Europeanisation of Religion-Related Activism? Forms, Effects and Paradoxes

13-15 June 2018

European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) Standing Groups, Sciences Po, Paris, SGEU Conference

On 15 June 2018 Alberta Giorgi presented her paper entitled ‘Europeanisation of Religion-Related Activism? Forms, Effects and Paradoxes’ as part of the panel ‘The Populist Right and EU Civil Society’, at this year’s ECPR Standing Group on the European Union (SGEU) conference.

Her contribution focused on Italy as a case-study, drawing on data collected in the framework of the Grassrootsmobilise project (including interviews, document and media analysis). It explored the different forms that the Europeanization of religion-related activism takes considering different actors (religious majority; religious minority groups; LGBT and atheist NGOs) and identified the main factors underlying differences. Secondly, it investigated the effects of the Europeanization of religion-related issues, on the one side, and religion-related actors, on the others. In relation to the actors, the analysis showed how Europeanization of activism is related to both the varying degree of access to different aspects of the ‘EU opportunity structure’ and, more interestingly, to the actors’ identity and self-representations. Furthermore, in relation to the issues, the analysis highlighted that, paradoxically, the Europeanization of religion-related issues often makes them a domestic concern.

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Universality v Particularity: Human Rights and Religions

8-9 June 2018

UNESCO Amphitheatre, University of Nicosia, Cyprus

On Saturday, 9 June Effie Fokas gave a keynote speech on ‘Religion and Human Rights in Greece’ as part of the conference ‘Universality v Particularity: Human Rights and Religions’, organised by the Joint PhD Program on «Human Rights, Society, and Multi-Level Governance» offered by the University of Padova, University of Zagreb-Faculty of Law, University of Western Sydney, Panteion University of Athens, and the University of Nicosia.

In her presentation she discussed issues such as religious education in public schools, proselytism bans, limitations on the legal status of religious minorities, blasphemy laws, and limitations on rights related to social ethics issues (e.g., same-sex marriage) and focused especially on the impact of European Court of Human Rights case law on religion-related freedoms in the Greek context.

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