The Centre on Social Movement Studies




Interactive Diffusion: The coevolution of police and protest behavior with an application to transnational contention

Journal Article - 2012

Authors: Donatella della Porta; Sydney Tarrow

In this article, the authors focus attention on a poorly understood aspect of contentious politics: the interaction between the transnational diffusion of new forms of protest behavior and police practices in response to them. Studies of diffusion are usually limited to the diffusion of one kind of innovation by one set of actors to another,… more

Libya's Violent Revolution

Working Paper - 2012

Author: Emin Poljarevic

Libya is unlike other states in North Africa mainly because of the distinctive arrangement of different socio-economic and political features it combines. This arrangement came into sharper focus in the wake of the recent collapse of its 40-year-old authoritarian regime. What had begun as a series of peaceful protests against the regime's administrative misconducts became… more

Mass Migration, Student Protests and the Intelligentsia Popullore in the Albanian Transition to Democracy

Working Paper - 2012

Author: Luisa Chiodi

After decades under a Stalinist regime, the latecomer transition in Albania began thanks to the large-scale exodus of hundreds of young people which stimulated the mobilization of university students. In turn, the student movement became the catalyst of a wider social mobilization once fear faded away from December 1990 onwards. These experiences were nevertheless short-lived… more
Picture description

Media Practices and Protest Politics: How precarious workers mobilise

Monograph - 2012

Author: Alice Mattoni

How do precarious workers employed in call-centres, universities, the fashion industry and many other labour markets organise, struggle and communicate to become recognised, influential political subjects? "Media Practices and Protest Politics: How Precarious Workers Organise" reveals the process by which individuals at the margins of the labour market and excluded from the welfare state communicate… more

Micro-Mobilization into Armed Groups: ideological, instrumental and solidaristic paths

Journal Article - 2012

Authors: Lorenzo Bosi; Donatella della Porta

Based on biographical materials of armed militants of the Provisional Irish Republican Army and Red Brigades, this article analyses variation within the micromobilization that leads to armed groups. Three general paths are singled out: the ideological path, the instrumental path and the solidaristic path. Each of these is characterized by complex interactions between the individual… more

Mobilizing for Democracy: A research project

Working Paper - 2012

Author: Donatella della Porta

The project addresses the role of civil society organizations (CSOs) in democratization processes, bridging social science approaches to social movements and democracy. The project starts by revisiting the 'transitology' approach to democratization and the political process approach to social movements, before moving towards more innovative approaches in both areas. From the theoretical point of view,… more
Picture description

Mobilizing on the Extreme Right: Germany, Italy, and the United States

Monograph - 2012

Authors: Manuela Caiani; Donatella della Porta; Claudius Wagemann

Research on the extreme right is rare, and the extreme right has even more rarely been analysed as a social movement. In this volume, the extreme right is compared in Italy, Germany, and the United States using concepts and methods developed in social movement studies. In particular, the book describes the discourse, action, and organizational… more

Nationalism and Transitions: Mobilizing for democracy in Yugoslavia

Working Paper - 2012

Author: Daniel P. Ritter

The Yugoslav transition(s) to democracy is perhaps the most complex of all the Eastern European cases. It can be argued that Yugoslavia enjoyed the most favorable initial conditions of any country in the region: the regime was relatively liberal, there was an indigenous, vibrant civil society, an economic crisis had put politicians on the defensive,… more

No Way Back: Actors, structures and mobilization opportunities in the 2011-2013 Syrian uprising

Working Paper - 2012

Author: Teije Hidde Donker

The following report provides an in-depth, empirically focused, overview of contentious mobilization dynamics before and during the Syrian Uprising. The report describes the period between the beginning of Bashar al-Assad’s rule in 2000 until the end of 2012. Instead of an extensive chronological overview, the report is structured along a thematic “periodization”. It therefore focuses… more



"Standing up for Science" - a documentary by Dieter Rucht

A documentary by Dieter Rucht on the 2017 March for Science in Washington, D.C. - now available on YouTube.


COSMOS Talks Calendar - Second Semester 2018

Read here the full calendar of the COSMOS Talks Series


Call for Application Now Open: Summer School on Concepts and Methods for Research on Far-Right Politics

We are pleased to announce that the call for applications is now open for the 1st Summer School of the ECPR Standing Group on Extremism & Democracy on ‘Concepts and Methods for Research on Far-Right Politics’, sponsored by the Centre for Research on Extremism (C-REX), the European Council for Political Research (ECPR), and the Centre on Social Movement Studies (COSMOS).


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 - 2017

Reshaping Citizenship through Collective Action: Performative and Prefigurative Practices in the 2013–2014 Cycle of Contention in Bosnia & Hercegovina

Chiara Milan
This essay analyses the strategic practices adopted by social movement actors during the 2013 and 2014 mobilisations in Bosnia & Hercegovina. By bridging critical citizenship studies with literature on social movements, it classifies them as belonging to the realm of activist citizenship, but also as having a performative and prefigurative dimension.