Niccolò Fantini

Research Fellow

Niccolò is currently a Blue Book trainee at the EU Commission, working on partnerships and innovation in the DG EAC. Before that, he completed an internship at the Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS) in Berlin, where he focused on China’s economy and industrial policy. He earned an MSc in Public Policy from UCL after receiving his undergraduate degree in Liberal Arts with a Major in Politics and a minor in History from King’s College London. His primary academic interests lie in the field of comparative politics, with a particular focus on China.

Both his undergraduate and postgraduate dissertation projects have dealt with issues relating to the way the Chinese state reacts and adapts to public pressure. More recently, Niccolò has been considering the effects of Chinese domestic dynamics on the country’s international policy. Alongside his teaching commitments, Niccolò has been actively contributing to both established and newly founded policy think tanks.

When he is not researching or teaching, he likes composing and playing the violin together with fellow musicians. Together with some friends, he co-hosts Jetlagged, a podcast on world affairs.

Languages: Italian, English, German, Chinese Mandarin, Spanish

The EU at a Crossroads: Where from and where next?

Crises seem to pile up one after the other in Europe recently. As tensions were already on the rise globally after the financial crisis of 2008, the Covid-19 pandemic tested the very foundations of the European Union. The challenge posed by an invisible enemy brought to the surface the several constraints and limits, but also opportunities, that the European project presents.

‘Culture Wars’ and the EU: LGBT rights as a political weapon

The topic of LGBT rights has been increasingly politicised, becoming a powerful weapon in the hands of both incumbents and aspiring populist leaders. Posing the question: to what extent has the discussion on LGBT rights in the EU reached constitutional and potentially structurally relevant levels?