A decade of Crisis in the European Union: Lessons from Greece

Zoe Lefkofridi, Alexia Katsanidou

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In September 2009, Greece entered the most challenging period in the history of the Third Hellenic Republic (1975-today). Ten years after George’s Papandreou’s dramatic appeal for financial rescue by - what would be later called- the ‘troika’ we highlight the most important dimensions of this crisis and reflect on its consequences. We begin with discussing the impact of crisis-induced reforms (e.g. in the health care system and the labour market) on diverse social groups. Then, we will explain how these reforms became the basis of a new division in Greek politics. In spite of electoral system continuity, the party system experienced change: this was manifest in high electoral volatility, higher effective number of parties, and shifting of the dimensions of political contestation. Voters were faced with a break from normality and a choice between voice, exit or loyalty to the old party system. The key features of the crisis-focused scholarly debate are: the rise of the extreme right, Euroscepticism, and populism. We conclude with reflecting on whether Greece has found a new equilibrium or whether it is still in full transformation to reach it given the broader European context.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Fields of Science and Technology Classification 2012

  • 506 Political Science


  • crisis
  • European Union
  • Greece

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