The Rise of Kanzleramtology

Why did Merkel shake Sarkozy’s hand more warmly than at the last summit? Does that mean she’s softerning her stance on a Greek bailout? And did you overhear what a friend of a friend of mine thinks he overheard in a cloakroom in the Bundestag? These are the sort of parlour game questions to which the ongoing Euromess is driving many Germany-watchers.

Hans Kundnani notes the parallels to a prior era, and coins a word to describe it:

It strikes me that it’s all a little like Kremlinology — that is, the study of the Soviet leadership during the Cold War. Back then, the lack of reliable information forced Western analysts to attempt to understand possible shifts in Moscow by decoding what they thought were secret signs such as the position of leaders at parades. We now seem to speculate about what is really going on in Berlin in almost the same way — what you might call Kanzleramtology.

Author: Keith Humphreys

Keith Humphreys is the Esther Ting Memorial Professor of Psychiatry at Stanford University and an Honorary Professor of Psychiatry at Kings College Lonon. His research, teaching and writing have focused on addictive disorders, self-help organizations (e.g., breast cancer support groups, Alcoholics Anonymous), evaluation research methods, and public policy related to health care, mental illness, veterans, drugs, crime and correctional systems. Professor Humphreys' over 300 scholarly articles, monographs and books have been cited over ten thousand times by scientific colleagues. He is a regular contributor to Washington Post and has also written for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Monthly, San Francisco Chronicle, The Guardian (UK), The Telegraph (UK), Times Higher Education (UK), Crossbow (UK) and other media outlets.

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