Professor Helen Drake
Professor of French and European Studies and Director of the Institute for Diplomacy and International Governance
Helen is an internationally-acclaimed Professor of contemporary French politics and EU affairs, and from 2012-2018 chaired the UK’s leading University Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES).
Helen first studied at Surrey University, where she completed her first degree in French and German Linguistic and International Studies. Helen continued her passion for European studies by undertaking an MSc in European Management at Cranfield Institute of Technology. Helen then completed her PhD in European Studies at Aston University. Helen's multidisciplinary academic background has enabled her to utilise a multi-faceted approach towards teaching and research.
Current research and collaborations
Current PhD / research supervisions
- The political communication of mainstream European political parties
- EU diplomatic actorness in its immediate neighbourhood in the East (Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine);
- The governance of European funds in new EU member states: The absorption performance of Bulgaria and Romania, and their management and implementation of European Structural Funds during 2007-2013;
- The political and bureaucratic origins of the European External Action Service (EEAS);
- A critical discourse analysis of the EU’s counter-terrorism policy;
- The institutional response of the Czech state to EU membership;
- The socialisation of Polish members of the European Parliament;
- Johannes Althusius and the sui generis European Union and EU consumer policy;
- A critical examination of consumers’ economic rights across borders.
Interests and activities
Helen chaired the UK’s leading University Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES) from 2012-2018. In 2017, UACES celebrated its 50th anniversary and reflected on how it could support its present and future members in understanding Europe and the EU at times of crisis, particularly with regards to Brexit.
To keep up to date with Helen's latest research and related activities, you can follow on her on Twitter at @FrancoBrit.