Dr Othon Anastasakis

Dr Othon Anastasakis

Dr Othon Anastasakis
Senior Research Fellow in South European Studies
Director, St Antony’s South East European Studies at Oxford (SEESOX)
Former Director, European Studies Centre (July 2012-October 2015)
College Email Address: 

Othon Anastasakis is the Director of South East European Studies at Oxford (SEESOX), based at St Antony's College; a Senior Research Fellow at St Antony's College and Associate at the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Oxford; and the former Director of the European Studies Centre, also based at St Antony's (July 2012-October 2015). He teaches South East European politics. Previously he was Researcher at the London School of Economics; Expert & Advisor on European Union matters at the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He received his BA in Economics from the University of Athens, his MA in Comparative Politics and International Relations from Columbia University, New York and his PhD in Comparative Government from the London School of Economics. 

Research activities and interests

  • EU's eastern enlargement
  • Transition and democratization in South East Europe
  • Greek politics and foreign policy
  • EU-Turkey relations
  • European extreme right politics

Teaching in Oxford

"South East Europe: Politics, Economics and European Integration”  at Russian and East European Studies (REES) and "The uncertain state of the European Union” at the Department of Continuing Education

SEESOX Hilary Term seminar series on South East Europe (convenor)

Recent publications

“Russia, South East Europe and the geopolitics of opportunism” Clingendael Spectator 4 – 2017 (vol.71)  https://spectator.clingendael.org/pub/2017/4/russias-involvement/

“The five infections of the social democratic “family” in the Western Balkans” Open Democracy 19 April 2017 https://www.opendemocracy.net/can-europe-make-it/othon-anastasakis/five-infections-of-social-democratic-family-in-western-balkans

“Grexit to Brexit: Be careful what you wish for!” in Open Democracy 10 June 2016


"The balkanisation of Greece’s centre-left politics" on OpenDemocracy.net, 4 February 2015

"Greece’s party landscape and the politics of 'muddling through'" in The Economy Journal.com Special Issue on "The Political Parties Crisis", July 2014 pp. 22-25

"Election Consolidation in the post-communist Balkans: Progress and Obstacles" in Caucasus International, Vol. 3, No 4, Winter 2013-14”   progress_obstacles.pdf

"Sustaining rapprochement? Greek-Turkish relations, low politics and regional volatility" in South East European and Black Sea Studies” Vol 13 No.3 2013 (with Nora Fisher)  sustaining_engagement.pdf

"Greece's radical politics on the dark the side of dawn" in e-International Relations, 5 November 2013

"Post-1989 political change in the Balkan states: The legacy of the early illiberal transition years" in Perceptions; Journal of International Relations Summer 2013, Volume XVIII Number 2, pp. 91-112


The past is never dead: Balkan legacies of the Great War (with David Madden and Elizabeth Roberts) Palgrave Pivot, 2015


Defining a new reform agenda: Paths to sustainable convergence in South East Europe (with Peter Sanfey and Max Watson eds) South East European Studies at Oxford, 2013

Reforming Greece: Sisyphean task or Herculean challenge? (with Dorian Singh, ed) SEESOX, 2012  reforming_greece.pdf

Reforming Greece: From Crisis to Recovery; Sustainable Growth in South East Europe (with Jens Bastian and Max Watson eds.) South East European Studies at Oxford, 2011  from_crisis_to_recovery.pdf

Greece and the Balkans: Memory, Conflict and Exchange (with Dimitar Bechev and Nicholas Vrousalis, eds.) Cambridge University Scholars Press, 2009

In the Long Shadow of Europe: Greeks and Turks in the era of Postnationalism (with Kalypso Nicolaïdis and Kerem Oktem, eds.) Brill Publications, 2009

Journal articles

"Election Consolidation in the post-communist Balkans: Progress and Obstacles” in Caucasus International, Vol. 3, No 4, Winter 2013-14” pp. 15-25

“Sustaining rapprochement? Greek-Turkish relations, low politics and regional volatility” in South East European and Black Sea Studies” Vol 13 No.3 2013 (with Nora Fisher)

"Post-1989 Political Change in the Balkan States: The Legacy of the Early Illiberal Transition Years", Perceptions Journal of International Affairs, Summer 2013, Volume XVIII-Number 2, pp. 91-112

"Regional Cooperation in South East Europe: A response to the interview with the Secretary General of the Regional Cooperation Council, Mr Hidajet Biscevic" in  Southeastern Europe, BRILL Netherlands, Volume 35 no 2, 2011  seeu_35_2_06_anastasakis_forum.pdf

"The EU's political conditionality in the Western Balkans: Towards a more pragmatic approach" in Southeast European and Black Sea Studies, Vol 8, No 4, December 2008, pp.365-377  political_conditionality.pdf

"Power and Interdependence: Uncertainties of the Greek-Turkish Rapprochement at the Dawn of the 21st century" Harvard International Review March 2007

"Europeanisation South East European Style: A Regional Challenge with Uncertain Outcome" Brown Journal of World Affairs, Watson Institute for International Studies, Brown University, Volume XII, Issue I, Summer/Fall 2005  europeanization_balkans.pdf

"EU policy of regional cooperation in South East Europe: The creation of a virtual reality" Fornet: CFSP Forum, Volume 3, Issue 2, March 2005, pp 10-12  cfsp_2005.pdf

"Britain: An Ally of Turkey in Europe?" Insight Turkey, Vol. 6, No 4, October-December 2004, pp. 38-48  britain_turkey2004.pdf

"Greece and Turkey in the Balkans: Cooperation or Rivalry?" Turkish Studies; Special Issue: Greek Turkish Relations in an Era of Detente, editors Ali Carkoglu & Barry Rubin, Volume 5, No 1, Frank Cass Spring 2004, pp. 45-60

"Ist genug Wille vorhanden? Hindernisse fur der Regionalismus am Balkan" ("Is there enough will? Local Attitudes towards Regional Cooperation") with Vesna Bojicic-Dzelilovic, Denken + Glauben, Nr 126, 127, Oktober-November 2003, pp 12-13

"EU Conditionality in South East Europe: Bringing Commitment to the Process", Review of International Affairs, Vol. LIV, No 1110, April-June 2003, Institute of International Politics and Economics, Belgrade 2003

"Political Extremism in Eastern Europe; A Reaction to Transition", Papeles del Este; Transiciones poscomunistas, No 3, Enero 2002, pp. 1-16

"Post-Communism Extremism in Eastern Europe; The Nature of the Phenomenon", Studies in Ethnicity and Nationalism, Vol. 1, No.2, 2001, pp. 15-26

Book chapters

"Regional approaches to state-building: The European Union" (with Spyros Economides and Richard Caplan) in Political Economy of Statebuilding: Power after peace (edited by Mark Berdal and Dominik Zaum) Routledge 2013 

"Turkey's assertive presence in Southeast Europe: Between identity politics and elite pragmatism" in Another Empire? A decade of Turkey's foreign policy under the Justice and Development Party (edited by Kerem Oktem, Ayse Kadioglu and Mehmet Karli) Istanbul Bilgi University Press 2012

"Enlargement and political conditionality in the Western Balkans: Towards a more managerial approach", in Western Balkans Cerovic & Unvalic (eds) Faculty of Economics, Belgrade 2011

"Modern Greece in Southeastern Europe: A general survey" in Regional Surveys of the World: Central and South East Europe Europa Publications, 2011 

"Kosovo at a crossroads" in Regional Surveys of the World: Central and South East Europe Europa Publications, 2011

"Greek-Turkish relations: Old problems, new challenges" in Mediterranean conflicts, Barcelona, IEM 2010

"The credibility of EU conditionality and compliance in the Western Balkans" in Greece, the Western Balkans and the European Union, Woodrow Wilson, 2008.

"The Limits of regionalism imposed from outside" in Regional Cooperation in South East Europe and Beyond: Challenges and Prospects, by Wolfgang Petritsch and Christophe Solioz (eds.) Baden-Baden: Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft, pp.35-44, 2008.

"EU and the Western Balkans: The Challenges of the Pre-accession Process", in The EU and Romania. Accession and Beyond edited by David Phinnemore, The Federal Trust 2006, pp. 165-173

"Democratic Transition in Serbia and the Road to Europe; Two Steps Forward, One Step Back", Hayoz, Nicolas / Jesien, Leszek / van Meurs, Wim (eds.) Enlarged EU - Enlarged Neigbhourhood. Perspectives of the European Neighbourhood Policy, (Interdisciplinary Studies on Central and Eastern Europe, Vol. 2, ed. by Rolf Fieguth and Nicolas Hayoz), Bern: Peter Lang 2005

Grossbritannien: Ein Verbundeter der Turkei in Europa? Giannakopoulos & Maras (eds) Die Turkei-Debatte in Europea, Vs Verlag Fur Sozialwissenschaften, Wiesbaden 2005, pp. 149-157

"La Politica del extremismo en Europa Oriental: una Reaccion a la transicion Nacionalismos y Minorias en Europea Central y Oriental" Ruth Ferrero (ed.) Institut de Ciencies Politiques I Socials, Barcelona 2004, pp.77-103

"Greece as a Regional Power in the Balkans"; From Politics of Coercion to a Policy of Cooperation Security Southeastern Europe, Security Policy Group, edited by Aleksandar Fatic, Belgrade 2004, pp. 121-134

"Eastern Enlargement and Turkey’s Accession Prospect; Is the EU Ready for More Commitments?" Turkey and the EU; From Association to Accession-Conference Proceedings, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, The Hague, The Netherlands 2003, pp. 171-175

"EU Policy of Regional Cooperation in Southeastern Europe: A Study of Recent Trends" (in Greek) 2002 Overview of Defense and Foreign Policy; Greece and the World 2001-2002, edited by Th. Kouloumbis et al, ELIAMEP, Athens 2002, pp. 181-194

"The Former Yugoslavia After Milosevic, Regional Surveys of the World: Central and South Eastern Europe", Europa Publications, London and New York 2002, 2003, 2004 editions

"Towards Regional Cooperation in the Balkans; An Assessment of the EU Approach Regional Cooperation in South Eastern Europe"; The Effects of Regional Initiatives - Conference Proceedings, edited by Dusko Lopandic, European Movement, Belgrade 2002, pp. 25-38

"The Countries of the European South; Common Paths or Different Strategies" (in Greek), Evropaiki Ekfrasi (European Expression), Vol.29, 2nd trimester 1998

Articles in the press

Dangers of inaction  Global Europe 5 February, 2010

"Western Balkans, the EU and the political criteria" (in Greek) Kathimerini  Newspaper, Special Issue on "Balkans" April 2008  20-04-2008_greek.pdf

Towards a more realistic approach to the EU’s eastern enlargement (in Greek) Vima Ideon, Issue 3, July 2007

After the Constitutional Treaty, the borders? The Bridge, Issue 6, 2007

The Double Message of the Balkans The Bridge, Issue 1, 2006

Edited volumes, opinion pieces and interviews on the crisis in Greece

Greece's radical politics on the dark the side of dawn. Article for e-International Relations, 5 November 2013

The far right in Greece and the theory of the two extremes. Opinion piece for Open Democracy, 31 May 2013  2013-05-31_-_the_far_right_in_greece_and_the_theory_of_the_two_extremes.pdf

Greece's crisis has brought new popular mood. Opinion piece for Oxford Analytica, 30 July 2012  oxford_analytica_greece_s_crisis_has_brought_new_popular_mood_tmp10d.pdf

Reforming Greece: Sisyphean task or Herculean challenge? Edited by: Othon Anastasakis, Dorian Singh, SEESOX, May 2012  reforminggreece3.pdf

Greece needs less austerity and more growth. Interview with Novi Magazin, Serbia, 29 March 2012

Has Greece's democracy regressed? Opinion piece for CNN.com, 1 March 2012

Protracted crisis will break Greece's political mould. Opinion piece for Oxford Analytica, 15 February 2012  protracted_crisis_oxford_analytica.pdf

The Causes, Consequences and Solutions to the Greek Crisis. Filmed interview for European Ideas, 9 February 2012

Greek democracy "at gunpoint". European Voice, 10 November 2011

Discussion papers

EU Conditionality in South East Europe: Bringing Commitment to the Process, with Dimitar Bechev, South East European Studies Programme Discussion Paper, Oxford, April 2003  euconditionality.pdf

Balkan Regional Co-operation and European Integration, with Vesna Bojicic-Dzelilovic, The Hellenic Observatory, LSE, London 2002

Extreme Right in Europe; A Comparative Study of Recent Trends, Discussion Paper Series No. 3, The Hellenic Observatory, LSE, London 2000.

The Enlargement of the European Union to the East; A Challenge for the Future, Working Paper Series No. 2, Institute of International Relations, Panteion University, Athens 1999.

Supervision of PhD students

Kostas Bakoyannis
Thesis title: "The ‘Great Debate’: Pragmatists vs. Idealists- the Case of Greek Foreign Policy"

Melis Evcimik
Thesis title: "The impact of demilitarisation on Turkey’s foreign policy"

Jessie Hronesova
Thesis title: "Reckoning with the Past in a Contested State: Local Transitional Justice in Bosnia and Herzegovina"

Completed DPhil theses

Milos Damnjanovic
Thesis title: "The Breakdown of Semi-Authoritarian regimes: The Role of Domestic and International Actors in Bringin about Democratic Transitions in Serbia and Croatia"

Nora Fisher-Onar
Thesis title: "Which civilisation? Turkish elite's perceptions of European universalism"

Cvete Koneska
Thesis title: "Between past conflict and European future: Domestic politics in post-conflict states"

Saliha Metinsoy
Thesis title: "Explaining political unrest under IMF programmes: Labour immobility, fiscal conditionality and democratic representation"

Giorgos Michalopoulos
Thesis title: "Political parties, irredentism and the Foreign Ministry: Greece and Macedonia, 1878-1910"

Sorin Moisa
Thesis title: "The formation and functioning of EU political conditionality: Transforming Romania?"