Professor Jean Blondel specialised in comparative politics and was known for his contributions to the theory of party systems, the comparative study of cabinets, and the relations between parties and governments.
Born in Toulon, France, on 26 October 1929, Blondel graduated from the Institut d'Études Politiques in Paris in 1953 and then from St Antony's College, Oxford University in 1955. He was a lecturer at Keele University from 1958 to 1963, until becoming a fellow at Yale University in 1964. He then moved to the University of Essex where he founded the Department of Government. In 1969, he co-founded and directed the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR), where he remained for 10 ten years. In 1984, Blondel was appointed scholar of the Russell Sage Foundation in New York.
Jean Blondel became Professor of Political Science at the EUI in 1985, where he held a position as External Professor from 1994 to 2000, and served as Emeritus Professor at the Robert Schuman Centre. He was also a Visiting Professor at the University of Siena.
Blondel was a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Academia Europaea. In 2004, he received the Johan Skytte Prize in Political Science from the University of Upsala "for his outstanding contribution to the professionalisation of European political science."
Professor Blondel was awarded honoris causa doctorates from the University of Salford, the University of Essex, the University of Louvain-la-Neuve, the University of Turku, the University of Macerata and the University of Siena.
Jean Blondel passed away on 25 December 2022, at the age of 93, in London. The EUI community mourns the loss of Professor Blondel and holds the memory of his outstanding contributions to the field of political science.
Read the homages to Professor Jean Blondel.
Photo credit: Centre for the study of political change - CIRCaP