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European Networks: The Balkans, Scandinavia and the Baltic world in the time of economic and ideological crisis

Venue: Targoviste (Romania)
Period: May 25 - 27, 2012

Program

The conference "European Networks: The Balkans, Scandinavia and the Baltic world in the time of economic and ideological crisis" speak about the the current global economic crisis that has generated debate in Europe regarding not only the future expansion of the EU, but the very viability of the European project itself. The discussion regarding the integration of the Balkans in the EU or NATO has been accompanied or even replaced by the question of whether the European project will in fact survive the general economic and social crisis that Europe faces today. While the Balkans still look towards Western European models and standards, Europe itself is suffering a crisis of political deadlock, economic decline, and an increasingly sharp ideological divide. Similarly, while Estonia has just entered the Euro club and Latvian, Lithuanian, Bulgarian and Romanian leaders talk about joining into the Euro zone, top world economists are at the same time predicting the end of the Euro as a currency sometime in the near future.

The economic crisis in Europe seems to be partially responsible for the adoption over the past few years of anti-immigrant policies, something also being fed by fears of the future role of Islam in Europe. But these policies have also targeted citizens of European Union countries in Central and Eastern Europe (such as the Roma minority in Romania), as well as those of non-EU Balkan states.
 
A common reason stated for exclusionary policies is to safeguard the jobs of domestic workers. However, this crisis has also fostered the development of a new far right bloc around Europe, having as one of its features the exaltation of xenophobia, fear of immigrants and foreigners in general. The debate regarding the Roma has been particularly fierce, with even the Finns and the Swedes opposed to the formers’ presence in their countries. A transformative moment in the evolution of this phenomenon occurred in July of 2011, with the Oslo attacks carried out by Anders Behring Breivik, allegedly done to save Norwegian society from the government’s liberal policies on immigration and multi-culturalism. Disturbingly, this event proved that even advanced and well-organized European states such as Norway are unable to prevent large-scale extremist violence.


 

The participants

The Key note speech will be delivered by Professor Michael North from the University of Greifswald (Germany). More speakers will be confirmed in the near future.

How to participate to the Conference

The conference deadline for abstracts for individual papers is Feb. 1, 2012. Please see the website for full details here.

Organizer and Partners

Information & contacts

Dr. Silviu Miloiu
Valahia University,
Lt. Stancu Ion St., No. 34,
130105 Targoviste, Romania
tel.: 004.07244.03094
fax: 004.0345.819714
e-mail: conference2012@arsbn.ro

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