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About Vassilis Petsinis

Vassilis Petsinis is a Marie Curie Experienced Researcher at the University of Tartu (Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies). His specialisation is European politics and ethnopolitics with a regional focus on central and southeast Europe (including the Baltic States). He holds a PhD from the University of Birmingham. His personal profile on can be accessed here.

Articles by Vassilis Petsinis

This week’s front page editor


Sunny Hundal is openDemocracy’s social media editor.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Estonia’s populist and radical right: how radical are they?

Many political observers have noticed how the most recent anti-immigration protests relating to the debate on the UN compact have displayed comparatively higher levels of violent rhetoric and political heat.

Why Catalonia is not the Balkans

An analysis of where the Spain/Yugoslavia comparison succeeds, and where it fails.

Competing conservatisms in Serbia and Croatia

Nationalist conservatives are dominating the political scenes in Serbia and Croatia, but how do they compare and differ in the way they rule?

Enter Serbia's ‘Orbán’? Aleksandar Vučić and his catch-all politics

Why the right-wing Serbian President's appointment of an openly gay woman to the position of Prime Minister is not as incongruous as it appears.

Syriza and ANEL: a match made in Greece

Are we seeing the convergence of Syriza and their right-wing coalition partners, ANEL, into a single party?

The geopolitics of Trumpology

A look at the curious emergence of pro-Trumpism among the far-right parties of Greece, Hungary and Estonia.

The banality of Golden Dawn

With Golden Dawn having entrenched themselves as the third-largest party in Greece, can they still be considered a 'criminal gang'? Or is this just the new political normal in Greece?

In Estonia, we should be careful not to overstate the impact of the information war

The Baltic States are now seen as the next frontline in Russia’s hybrid war. But the political preferences of ethnic Russian communities are more complicated than meets the eye. 

What does an anti-Semitic party look like in Europe today?

As Britain debates antisemitism and the left, support for populist right-wing parties using hardline anti-Semitic messages is growing across the continent. 

Syriza one year on: what happened to the radical left dream in Greece?

In the year since they came to power, Syriza have all but capitulated on their radical economic program. But what happened to other 'leftist' issues such as church-state relations, minority rights and the military?

Kyriakos Mitsotakis: a new leader with an old name

Why did New Democracy members choose the socially liberal son of a former prime minister as the leader of their party, and of the political opposition to Syriza?

The refugee question in Europe: 'south' vs 'east'

The refugee crisis has triggered a diplomatic row between Greece and certain 'new' member-states from Central and Eastern Europe. What does this tell us?

Why Jeremy Corbyn is not Alexis Tsipras

Those who think that Jeremy Corbyn could turn the Labour party into a British Syriza should think again.

Fomenting unnecessary alarmism (or why the scenarios of a “civil war” in Greece are unfounded)

Claims that the situation in Greece may escalate into a 'civil war' misunderstand the nature of modern Greek society.

From pro-American to pro-Russian? Nikola Gruevski as a political chameleon

A former staunch ally of the US-led War on Terror, Macedonia PM Nikola Gruevski has gradually turned his country away from the west towards Russia - all the while keeping his neoconservative ideology intact.

A ’different’ commemoration of Russia’s Victory Day: reporting from Thessaloniki, Greece (9 May 2015)

Does the ostentatious celebration of Russia's victory in the Great Patriotic War, which took place in Thessaloniki last week, tell us anything about the state of Russophilia in Greece?

Press-clipping the Tsipras-Putin meeting: the early impressions

How did the Greek press react to the recent Tsipras-Putin meeting in Moscow?

Of Trojan horses and realpolitik: The Tsipras-Putin meeting and its broader implications

Today Alexis Tsipras will sit down in Moscow for talks with Vladimir Putin. This meeting has been dogged by controversy and has led many to wonder: what exactly do Russia and Greece hope to gain from this encounter?

The convergence of divergence? Youth radicalization in Hungary, Bulgaria, and Greece

What separates youth radicalization in Greece from other European countries such as Hungary and Bulgaria?

Putin’s 'useless idiots' or signs of a deeper pathology? Russophilia and national populism in Greece

A number of ministers in the new Greek government have already been criticised by European commentators for their supposedly pro-Russian views. What explains this unique strain of Russophilia among the Greek radical left?

Random friends or asymmetric ‘Trojan horses’? An analysis of the far right in Central and Southeast Europe.

What has orientated parties such as Jobbik and Golden Dawn towards Moscow, and what are the implications for Russian foreign policy in the EU-peripheries of Central and Southeast Europe?   

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