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Conference: Citizenship and voting in post-communist Europe, IMISCOE annual conference, Amsterdam, 29 August 2012‏

Citizenship and voting in post-communist Europe:A snapshot at practices in the enlarged EU and in neighbouring countries

MIGCITPOL workshop organised by Jelena Dzankic to take place at the IMISCOE annual conference in Amsterdam on 29 August 2012

Call for papers

A number of East European countries have made a move towards more inclusive citizenship after the fall of the Iron Curtain. While seeking to transform their political communities, post-communist countries established different mechanisms to ensure the participation of citizens in their political communities through voting rights. Some of these transitional states extended voting rights to nonresident citizens, which was largely justified through the moral argument of ‘correcting past wrongs’, i.e., that those who fled authoritarianism cherished democratic values and that they should have a say in the aspiring democracies. In addition, in the course of their transition most of these countries became countries of migration and thus external voting became a mechanism of retaining economic and political links with expatriates. Simultaneously, the post-communist countries were left with significant numbers of non-citizen residents, either due to regional migration or the initial determination of citizenry in the new states. The way in which the voting rights of this group are regulated varies from complete exclusion, to partial inclusion (local/regional elections), to full voting rights (elections at all levels).

In this context, the aim of this panel is to build on the previous IMISCOE workshops dealing with external voting, and also the research of the EUDO Citizenship Observatory. The papers, either case studies or comparative, would look at the changes in citizenship policies after the fall of communism and their effect on voting rights in 1) the new Member States in the EU, 2) candidate countries, and 3) European states covered by the EU’s neighbourhood policy. Such a classification of countries would allow the panel to explore how different transition routes and political contexts affect the definition of 'insiders' and 'outsiders' and how that shapes the future of the polity in transition.

Issues covered in the panel include the scope of inclusion (the subject of voting rights), the scope of representation (national or subnational polity), and the analysis of contextual elements that have affected the issues of external and non-citizen residents’ voting. The panel thus offers a novel approach to the growing literature on citizenship and external voting, while highlighting the way in which different countries sought to regulate the link between nationalism and liberalism in the postcommunist period thus also contributing to transitional literature.

Abstracts of papers (300 – 500 words) must be sent to the workshop organizer until 25 June 2012 (JELENA DZANKIC@EUI.EU<mailto:DZANKIC@EUI.EU>).

The authors of accepted proposals will be asked to submit full draft versions of their papers until 20 August 2012.

The IMISCOE Standing Committee on Migration, Citizenship and Political Participation (MIGCITPOL) will subsidize travel and/or accommodation of those participants who do not have any other funds
and could not attend the conference if their costs were not covered by us.

MIGCITPOL will not be able to cover the conference fees. For further information on the IMISCOE conference and for registration, please consult: