RN32 - Political Sociology

 

!!! The ESA RN32 new website !!!

For more information, please visit:  www.europeanpoliticalsociology.eu  

 

Chair:

1. Virginie van Ingelgom (Université catholique de Louvain, BE),  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Vice-Chair:

2. Ov Cristian Norocel (University of Helsinki, FI & Stockholm University, S),  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Board members:

3. Tatjana Sekulic  (University Milan-Bicocca, IT)
4. David Paternotte  (Université libre de Bruxelles, BE)
5. Fabio de Nardis (University of Salento, IT)
6. Alison E. Woodward  (Vrije Universiteit Brussel, BE)
7. Riikka Perälä (University of Helsinki, FI)
8. Paul Blokker (University of Trento, IT)
9. Verena Braendle (PhD Students' representative) (University of Copenhagen, DK) 


Click here to read the biennial report 2009-2011 of RN32



(Dis)locating EUrope: Conflicts, challenges and changes

Fourth Mid-Term Conference

Political Sociology Research Network 32 of the European Sociological Association

October 28-29 2016

University Foundation (Fondation Universitaire), Brussels, Belgium

Convenors: Université libre de Bruxelles, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Université catholique de Louvain, Université Saint-LouisBruxelles.



Transformed migration flows, conflict, resistance and terror, the redefinition of freedoms in EU member states, and withdrawal from common commitments to welfare are dislocating the state-society bargains that underpinned the ‘European societal model’. The ESA Political Sociology research network (RN32) is a site for debate on the ongoing transformation of political order and authority in Europe. With an aim to stimulate the study of the European polity with insights from sociology on the relations between the polity, people and policy, the network organizes concentrated mid-term conferences to highlight new research themes and stimulate in-depth discussions. Many issues deserve investigation from a political sociological perspective today. Challenging the place of Europe in our understanding are de-centrifugal tendencies such as Brexit and regional independence impulses (Catalonia, Flanders, Scotland, etc.), the actions of a variety of citizens’ movements and new political organizations opposing social and political ‘(Euro-)sclerosis’, and the transformation of the decision-making elite. The increased tolerance for rising socio-economic inequality and new conceptions of European identities and social borders further dislocates the understanding of European societies.

The 4th ESA RN-32 mid-term conference aims to bring together researchers working within a European political sociological perspective to illuminate four sets of topics within the theme of conflicts, challenges and changes to European transnationalizing or re-nationalizing societies. Papers using a range of methodologies and interdisciplinary approaches confronting normative conceptions of Europe are of interest. We welcome proposals for individual papers and panels dealing with the following - interrelated themes:

  1. Resistances and backlashes: Across Europe, collectivities mobilize, digging in/opting out. This theme welcomes research dealing with resistances from the right and the left, populism and social backlash, new parties and power balances, nationalism, mobilizations, and anti-politics.
  2. Migration and mobilities: Resilience and change of migration, mobility and integration policies, in-/exclusions, border politics, disadvantage, cosmopolitanism, participation and perceptions of ‘race’, nation and culture; as well as securitization and fear are all topics relevant to this theme.
  3. Civil Society and democracy: Where and who decides? This theme tackles changes in European decision-making, governance and relations to society. The role of changing elites (experts, think-tanks), NGO’s and (re)activated grassroots, issues of inequalities in participation, and changing roles for social movements in Europe are topical here.
  4. Diversity, equality and identity: Submissions for this theme may focus on issues relating to citizenship and multiple identities, the intersections of class, gender, sexuality, age, religion, race, or disability, religion and secularism in Europe, value debates, public opinion, the role of media in framing and changing perceptions of belonging. Such issues are (re)defining and (re/dis)locating the nature of European societies and identities.
Deadlines and format: April 15 2016

With this in mind we invite the following types of contributions:

A) Panel proposals containing abstract (max. 300 words); title and keywords; chair, discussant and a maximum of 4 abstracts (max. 300 words; title and keywords; author(s)). Important: please indicate a maximum of two conference themes that the proposed panel lies closest to!

B) Paper presentation proposals containing abstract (max. 300 words; title and keywords; author(s)). Important: please indicate a maximum of two of the conference themes that the proposed paper lies closest to!

Notification: May 15 2016

Website for paper and panel submission: www.ESA-RN32.eu

Scientific Committee: Florence DELMOTTE (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/Université Saint-Louis - Bruxelles), François FORET (Université libre de Bruxelles), Virginie GUIRAUDON (Sciences Po Paris), Ov Cristian NOROCEL (University of Helsinki/Hungarian Academy of Sciences), David PATERNOTTE (Université libre de Bruxelles), Geoffrey PLEYERS (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/Université catholique de Louvain), Carlo RUZZA (Università degli Studi di Trento), Florian TRAUNER (Vrije Universiteit Brussel), Hans-Joerg TRENZ (University of Copenhagen), Virginie VAN INGELGOM (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/Université catholique de Louvain), Alison E. WOODWARD (Vrije Universiteit Brussel).

Organizing Committee:Arthur BORRIELLO (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/ Université libre de Bruxelles), Charlotte DOLEZ (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/Université catholique de Louvain), Christophe MAJASTRE (Fonds de la recherche scientifique / Université Saint-Louis – Bruxelles) Heidi MERCENIER (Université Saint-Louis - Bruxelles), Emilie MONDO (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/ Université libre de Bruxelles), David PATERNOTTE (Université libre de Bruxelles), Virginie VAN INGELGOM (Fonds de la recherche scientifique/Université catholique de Louvain), Florian TRAUNER (Vrije Universiteit Brussel), Alison E. WOODWARD (Vrije Universiteit Brussel).




ESA 2015 - Call for Papers

Differences, Inequalities and the Sociological Imagination
12th Conference of the European Sociological Association
Prague, Czech Republic, 25 – 28 August 2015

RN32 - Political Sociology

RN Coordinators: Hans-Jörg Trenz, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, trenz(at)hum.ku.d, Virginie Van Ingelgom, Université catholique de Louvain, Belgium, virginie.vaningelgom(at)uclouvain.be

 

On occasion of the 2015 ESA General Conference in Prague the political sociology network will offer again a forum for debate on the ongoing transformation of political order and authority in Europe and beyond. It invites general contributions in the fields of citizenship, governance and political institutions, political attitudes, political communication, forms of political participation, democracy and democratisation. The thematic focus will be on how multiple crises in Europe and beyond redefined the ways citizens interact with the state. In a context marked by the exponential increase in social inequalities, a process that the international crisis as exacerbated beyond measure, the very existence of democracy is threatened. Thus, as Europe finds itself in a time of turmoil and crisis, the meaning and the practice of citizenship are renegotiated. To this regard, we are particularly interested in (a) how vulnerable groups of society interact with the welfare state and in the representational functions of civil society organisations at different levels of governance; (b) how the experiences of social precariousness and poverty shape citizens relationship to politics (c) the emergence of new cleavages and their political expression; (d) the impact of the crisis on attitudes in particular towards ethnic minorities and migrants and the resurgence of right-wing populist movements; (e) changes in the structure of political communication, the role of the new and social media and their impact on political legitimacy.

1. General session : open

2. European enlargement: new asymmetries and inequalities
Political sociology has been mainly interested in the process of European integration from a perspective of deepening and widening that was meant to create equal living conditions across the territories and the populations of the European Union. This promise of ‘equality’ and ‘symmetry’ was also underlying the last waves of enlargement that invited the former socialist countries of the East to join the European club. In this panel, we which to collect evidence for a possible rupture of this inclusive logic of integration. For the first time in its history, the European Union has now put a formal five years moratorium to this process of enlargement. One question to be investigated is what effects this moratorium has on a number of accession countries, both with the status of candidate or potential candidate to the membership. Another question that shall be raised in this panel is how through the recent emphasis on differentiated integration new inequalities emerge giving rise to asymmetrical structures in the relation between member countries and accession countries or in the relationship between member or accession countries and the EU. Last but not least, the panel invites for contributions which investigate how the differentiated statuses of membership/non-membership affect civic agency in these countries, empower or disempower democratic institutions and generally support or undermine the establishment of democracy in the aspirant member countries.

3. Mediating cultural diversity: Understanding new challenges for the accommodation of difference and diversity in Europe and the World

The panel discusses the challenge of mediating cultural diversity in contemporary Europe situating the debate in relation to theories of multiculturalism, transnationalism, cosmopolitanism and/or globalization. Contributors are invited to develop conceptual approaches to cultural diversity that captures the magnitude of cultural changes from the national to the transnational, and to apply models of how diversity may be handled, both a state level and within Europe and the world. The particular challenge to be addressed is how cultural diversity in Europe and beyond can be mediated. This includes a focus on the public sphere and its function of accommodating difference and the plurality of political and cultural expressions. Special attention will be paid to the role of new media technologies and the effects of the global diffusion of media content. Thus, the panel seeks to capture both changes in media and public sphere infrastructure for accommodating cultural difference, and media’s role as an amplifier of cultural conflicts and public contestation.

4. The Populist Radical Right as Political Actor in Europe

Populist radical right parties have meanwhile established themselves in Western and Eastern European party systems. They refer to social exclusion and inequalities in European societies, when they represent via class politics “modernisation losers” who are concerned by the impact of economic globalization and the European crisis. Simultaneously, they offer – and this in their core – a nationalistic answer to cultural and religious difference in modern societies and succeed in filtering status politics by using cultural issues of identity politics. With their protectionist positions, populist radical right parties form the radical poles in the new cleavage structures of national party systems, which oppose liberal and “open” to such protectionist and “closed” positions; in several countries these parties have even become the spearhead of a larger process of re-nationalization directed against the European order. In this context, the radical right is not only a nationalistic “reaction” to globalization based on the social and political disintegration of declining (post)industrial societies; but it has become an important political actor, which transforms the political exit behaviour of citizens living in economical, urban, cultural and political margins into a political voice. This panel wants to discuss this “creative” moment in the dark side of Western and Central and Eastern European democracies; comparative contributions are as welcome as case studies.

5. Social resilience and/or social resistance in times of political and economic crisis

In times of crisis, citizens prove to be able to activate survival strategies through the organization of collective dynamics. In particular, in a time in which political Authorities are unable to protect social interests, by promoting the de-structuring of welfare institutions, citizens are often organized in order to compensate for the absence of public institutions. In this regard, scholars speak of “social resilience”. As de-politicization and financial crisis may have anti-political effects they also create the conditions for new forms of activism of civil society that becomes the protagonist of forms of public protest also activating different resilience strategies, meant as the ability of citizens to address economic difficulties by deploying an active process of endurance, self-righting, and growth in response to crisis and challenge. The operationalization of the concept of resilience, allows us to analyze the ways in which people face the crisis in times of de-politicization. If on the one hand, the social consequences of the crisis may have inhibitory effects on the forms of collective solidarity and participation, on the other hand, the crisis itself creates the conditions for a new contentious politics that cannot be implemented within the conventional parameters of the electoral participation.

6. Welfare State Transformation at the Grass Roots: New forms of Social Solidarity, Social Resilience and Citizen Activity in Europe

Western welfare states are undergoing significant changes and we need more information about what these changes mean for being a citizen. This is a particularly urgent question at the moment, as the mechanisms that once produced social solidarity are disintegrating all over the Western world and we need to figure out new ways to secure it. The aim of this session is to explore different new forms of social solidarity, social resilience and grass root level citizen activity that have emerged in different parts of Europe in the past few years to tackle exclusion and poverty or bring about new kinds of communality and solidarity. The key questions that we hope to address in the session are: what means and preconditions does this kind grass-root activity have to help people and offer possibilities e.g. for inclusion, why people engage in this kind of activity and what is their agenda, what is meant with solidarity in them and who have the right to participate, how or by which means are solidarity and communality, in fact, produced in them?

7. Joint session with RN 28 – Society and Sports and RN 31 – Ethnic Relations, Racism and Antisemitism : Sport, ethnicity and political conflict

There has been a growing interest in the role of sport both in underpinning ethnic belongings and exacerbating interethnic tensions, on the one hand, and in promoting positive interaction and conflict resolution, on the other. The proposed session will explore these phenomena along a range of dimensions including:

• The historical sociology of ethnic conflict, nationalism and sport

• The comparative analysis of ethnic conflict, nationalism and sport

• The historical sociology of ethnic/national conflict resolution

• The comparative analysis of ethnic conflict/national conflict resolution

We welcome contributions that develop these ideas theoretically and/or empirically. New styles of analysis would be desirable, including visual approaches and new forms of textual analysis.

 

Notes for authors

Authors are invited to submit their abstract either to the general session or any specific session. Please submit only to one session. After abstract evaluation, coordinators will have the chance to transfer papers between sessions where applicable.

Abstracts should not exceed 250 words. Each paper session will have the duration of 1.5 hours. Normally sessions will include 4 papers.

Abstracts must be submitted online to the submission platform, see below. Abstracts sent by email cannot be accepted. Abstracts will be peer-reviewed and selected for presentation by the Research Network; the letter of notification will be sent by the conference software system in early April 2015.

Abstract submission deadline: 15th February 2015

Abstract submission platform: www.esa12thconference.eu 

If you have further questions on the conference, please visit the conference website. For further information on the Research Network, please visit www.europeansociology.org.

 



ESA Research Network 32 - Political Sociology

3rd Interim Conference

EuroChallenge and University of Copenhagen
28-29 November 2014


Europe’s global challenges: Society, Politics, Markets

Conveners:

Ben Rosamond, Professor at the Department of Political Science, University of Copenhagen and Director of EuroChallenge.

Hans-Jörg Trenz, Professor at the Department of Media, Cognition and Communication, University of Copenhagen. Chair of CEMES, Centre for Moderns European Studies and Co-PI of EuroChallenge.

Marlene Wind, Professor at the Department of Political Science, University of Copenhagen. Director of CEP, Centre for European Politics and Co-PI of EuroChallenge.

Mikael Rask Madsen, Professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen. Head of iCourts, the Danish National Research Foundation’s Centre of Excellence for International Courts and Co-PI of EuroChallenge.
 

Conference website http://www.eurochallenge.ku.dk/esa_home/
Conference programme http://www.eurochallenge.ku.dk/esa_home/Programme_ESA_midtermconference_Nov_2014_final.pdf

 

Europe finds itself in a time of turmoil and crisis. This conference will provide a platform for discussing the internal crisis of the project of European integration in relation to the global challenges, which European societies are currently facing. We wish to examine the role of political sociology as a discipline that can enhance the understanding of ever more complex relationships between (nation) states, supranational institutions and (trans)national society. We also wish to develop a more thorough understanding of the consequences of crises for state-society relations in a comparative perspective and in relation to the project of European integration.
The first transformations that concern European political sociology are Europe’s own internal crises. Western societies in general and European societies (including Eastern Europe) in particular have seen their growth models stall and, in some cases, fall into decline. Europe as a whole faces a serious social and demographic challenges. The question of how to ‘govern’ these internal challenges poses a series of near-intractable political, social and cultural problems. These include the rise of populist and neo-nationalist political parties, the growing hostility to immigration, the sustainability of our welfare systems, and the politicised struggles over distribution, gender and collective identification within the European political space. The second transformation that concerns European political sociology is the changing premises of globalisation. The moment of crisis is connected to the fact that the west’s leadership across a range of domains – political, legal, cultural, normative – seems to be in serious decline. The premise of ‘globalisation’ has been that the progressive spread of market society and economic liberal policies through the promotion of free trade, capital mobility and the removal of other barriers to transactions across borders would not only deliver absolute positive-sum gains across the world economy, but also facilitate the global spread of human rights and liberal democracy. The shift away from globalisation leads to a return of political and economic nationalism, regionalism and localism and a new cultural particularism. Similarly, in the areas of normative politics – human rights, democracy, equality and diversity – Europe is facing severe problems maintaining its position as a key producer of ‘universals’. While still universalist in aspiration, central notions such as ‘civic rights’ ‘citizenship’ and ‘social equality’ are currently under heavily contested by new political actors and movements that stretch beyond the European political space.

The negotiation of the relationship between (a) the EU’s internal crisis and (b) Europe’s responses to global challenges raises fundamental questions about the direction, dynamics, legitimacy and future viability of the European project. Here the question of how the dynamics of globalisation and Europe’s global challenges are dealt with at the meso-level (‘Europe of the Nations’, ‘Europe of the regions’) and micro-level (‘Europe of the suburbs’) is pivotal.

The Third European Political Sociology Midterm Conference will be organized around three sub-sections:

Subsection 1: The European Socio-cultural Space and the New Global Order
Here we invite contributions dealing with political culture, media and the public sphere in a trans-nationalising context. How can we capture the socio-cultural and identity cleavages in relation to ongoing political struggles and the challenges to the welfare state? How do reactions to crisis heighten media attention and give salience to ethnic, cultural and gender cleavages in Europe? How does the confrontation with the present crisis contribute to the reconfiguration of social and cultural spaces facilitating or inhibiting transcultural encounters and exchange of understandings? How are issues of welfare chauvinism connected to fears of a ‘demographic winter’ among the diverse polities in Europe.

Subsection 2: The European Legal-Politico Space and the New Global Order
Here, we invite contributions dealing with the current contestation and reconfiguration of political order and its legitimacy. How effectively, given the scale of the EU’s own crisis, can EU institutions manage the intra-European effects of this new global configuration? In what ways, to what extent and with what political, legal and social instruments are European and domestic (national, regional and local) policy-makers and citizens contesting political and economic choices in the shifting global configuration? From a classical political sociology perspective, we wish to examine the transformations of European leadership and the elites in the enlarged Europe in a global context. How does the erosion of citizen trust affect the constitution of social and political authority and leadership in Europe? How do the claims of new groups and rules of representation transform the roles of elites in Europe? From the perspective of democracy and rights, we wish to ask what role is played by the forms of active citizenship (resilience strategies, social movements, etc.) in this context? How are law, political rights, citizenship and democracy redefined in this process of contestation of the contours of political order? How are global problems administrated by urban and regional governance and how are they perceived subjectively in processes of political representation? How are these options accounted for from an intersectional perspective considering systems of class, ethnicity/race, gender and sexuality?

Subsection 3: The European Market Space and the New Global Order
Here we look for contributions dealing with a political economy of Europe in times of crisis. What is the scale of the challenges posed to Europe by the shifting global configuration? How do European policy-makers and institutions conceptualise the changing global economic and political order, and how is the place and role of ‘Europe’ understood in the context of that order? How are fundamental dilemmas (‘market versus democracy’ and ‘competitiveness versus cohesion’) conceived and related to policy formulation at the EU level in this context? How are these options accounted for from an intersectional perspective (the interplay between class, ethnicity/race, gender, and sexuality) in the wider context of the ‘rush to the bottom’ as part of the continuous striving for economic competitiveness, both internally among various European polities, but also externally between European countries and the rest of the world ? How do cities or regions face the crisis and what are the territorial economical dimensions of globalisation?

Submission of Papers and Panel Proposals
Participants are requested to apply directly to one of the three sections. Panel proposals should include at least three abstracts (max. 200 words). Deadline: Paper abstracts and panel proposals should be submitted online no later than Monday 31 March 2014. The online submission form as well as detailed information of can be found on the conference website: http://www.eurochallenge.ku.dk/ec_esa_conf_2014/call_for_papers



European Sociological Association 11th Conference

TORINO, 28-31 August 2013

Call for Papers

Instructions

Authors are invited to submit their abstract either to the general session (open) or any specific session. Please submit each abstract only to one session. After abstract evaluation, coordinators will have the chance to transfer papers between sessions where applicable.

Abstracts should not exceed 1750 characters (including spaces, approximately 250 words). Each paper session will have the duration of 1.5 hours. Normally sessions will include 4 papers.

Abstracts can only be submitted online no later than 1st of February 2013 to the submission platform at: www.esa11thconference.eu. Abstracts sent by email cannot be accepted.

The information requested during abstract submission include: 1) name(s), affiliation(s) and email of all the author(s); 2) contact details of presenting author (postal address, and telephone in addition to email); 3) title of proposed presentation; 4) up to 4 keywords (optional).

Submitting authors will receive an email of acknowledgement of successful submission receipt. Abstracts will be peer-reviewed and selected for presentation by the relevant Research Network or Research Stream; the letter of notification will be sent by the conference software system in early April 2013. Each author cannot submit more than two abstracts (as first author).

Abstract submission deadline: 1st February 2013

Abstract submission platform: http://www.esa11thconference.eu

If you have further questions on the conference, please visit the conference website.

For information on the Research Networks, visit: http://www.europeansociology.org/


 

RN32 - Political Sociology

 

Coordinators: Virginie Guiraudon < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >

 

Univeristy Sciences-Po Paris, France

 

Hans-Jörg Trenz < This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. >

 

Unversity of Copenhagen, Denmark

 

 

On occasion of the 2013 ESA General Conference in Torino the political sociology network will offer again a forum for debate on the ongoing transformation of political order and authority in Europe and beyond. It invites general contributions in the fields of citizenship, governance and political institutions, political attitudes, political communication, forms of political participation, democracy and democratisation. The thematic focus will be on how the 2008 crisis and its aftermaths have redefined the ways citizens interact with the state. We are particularly interested in (a) how vulnerable groups of society interact with the welfare state and in the representational functions of civil society organisations at different levels of governance; (b) the emergence of new cleavages and their political expression; (c) the impact of the crisis on attitudes towards ethnic minorities and migrants and the resurgence of right-wing populist movements; (c) changes in the structure of political communication, the role of the new and social media and their impact on political legitimacy.

 

 

01RN32.          The Aftermath of the 2008 Financial Crisis and International Civil Society

 

 

We are interested in presentations, which explore the impact of the crisis on international civil society.  The 2008 crisis and its aftermath affected in multiple ways and often undermined the legitimacy of supranational and international organisations such as the EU and the World Bank. This has in turn affected the role and functions of international civil society groups interacting with them. Secondly, declining donors’ budgets have negatively impacted the viability of several civil society organisations in both their advocacy and service delivery functions. Thirdly, certain civil society groups such as those combating racism and xenophobia have also directly been affected by the cultural consequences of the crisis. For instance, mounting right-wing populism and mounting social rivalry within EU Member States for resources of the welfare state have undermined the political opportunities of these civil society organisations. In this context, presentations will explore the changing roles, resources and cultural framings of international civil society.

 

 

02RN32.          Citizens’ resilience in Times of Crisis

 

 

How are the meaning and the practice of citizenship renegotiated in times of crisis? The multiple crises of Europe have arguably stretched the idea of European citizenship as a stabilizer of an integrated European social, economic and political space beyond its limits. Instead of economic and social harmonization, the Euro crisis has exposed the thinness of European citizenship and the seemingly insurmountable differences that divide the people of Europe. Has citizenship now come to symbolize again the cleavages and tensions among the people in Europe? Or can we observe that citizens, who are most affected from crisis, develop new forms of activism in political life? Are there new forms of activating European or transnational citizenship rights in times of crisis, e.g. through the boost of social mobility (e.g. young people moving to the North) or through the emergence of new movements of social and political protest? The panel seeks to explore the conditions under which crisis perceptions and responses either lead to a new re-nationalising politics of exclusive rights and belonging or facilitate a new politics of transnational civil society that asks for the extension of rights, participation and democratic control of economic governance.

 

 

03RN32.          The Populist Radical Right in Europe in the Aftermath of the Crisis

 

 

The rise and establishment of populist radical right parties in Europe is no more a new phenomenon. Yet, the economic and financial crisis and the dismantling of the welfare state have demonstrated how so far “free zones” in Northern and Southern Europe have been affected by radical right wing populism (e.g. the rise of the Greek “Golden Dawn”), and the decline of old industrial areas goes on strengthening classical national-populism like that of the National Front in France. Nevertheless, the impact of capitalist modernization has always been necessary, but not sufficient to understand and explain the extreme/radical right and populism. Cultural issues turned against migrants build the core of these movements, if linked to religious difference in liberal society or to the ethnicization of status politics for “modernization losers”. Hence, this panel wants to analyze the simultaneity and the relations between these economic and cultural issues. Thus, it focuses on cross-cutting conflicts in the new cleavage structure of national party systems in Europe, where the populist right with its nationalistic and protectionist positions is the spearhead of a larger renationalization process directed against positions of supranational and global integration. Comparative contributions stressing the correspondent similarities of these parties and movements in Western and Eastern Europe are as welcome as those which underline regional and national differences in case studies.

 

 

04RN32.          Urban segregation and citizenship of immigrants and young people of immigrant descent in Europe

 

 

One can surmise that the economic and financial crisis has amplified the already growing urban segregation in European cities. This spatial form of exclusion has become particularly visible before and within periods of socio-economic vulnerability, for instance in the French riots of 2005 and those of London in 2011.  Immigrants and young people of immigrant descent are particularly concerned by urban segregation in Europe, as they constitute a large part of the urban underclass. Their living conditions are not only characterized by residential and school segregation, but also by political exclusion, although they often have full citizenship. In this context, this panel focuses on the political dimension of urban segregation. It is interested in representative democracy, i.e. in the voting behaviour of naturalized immigrants and young people of immigrant descent (party choice, ethnic electoral lists, low voter turnout, etc.). It is also interested in the forms of participatory democracy in poor neighbourhoods, where civil society organizations are weak, and (the absence of) citizenship becomes manifest in the participation in associations, in (political) violence, in the withdrawal into the private sphere and also in religious radicalism. What does citizenship and political participation of immigrants and young people of immigrant descent in poor neighbourhoods mean? Which are the relations between the political choices of exit (e.g. withdrawal), voice (e.g. riots) and loyalty (e.g. voting)? The panel is interested in either case studies or comparative analyses conducted in European cities.

 

 

05RN32.          Social Media and Public Opinion: Conceptual and Empirical Challenges

 

 

The notion of “social media” has come to identify the public space and communication process on the Web in which the former audience of traditional media takes part in terms of self-expression, interaction, content production, and online action. Therefore, social media are also a new space both for the formation and expression of public opinion and for online political participation. However, contrary to traditional public opinion polls, social media – especially blogs and microblogs like Twitter – entail self-selection, i.e. individuals actively willing to express their opinions and to participate. New “big data” research techniques, such as blog sentiment analysis, are monitoring opinion trends on the web concerning salient political issues on a daily basis. This engenders a new potential conflict between social media opinion and poll-based public opinion about which should be considered the legitimate and politically more influential form of public opinion. Nonetheless, opinion trends as seized via social media and opinion polls might also disclose roughly convergent results and public orientations. The economic crisis over the past four years, in Europe and beyond, is providing an extraordinary case for the analysis of citizens’ political opinions and reactions via these two different channels. This session is especially interested in papers that analyze cases of possible divergence/convergence between these competing forms of public opinion.

 

 

06RN32.          Crisis and Change in Northern Europe: From Nordic welfare systems to welfare chauvinism?

 

 

The Nordic welfare system, which is commonly underpinned by comprehensive labour force participation, promotion of gender equality, egalitarian and far–reaching levels of redistribution and benefits, and comprehensive fiscal policy, has been confronted with the sweeping wave of neo–liberal ism and economic globalization. Even more so, the ongoing economic crisis has had a polarizing effect also in the Nordic context (particularly in Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden). It has been accompanied by the emergence of strong appeals for exclusionary politics, such as the bold emergence of radical right populist parties at the forefront of parliamentary politics across the region, and the sharpening of the debate about the future of the Nordic model of welfare state. With this in mind, this panel proposal should reunite papers that explore the emerging political cleavage along the nationalism vs. cosmopolitanism value dimension. Particular emphasis is put on the emerging dichotomy between particularist nativism (the narrow definition of the modern Nordic societies as welfare chauvinistic projects), on the one hand, and universalist cosmopolitanism (the integrative and accommodating definition of the welfare state in the age of globalization), on the other.

 

 

07RN32.          Political Sociology (open)



 

CALL FOR PAPERS

ESA Research Network 32 – Political Sociology

The European Sociological Association’s Research Network on Political Sociology (RN32) is pleased to announce its second mid-term conference, to be held at the University of Milan (Italy), 30 November and 1 December, 2012:

Political Participation and Beyond
Multi-level dynamics of inclusion/exclusion in times of crisis

Political participation is a founding theme of political sociology. In broadest terms, it refers to all forms and activities through which individuals or collectives express opinions and also exert influence on decisions that are of common concern. While concerned with apathy, abstention and “exit”, political sociology has also described and categorized a broad and ever-changing repertoire of citizen (and non citizen) voice, i.e. activism and formal or informal involvement whether individual/collective, manifest/latent, institutionalized/unconventional, direct/mediated, online/offline. In an age of globalization and multilevel (local, national, supranational, global) networking of collective decision-making processes, in which social and political boundaries are being reshaped and new dynamics of social and political inclusion and exclusion are emerging, this scope of political participation is potentially wider and rapidly changing. One may wonder if participation is heightened in times of crisis, which favour more exclusive forms of governance and tend to mobilise new forms of protest, or on the contrary generates anomie.

The aim of this conference is to explore the extended scope of political participation in relation to transnational government arrangements and processes. Within this broad theme, all crucial concepts of political sociology are embraced. These include: challenged legitimisation of democratic representative institutions; changing power relationships between citizens and the state; the making of a new political order across the interaction of macro- and micro-level actors; the battle for cultural, social, and institutional change involving networked individuals and organized groups at local, national and global levels.

A number of key contemporary political and social phenomena can therefore be analysed from a political participation perspective:

  • Globalizing forms of protest and new forms of political mobilization
  • Changing interactions between public opinion, political elites, mainstream media, and social media
  • The plebiscitary nature of leader-followers relationships as regards populist parties
  • Party primary elections and campaigning
  • New patterns of electoral turnout and volatility
  • Citizens’ deliberations and experiments in participatory democracy
  • The emergence of a new political cleavage along the nationalism vs. cosmopolitanism value dimensions
  • The ongoing conflict over norms of citizenship
  • Processes of agenda-setting and the role of migrants’ organizations in key policy areas
  • Political dimensions of immigrant integration and the politics of voting rights
  • Urban governance and urban conflicts

Proposals can relate to all levels of – local to global – mobilization and participation in the polity. Studies employing a European comparative perspective or EU-wide framework, that address the multi-level dimension of participation, or discuss more recent challenges to citizens’ participation and legitimacy in times of financial and economic crisis are particularly welcome.

Abstract submission: Both panel proposals and individual paper proposals are encouraged. For panel proposals please submit a short description of the theme of the panel and at least three individual paper abstracts.

Deadline: The deadline for panel and paper proposals is Friday April 30th. Please submit abstracts of max 200 words to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The conference committee will notify applicants by May 30th.

Conference venue and organization: The conference will be hosted by the Department of Social and Political Studies, University of Milan (Italy). The Department is located in the centre of Milan. Participants are asked to make their own travel arrangements and book accommodation. We will suggest a list of hotels. Information will be available at: http://www.sociol.unimi.it.

To encourage participation by a broad range of early career researchers and experienced academics, there is no registration fee. To register, please write to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the following information: name, position, affiliation with postal address, country, email address and dietary preferences.

Further information: Contact MAURO BARISIONE This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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