Call for Papers for the Critical Romani Studies Journal: Thematic Issue on Environmental justice for Roma

January 6, 2020

Editors: Jekatyerina Dunajeva, PhD. (Pazmany Peter Catholic University, Department of Political Science), Szilvia Rezmuves (independent activist and researcher), Richard Robert Racz (Research Fellow, Roma Initiatives Office, Open Society Foundations), and Marek Szilvasi, PhD. (Public Health Program, Open Society Foundations).

About the Critical Romani Studies Journal:

Critical Romani Studies (CRS) is an international, interdisciplinary, double blind peer-reviewed journal providing a forum for activist-scholars to critically examine racial oppressions, different forms of exclusion, inequalities, and human rights abuses of Roma. Without compromising academic standards of evidence collection and analysis, the Journal seeks to create a platform to critically engage with academic knowledge production, and generate critical academic and policy knowledge targeting—amongst others—scholars, activists, and policymakers.

About the Thematic Issue:

This CRS thematic issue invites contributions exploring intersection of antigypsyism and environmental rights. The papers should address environmental justice approaches and provide analysis of exposure of Roma to environmental and public health harms. Environmental injustice works alongside the structural violence of poverty, as well as racial and socioeconomic factors. However, these forms of structural discrimination receive little attention within academic or policy discussions regarding the marginalization of Europe’s Roma. We welcome comparative studies, which include Roma as a case study as well.

We invite several types of inquiries:

- Academic articles that should be 5,000 to 8,000 words long

- Book reviews that should be 1,000 to 2,500 words long

- Shorter articles, such as:  Fieldwork notes or Policy papers

- Work in progress: in exceptional cases we may provide mentoring assistance to develop an article in terms of the content, argument and academic style. Please indicate if your submission is work in progress.

About Environmental justice for Roma:

The environmental justice movement, first developed in the US in 1960-1970s, is driven by the objective that clean environment, basic public infrastructure and quality public spaces should be available, accessible, and affordable to all people regardless of ethnicity, gender, socio-economic status and rural/urban residency. The environmental justice frame allows us to see that social conflicts are increasingly playing out through battles around environmental resources and public utilities, while environmental and public health hazards are often disproportionately inflicted on the socially excluded, the poor, and ethnic minorities - such as Roma.

Many Roma live in poor and segregated neighbourhoods. Spatial segregation and social exclusion are often accompanied by substandard living conditions including poor sanitation and a lack of public utilities, a prevalence of environmental hazards including toxic industrial waste, rubbish tips, floods, and intermingling of waste and drinking water, which adversely affects their health conditions.

This is an unexplored area of research and development in Europe, which has received low attention in Central and Eastern Europe. Until recently, environmental justice approaches have also remained unnoticed by the Roma movements.

In this thematic issue, we welcome papers that address one or more of the following issues:

- Roma communities disproportionately affected by environmental harms and public health risks

- Roma communities’ struggle, mobilization, and organizing for environmental justice

- State and regional policies leading to discriminatory practices in distribution of environmental and public health benefits and harms,

- Empirical field work concerning Roma and environmental hazards, urban and residential planning

- Comparative studies of environmental injustice (Roma and non-Roma groups)

- Theoretical examination of the nexus between environmental injustice and Roma, especially using critical theories

- Neoliberalism, economic logic, austerity, and environmental rights

- Any form of environmental discrimination that Roma face (e.g. access to natural resources and public infrastructure, including energy poverty, water, air, and soil contamination, sanitation, waste management, etc.)

- Case studies of environmental injustice in Europe

- Positive practices of mobilization and actions against environmental injustice in Europe

This thematic issue strives to initiate a conversation that recognizes disparities in environmental quality, which are often driven by socioeconomic status and race. We welcome both, academics, civil society and policy experts to submit their articles. We particularly interested in soliciting papers from critically-minded young Romani scholars who have historically experienced significant barriers in engaging with academic knowledge production.

Submission Guidelines:

Deadline for abstract submission: 15 February, 2020.

Deadline for paper submission: 1 May, 2020

The authors of selected abstracts will have the opportunity to present their draft papers at the Critical Approaches to Romani Studies Conference held 20-21 May 2020 at Central European University in Budapest. If you are interested in presenting your paper at the conference, please fill in the following form

All inquiries should be directed to

Academic Area: