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Dermot Hodson

Professor of Political Economy
Assistant Dean for Education


I am Professor of Political Economy in the Department of Politics and Assistant Dean for Postgraduate Research and Teaching and Learning in the School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy at Birkbeck. I studied at Trinity College, Dublin, the College of Europe, Bruges and the London School of Economics and worked as an economist at the European Commission’s Directorate General for Economic and Financial Affairs before joining Birkbeck. I have taught at the London School of Economics and held visiting positions at the College of Europe in Natolin, the University of Agder in Kristiansand and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I am Visiting Professor in the Department of European Politics and Governance Studies at the College of Europe, Bruges.


The primary focus of my research is the European Union (EU). In an era of Brexit, Orbán and Trump, my work explores how European states respond to economic interdependence and public mistrust in traditional modes of decision-making.

I am also interested in economic policy in national settings and in international financial institutions and fora at a time when anti-politics and anti-globalisation sentiment is hardening.

My approach to these issues is grounded in the study of international political economy, comparative political economy and EU politics. I also engage with debates in European and international law and comparative constitutionalism.

My other research interests include the relationship between politics and the arts.

Main research interests

I have published extensively on Economic and Monetary Union. My 2011 book on this topic explores how key elements of eurozone governance, including the Eurogroup, the Stability and Growth Pact and the Broad Economic Policy Guidelines, depart from the so-called Community method of policy-making.

Since 2010, I have examined how and why the euro crisis has transformed eurozone governance through reforms such as the Six Pack, Two Pack and European Banking Union.

My research also encompasses wider questions of European integration. My 2015 book with Uwe Puetter (Central European University) and Chris Bickerton (University of Cambridge) developed the new intergovernmentalism, a novel theoretical approach for understanding the turbulent dynamics of European integration in the post-Maastricht period.

My recent work on this research agenda asks how European integration continues in spite of the rise of Eurosceptic challenger parties and governments.

In 2017, I joined John Peterson (University of Edinburgh) as co-editor for the fourth edition of The Institutions of the European Union. This book is a key text for anyone wishing to understand the functions, powers, and composition of the EU's institutions.

The relationship between politics and law is a recurring theme in my research. My early work with Imelda Maher (UCD Sutherland School of Law) used the concept of soft law to understand the EU’s Open Method of Coordination. Our 2018 book investigates changing constitutional rules and norms concerning the negotiation and approval of EU treaties. It explains the rise of parliaments, referendums and courts in treaty making at the EU level – and in each of the 28 EU member states – since 1950.

My research on economic policy in national settings has encompassed the design of fiscal rules in EU member states, social partnership in Ireland and macroeconomic policy in the UK. I have written about the role of the International Monetary Fund and the G20 in international economic surveillance and crisis management.

Other research interests

I convene Birkbeck’s Seminars on Politics, the Arts, Culture and Entertainment (SPACE) series and I am a member of the photography + (con) text network. I have published on the politics of documentary photography and, in 2018, organised a three-day conference at Birkbeck on images in the post-truth era.

I am co-editor of 10 Gower Street: The Birkbeck Politics Department Blog and co-presenter of Birkbeck's British politics podcast, Westminster Watch.

I direct the Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence Programme, which allows suitably qualified writers to spend up to a year at the Department of Politics. For further details about this programme, please see here.



Edited special issues of journals

Journal articles and book chapters



My research has a strong policy focus and I have engaged extensively with EU and national policy-makers.

I have given evidence to the House of Lords EU Financial Affairs Sub-Committee on various aspects of my research and serve as an external consultant to the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

I am a member of the Irish Government’s Global Foreign Policy Network.


I teach on a range of undergraduate and postgraduate modules at Birkbeck, including:

  • Public Policy: Interests, Ideas and Institutions
  • Politics of European Integration
  • The Politics of Global Europe
  • Global Politics, Governance and Security
  • Contemporary British Politics

I have previously contributed to the following modules at Birkbeck and elsewhere:

  • European Union: Integration, Politics and Policy (Birkbeck)
  • European Management and Political Economy (Birkbeck)
  • Comparative European Public Policy (Birkbeck)
  • EU Macroeconomic Policy and Economic Governance (College of Europe)
  • The Economics of European Integration (London South Bank)
  • International Economics (London Metropolitan University)
  • Economic Analysis of the European Union (LSE)

PhD Supervision

I am currently supervising PhD students working on:

  • The governance of UK alcohol policy
  • EU Sugar policy

I have successfully supervised PhD students who worked on:

  • The governance of water (Dr Patrick Coupar)
  • EU migration policy (Dr Marco Scipioni)
  • EU public procurement policy (Dr Abby Semple)

I am always keen to hear from suitably qualified applicants who are interested in doing a PhD under my supervision. If you have a PhD topic that fits with my research interests, please feel free to e-mail me.

I also direct Birkbeck's Politics MPhil/PhD programme and welcome general inquiries on doctoral studies at Birkbeck.


I am Assistant Dean for Education in Birkbeck’s School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy. In this role, I am responsible for promoting excellence in learning and teaching for six Departments and nearly 3,000 students.

I previously served as Assistant Dean for Postgraduate Research. In this role, I was responsible for 200 postgraduate research students in six Departments.

I have had a variety of other administrative roles in Birkbeck's Department of Politics including Personal Tutor for final year BA Global Politics and International Relations students (2015-ongoing), Director for Teaching Quality and Enhancement (2011-15) and Programme Director for the MSc European Politics and Policy (2015), MSc Global Governance and Emerging Powers (2014-15), MSc Global Governance and Public Policy (2009-12) and the MSc European Policy and Management (2008-10).

Contact details

Tel: +44 (0) 20 3926 1668


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