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Cosmos

The Centre on Social Movement Studies

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The integrative power of online collective action networks beyond protest. Exploring social media use in the process of institutionalization

Elena Pavan

In this article, we aim at expanding the event-based and protest-centered perspective that is typically adopted to study the nexus between social media and movements. To this aim, we propose a network-based approach to explore the changing role that these tools play during the dynamic unfolding of movement processes and, more particularly, over the course of their institutionalization.

Type: Journal Article
Year: 2016

In this article, we aim at expanding the event-based and protest-centered perspective that is typically adopted to study the nexus between social media and movements. To this aim, we propose a network-based approach to explore the changing role that these tools play during the dynamic unfolding of movement processes and, more particularly, over the course of their institutionalization. In the first part, we read the added value of social media as a function of the ‘integrative power’ of the networks they foster – a unique and evolving form of sociotechnical power that springs from the virtuous encounter between social media networking potential and social resources. In the second part, we investigate this form of power by focusing directly on online networks’ structure as well as on the type of communication and participation environments they host. We apply our proposed approach to the longitudinal exploration of the Twitter networks deployed in the period 2012–2014 during three annual editions of the transnational feminist campaign ‘Take Back The Tech!’ (TBTT). Results from our case study suggest that, over time, TBTT supporters do in fact make a differentiated use of social media affordances – progressively switching their communicative strategies to better sustain the campaign’s efforts inside and outside institutional venues. Thus, the exploration of the TBTT case provides evidence of the usefulness of the proposed approach to reflect on the different modes in which social media can be exploited in different mobilization stages and political terrains.

http://www.tandfonline.com.ezp.biblio.unitn.it/doi/full/10.1080/14742837.2016.1268956

News

16/06/2018

Martin Portos wins the Juan J. Linz Prize to the Best thesis in Political Science 2017

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Martin Portos was just awarded with the Juan J. Linz Prize to the Best thesis in Political Science 2017 with his tesis “Voicing outrage, contending with austerity. Mobilization in Spain under the Great Recession”, realized under the supervision of prof. Donatella della Porta.

18/05/2018

Donatella della Porta at the Belleuve Forum in Berlin - May 23, 2018

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On May 23rd, 2018, the Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier talks with Donatella della Porta, Christoph Möllers and David Van Reybrouck about anti-politics, anti-establishment and the dangers of indifference to the political to address the 2018 topic of the Forum "Society without Politics - Testing Liberal Democracies".

08/04/2018

Austeridad, capitalismo y conflicto social. Nuevas tendencias en el estudio de los movimientos sociales - An interview with Donatella della Porta

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An interview with Donatella della Porta realized by COES - Centro de Estudios de Conflicto y Cohesión Social

Publications

Edited Volume - 2018

Solidarity Mobilizations in the ‘Refugee Crisis’. Contentious Moves

Donatella della Porta (ed.)
This edited volume ddresses a gap in research on social movements that has disregarded the origins of discontent and overlooks protest as a resource of the powerless; it offers insight into how the movement of refugees across the European Union and elsewhere activates political opportunities; it explores claims to citizenship made by refugees within processes of knowledge production and the mobilization of emotions

Journal Article - 2018

The Passage from Hierarchy to Horizontality: The Self-managed Factory of Vio.Me, Greece

Haris Malamidis
Through fieldwork research conducted in Vio.Me between January and April 2014 and in July 2015, this article examines the self-managed factory of Vio.Me in Greece, one of the most popular examples of these alternative forms of resistance during anti-austerity mobilizations in the country.