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Photo of Dr Dario Castiglione

Dr Dario Castiglione

Dott Fil (Palermo), MA DPhil (Sussex)

Associate Professor


01392 723173

Amory B208

My field of interest is political theory and its history, with particular application to contemporary European developments. My main areas of research comprise democratic theory, the interconnection between state and society, the history of early modern political thought, and democracy and constitutionalism in the EU.

I am currently one of the Editors of the ECPR Press.

During the Academic Year 2007-08, I was the Gaetano Mosca Chair for the "Dipartimento di Science Politiche" of the University of Turin. And from 2003 to 2005 I was Senior Research Fellow at Center for Democracy and the Third Sector, Georgetown University, Washington DC

I have been Visiting Fellow or Professor at the following institutions: Research School of Social Sciences, Australia National University, Canberra; Zentrum fur Europaische Rechtspolitik, University of Bremen; Robert Schuman Centre and European University Institute, Florence (Forum on "European Constitutionalism"); and the New School University, New York.

In 2001 I gave one of the Plenary Lectures at the 28th Annual Hume Society Conference, University of Victoria (BC).

Research interests

Main Research Interests

My main field of interest is political theory and its history, with particular application to contemporary European developments.

Main areas of research comprise:

· Democracy, citizenship and constitutionalism in Europe, with particular application to the development of the European Union as both a ‘polity’ and a ‘regime’.

· Democratic theory and the interconnection between state and society, in particular ideas of representation and accountability, civil society and social capital, public and private.

· European ideas and the history of political thought; with particular interest in the early modern republican and the jurisprudential traditions; the Scottish Enlightenment, and the debate about commerce and morality; the historiography of political thought and its methodological implications; philosophical scepticism.

Research Projects

My main research interest at the moment is in the area of political representation, although I am concluding several projects on European democracy and on more historical subjects. My interest in political representation developed while I was a Research Fellow at the Georgetown 'Centre for Democracy and the Third Sector', where I organized several initiatives together with Professor Mark Warren. On the them of representation in Europe, I am at present collaborating with Sandra Kroeger, who is Marie-Curie Fellow in Exeter for two years.

In the past, I have been part of a number of research projects financed by either the ESRC or the European Commission on issues of European democracy, constitutionalism, new governance, and citizenship.


Main Research Grants

· 2011-2013: Grant in support of FP7 Intra-European Marie Curie fellowship (Dr Sandra Kroeger): 192.850Euros

· 2004-2007: IP on ‘New Methods of Governance’ (NEWGOV), Exeter Partner: 20,000Euros

· 2002-2005: RTD consortium on ‘Citizenship and democratic legitimacy in the European Union (CIDEL), Exeter Partner: 162,694 Euros

· 2001: EURESCO Conference on ‘Social Capital: Interdisciplinary Perspectives’, sponsored by ESF and EC (plus a £3,000 contribution from the OEOS ESRC Programme): 45,000Euros

· 1999-2002: ESRC Research Grant on ‘Strategies of Civic Inclusion in Pan-European Civil Society’ (main co-ordinator) as part of the Programme on ‘One Europe or Several’: £161,090

· 1998-2000: TSER Network on European Citizenship (EURCIT), Scientist in Charge for Exeter: 29,220ECU (Exeter’s share)

· 1998-99: ESRC Research Grant on ‘Citizenship and sovereignty in a mixed polity’ (together with Professor Richard Bellamy, Reading): £41,913 (R000222446)

· 1994-97: ESRC Research Grant on ‘Principles and languages of the constitution of Europe’ (together with Professor Richard Bellamy, Reading): £24,140 (R000221170)


Editorial Collaborations

Editor of ECPR Press

Associate Editor of the European Journal of Political Theory

Member of the editorial board of the online, peer-reviewed journal: InTransizione

Reader for Publishers: Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, Manchester University Press, Palgrave Macmillan, Routledge, Polity, Sage, Continuum.

Academic Journals, American Political Science Review, British Journal of Political Science, European Journal of Political Research, History of Political Thought, Political Studies, Journal of Political Philosophy, Journal of Common Market Studies, British Journal of the History of Philosophy, British Journal of Politics and International Relations, Res Publica, Review of International Political Economy, Contemporary Political Theory, European Journal of Political Theory, The Journal of European Integration, Journal of International Relations, European Journal of Philosophy, European Journal of International Relations, The Swiss Political Science Review, Hume Studies, Constellations, Theoria, Perspectives on European Politics and Society, Polity, International Studies Perspectives, Policy and Politics, International Studies Review, Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy, Government and Opposition, Journal of Social Policy, Politics, Philosophy Politics and Economics, Ratio Juris.

Referee for Grant and Post-doctoral Fellowship:

ESRC (UK), the SSHR Canada, the Italian Ministry for University and Research, the European Commission for FP7, the European Science Foundation, the Dutch Research Council, and the French Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR).

Research supervision

Theories of Democracy and civil society
Constitutionalism: Theory and history
The development of the European Union: constitutional and democratic issues
Citizenship and social capital
History of political thought: methods and approaches
17th and 18th political thought, with particular reference to the Scottish Enlightenment, republicanism, natural law theories
The political thought of authors such as David Hume, Bernard Mandeville

Research students

I am supervising the following research students:

Marios Filis (PhD February 2013)

Alexandra Bohme

Jan Pieter Beetz

Keith Sutherland

Laura Moralee

Farhad Kerimov (second supervisor)

Martin Moorby (co-supervisor)


Other information


At present, I am working on a book on European democracy, and on various articles on poltiical representation.

Conferences and WorkshopsAs part of my research activities, I have organized numerous conferences and workshops. This is a list of the main events which I have promoted:

- Conference on New Trends in Political Representation in the EU, (co-organised with Sandra Kröger), University of Exeter, May 2012, funded by the Jean Monnet Programme. 

- Workshop on ‘”We the People” A new object of democratic analysis’ (co-organized with Sofia Näsström), ECPR Joint Sessions, St. Gallen, April 2011


- Symposium on Michael Saward, The Representative Claim, University of Exeter, October 2010


- Panel at the ECPR conference, Potsdam 2009


- APSA Roundtable on ‘Social Capital and Inequality’, Boston, August 2008

- (Co-organiser of) the Conference on "Democratic Representation" at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver May 2006


- Panel on "Changing ideas of accountability, responsibility and representation in democratic governance", 3rd ECPR Conference, Budapest, September 2005

- Panel on "Representation and participation in democratic theory", at the MPSA Annual Conference, Chicago, April 2005

- Research Workshop on "The transformation of Representation", CDATS, Georgetown University, Washington DC, June 2004



- The public discourse of law and politics in multilingual societies (IILS, Onati, 6-8 June, 2001)

- EURESCO Conference on "Social Capital: Interdisciplinary Perspectives" (Exeter, September 2001)

- Colloquium on "Constitutionalism, democracy and citizenship" (University of Exeter, November 2000)




� �The Culture of Toleration�, Conference of the Association of Social and Legal Philosophy (University of Exeter, April 2000)

� 1999 Conference of Political Thought (St. Catherine College, Oxford), January 1999

� �The Constitution in Transformation�, Workshop in preparation of the Political Studies Special Issue (UEA, September 1995)

� �History and Theory in National Contexts� (University of Exeter, November 1994)

� �The Constitution of Europe� (University of Exeter, June 1993)

� �Public and Private Spheres in the Eighteenth Century� (University of Exeter, May 1992 and March 1993)

� �The Greening of Politics� (University of Exeter, March 1991)

� �Open Forum on Easter Europe� (University of Exeter, February 1990)

� �La Trasformazione della Sinistra Italiana� (University of Palermo, November 1989).

Awards and Visiting Positions

1983-85: Three one-year Research Awards from Fondazione Luigi Einaudi, Torino

1988: Visiting Fellow, Research School of Social Sciences, Australia National University, Canberra

1995: Visiting Scholar, Zentrum f�r Europ�ische Rechtspolitik, University of Bremen

1996: Guest Editor of Political Studies Special Issue

1999: �Gaetano Mosca Lecture� February 1999, Dipartimento di Politica, Stato e Diritto, University of Palermo

2000 (July): Course on �Supranational and International Democracy� as part of the 8th IWM International Summer School in Political Philosophy (Cortona) organized by the Institut f�r die Wissenschaften vom Menschen (Vienna).

2000 (October): Course on �Cosmopolitismo ed Istituzioni Sovranazionali� as part of the Global Governance Programme at Scuola Superiore St. Anna (Pisa).

2001 (July): Plenary Lecture for the 28th Annual Hume Society Conference, University of Victoria, BC

2001 (September): Chair of the Organizing Committee for the EURESCO Conference on �Social Capital: Interdisciplinary Perspectives� (jointly funded by the European Science Foundation and the European Commission).

2003-2004: Forum Visiting Fellow, Robert Schuman Centre and European University Institute, Florence, for the Forum on �European Constitutionalism�

2003-04: Member of the High-Level Group, commissioned by the Council of Europe to write a Green Paper on the �Future of European Democracy�

2003-2005: Visiting Faculty Fellow at the Center for Democracy and the Third Sector, Georgetown University, Washington DC

2004-2005: Visiting Professor at the New School University, New York

2006-07: Member of the ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowships Referee Panel

2007: Member of Evaluation Panel of >node< (New Orientations for Democracy in Europe), a research programme of the Austrian Council for Research and Technology Development (RFT).

2008: Gaetano Mosca Chair, Dipartimento di Scienze Politiche, University of Turin

External Examiner

1999-202: MSc in Social and Political Theory, Birkbeck College, London

2001-2003: BA in Politics, UEA (Norwich).

2005-2008: BA in Politics, University of Edinburgh


2005-2008: BA in Politics, UWE (Bristol)

2009-2012: MA in Intellectual History (Sussex)

2012-2015: BA in Politics (Reading)




Current research and activities



Dario is Reader/Associate Professor in Political Theory.

He studied Philosophy in Palermo, where he graduated with a thesis on Max Weber. His education at the time owes probably more to the intellectual rigor and stimulation of political discussions and political criticism (and to an amazing group of friends) than to University lectures.

During and soon after his undergraduate studies, he worked as a journalist. He did not escape the military service, which in Italy was compulsory until a few years ago.

He came to Britain in the early 1980s to learn English, and is still learning. Thanks to a studentship from the Fondazione Luigi Einaudi (Turin), which was generously renewed for 3 years, he did his postgraduate studies at Sussex, and obtained a D.Phil. with a thesis on David Hume's Political Philosophy. While at Sussex, he discovered the riches of Intellectual History thanks to Donald Winch, John Burrow and Stefan Collini.

He joined the Department of Politics at Exeter in 1989, and was lucky to find the ideal environment in the Exeter political theory group, which has traditionally cultivated both historical and contemporary interests in the study of political thought. During these years, he has greatly enjoyed the friendly environment offered by the Department and the intellectual stimulus of the conversations and the collaboration with present and past colleagues. However, he has not given up his combative spirit, which occasionally drives academic colleagues and some in the administrative staff mad.

During these years, he has carried on working on the history of political and philosophical thought, but has also returned to his earlier interests in contemporary social and political theory. For the last ten years, he has been actively involved in the discussion of the constitutional impact of the European integration process, and on the transformation of some of the fundamental categories of our political language in the light of recent postnational developments. He has been involved in numerous European-wide research networks and projects concerned with the normative dimension of European integration, particularly in collaboration with Richard Bellamy (currently at UCL).

More recently, he has become increasingly interested in issues such as social capital, representation, and accountability. But he is still working on his Hume book.

He has taught or has been visiting scholar in a number of institutions in the USA, Australia, Italy, Germany, and Austria

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