Understanding the ‘rise’ of the radical left in Europe: it’s not just the economy, stupid

A considerable amount of attention has been paid to understanding the electoral rise of populist radical right parties in Europe. However, much less research has focused on understanding the recent electoral fortunes of the populist radical left across Europe. James F. Downes, Edward Chan, Venisa Wai and Andrew Lam argue that three key factors, in the form of the 2008–13 economic crisis, the decline of the centre left and Euroscepticism can partly explain the post-crisis electoral growth of populist radical left parties in Europe. In addition, it is important to note that this electoral growth is higher than centre left and right parties, but considerably lower than populist radical right parties.