16 November, Dr Michal Krzyzanowski, Örebro University

Neoliberalism and the Dynamics of Policy Discourse:
Analysing economisation of language/multilingualism in the European Union


 In my presentation, I will critically analyse the discursive construction of language and multilingualism policy of the European Union as an attempt to reshape social relations and political practice by means of policy-driven regulatory impact. Drawing on my long-term critical-analytic work on political, policy, organizational and identity discourses in Europe (Krzyżanowski 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014), I will argue that the EU policy discourse is exceptionally challenged by developments related to neoliberalism. These pertain to, inter alia, the increased economization of socio-political relations (Jessop 2012) as well as the related crisis of political authority characteristic for various multilevel regimes of governance (Hooghe & Marks 2003). In the presentation, I will call for an in-depth, context-sensitive and diachronic Discourse-Conceptual Analysis (Krzyżanowski 2016) of neoliberal policy that is multilevel in nature while covering several aspects of discursive change. These include the neoliberalism-induced facets of intra-discursive dynamics, such as, most prominently, the strongly economically utilitarian framing of policy and the wider society (Krzyżanowski & Wodak 2011) as well as the closely related development of new policy and policy-communication genres (Krzyżanowski 2015) produced in order to gain public legitimacy for the dynamically changing and increasingly complex neoliberal policies and regulations.  


Hooghe, L & G. Marks. (2003). Unravelling the Central State, But How? Types of Multi-

Level Governance. Vienna: Institute for Advanced Studies.

Jessop, B. (2012). Understanding the Economization of Social Formations. In: U.

Schimank & U. Volkmann (eds.) The Marketization of Society: Economizing the

Non-Economic. Bremen: University of Bremen / Research Centre “Welfare

Societies”, 5-35.

Krzyżanowski, M. (2010). The Discursive Construction of European Identities: A

Multilevel Approach to Discourse and Identity in the Transforming European

Union. Frankfurt am Main et. al.: Peter Lang

Krzyżanowski, M. (2011). Political Communication, Institutional Cultures, and Linearities

of Organisational Practice: A Discourse-Ethnographic Approach to Institutional Change in the European Union. Critical Discourse Studies 8(4).

Krzyżanowski, M. (2012).  (Mis)Communicating Europe?  On Deficiencies and

Challenges in Political and Institutional Communication in the European Union.

In: B. Kryk-Kastovsky. (Ed.). Intercultural Miscommunication Past and Present.

Frankfurt: Peter Lang, 185 - 213.

Krzyżanowski, M. (2014). Multilingual Communication in Europe’s Supranational

Spaces: Developments and Challenges in European Union Institutions. In: J.W. Unger, M. Krzyżanowski & R. Wodak (Eds.). Multilingual Encounters in Europe’s Institutional Spaces. London: Bloomsbury Academic, 109-128.

Krzyżanowski, M. (2015). International Leadership Re-/Constructed? On the

Ambivalence and Heterogeneity of Identity Discourses in European Union’s Policy on Climate Change. Journal of Language and Politics, 14(1).

Krzyżanowski, M. (2016). Recontextualisations of Neoliberalism & The Increasingly

Conceptual Nature of Discourse: Challenges for Critical Discourse Studies. Discourse & Society 27(3).

Krzyżanowski, M. & R. Wodak. (2011). Political Strategies and Language Policies: The

Rise and Fall of the EU Lisbon Strategy and its Implications for the Union’s

Multilingualism Policy. Language Policy 10(2).


Michał Krzyżanowski is Full Professor and Chair as well as Director of Research in Media and Communication Studies at Örebro University, Sweden. His research focuses on discourse and communication in the context of political, social and institutional change in contemporary Europe, including from the perspective of new/social and traditional media. He is Executive Editor of Journal of Language and Politics and co-editor of book series Bloomsbury Advances in Critical Discourse Studies and sits on editorial boards of such journals as, inter alia, Critical Discourse Studies and Social Semiotics. He has published widely incl. in such journals as Discourse & SocietyDiscourse & Communication, Journalism Studies, Journalism Practice, Social Semiotics, Critical Discourse Studies or Journal of Language and Politics. He is the author and editor of several major monographs and anthologies in critical discourse research on media, political and organizational communication.

Info:http://www.oru.se/English/Employee/michal_krzyzanowski or @MichalTweets