Sean McDanielSean McDaniel

Position: Research Assistant


Research Interests: British and Comparative Political Economy, the British model of capitalism, post-crisis economic growth models, ideational political economy, austerity, social democratic politics, The Labour Party, France’s Parti Socialiste.

Sean McDaniel joined SPERI in July 2017 from the University of Warwick, where he is conducting his PhD, a comparative political economy account of the difficulties faced by the UK Labour Party and France’s Parti Socialiste in the post-crisis environment. His thesis utilises an ideational political economy approach in order to develop a more intricate account of how these social democratic actors have engaged with the post-crisis political economy, and particularly the politics of austerity. It advances the view that this ideational approach can help us better understand both the failure of social democratic actors to successfully articulate a convincing economic alternative post-crisis. It demonstrates how the global financial crisis, rather than acting to spur a social democratic revival, has served as a catalyst for a rupture at the heart of these social democratic parties. In 2016, Sean was a Visiting PhD Fellow at Sciences Po, Paris, under the guidance of Professor Colin Hay and has previously worked as a project assistant at SPERI, helping to produce two Global Political Economy briefs on the impact of Brexit in April 2017. He has also published work on post-crisis European social democratic policy capacity, and the consequences of the unravelling of President Hollande’s anti-austerity programme in France.
Sean is a Research Assistant at SPERI, working alongside deputy director Dr Craig Berry on research linked to the Commission on Economic Justice established by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR). The project will investigate a range of key aspects of the contemporary UK political economy, from the taxation system, to infrastructure to the development of the community-based economy.


  • (2017) ‘French Socialism in Crisis: The Undoing of Hollande’s ‘Anti-Austerity’ Programme’, Rewnewal, 25 (1), 39-52.
  • (2017) ‘EU Business Views on Brexit: Politics, Trade and Article 50.’, SPERI Global Political Economy Brief No. 7.
  • (2017) ‘Frankfurt, Paris and Dublin: Post-Brexit Rivals to the City of London?’, SPERI Global Political Economy Brief No. 6.
  • (2014) ‘Post-crisis social democratic policy capacity in France and the United Kingdom: A lesson from the globalisation and social democracy debate’, French Politics 12 (4), 283–309.
    Sean has also written several pieces on the Labour Party and the French Socialist Party, appearing on a number of blogs including speri.comment, Policy Network and EuroCité.