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Alberto Cunha
Alberto Cunha

Alberto Cunha

  • PhD students

PhD candidate and Graduate Teaching Assistant

Contact details


Alberto is a PhD candidate at the Department of European and International Studies at King's College London. He has an initial background in Economics and Business Administration (Bachelor and Master in the Catholic University of Portugal), including two stints as a Business Consultant and working for a French multinational Bank in Paris.

After that, he decided to delve further into his lifelong passion for International Politics, getting a Master from the University of Lisbon and gaining two work experiences in Portuguese embassies: six months as an intern in the Portuguese Representation to the OECD and one year as a Political Analyst in the Portuguese Embassy to the USA.

In the meantime, and before starting his PhD in King’s College, he has collaborated with two different Portuguese associations for the study of International Relations and Politics, which included the writing and publication of one working paper and one article.

Doctoral Research

The topic of Alberto’s doctoral research is the German European policy in the decade between 2008 and 2018 – the EU’s ‘crisis decade’. Its main research question will be: Given the political and economic predominance Germany is considered to have in the EU/Eurozone, does it constitute, or not, a (regional) 'hegemon'?

This research stands in the intersection of three different disciplines: German politics and in particular its EU policy; international relations theory and in particular the concepts of “hegemony” and “power”; foreign policy analysis and in particular its application to the German institutions/decision-makers in the chosen timeframe.

The theoretical focus is on the (re)definition and clarification of two main concepts: that of “hegemony” and “power”, when applied to the specific case of Germany’s role in Europe. With a deductive reasoning, the basic hypothesis, to be confirmed or rejected, is that a German regional hegemony exists within the EU/Eurozone in the last decade. Alberto posits that ‘hegemony’, for such an important concept in political science and international relations, remains often not fully understood, or understood in ways that not only differ but can even be contradictory. As such, Alberto’s main contributions shall be to arrive at a different definition of regional hegemony and to produce a rigorous academic study on the nature of German hegemony in the EU system (the main literature gap identified) which center on how German power actually works within the EU system.

Research Interests

  • German European and Foreign Policy
  • French European and Foreign Policy
  • Franco-German Relations
  • European Union Defence and Foreign Policy
  • Transatlantic Relations
  • Geopolitics