The Centre on Social Movement Studies


COSMOS Conferences

The Contentious Politics of Higher Education. Student Movements in Late Neoliberalism

Date: 15/11/2017 - 16/11/2017

Place: Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, Scuola Normale Superiore, Palazzo Strozzi - Conference Hall "l'Altana"

Category: COSMOS Conference


Several recent episodes of massive student protests in countries in Europe, Latin America and Africa, have triggered questions over the main characteristics of a new wave of campus activism taking place across the world. For sure, these protests address the neoliberal transformations of the system of higher education, enacted by governments of all political leanings. Although differences between countries continue to be pronounced, national higher education systems are becoming more alike in the sense of being more market-oriented, even in countries with a strong state intervention tradition. Such transformations were not only aimed at meeting effective and well-structured policy designs, but they were also triggered by the logic of vested interests, power relations, and social conflicts. This is where our research interest comes in with our focus on the contentious politics of higher education.


International Conference – Beyond Borders: Refugees and Struggles in Europe Mobilization, Solidarity and Political Challenges in the Long Summer of Migration

Date: 12/05/2017

Place: Institute of Human and Social Sciences Scuola Normale Superiore Conference hall “L’Altana” Firenze, Palazzo Strozzi

Category: COSMOS Conference


The conference provides the chance for an interdisciplinary debate between scholars coming from the fields of social movement studies and political philosophy, who have been analysing the issue of migration and the episodes of collective action related to it through different conceptual lenses.


Policing research: Surveillance, repression and the academia

Date: 04/11/2016

Place: Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, Palazzo Strozzi - Conference Hall "l'Altana"

Category: COSMOS Conference



The Charlie Hebdo Critical Juncture: European Public Spheres Before and After the Paris Attacks

Date: 20/10/2016 - 21/10/2016

Place: Palazzo Strozzi - Sala Altana

Category: COSMOS Conference


This conference aims at analysing the effects of the Charlie Hebdo attacks on the content and quality of public debates across Western European societies, paying special attention to dynamics of deliberation and polarization across public spheres, and to the interplay between mass media and social movements in the construction of public discourse.


Friends and Foes of Social Movements

Date: 06/10/2016 - 08/10/2016

Place: Institute of Humanites and Social Sciences, Scuola Normale Superiore, Palazzo Strozzi, Florence

Category: COSMOS Conference





Donatella della Porta on the Growing Criminalization of Protest

The criminalization of protest is growing: there are many signals of this both in ‘hybrid’ regimes and in democratic countries. In this interview, Donatella della Porta discusses the dynamics and consequences of such trend.


Andrea Pirro appointed as new editor of East European Politics

Andrea Pirro has been recently appointed as new editor of the journal East European Politics published by Taylor and Francis.


Volkswagen foundation Grant 2018 for Manuela Caiani

Manuela Caiani has been awarded the Volkswagen Grant 2018 for the research project Popular Music as a Medium for the Mainstreaming of Populist Ideologies in Europe, that will be directed by Mario Dunkel (University Carl von Ossietzky of Oldenburg, Germany).


Journal Article - 2018

Movement parties of the far right: The organization and strategies of nativist collective actors

Andrea Pirro, Pietro Castelli Gattinara
Despite theoretical commonalities, very little empirical research has focused on far-right “movement parties” as collective actors operating both in the protest and the electoral arenas. The article redresses this inconsistency by exploring the organizational and strategic configuration of two far-right collective actors—the Hungarian Jobbik and the Italian CasaPound.

Monograph - 2018

Political Strategies and Social Movements in Latin America. The Zapatistas and Bolivian Cocaleros

Leonidas Oikonomakis
This book investigates how social movements form their political strategies in their quest for social change and -when they shift from one strategy to another- why and how that happens.