The politics of the global financial crisis: Legitimating the 'age of austerity' in the UK
Supervisors: Stephen Bates, David Bailey
From bank bailouts to the 'age of austerity', the advent of the global financial crisis has had an undeniable influence on how the economy is governed. In the UK, the Conservative party-led coalition government has tackled the nation’s debts and deficits through implementing 'austerity' - an economic strategy that, in this case, commits to lower state spending through reducing benefits and public services. My research focuses on how these potentially unpopular measures, which have been blamed on previous Labour government over-spending by the coalition government, resonated with the mood of the times of the British public. More specifically, I have conducted focus groups to investigate how members of the public discuss and make sense of the state and public finances in order to understand how many reluctantly accepted the necessity of cutting the fiscal deficit – and, subsequently, the ‘swingeing’ cuts to public spending that have characterised the post-2008 political environment. In doing so, it aims to contribute to the emerging international political economy and British politics literature on the politics of the global financial crisis and fiscal consolidation.
I completed my undergraduate degree at Birmingham (2006-9), before moving to Sussex to complete an MSc in research methods (2009-10). I then returned to POLSIS in October 2010 to embark on an ESRC-funded PhD on the politics of the global financial crisis in the UK. In addition to my doctoral research, I also have an interest in political science methodology – which is reflected in a couple of my publications.
In 2011 I contributed to a project on Prime Minister’s Questions with colleagues from POLSIS. The resulting work has been accepted for publication by Parliamentary Affairs and received coverage on the Guardian.co.uk Politics blog. From January to March 2013, I will be a Visiting Research Fellow at the Department of Business and Politics, Copenhagen Business School. I also organised the POLSIS weekly graduate colloquium for the year 2011-12.
BA, Political Science, University of Birmingham.
MSc, Cross-cultural and Comparative Research Methods, University of Sussex.
British political and economic change
International political economy
The global financial crisis and the politics of fiscal consolidation
Constructivism, ideas and political rhetoric
Philosophy of social science and political science methodology
Political Studies Association
British International Studies Association
POLS101 Foundations of Politics (2010-11).
POLS205 International Political Economy (2011-12).
Stanley. L. (2013) ‘‘We’re reaping what we sowed’: How British middle-class homeowners reluctantly accepted the idea of fiscal consolidation’, COST-Action IS0902 workshop ‘Post-positivist approaches to International Political Economy in times of economic crises’, University of Erfurt, January 11-12.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Acquiescing to the ‘age of austerity’: everyday crisis narratives and the politics of fiscal consolidation’, CPERC workshop ‘Never Waste a Crisis. Strategies of Representing and Managing Crisis after the Crash’, Morecambe, November 1-2.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Crisis narration and off-loading responsibility: Displacing blame for the austerity in the UK’, Warwick IAS workshop ‘(De)Politicisation: What's in a Name? Reflections on (Anti)Politics in Times of Crisis’, University of Warwick, September 14.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Everyday meaning making: Focus groups as a critical method’, CRESC workshop ‘(How) do we understand Capitalism? Reflections on critical methods’, University of Manchester, September 12-13.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Crisis narration and off-loading responsibility: Displacing blame for the austerity in the UK’, BISA-IPEG Conference ‘The Future of Global Economic Governance’, Birmingham, September 10-11.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Acquiescing to the ‘age of austerity’: everyday crisis narratives and the politics of fiscal consolidation’, CRESC Conference ‘Promises: Crisis and Socio-Cultural Change’, University of Manchester, September 5-7.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘What happens when there is no ‘great transformation’? The global financial crisis and the prism of policy paradigms’, BISA-ISA Joint International Conference, Edinburgh, June 20-22.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Selling the ‘age of austerity’ to the UK: An analytical and methodological framework’, BISA-IPEG The Methodology of the Everyday in IPE workshop, University of Copenhagen, May 29 – 30.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘'What exists in reality' or the (epistemological) means to an end? Competing conceptions of ontology in political science’, Political Studies Association Annual Conference, Belfast, April 3 – 5.
Stanley, L. (2011) ‘Does crisis matter? Everyday experience and resistance during the global financial crisis’, Agents, acts and effects of resistance in the wake of economic crisis. ECPR Annual Conference, Reykjavik, August 25– 27.
Bates, S., C. Byrne, P. Kerr, and L. Stanley, ‘Questions to the Prime Minister: A Comparative Study of PMQs from Thatcher to Cameron’, Parliamentary Affairs, forthcoming.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘The Difference Between an Analytical Framework and a Theoretical Claim: A Reply to Martin Carstensen’ Political Studies, 60:2.
Stanley, L. (2012) ‘Rethinking the definition and role of ontology in political science’, Politics, 32:3.
I have also published book reviews in Journal of Critical Globalisation Studies and Political Studies Review.