Research Interests

EU Politics; Irish Politics; Research Methods; Economics.

Background & Qualification

Karl Murphy completed his PhD at the School of Law and Government, DCU, in 2017.  He was in receipt of an Irish Research Council Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship (2014-2017). He holds a BA (Hons) in Economics, Politics and Law, (Dublin City University 2011) and an MA (1st Class Honours) in European Politics and Governance, (University of Limerick 2013).  Karl will be a visitor at the Department of Political and Social Sciences, European University Institute in Florence from September to December 2016.

Doctoral Research

European Union politics and the role of European Union institutions in the formation of EU law.

Research Overview

The European Union’s decision-making process is often criticized for its perceived distance from the wider EU citizenry resulting in a term coined the ‘democratic deficit’. The European Parliament (EP) was officially granted status as an equal co-legislator alongside the EU Council of Ministers (Council) by the Treaty of Maastricht in 1993. The EP’s role in legislative decision-making was then increased across subsequent treaties. Both the EP and Council engage formally in inter-institutional legislative bargaining. However, at an earlier stage, informally, EP representatives often meet representatives of the European Commission and the Council in an attempt to come to an agreement on the legislative proposal. This can lead to the exclusion of the majority of MEPs and raise concerns about transparency and legitimacy. At a time of great turmoil across the EU and its Eurozone area, most boldly seen by the continued financial crises, it is vital that EU citizens’ elected MEPs play a direct role in EU decision-making.

The aim of the thesis is to investigate the EP’s role specifically in the informal bargaining arena of EU legislative decision making. The question(s) being posed are “When trilogues and Why?” A logistic regression model has been developed and both a mixture of quantitative and qualitative research will be utilized to further understand the characteristics of trilogue negotiations as well as when and why they are used above the more traditional formal method of EU legislative decision making. To further examine the democratic merits of trilogues, a separate multinomial regression model will investigate the factors influencing the levels of transparency surrounding these informal processes.

Courses/Tutorials Taught

Co-lecturer on Introduction to European Integration LG104 (spring 2016)

Guest lecturer on Issues in European Integration LG345 (spring 2016)

Guest lecturer on Introduction to International Political Economy LG125 (spring 2014)

Tutorial on International Political Economy LG125 (spring 2014)

Tutorial on Research Methods LG133 (autumn 2013)

Contact Details