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Photo: “Election 2018 in Hungary. Taken on the 8th of April, 2018, around 23.35. Bálna, Budapest. Orbán Viktor announcing the victory of the FIDESZ party.“, by Elekes Andor licensed under CC-BY-SA-4.0. Hue modified from the original.

Riedel, Rafał, and Emilia Szyszkowska. “Interest Representation Preconditions in Illiberal Poland and Hungary.” Studia Europejskie-Studies in European Affairs 26, no. 1 (2022): 47-62.


Poland and Hungary have been widely recognised as countries affected by illiberalism. This has undoubtedly created a challenging environment for interest groups; groups which are a touchstone for the quality of democratic processes. In this article, we aim to understand how preconditions for interest representation have changed due to illiberal drift through the eyes of interest groups operating in these two selected post-communist countries. In order to examine their perception of opportunity structures, interaction infrastructure as well as the level of political coordination under the new circumstances, we rely on quantitative research in the form of a survey carried out among interest group representatives. Our results indicate that the political systems of Poland and Hungary are still a mix of pluralist and corporatist features, however, the Polish political opportunity structures are still more open to input from civic society and interest groups have stronger positions compared to the situation in Hungary.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.