Shared Sacred Sites in the Balkans and the Mediterranean: An International Workshop

24 September, 2017

Thessaloniki Museum of Photography, Thessaloniki

On 24 September 2017 Margarita Markoviti presented aspects of her research at the opening of the “Shared Sacred Sites in the Balkans and the Mediterranean” exhibition at the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography, as part of the panel on ‘Religious Pluralism Now: Politics, Challenges, Success Stories’.

The workshop programme is available here.

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Grassrootsmobilise independent session, APSA Annual Conference

On the occasion of the APSA Annual Conference that took place in San Francisco from 31 August to 3 September 2017, the Grassrootsmobilise research team organised an independent session with a number of distinguished academics also participating in the APSA conference and working on or around related issues.

The session was held on 31 August at the Westin Hotel, where the Grassrootsmobilise team was joined by Michael McCann, Erik Voeten, Bogdan Mihai Radu, Lisa Conant, Nicholas Tampio, Courtney Hillebrecht, Ayelet Shachar, Clifford Bob, and Guy Ben-Porat.

Effie Fokas presented her research on ‘Awareness about religion at the European Court of Human Rights at the grassroots level’, followed by feedback from Michael McCann. Dia Anagnostou then gave a presentation on ‘The domestic implementation of European Court of Human Rights judgments related to religious minorities’, with Erik Voeten acting as discussant. Finally Liviu Andreescu’s presentation on ‘The influence (or lack of it) of European Court of Human Rights in domestic struggles around religion and education: a comparison of Greece, Italy, Turkey and Romania’ was discussed by Bogdan Mihai Radu. The presentations were followed by a highly fruitful general discussion.

Recording available upon request.

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Measuring Legitimacy at the Grassroots: Mobilizations in the Shadow of the ECtHR

31 August – 3 September, 2017

American Political Science Association (APSA) Annual Meeting, San Francisco

The Grassrootsmobilise research team recently participated in the American Political Science Association’s (APSA) Annual Meeting that took place in San Francisco, with a full panel on ‘Measuring Legitimacy at the Grassroots: Mobilizations in the Shadow of the ECtHR’.

The panel was chaired by Effie Fokas, with Dia Anagnostou and Liviu Andreescu as discussants.

Margarita Markoviti discussed the ‘Legal recognition of religious minorities in Greece “in the shadow” of the ECtHR’, examining the emerging role of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) case law in influencing the legal status of religious minorities in Greece and offering new insight on the legitimacy of the ECtHR by analyzing the extent to which its religion-related jurisprudence has provided the political, legal and discursive opportunity structures in Greece, which religious minority communities use in order to raise their awareness, to articulate and claim their rights.

Pasquale Annicchino and Alberta Giorgi explored, with their presentation ”​The Constitutional Court as an agent of change in Italy?​’,​ whether and the extent to which in a given number of selected cases the Italian Constitutional Court (also indirectly by referencing to the ECtHR) has contributed to legal change and how actors, whether religious minorities or any other kind of claimant, have decided to employ tactics and arguments used also before the Strasbourg Court.

Mihai Popa’s presentation ‘Seeking Justice in Strasbourg? Religious actors’ uses of the ECtHR in Romania’ explored the uses that representatives of religious communities make of the ECtHR and sought to understand the relationship between ECtHR awareness, litigation at the Strasbourg Court, and religious freedom dynamics. By drawing on data gathered through interviews with top-level representatives of religious organizations operating at the national level in Romania, the presentation compared how individual actors engage with the ECtHR in order to highlight the main factors that correlate with a heightened awareness of the Strasbourg Court and its judgments.

Ceren Ozgul examined the ‘Legitimacy of the ECtHR among the grassroots actors in Turkey regarding FoRB’, focusing on legal mobilization in the Turkish courts regarding freedom of religion, in order to examine the legitimacy of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) among the grassroots actors in Turkey and discussing the legal mobilization around freedom of belief, religion and conscience among grassroots actors in the wake of high profile ECtHR decisions such as Hasan and Eylem Zengin v. Turkey and Ercep v. Turkey and in the light of their non-implementation.


The conference programme is available here and you can listen to the panel here:

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Constraints and opportunities of ‘judicialization’: religious organizations’ mobilizations and the European Court of Human Rights

29 August – 1 September, 2017

European Sociological Association (ESA) Conference, Panteion University of Social and Political Science and Harokopio University, Athens, Greece

The European Sociological Association’s (ESA) 2017 Conference on the theme ‘(Un)Making Europe: Capitalism, Solidarities, Subjectivities’ took place in Athens from 29 August to 1 September 2017. Recent research by Alberta Giorgi, Grassrootsmobilise researcher for the Italian case study, on ‘Constraints and opportunities of ‘judicialization’: religious organizations’ mobilizations and the European Court of Human Rights’ was presented at the conference.

The conference programme is available here.

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