Jose Javier Olivas Osuna

Jose Javier Olivas Osuna
National Distance Education University | UNED · Department of Political and Administration Sciences

PhD in Government
I lead two interdisciplinary projects one on populism and secessionism and another on populism and borders at UNED.

About

68
Publications
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Introduction
I work at the Department of Political Science and Administration at the National Distance Education University in Madrid (UNED). I coordinate a project on populism and secessionism. I have developed a new framework and method for the measurement and comparison of populism. I am also asociated to the Conflict and Civil Society Research Unit, London School of Economics, where I coordinated a comparative project on the impacts of Brexit at local levels. I have also worked many years on civil-military relations, combining public policy theory with archival research.
Additional affiliations
April 2019 - April 2023
National Distance Education University
Position
  • Principal Investigator
October 2007 - March 2019
The London School of Economics and Political Science
Position
  • Lecturer
Education
October 2006 - April 2012
The London School of Economics and Political Science
Field of study
  • Public Policy - Political Science
October 2005 - September 2006
The London School of Economics and Political Science
Field of study
  • Public Policy and Administration
September 1999 - June 2000
Edhec Business school
Field of study
  • European Studies

Network

Cited By

Projects

Projects (9)
Project
This project analyses the interplay between populism and borders. These concepts have great scholarly and policy relevance but have been rarely considered together (De Genova 2018). Populism is one of the most prominent challenges to western-style pluralist democracy (Kriesi et al. 2008; Müller 2014). Migration flows, technological changes, and economic transformations linked to globalisation have fuelled public discontent and facilitated the rise of populism (Rodrik 2018). Additionally, shifts in social and cultural values have produced a backlash against governments and other democratic institutions which has been capitalised by populist movements (Norris & Inglehart 2019). Borders are intrinsic part of the logic of inclusion/exclusion that helps define and decontest ‘the people’ as a clearly separate entity and in opposition to ‘the other’. Populists dichotomise the social by creating internal frontiers and antagonistic equivalential chains that bring together individuals with different, but comparable, fear, concerns and grievances (Laclau 2005). Thus, bordering discourses and practices are central instruments in populist toolkits. This project combines advanced qualitative and quantitative methodologies (e.g. content and discourse analysis, OLS and logistic regression, CFA, IRT, etc.) to study the supply- and demand-side of populism (see 1.3). It deconstructs and compares party and media discourses as well as citizens’ attitudes on borders and migrants across five dimensions: 1) antagonism; 2) morality; 3) idealised construction of society; 4) sovereignty claims; and 5) reliance on charismatic leadership. This project approaches populism as a latent construct with multi-layered network structure composed by a set dimensions and subdimensions which interact with each other (Olivas Osuna 2020). This project includes a comparative analysis of manifestos of radical right and sub-state nationalist parties, press articles and three surveys in Spain, Italy and the UK. It sheds light on research questions such as: How radical right populist parties and sub-state nationalist parties articulate their re-bordering strategies? To what extent borders appear entangled in their manifestos and communication with other populist features? How do media reflect discourses on border? Do they resonate with those used by nationalist parties? To what extent ordinary citizens agree with re-bordering ideas encountered in party communications? Are citizens views on borders correlated to general populist attitudes and beliefs? Are populist attitudes and negative views on migrants linked to specific psychological and socio-demographic characteristics? To what extent populism relies on a binary distinction of ‘us’ vs ‘them’ or reflects a hierarchical approach to ‘othering’ and degrees in exclusion? Jose Javier Olivas will coordinate a highly qualified international interdisciplinary team of researchers (Francisco Panizza, Oscar Mazzoleni, Maria Kyriakidou, Lisa Zanotti, Manuel Moyano, Cecilia Biancalana, Feline Freier and Jose Rama).
Project
PsyCorona is an ad hoc, multinational collaborative study in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Broadly speaking, we study the psychological factors that predict how people respond to the coronavirus and to the associated public health measures. The ultimate goal is to provide actionable knowledge that can serve to enhance pandemic response. To achieve this goal, PsyCorona was designed with three distinct phases: (1) a cross-sectional survey, (2) follow-up surveys, and (3) integrative data science. In March 2020, scientists at the University of Groningen and New York University – Abu Dhabi recognized the urgent need to study the psychosocial dynamics underlying people’s adherence to public health directives and government policy. The “PsyCorona” survey was launched on March 19th to assess attitudes, behavior and cognitions related to the coronavirus in 60,000+ participants around the globe, in collaboration with 100+ behavioral and data scientists across 5 continents. The project is led by Pontus Leander (University of Groningen)
Project
(Research project on populism in Andalucia) El populismo acapara cada vez mayor atención en los medios y debate académico. Sin embargo los desacuerdos teóricos y la escasez de estudios empíricos comparativos han lastrado el progreso científico en este campo de investigación. Hoy, mientras algunos estudios consideran el populismo una ideología (Mudde 2004, Stanley 2008), otros lo definen como una estrategia política para obtener poder (Weyland 2001, Pappas 2012) o se concentran en la naturaleza discursiva (Laclau 2005, Jagers & Walgrave 2007) o performativa (Moffit 2016, Ostiguy 2017) de este fenómeno. Además, la superposición de los términos populismo y nacionalismo también ha creado confusión (De Cleen & Stavrakakis 2017. Durante los 2 años que durará nuestro proyecto comparativo sobre populismo en Andalucía, pretendemos no sólo generar nuevos datos y un análisis empírico multidimensional para una mejor comprensión de la intensidad y características de las actitudes y discursos populistas en ciudadanos y partidos políticos en nuestra Comunidad Autónoma, sino también tender puentes entre las diferentes interpretaciones ontológicas y contribuir decisivamente al debate teórico que está teniendo lugar en este campo académico a nivel internacional. Aunque emplearemos un abanico de metodologías diferentes para estudiar diferentes ángulos y componentes del fenómeno de populismo (encuestas, análisis IRT, entrevistas, análisis de contenido de textos, análisis lingüístico de corpus, minería de datos web y de redes sociales), el proyecto está estructurado en torno a un único marco teórico diseñado para cuantificar y comparar el grado y tipología de populismo (Olivas Osuna 2019). Este nuevo marco analítico responde a la reciente llamada llamada de distinguidos expertos en el campo de populismo (Brubaker 2017: 360-362, De la Torre & Mazzoleni 2019) que invitan a ir más allá de las definiciones minimalistas que han dominado el campo en los últimos años y a operacionalizar este concepto como una realidad compleja y multidimensional. Así el marco que utilizamos (Olivas Osuna 2020) deconstruye el concepto de populismo en cinco dimensiones: 1) Antagonismo: descripción dual y antagónica de los actores políticos “nosotros” vs “ellos”, “el pueblo” vs “la élite” o “el otro” (Panizza 2005: 3; Müller 2016: 4). Esta diferenciación implica una lógica de exclusión a menudo vertical y un rechazo y a las instituciones políticas, legales y económicas y por tanto al status quo (Grattan 2016: 14-18) 2) Moralidad: interpretación de la que refleja una jerarquía moral entre los actores políticos (superioridad e inferioridad moral). Cuestionamiento de la legitimidad del otro (Mudde 2004:543, Arato 2013: 156). Esta lógica suele manifestarse en discursos victimistas y de culpabilización del “otro” (Vasilopoulou et al. 2014). 3) Construcción idealización de la sociedad: Descripción anti-pluralista del “pueblo” enfocada en la identidad, nación y/o una concepción ahistórica del territorio (“heartland”) (Taggart 2002: 67-70). Enfasis en la diferencia con el “otro” y la homogeneidad dentro del grupo. Esta disonancia entre el pueblo real o empírico y el pueblo ideal genera también llamadas a la exclusion de las minorias “corruptas” (Müller 2014) 4) Soberanía popular: ausencia de límites a la soberanía popular (Canovan 2002: 33-37. Lógica mayoritarista que implica la imposición de “la voluntad del pueblo” a minorías (Stavrakakis 2005: 239). Además esta concepción suele llevar a priorizar herramientas de democracia directa (Mohrenberg et al. 2019) 5) Liderazgo personalista: El líder carismático se considera la “voz del pueblo” y encarna los intereses del pueblo (Kriesi 2014: 363). Se suele asumir una conexión directa del líder con el pueblo (Müller 2016: 32-38). Se enfatizan las acciones, ideas y logros del líder, mientras se minimiza la importancia de los partidos y otras instituciones políticas. El equipo: Manuel Arias Maldonado (PI) Jose Javier Olivas (Coordinador)(Universidad Málaga) Juan Carlos Trujillo (Universidad de Alicante) Encarna Hidalgo Tenorio (UGR) Astrid Barrio (Universidad de Valencia) Manuel Moyano (Universidad de Córdoba)