Issues and Perspectives in the Study of Social Movement Impacts

Call for Papers

Issues and Perspectives in the Study of Social Movement Impacts

27 May 2022
Institute of Citizenship Studies, University of Geneva
Geneva, Switzerland


César Guzmán-Concha (UNIGE)
Marco Giugni (UNIGE).

Keynote speakers:

Jennifer Earl (U. Arizona), Lorenzo Bosi (SNS Florence), Katrin Uba (Uppsala).

There is a growing interest in the study of the consequences and impacts of social movements and other forms of contentious collective action. Over the last four decades, a growing number of scholars have examined the different ways by which citizens who lack access to decision-making instances, coordinate with the intention to modify their environment, improve their lives, or resist the initiatives of large, powerful actors. By acting in such manners, and even when they fail to achieve their goals, activists alter the milieus in which they live and, in the process, they often change themselves.

Some researchers have focused on how social movements influence public policy, state institutions and large organizations, including political parties, corporations and religious groups. Other scholars have been interested in the transformative dynamics of social movements in culture and values, including aspects such as emotions, ideas, popular cultures and zeitgeist. It is generally agreed that direct causal links between social movements and specific outcomes are difficult to determine, or rare to find. In this vein, some scholars have suggested to pay attention to the interactions between movements and institutions –the overlapping areas in which insiders and outsiders meet and interact– or to the arenas that connect ordinary citizens and the decision-making centers –the public opinion, or the public sphere–, which condition the very chances of movements to achieve their goals. More recently, some authors have expanded the notion of cultural impacts to cover a broad range of ideational elements, networks and practices that underpin changes in social policies, the economy and politics. The range and breadth of the outcomes studied also varies significantly. Researchers often consider instances of impacts circumscribed to discrete, well- defined policy areas or social domains, including the trajectories of individuals and social movement organizations. However, this emphasis might reflect the choices of those scholars who are based in advanced economies and publish regularly in mainstream academic outlets. As we move outside North America and Western Europe, we notice that scholars remain keenly interested in the systemic impacts of social conflict, including regime change, democratization and (in)equalities.

Against this background, this one-day workshop invites scholars working on the consequences and impacts of contentious politics. We understand social movement impacts in a broad manner, including political, cultural and economic consequences, intentional or non-intentional effects, taking place over the short, medium or long term. We welcome innovativetheoretically-informedempirically-grounded studies from researchers working from a broad range of perspectives, methodologies and regions.

A maximum of 8-10 participants, predominantly early and mid-career scholars, will be selected to present their current work related to the theme of this event. Experienced researchers, including the keynote speakers, will act as discussants of the papers.

The workshop will conclude with a roundtable where the keynote speakers will engage in a dialogue about the main issues and challenges in the study of social movement impacts.

A selection of the papers presented at this workshop will form part of a proposal for a peer- reviewed special issue to be submitted for consideration in an international leading journal in the field.

How to apply:

Please submit a copy of your CV and the title and abstract (300 words max.) of your presentation to by 30 November 2021. We will notify the outcome of your application by 15 December 2021.

The language of the conference will be English. Invited scholars are required to submit their working papers (8000 words max., in English) by 15 May 2022.

The organizers can contribute to the travel and/or accommodation costs for a limited number of participants. In case you need financial assistance, please indicate this in your submission, including an estimation of the resources required. Need of funding is not a criterion for disqualifying papers and participants.

For any question you can contact César Guzmán-Concha:

This workshop is financed by the EU-H2020 project “MOBILISE” (Grant Agreement no. 839483), and the Institute of Citizenship Studies of the University of Geneva.

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Publicado en: Convocatorias, Eventos, Eventos externos

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