Hussein Kassim
  • 0.27 Arts and Humanities Building

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

EU institutions; the EU administration; the UK and the EU; EU aviation policy; the politics of EU competition policy

Personal profile


I am specialist of the EU, where my research examines four main areas: the EU institutions; EU civil servants; EU-member state relations; and Brexit. I have co-authored or co-edited six books and six special issues, and my work has appeared in top journals in politics, public administration, and EU studies. I have been principal investigator or co-investigator on research funded by grants from the British Academy, the ESRC, the Nuffield Foundation, and the EU (‘EMU Choices’). Much of my work has been collaborative across institutions and disciplines. I have led four major multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary research projects on the EU that have significantly advanced understanding of the EU administration and the people who work in it:

I am coediting with Adriaan Schout a book on National European Union narratives: the official story, which explores the meanings that the EU has for different European states through an examination of how governments explain and justify the relationship with the EU, Negotiating Brexit. EU institutions, national governments, and the UK, with Simon Usherwood, and Coordination at the Top, with Jean-Michel Eymeri-Douzans and Marie Goransson, which explores core coordination in national administrations and international organisations.

I am a three-time Senior Fellow of the ESRC ‘The UK in a Changing Europe’ initiative. My current project, ‘Living with the neighbours’, follows UK-EU relations, compares the UK’s relationship with the EU’s with the EU’s relations with its other neighbours, and looks at the UK’s bilateral relations with European states. It builds on earlier research, ‘Negotiating Brexit: EU institutions, national governments, and the UK’, and ‘Negotiating the Future’, which examined negotiations which led to the Withdrawal Act and the Trade and Cooperation Agreement, and the impact of Brexit on UK regulation. As Senior Fellow, I have organised multiple events, publishing commentary and analysis, and hosted podcasts, ‘Good Neighbours? The UK and Europe after Brexit’, 'After Brexit: What has changed?’, and ‘Negotiating Brexit: views from the Member States’. I have made many radio and TV appearances, and been frequently interviewed by the national and international media.

Since joining UEA as Professor of Politics in 2007, I have served as head of department, research director, impact champion, REF unit of assessment coordinator, and research theme leader at the Centre for Competition Policy, was co-founder of University-wide network policy@uea, and taught on courses on EU politics, institutions and policy, comparative politics, international organisation, public policy, and regulation. I am currently a Visiting Professor at the College of Europe in Bruges, EGPP Fellow at the European University Institute, Visiting Professor at Birkbeck University of London, Academic Fellow at the European Policy Centre, and professeur invité at Paris 1 – Panthéon-La Sorbonne.

Administrative Posts

My current responsibilities are at University level are as theme leader under the AHRC impact accelerator scheme, as part of a £1.5 million grant awarded to UEA in 2022. I am Unit of Assessment Coordinator for Politics and International Studies, a role I held for the 2021 REF, which saw UoA19 make the highest GPA increase in the University, and faculty member of the Centre for Competition Policy.

In previous positions, during my term as Head of School from 2010 to 2013, the School of Political, Social and International Studies rose from 41st to 16th among UK Politics and International Relations departments in The Guardian University Guide ranking. I co-convened ‘The Too Difficult Box’ public lecture series with the Rt Hon Charles Clarke, which brought many distinguished speakers to UEA, including Adam Boulton, Richard Dannatt, Anthony Giddens, Patricia Hollis, Gillian Sheppard, and Shirley Williams. As part of the ESRC Business and Local Government Data Research Centre, funded under the ESRC Big Data Network funded, I co-convened a public lecture series, with Professor Ruth Hancock, UEA, and colleagues at the University of Essex and Kent, which featured Tom Baker, BT Global Services, Giuseppe Abbamonte, European Commission, Helen Margetts, Director of Oxford Internet Institute, Will Cavendish, Director General of Innovation, Growth and Technology in the UK Department of Health, Ain Aaviksoo, Chief Information Officer in the Ministry of Social Affairs, Estonia, and Bernard Marr, author of Big Data: Using Smart Big Data, Analytics and Metrics to Make Better Decisions and Improve Performance. Convenor of: ‘The Coalition at One: The Conservative-Liberal Democratic Government in Historical and Theoretical Perspective’ (with Charles Clarke, Andrew Adonis and Jon Davis). I was co-investigator for the ESRC Research Centre grant that funded the Centre for Competition 2009-14, where I was also a member of the Steering Group and coordinator of the ‘Institutions’ research theme.

Research Group or Lab Membership

Much of my work has been collaborative. The projects I have led on the EU administration have been conducted by teams that are multi-institutional as well as multidisciplinary:

  • The European Commission: Where now? Where next?’ 2018, team included Sara Connolly, UEA, Michael W. Bauer, EUI, Pierre Bocquillon, UEA, Renaud Dehousse, EUI, Brigid Laffan, EUI, Andrew Thompson, University of Edinburgh
  • Understanding the EU administration: the Council Secretariat’, 2016, team included Sara Connolly, UEA, Michael W. Bauer, EUI/ German University of Administrative Sciences, Speyer, Renaud Dehousse, EUI, Brigid Laffan, EUI, and Andrew Thompson, University of Edinburgh
  • European Commission: Facing the Future’, 2014, team included Sara Connolly, UEA, Michael W. Bauer, German University of Administrative Sciences, Speyer, Renaud Dehousse, Sciences Po Paris, and Andrew Thompson, University of Edinburgh
  • The European Commission in Question’, 2008, team included John Peterson, University of Edinburgh, Sara Connolly, UEA, Michael W. Bauer, German University of Administrative Sciences, Speyer, Renaud Dehousse, Sciences Po Paris, Liesbet Hooghe, UNC at Chapel Hill and University of Amsterdam, and Andrew Thompson, University of Edinburgh.

I was recently co-I of ‘EMU Choices’, a Horizon 2020-funded project led by Sonja Puntscher-Riekmann, University of Salzburg, and worked with Shaun Hargreaves Heap and Scott James, both King's College, London, on the UK and the eurozone crisis, and with Sabine Saurugger and Uwe Puetter on national preferences and preference formation. 

Previously, I was a member of the 'Connecting Excellence on European Governance' (CONNEX) FP6 network, led by Beate Kohler-Koch, University of Mannheim, and Morten Egeberg, University of Oslo, and convened an ESRC Research Seminar, ‘Modelling Political Accountability: Principal-Agent in Government and Politics’ with Peter John, Bill Tompson and Catherine Waddams.

in the 1990s, I worked on major projects with Anand Menon on the EU's impact on member state autonomy, with B. Guy Peters, Vincent Wright, and Anand Menon on the national coordination of EU policy, and with Dionyssis G. Dimitrakopoulos on the approaches taken by national governments and EU institutions to the constitutional convention.

Areas of Expertise

  • European Union institutions
  • the EU administration and the people who work for it
  • European Union policy and policy making
  • UK-EU relations before and after Brexit

Teaching Interests

  • Administering Europe
  • The EU and the member states
  • Comparative Politics
  • Public Policy
  • Public Administration and Management
  • European Union: history, institutions, policy
  • Britain and Europe
  • The Politics of Regulation
  • International Organizations
  • Capitalism.

Key Research Interests

  • Leadership, presidentialisation, and coordination in the European Commission
  • the Secretariat General of the Commission
  • the Council Secretariat
  • the European Council and the European Commission
  • beliefs and values of individual bureaucrats
  • UK-EU relations, the EU's relationship with its neighbours, the UK's bilateral relations with European states
  • UK regulation before and after Brexit
  • EU policy and policy making, especially in developing fields

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Oxford

Award Date: 1 Jan 1996

Master of Philosophy, University of Oxford

Award Date: 1 Jan 1989

Bachelor of Arts, University of Oxford

Award Date: 1 Jan 1987

External positions

Fellow, , The European Governance and Politics Programme, European University Institute, San Domenico

2018 → …

Visiting Professor, College of Europe

2015 → …