A Closely Coupled Tango? Interactions between Electoral and Protest Politics, Workshop at the ECPR Joint Sessions, Nottingham, 25-30 April 2017, organizers: Ondrej Cisar (Charles University in Prague) & Swen Hutter (European University Institute)

The proposed workshop focuses on one of the most debated theoretical and empirical problems of social movement and collective action research. Social movement studies have tended to declare social movements the defining feature of established post-1968 democracies and generally prioritized the protest arena of action. However, there have been important recent contributions pointing out the need to focus on the electoral arena, political parties, and their interactions with social movements and protest politics. In fact, this type of inter-arena interaction constitutes one of the most important challenges of social movement research. At present, their interaction remains undertheorized and understudied. Moreover, by focusing on these two particular arenas, the papers assembled in the workshop will be able to address more general issues related to interactions of social fields in modern societies. Also, it will hopefully stimulate conversations across various research areas by bringing together scholars working on social movements, political parties and their networks, as well as on political participation and representation more generally. Given that European societies are currently facing multiple challenges, such as the recent economic recession in some parts of the continent, the rise in political populism, and xenophobic mobilization against diverse representatives of the supposed European “other”, this type of research focused not only on protest, but also its electoral consequences is about to become even more important. This is currently reinforced by the European “migrant crisis” which holds a clear potential to politically reconfigure not only the European political arena, but also national politics in many member states. In this respect, the workshop focuses on a problem of high real-world relevance.

To learn more about the Workshop and to submit a paper proposal visit the ecpr website. Abstracts are to be submitted by 1 December 2016.