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In a new six-month investigative series 'What is Populism', the international newspaper The Guardian explores with researchers who the new populists are, what factors brought them to power, and what they are doing once in office. Political sociologist and populism expert Matthijs Rooduijn and political scientist Sarah de Lange contribute to this series.

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In the last 10 years populist parties have won ground in more than a dozen democracies, many of them in Europe, and populist leaders govern countries with a combined population of almost two billion people.

Exploring who the new populists are

Against the background of the increasing populist vote and influence, the newspaper The Guardian has launched a series to investigate who the new populists are. What factors have brought them to power? What are they doing once in office?

Contribution from social scientists

Scientists from different countries contribute to this series, including political sociologist Matthijs Rooduijn and political scientist Sarah de Lange of the University of Amsterdam: