The Populism RPN was established in March 2019. The network has been merged in October 2022 with the CEPR Political Economy Programme (POE), with which the RPN has cooperated closely,  in particular in organising the joint POLECON Webinar Series in 2020-2022 and a joint Symposium in June 2022 in Stockholm. 

Depending on the definition, in the last ten years the European populists’ vote share in general elections increased by about 10-15 percentage points. Today, the number of large countries with populists in government is higher than ever in history.

There are two reasons to be concerned about the populists’ popularity. One is that their promises are not macroeconomically sustainable (as in Latin America in the past or in Turkey today). Most populists, however, have learned this lesson and once in power, recognise the macroeconomic constraints. The second reason is much more important - modern populists promise and, once in power, implement policies that (i) destroy economic and political checks and balances and (ii) create barriers for economic and political competition.

The evidence-based policy advice on why the recent rise of populism took place and how to counter it is still quite scarce. The main objective of this RPN was to bridge the gap between research and specific practical solutions.

In addition, the RPN maintained the VoxEU Populism page as a forum for the wider debate.


The Populism RPN hosted several events, including a joint Symposium with the POE Programme. 

The RPN also co-organised the monthly POLECON Webinar Series with the  POE Programme and the Preventing Conflict: Policies for Peace RPN.



Yann Algan

Dean of Pre-experience Programs and Professor of Economics HEC Paris School of Management

Sascha O. Becker

Professor and Xiaokai Yang Chair of Business and Economics Monash University; Part-time Professor of Economics University Of Warwick

Tito Boeri

Full Professor and Head of the Economics Department Bocconi University; Senior Visiting Professor London School Of Economics And Political Science

David Dorn

UBS Foundation Professor of Globalization and Labor Markets University Of Zurich

Ruben Durante

Professor of Economics National University Of Singapore; ICREA Researcher Pompeu Fabra University

Christian Dustmann

Director Centre For Research And Analysis Of Migration; Director, The Institute for the Economy and the Future of Work Rockwool Foundation Berlin; Professor of Economics University College London

Barry Eichengreen

George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Political Science University of California, Berkeley

Luigi Guiso

AXA Professor of Household Finance Einaudi Institute for Economics and Finance (EIEF)

Anna Maria Mayda

Professor of Economics (with Tenure) in the Department of Economics and School of Foreign Service Georgetown University

Massimo Morelli

Professor of Political Science and Economics, Director of the Research Unit Pericles in the Baffi Carefin Center Bocconi University

Elias Papaioannou

Academic Co-Director LBS Wheeler Institute for Business and Development; Professor of Economics London Business School

Fellow, Macroeconomics and Growth / RPN Member, Preventing Conflict: Policies for Peace / RPN Member, European Economic Policy / Fellow, Political Economy

Torsten Persson

Swedish Research Council Distinguished Professor at the Institute for International Economic Studies (IIES) Swedish Institute for Social Research (SOFI), Stockholm University

Fellow, Macroeconomics and Growth / Fellow, Public Economics / Fellow, Development Economics / RPN Member, Populism / Fellow, Political Economy

Maria Petrova

Researcher, Barcelona Institute for Political Economy and Government; Affiliate Professor Barcelona School Of Economics; ICREA Research Professor and Associate Professor of Economics Pompeu Fabra University

Dani Rodrik

Ford Foundation Professor of International Political Economy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government Harvard University

Gilles Saint-Paul

Professor of Economics École Normale Supérieure; PSE Chaired Professor Paris School of Economics (PSE)

Andre Sapir

Senior Fellow Bruegel; Professor Emeritus Université Libre De Bruxelles

Moritz Schularick

President Kiel Institute For The World Economy; Professor of economics Sciences Po Paris; Director & Professor of Economics University Of Bonn

Konstantin Sonin

John Dewey Distinguished Service Professor Irving B. Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies University Of Chicago

Stefanie Stantcheva

Founder of the Social Economics Lab; Nathaniel Ropes Professor of Political Economy Harvard University

Guido Tabellini

Professor of Economics, Intesa Sanpaolo Chair in Political Economics and Vice President Bocconi University

Mathias Thoenig

Professor of Economics at the School of Business and Economics Hec Lausanne; Centenary Visiting Professor of PPE at the Department of Economics University Of Oxford

Fellow, International Trade and Regional Economics / Fellow, Macroeconomics and Growth / RPN Member, Preventing Conflict: Policies for Peace / Fellow, Political Economy / RPN Member, Geoeconomics

Christoph Trebesch

Director of Research Area "International Finance and Macroeconomics" Kiel Institute For The World Economy; Professor of Economics Kiel University