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The Consortium on Social Movement Studies (Cosmos) is part of the Department of Political and Social Sciences of the European University Institute. Focusing on social movements as part of broader contentious politics, it promotes theoretically-driven empirical analyses on forms, dimensions, causes and impacts of social movements, in established democracies as well as authoritarian regimes. Particular attention is given to social movements as promoters of democratization processes. Cosmos aims at raising funds for research projects on social movements. In the spirit of methodological pluralism, it welcomes qualitative and quantitative approaches to undertake empirical investigations. Cross-national comparative project are complemented by analyses of transnational phenomena. Building upon a cross-disciplinary tradition in social movement studies, Cosmos also aims at increased cooperation among the the fields of political science and sociology, as well as anthropology, history, psychology, philosophy, law, economics and area studies.In order to improve synergies and networking among researchers in social movement studies, Cosmos organizes conferences, colloquia, public lectures, seminar series and other public events that will bring together expertise from the EUI as well as from other universities. It welcomes research students, postdoctoral fellows and visiting scholars from any discipline interested in the Centre’s themes. It also aims at facilitating the communicating of research findings on the mentioned topics to the academia, the public sphere and policy makers.

The Consortium on Social Movement Studies, COSMOS, will be inaugurated with a speech by Sidney Tarrow. The inaugural speech will be about “Occupying America: Lessons for Social Movement Theory”. For more details see the EUI website.

Watch the livestream of the inauguration on April 30th, from 3 to 5 pm.

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7th CEU Conference in Social Sciences „What Follows after the Crisis?“ Approaches to Global Transformations. Panel 7: Crisis and emergence: radicalization, institutionalization, and generation of social movements

Coference Website: http://ceuconf2011.wordpress.com
Conference Venue: Central European University, Budapest, HU
Conferrence Date: May 27-29, 2011

Panel 7: Crisis and emergence: radicalization, institutionalization, and generation of social movements

Chairs: Cesar Guzmán-Concha, University of Barcelona; Mariya Ivancheva, Central European University

This panel approaches the topic of contemporary political conflicts within the framework of the literature on contentious politics, political sociology and the anthropology of social movements. The panel deals with the mobilization of ideologically committed groups (i.e. far-right or radical left organizations, religious groups etc.). Our aim is to explore how trajectories of collective and individual actors and their relations to the fields of power and autonomy lead to the processes of radicalization (e.g. squatting, rioting, uprising), institutionalization (mainstream politics, ngo-ization etc), and emergence of new movements, generations of activists, and waves of contention. The papers focus on movements in contemporary societies, through case studies, and comparative and historical perspectives. The papers trace the organizational and/or political dynamics of groups engaged in political claim-making on a local, national, or transnational level. The presented work will address the ‚crisis‘ in relation to social movements not in singular, but in plural. This is in order to avoid a simplistic understanding of a crisis as a single event, and show the complexity of multi-layered chains of interconnected events that accumulate memories and social relations in very practical but substantive ways. The emergence, radicalization, or institutionalization of social movements is often in relation to crisis in the broaden sense of the concept. The current crisis might be an opportunity to assess the aforementioned processes by considering empirical research and conceptual debates.

Some of the questions this panel would like to address – but is not restricted to – are as follows:

  • What happens with and within non-mainstream groups after episodes of engagement with contentious politics?
  • What are the determinants of social movement outcomes such as emergence, radicalization, or institutionalization?
  • How do social movements maintain, negotiate, or change frames of campaigns, and opportunity structure openings beyond individual waves of mobilization?
  • How do movement members engage in the transmission of knowledge to emerging new generations of activists, and for new sustained campaigns of collective action?
  • How do political, economic, or social crises foster or hinder social movement emergence, radicalization, or institutionalization?

The purpose of this panel is twofold: on the one hand, to foster discussion regarding theoretical approaches, findings and implications of ongoing research in the concerned fields of social inquiry. On the other hand, we aim to settle a platform for further collaboration on the topics and sites emerging in the panel presentations and discussion.

Please submit by 1st of March, 2011 abstracts max. 250 words and CVs max.100 words to cesarguz(at)hotmail.com and mariya.ivancheva(at)gmail.com . The provisional program of the conference will be known by the 15th of March.

* full-length papers for this panel must be sent in by the 15th of April 2011
** The organizers provide hotel accommodation (two nights) and meals for all presenters.

Titelbild: Performance von Pussy Riot auf dem Roten Platz (Foto: Pussy Riot Blog)

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