Call for Papers — Law, Social Movements, and Mobilization Across Contexts

Law & Policy, a peer-reviewed journal published by Wiley, is seeking submissions for a special issue entitled Law, Social Movements, and Mobilization Across Contexts, edited by Steven Boutcher (UMass Amherst) and Lynette J. Chua (National University of Singapore). Submitted papers should advance theory on the relationship between legal mobilization and social movements. We take a broad approach toward legal mobilization to include not only litigation but also the use of law in lobbying, policy-making and implementation, and other types of advocacy work. We also construe “contexts” widely to refer to domestic, international, transnational, or other socio-political locales, time periods, or institutional settings, such as courts, legislature, and agencies. The submissions need not be explicitly comparative, though we especially welcome work that is comparative across contexts (as we have broadly construed).

Submission Guidelines:

To be considered for inclusion, please submit an abstract of a maximum of 1,000 words that clearly outlines the theoretical approach, empirical material, research methods, and any preliminary findings. Please send your abstract to both editors (email addresses below) using the following file title: “Your Name_Law and Social Movements.pdf” no later than October 15, 2015. Authors selected for the special issue will be notified by early December and will then be asked to submit full versions of the paper, between 8,000 and 10,000 words, by mid-March for peer review. We will consider longer submissions with sufficient justification, but submissions cannot exceed 12,500 words. All selected submissions will go through a double-blind review process.

Abstracts and inquiries should be sent to:

Steven Boutcher
University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Lynette J. Chua
National University of Singapore

About the Journal:

Law & Policy is a fully peer-reviewed journal that is international and interdisciplinary in scope. It embraces varied research methodologies that interrogate law, governance, and public policy worldwide and contributes to current dialogue on contemporary policy in areas such as government and self-regulation, health, environment, family, gender, taxation and finance, legal decision-making, criminal justice, and human rights.

Two Assistant Professor positions — Scuola Normale Superiore

n. 1 full time assistant professor in Sociology, Political Sociology for three years, renewable for additional two years
The candidates need to have  experiences in research on social movements, political participation, civil society, democratic innovations; strong methodological skills in qualitative and/or quantitative methods as well as an international profile. The selected candidate will participate in the research activities of the Center on social movement studies–Cosmos. The selected assistant professor will teach courses at doctoral level on democracy and social movements at the PhD program on Political science and sociology at the Institute of human and social science, at Scuola Normale Superiore, Palazzo Strozzi, Firenze.

n. 1 full time assistant professor in Political Science for three years, renewable for additional two years

Candidates need to have a strong background in Comparative Politics and/or Comparative Public Policy.  Whatever the empirical focus of their research, they have to show capacity to  bridge empirical and theoretical research and contribute to cross-field discussions within the Institute. Furthermore, we require strong methodological skills in qualitative and/or quantitative methods as well as an international profile. The selected assistant professor will teach courses at doctoral level in comparative politics and/or public policy at the PhD program on Political science and sociology at the Institute of human and social science, at Scuola Normale Superiore, Palazzo Strozzi, Firenze.

Information available at

deadline 21.9.2015

Head, Department of Sociology – University of British Columbia – Vancouver

The Faculty of Arts invites applications for the position of Head of the Department of Sociology, with anticipated start date of July 1, 2016. We expect that the successful candidate will be appointed at the rank of full Professor; however, exceptional candidates at the senior Associate Professor level also will be considered. The successful candidate must have a Ph.D., a distinguished record of research preferably in any of the Department’s broad areas of specialization, a strong commitment to advancing all areas of research, a demonstrated commitment to high quality teaching at the graduate and undergraduate levels, and possess a track record of successful graduate supervision.  The Department is committed to international visibility, research excellence and societal impact.
The successful candidate will be expected to demonstrate vision and creativity as a leader, administrator, and advocate for the Department. The Head is responsible for recruiting and evaluating faculty, developing scholarly initiatives, and overseeing the educational programs and the financial health of the unit. For information about the Department, visit The position is subject to final budgetary approval. Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience.  The appointment as Head is typically for a five-year term with the possibility for reappointment.
Submissions should include a letter of application and curriculum vitae sent to Laura J. Hart,Manager, Dean’s Office, via email (  At a later stage of the process, long-listed candidates will be asked to provide evidence of teaching effectiveness, and arrange to have four confidential letters of reference sent directly to the Dean’s Office. Review of applications will begin on October 1, 2015 and will continue until the position is filled.
UBC hires on the basis of merit and is committed to employment equity and diversity within its community. We especially welcome applications from members of visible minority groups, women, Aboriginal persons, persons with disabilities, persons of minority sexual orientations and gender identities, and others with the skills and knowledge to engage productively with diverse communities. We encourage all qualified persons to apply; however, Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada will be given priority.

Assistant Professor – Washington University in St. Louis

Washington University in St. Louis invites applications from outstanding scholars and teachers to join our recently re-established Department of Sociology. We are authorized to fill two tenure-track assistant professor positions. Candidates must have a recent Ph.D. in sociology or finish the Ph.D. by July 1, 2016. Duties include research for scholarly publication, teaching, student advising, and participation in department planning and university service. Washington University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and especially encourages applications from women and members of under-represented and minority groups. Salary, teaching requirements, and research support will be highly competitive.

Applications should be received by October 1, 2015 if at all possible, but the search committee will consider applications until the positions are filled. Applicants should submit a cover letter, curriculum vitae, statement of research and teaching interests, three letters of reference, and writing samples.  Applications and supporting materials, except reference letters, should be submitted electronically through the Washington University HR system at Candidates should create an account as an external applicant, search for job requisition number 31369, complete the application form, and upload a CV and supporting materials.  Letters of reference should be e-mailed directly to Sarah Crean at

If applicants have questions about the application process, they should email Sarah Crean,, for additional instructions.  All other questions may be directed to Heather Sloan-Randick, office manager for the Department of Sociology, at (314) 935-5852 or

Professor of Sociology, Brown University

As part of a major new hiring initiative across multiple fields, the Thomas J. Watson Jr. Institute for International and Public Affairs and the Department of Sociology at Brown University seek to recruit a Professor of Sociology (tenured, senior appointment) who works on the sociology of the Middle East beginning July 1, 2016. We are seeking applicants whose research focuses on aspects of governance, development, and/or security broadly defined. The successful candidate must have an outstanding record of national and international scholarly achievement, a proven record of successful research funding, and a demonstrated commitment to undergraduate and graduate teaching and advising. The new faculty member will hold a joint appointment and have equal teaching, advising, and administrative responsibilities in the Watson Institute and the Department of Sociology.

Candidates should submit: (1) a cover letter describing research completed and planned, (2) a curriculum vitae, (3) a teaching statement, and (4) the names of five references who would be contacted at the appropriate time by the search committee.

Full consideration will be given to applications received by September 15, 2015. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled or the search is closed. Brown is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer, and women and minorities are enthusiastically encouraged to apply. Please submit application materials on line at

ISA Forum Session CfP: Youth and Climate Change

Session Title: Youth and Climate Change

Organizer: Jeylan T. Mortimer, University of Minnesota

ISA Forum, Vienna, July 10-14, 2016

Climate scientists predict that intensifying planetary warming will cause more frequent severe weather events, droughts and water shortages. These will likely cause massive population migrations and wars over declining resources. Youth are often the most able and willing to migrate, and they become the soldiers in war, voluntarily or not. Such changes may disrupt the passage to adulthood, especially in the global South, as migrant youth experience difficulties in assimilating into new societies. Many youth may find it difficult to see ahead, to envision stable life courses for themselves and future generations. Failure of governments to act may foster a decline in confidence in, and disconnection from, societal institutions.

This session will draw attention to the challenges and potentially catastrophic consequences posed by climate change for present and future youth generations and encourage research on this topic. Illustrative questions to be considered: How have recent severe weather events impacted youth? Are youth becoming aware of the threat of climate change? How is it affecting their outlooks to the future? Are value shifts occurring among young people as it becomes increasingly evident that the planet’s capacity to support life is eroding—e.g., values surrounding economic growth, population size, energy conservation, life styles and living arrangements? Are youth becoming attracted to social movements advocating governmental and individual ameliorative action, or are they increasingly acknowledging dystopian futures, assuming a fatalistic stance, and turning inward? To what extent are youth spearheading social movements to address climate change?

Abstract submission portal:

Sponsored by RC34, Research Committee on Youth

Deadline: September 30, 2015.

Call for Papers: Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change v. 40

Call for Papers

Narratives of Identity in Social Movements, Conflicts & Change

Research in Social Movements, Conflicts & Change, Volume 40

Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change, a peer-reviewed volume published by Emerald Group Publishing, encourages submissions for Volume 40 of the series.

This volume will include research in two areas: (1) submissions focused on analytical analyses of identity and narratives of identity in conflict outbreaks, dynamics, resolution and/or post-conflict peacebuilding and transitional justice; and (2) general submissions appropriate to any of the three broad foci reflected in the Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change series title. The Volume Editor is Landon E. Hancock (Kent State University). Submissions may focus on single or comparative case studies or may explore other avenues of analysis, but all submissions should be data-driven and theoretically informed.

Research in Social Movements, Conflicts and Change (RSMCC) is a fully peer-reviewed series of original research that has been published at least annually for over 35 years. We continue to publish the work of many of the leading scholars in social movements, social change, and peace and conflict studies. Although RSMCC enjoys a wide library subscription base for the book versions, all volumes are also published both in book form and are available online to subscribing libraries through Emerald Insight. This ensures wider distribution and easier online access to your scholarship while maintaining the esteemed book series at the same time.

RSMCC boasts quick turn-around times, generally communicating peer reviewed-informed decisions within 10-12 weeks of receipt of submissions.

Submission guidelines

To be considered for inclusion in Volume 40, papers should arrive by September 15, 2015, earlier submissions are welcomed as well. Queries about possible submissions are also welcomed by the Volume Editor in advance of the submission due date.

Send submissions as a WORD document attached to an email with the subject line “RSMCC” to Landon Hancock, guest RSMCC editor for volume 40 at:

  • Except for on the title page (which should include full contact information for all authors) remove all self-references (in text and in bibliography).
  • Include the paper’s title and the unstructured abstract on the first page of the text itself.
  • Provide 5-6 key words below the abstract
  • For initial submissions, any standard social science in-text citation and bibliographic system is acceptable.

For more information, please visit the RSMCC website:

Please forward and distribute this call widely.

Critical Mass — Spring 2015

PDF version of Critical Mass — Spring 2015

Social Movements Research in Russia: Sociology of the ignored activism

By Anna Zhelnina, CUNY Graduate Center

Social movement studies in Russia gained momentum after the 2011-2012 protest wave, as new research groups emerged to conduct empirical studies of the spontaneous mass protests against electoral fraud (known as the “Movement for Fair Elections”). Publications appeared as early as January 2012 (one month after the first protests), when sociologists and anthropologists made their first and rather descriptive attempts to make sense of the unexpected mass mobilization. The “Rallies Research Institute” (NII Mitingov) in Moscow and the PS-Lab (Public Sociology Laboratory) in St. Petersburg and other Russian cities collected data on the protesters’ demographics and demands, struggling to find adequate methods to capture the “new” reality of mass protests.

The deeper analysis of these events followed later. One of the best contributions so far is the book The Politics of the Apolitical (Politika apolitichnykh) published by the PS-Lab collective in 2014. The book focuses on the “paradoxicality” of mobilization in the political and ideological context of depoliticization of the Russian society, and looks for the conditions of political subjectivization. Several chapters are dedicated to later mobilizations (such as volunteering in areas of natural disaster, local level activism) that allowed the “political subjects” formed during the anti-electoral protests to stay active.

The upsurge of mobilization research in 2012-2013 can leave a false impression of the absence of social movements and social movements research before 2011, and both the media and some of the researchers referred to the “Movement for the Fair Elections” as the first mobilization since 1993. However, social movements existed during the “cursed nineties” and “stable” 2000s, and researchers have examined mobilization around urban problems (housing conditions, heritage protection), labor and social security issues, and the women’s and environmental movement. Tilly’s political process theory, Melucci’s collective identity theory, and framing theory are popular frameworks for research. One significant contribution is the 2010 book From average people to activists (Carine Clement, Olga Miryasova and Andrei Demidov), an encyclopedia of social activism in Russia in 2000s.

Generally, movement-state relations are the center of scholars’ attention. Elena Zdravomyslova in her work on the organization “Soldiers’ mothers” analyzes the identity politics and the tactics of collective action legitimation under hostile state conditions. Natalia Danilova (in research on the disabled war veterans’ movement) and Milyausha Zakirova (on urban protest) look at movements’ search for mobilizing frames that allow them not to appear too “oppositional.” Scholars such as Elena Belokurova and Ivan Klimov pay attention to the organizational dimension of movements. Boris Gladarev in his work on the heritage protection movement is interested in a broader issue of the formation of the public, mostly based on Laurent Thévenot’s “moral sociology”.

Current interest is growing in conservative and right wing mobilization, although the future of those studies is questionable, since the state has become hostile not only to the activism, but also to research about it.

Question: did the emergence of the fair election movement change how scholars thought about movements, at the theoretical level? I think, it promoted the topic and it became more popular after the movement, and maybe just more people started “theorizing” about its origins. But it still is discussed either from the point of view of political philosophy or political science in the narrow sense, social movements studies in the strict sense did not become extremely popular.


Social Movements in India

By Debal K. SinghaRoy, Indira Gandhi National Open University

Societies in India have long been the breeding grounds for varieties of social movements as collective agency to protest against socio-economic dominations and exploitation and also for the articulation of new identities. Many of these movements have retained their historical legacies despite reorientations over the time.

Historically India has witnessed numerous religious reform movements and revolts of the peasants and tribal people against the rulers. During British rule starting from the early 19th century, tribal revolts surfaced in the eastern, central and northeastern parts of the country. India has also seen the phenomenal participation of the tribes and peasants in the Independence movements and also the proliferation of autonomous peasant and workers movements since the first quarter of the twentieth century. There have also been trade union movements, caste and ethnic movements like that of the Rajbansi movements in the northern parts of Bengal and the Anti Brahmin movements in the southern part of the country.

After Independence many of the previous movements continued, and India experienced an outburst of new peasant movements like the Tebhaga movements1946-47, Telangana Movements 1948-52, and thereafter the radical Naxalite movements in 1970s. It has also seen the proliferation of workers movements in the growing urban areas of the country in the 60s, 70s and 80s. Since the mid 1970s India has experienced women’s movements, environmental movements like Chipko (hugging the tree), movements against big dams (Narmada Bachaao Andolon), regional autonomy (separate statehood with Indian Union) movements like the Telangana, Vidharva, Kamptapuri ,Gorkhaland, Uttaranchal, Jharkhand, Bodoland movements, rich farmers’ movements in the agriculturally developed states, movements for the assertions of caste identity like the Dalit Panther Party , Bahujan Samaj Party, Pro-Mandal Commission Movements (movements in favor of reservations for the socially and economically backward classes in government jobs and in education), the radical Maoist movements since mid 1980s in the agriculturally backwards parts of the country. In recent years, movements against big hydro and thermal projects and dams, movements against nuclear and defense projects (e.g. Anti-Missiles Base movement in Baliapal, Orissa, Anti Nuclear Power Project in Haripur, West Bengal, movement against Jaitapur Nuclear Power Project in Maharashtra), Anna Hazare’s movement against corruption, Movement for right to Information,   Movements of agriculturalists’ against land acquisition, civil liberty and human rights, gay rights, children’s rights, and numerous localized social movements for employment, livelihood security of the poor, safety and dignify of women, tribes, low castes, religious minority groups have surfaced in many parts of the country.

Despite India’s new social movements, the old social movements persist, although in new forms, as the old issues are yet to be resolved. However in the wake of economic globalization, penetration of ICTs and communication networks, increased migration and social mobility, a high concentration of youth in the population, most of these social movements are now nationally and internationally connected, attract supporters across the geographical space, and predominantly adopt strategies of non violence (except for the Maoists), and reforms rather than transformation. Many movements are in the process of getting transformed into political parties, getting co-opted by the state, or are aspiring for realignment with varieties of social forces.

Many Indians are vulnerable, due to the contradictions between economic prosperity and livelihood insecurity, legal enactment and political commitment, the culture of inclusion and the politics of subordination. Despite being routinised and reformative, social movements have remained inseparable parts of social progress to create space for collective contestation against these insecurities and vulnerabilities and to reorient collective identities for self expression and fulfilment.