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Research interests

Dr James' research concerns the development and adaptation of democratic governance and public policy to contemporary socio-economic and geopolitical challenges. In particular he is interested in the impact of European integration on the politics, policy, and polity of the member states: how the demands and pressures of EU membership give rise to political, policy, and institutional change at the domestic level, and how national governments respond by attempting to upload their policy preferences into the EU policy process. His research interests are therefore broad and include EU politics and policy, theories of European integration, Economic and Monetary Union, British and Irish European policy, and political and economic governance.His doctoral research explored the concept of Europeanisation as projection: how national governments adapt strategically in order to enhance the projection of national policy preferences. Employing innovative conceptual and analytical frameworks, the study sought to analyse and explain the strategic adaptation of the national EU policy making process within the UK and Irish core executives under the Blair and Ahern governments. In the future he hopes to undertake related research into how EU membership shapes patterns of governance at both the national and supranational levels: in particular, examining the extent to which the increasing prominence of the European Council gives rise to an intensive form of transgovernmentalism that empowers heads of government/state within the member states.Dr James has presented papers at several international conferences in both the UK and US, including the Political Studies Association annual conference (in 2006 and 2008), the University Association of Contemporary European Studies annual conference (in 2007), and the British Politics Group conference on 'Britain after Blair' (as part of the American Political Science Association annual conference in Chicago in 2007).

Dr James' current research involves understanding how policy makers have responded to the global financial and economic crisis. Recently he has undertaken research exploring the re-launch of the EU's economic reform agenda in 2010. This analyses how the Greek sovereign debt crisis forced the European Commission to reinvent the Lisbon Strategy as an agenda for fiscal consolidation in order to re-legitimate a policy that was widely perceived as having failed. In 2011 Dr James was awarded an ESRC grant under the Future Research Leaders Scheme (Ref ES/K001019/1). The project, running from October 2012 to September 2014, sets out to explore how the City of London can be conceptualised as a multi-level policy actor and to understand the profound impact of the financial crisis. By undertaking a comparative analysis of recent financial regulatory reforms, this high impact study intends to engage policy makers and practitioners in an analysis of the shifting policy preferences, coordination activity and lobbying networks that exist across the City in order to shape the regulatory agenda at the national, European and international levels. This is intended to contribute to the development of future comparative research on the politics of international financial centres in different parts of the world.  

Research interests (short)

Dr James’ research interests include EU politics and policy, comparative political economy, governance and regulation, and the politics of financial services.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, Singing from the Same Hymn Sheet? Europeanisation and European Poliocy Making in the UK and Irish Core Executives, 1997-2007 , University of Manchester

Award Date: 1 Jan 2009

Master of Arts, University of Manchester

Award Date: 1 Jan 2005

Master of Arts, University of Liverpool

Award Date: 1 Jan 2002

Bachelor of Arts, University of Liverpool

Award Date: 1 Jan 2001

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