Research seminar

of Center for Governance and Security Policies

It gives researchers in the country or abroad the opportunity to present their recent results to a wide audience. The center invites 6 researchers each year, and the events take place online or in person.

Guadalupe Martínez Fuentes

Against or in favor of the new Tunisian regime? Map of local and international actors

9 March 2023, 17.00

Registration for the seminar can be done by filling in the form available at until 9 March at 11.30 am. Only those registered will receive the link to the online session of the seminar.
The presentation will take 30 min., followed by a 30 min. Q&A session from the audience.

Since mid-2021, president Kais Saied has turned the tide of Tunisia’s transition to democracy towards a transition to a new form of regime, which is still difficult to categorise. Some call it hyper-presidentialism, considering the concentration of powers in the hands of the president and the eradication of institutions with check and balance capacity. Others see it as a new expression of constitutional authoritarian populism, given that constitutional formalities and populist rhetoric are used to cover up an authoritarian backslide. Others call it merely adhocracy, given that political improvisation seems to predominate in Saied’s ruling style at this late stage. While Saied regime is still under construction, the map of its local and international supporters and detractors remains fickle and confusing, as is the nature of the relationships between them. This seminar aims to clarify the configuration of this constellation of actors and encourage reflection on their possible influence as drivers towards the new regime consolidation, change or blockade

Guadalupe Martínez Fuentes is Associate Professor in Comparative Politics at University of Granada. Her expertise lies in elections, party politics, social movements, democratization and political islam.

Past Events

Populism and the Diaspora Communities (8 december 2022)

Sorina Soare is Lecturer in Comparative Politics at University of Florence.

Populism and its varieties are widespread throughout the world. Populist parties, which were considered until recently fringe, have gradually become a common presence in Parliament and got sometimes involved in government coalition formation. In this context populism started to be understood beyond nationalism and considered a transnational phenomenon. In a first step, these phenomena were identified at the European level as it is the case with DieM25 or the movements Occupy Wall Street and Indignados. More recently, the transnational dimension of populism was linked to the strategies used by populist parties to mobilize successfully the communities of citizens who live abroad from their country of origin. This presentation aims to analyze the causes and the characteristics of the transnational mobilization explaining how and why populism becomes a transnational phenomenon. To identify possible answers, it will use elements of migration and party politics, with emphasis on real-life examples.

Democratic Innovations: a new solution to old problems? (24 november 2022)

Nanuli Silagadze is Post-doctoral fellow at Abo Akademi University, Finland.

The weaknesses of representative democracy are reflected in various facets around the globe: general political disenchantment of citizens, low confidence in political institutions, declining interest in politics with falling turnout, and decrease in party membership. As a consequence, a variety of democratic innovations have been implemented worldwide in order to cure this ‘malaise’. In this talk, we will touch upon the main tools of democratic innovations – direct democracy and deliberative democracy and reflect on their merits and challenges within the contemporary system of representative democracy.

Politics and Security after Secessionist Challenges: Catalonia and Spain Since 2017 (27 October 2022)

Oscar Barberà (Associate Professor in Political Science and Public Administration, University of Valencia)

The Catalan Secessionist Challenge started by the early 2010s with the Spanish Constitutional Court rule rejecting key points of a reform of the Catalan Statute of Autonomy. Between 2012 and 2017, the seccessionist movement was able to mobilise large crowds, organise innovative demonstrations and rallies, and try to gain internantional legitimacy throguh two very controversial referendums (2014, 2017). The fall of 2017, fundamental institutional clashes between the Spanish and the Catalan institutions emerged. It also pointed out enormous security dilemas involving the role of the Spanish and Catalan police, the Spanish military as well as possible international interference from other countries. After 2017, the institutional and security challenges have also been very relevant, but the conflict has slowly been contained, the Secessionist movement has lost momentum and it now faces substantial internal divisions. The presentation will highlight what have been the main political and security developments that help to understand what has changed between 2017 and today.

Discrimination between Concepts and Realities in Contemporary Societies (12 May 2022)​

Asztalos Csaba-Ferenc (lawyer and member in the Director College of the National Council for Combating Discrimination)

Discrimination is the unequal treatment of persons or groups in society. It ranges from verbal abuse or feeling less valued as a human being to unfair practices, bias and harassment. A discriminatory treatment applied to citizens can lead to dangerous consequences for social interactions or country’s democratic future. This presentation will highlight some of the forms and challenges of discrimination in contemporary Romania.

Rebel governance and security challenges (7 April 2022)

Adrian Florea (Senior Lecturer in International relations, University of Glasgow)

 My research draws inspiration from the literatures on governance and civil warfare/insurgency to examine the conditions under which rebel groups establish complex architectures of governance in the areas that they control. While many civil wars do shatter existing socio-political orders, they often create alternative orders where rebels engaged in contention with sovereign governments perform a wide range of governance activities: they set up parallel executive, legislative, and administrative structures, establish alternative institutions for property rights enforcement and dispute resolution, collect taxes, and provide a range of public goods, such as healthcare, education, or social services, to the local population. During the CGPS seminar, I will discuss the key factors that shape both the supply of and demand for rebel governance.

The COVID-19 Pandemic and the Angry Youth: Stories from Bosnia and Herzegovina (10 martie 2022)

Maja Savić-Bojanić (Lector univ. dr. în Științe politice, Sarajevo School of Science and Technology)

Political participation during crisis takes a reactive form – it is merely a response to an emergency which is manifested through varying forms of protest. In a global crisis caused by Covid-19 pandemic, massive protests occurred as a response to restrictive measures that governments around the world imposed as means of protecting public health. This lecture will examine why youth engaged in Covid-19 related protests in Bosnia and Herzegovina. What were the triggers and how did youth opinion changed as policies changed? Is youth on a ‘standby’ or are they easily triggered?