Lori Thorlakson, PhD, MSc (London School of Economics), BA(Hons) Queen's University

Professor, Faculty of Arts - Political Science Dept
Director, Intl Prog in Cortona, Faculty of Arts - Deans Office


Professor, Faculty of Arts - Political Science Dept
(780) 492-2282
11-20 Tory (H.M.) Building
11211 Saskatchewan Drive NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2H4

Director, Intl Prog in Cortona, Faculty of Arts - Deans Office


Area of Study / Keywords

Political Parties Multi-level Systems Energy Transition Democracy European Union


Lori Thorlakson holds an MSc and PhD from the London School of Economics. Before coming to the University of Alberta in 2008, she was a lecturer at the University of Nottingham, UK, and a Jean Monnet fellow at the European University Institute in Florence. At the University of Alberta, she has held a Jean Monnet Chair and was the founding director of the European Union Centre of Excellence, from 2013 - 2016. She is currently the academic coordinator of the Faculty's School in Cortona, Italy.


Dr. Thorlakson is currently a co-PI (with Melanee Thomas at the University of Calgary) of a Future Energy Systems project, Political Pathways of Energy Transition. She also leads an NSERC-funded project on political aspects of electricity grid transformation.

Dr. Thorlakson's research focuses on issues of party competition and representation in multi-level systems, including federations and the European Union. She studies party organization, party system change and voter behaviour, and how these three dimensions of political competition combine to shape the nature of representation in democratic states. She is also involved in research that assesses the impact of the EU on democratic development, particularly in post communist states, and research that examines the development of the European Parliament and representation in the EU. 

Dr. Thorlakson would welcome supervising graduate students working on energy transition, as well as on questions in the field of comparative politics related to parties, elections and voter behaviour, especially in multilevel contexts. She is willing to supervise work that uses qualitative or quantitative methods. 


POL S 371 - Populism and Democracy in Central Europe

Democratic transition, consolidation and backsliding in Central Europe, with a focus on nationalism, the politics of memory, European integration and Euroscepticism. Prerequisite: Any 200- level course in POL S or consent of Department.

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