutinised? The Kadi Case’.
On 24 February, Prof Yvonne Donders (University of Amsterdam) spoke on 'Economic, Social and Cultural Rights' See poster.
Christoph Mollers (Humboldt-University Berlin), 'Why there is no Governing with Judges', on Wednesday, 29 February 2012, 3:00pm, Faculty of Law, The Cube.
Paul Craig (University of Oxford), 'The Euro-Crisis: Law, Politics and Treaty Reform', on Tuesday, 6 March 2012, 1pm, Faculty of Law, Lecture Room 1.
Liesbet Hooghe and Gary Marks (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill), 'Decision making in 72 international organizations: Why so much supranationalism?' , on Thursday, 8 March 2012, in the 'Large Lecture Seminar Room at Nuffield College. See poster.
The ‘State of the state’ lecture series, Michaelmas term 2011
This term three talks took place. On 3 November Tanja Borzel (Free University of Berlin) spoke on, 'Good Governance and Bad Neighbours? The Limits of Transformative Power in Europe' Poster
On 17 November Kalypso Nicolaidis (Professor of International Relations, University of Oxford) spoke on, 'The Crisis of Demoi-Cracy in Europe'. Poster
On 23 November The Current Research in European Union Politics Seminar Series and The Anglo-German State of the State Fellowship Programme Lecture Series jointly presented, 'Explaining European Identity' by Professor Paolo Bellucci (Professor of Comparative Political Behaviour, University of Siena)
Conference: University of Oxford, May 21st 2011
The second conference of the Anglo-German State of the State Fellowship took place on Saturday, May 21st 2011 in the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Oxford. The theme of this conference was Transformations of the State: Interdisciplinary Perspectives. In the last two decades a wide range of disciplines (including economics, law, politics, history and sociology) have examined the extent to which driving forces like globalisation and modern information technologies challenge the capacity of nation states to provide the fundamental goods of governance, such as security, social welfare, legal certainty or the democratic nature of decision-making. The aim of this conference was to bring together international scholars from these different disciplines to present their latest research on the state of the state, and to foster the exchange of ideas and further inter-disciplinary links.
To find out more, click here.
To download the conference programme, click here.
The ‘State of the state’ lecture series 2010-11
The Anglo-German Fellowship invited a series of international scholars to the University of Oxford in Trinity Term 2011. The programme of events can be viewed here:
Programme for Trinity Term 2011.
Workshop: University of Bremen, May 7 2010
The one-day workshop provided a forum for presenting and discussing papers on the generic theme of the state from various disciplines and brought together participants and audience members from Oxford, Bremen, Göttingen and the Volkswagen Foundation. Organized by the first cohort of fellows – Lucie Cerna, Brigitte Leucht and Reidar Maliks – with the generous on-site support of the University of Bremen, particularly Michael Carle and Lothar Probst, the workshop offered participants the opportunity to examine the state from historical, theoretical and political perspectives and analyze the pressures the state has been under, be it from the European Union and its precursors, immigration challenges or resistance and disobedience.
Lucie Cerna’s panel on “Immigration and the State: Opportunities, Challenges and the Way Forward” brought together scholars from universities and research institutes in France, Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. Each presentation dealt with a different question concerning immigration and the state, such as global mobility, high-skilled immigration, citizenship and political representation of immigrants. The panel contributions were linked by a common theme: how have states reacted to varying pressures, ranging from non-state actors, the European Union and international organizations. The presentations raised a number of interesting questions about challenges to the state and a fruitful discussion with audience participants emerged.
Inspired by Peter Hall’s edited classic “The Political Power of Economic Ideas” (1989), the second panel, convened by Brigitte Leucht, explored how ideas have been translated into concrete policies in the trans- and supranational European Union. Contributions by three historians based in the United Kingdom and France tackled this question in the specific policy areas of competition, agriculture and development. In line with the interdisciplinary approach of the panel, a political scientist then commented on the three historical papers and triggered a lively discussion, which focused in particular on methodological problems. (With regard to the programme, please note that Björn Fleischer replaced Thomas Sommerer.)
Reidar Maliks’s panel “The State of Freedom” explored problems in the understanding of freedom and the state as these concepts were developed in the last decades of the 18th century in Germany and as they continue to be debated in political theory. Isaac Nakhimovsky (Cambridge) gave a talk on Fichte and the modern republic, Alexander Schmidt (Jena) discussed ideas of freedom and beauty in eighteenth-century German thought, Daniel Viehoff (Harvard) discussed democracy and coercion, and Reidar discussed views of revolution and evolution among Kant’s radical critics. Gunnar Beck (SOAS) summed up the papers in an incisive reflection on the relation between autonomy and political institutions.
If anything, the range of different approaches to the study of the state as well as the time span and geographical spaces covered by the workshop contributions have highlighted the breadth of this area of research. Arguably, it is precisely the extent of the research area, which defies the development of an all-encompassing research agenda for the future study of the state. At the same time, the workshop has confirmed once again the worthiness of the state as an object of study – a point also forcefully argued by Quentin Skinner in his recent inaugural lecture of the ‘State of the State’ programme.
Building of the success of the workshop, the fellows are planning to organize a larger-scale international conference at the University of Oxford in 2011.
The Programme of The Event is Available for Viewing
The ‘State of the state’ lecture series 2010
Quentin Skinner, ‘The Idea of the State: a Genealogy’, April 29, 2010
The Full Podcast is Available to Download
In the lecture, Professor Quentin Skinner gave a genealogy of the modern state. He argues that we should not understand the state simply as the government, but rather as a fictional person, and that this enables us to speak coherently about public power and to explain such things as shared responsibility for debt over generations.
Quentin Skinner is the Barber Beaumont Professor of the Humanities at Queen Mary and he is the previous Regius professor of modern history at Cambridge. His most recent book is Hobbes and Republican Liberty (2008).
‘Anglo-German 'State of the State' Fellowship Programme’ launch event, 30 October 2009
Dr. Heather Bell, Oxford’s director of international strategy, opened the event, before the coordinator on the German side Professor Lothar Probst of Bremen, introduced the program. He was followed by Professor Neil MacFarlane who introduced Dr. Wilhelm Krull, the secretary general of the Volkswagen Foundation, who held the opening speech on the role of foundations in supporting research.
The three new postdoctoral fellows presented their projects at a panel chaired by the Programme Coordinator, Dr. Sara Hobolt. Dr. Lucie Cerna, whose field is comparative political economy, discussed the state’s role in high-skilled immigration policy making, Dr. Brigitte Leucht, whose field is history, discussed the origins of supranational governance in the European Union, and Dr. Reidar Maliks, whose field is political theory, discussed Immanuel Kant’s conception of the state as an organized being. What unites them is a conviction of the relevance of studying the state.
This conviction was also on display in the Roundtable discussion that followed, which was an unmitigated success for the multidisciplinary approach in the social sciences. Professor Kalypso Nicolaïdis argued that we ought to get beyond state-centric notions of the European Union, while Professor Anne Deighton defended the importance of history for understanding present European differences. Professor Rana Mitter discussed how the Chinese state today deals with many of the same issues and challenges that it did a century ago, and Professor Andreas Busch argued that the state is the clear “winner” after the recent financial crisis. Finally, Professor David Miller discussed new conceptualizations of state authority and cautioned against moving beyond the state.
The Programme of The Event is Available for Viewing