Patterns of exclusion, dilemmas of inclusion: Roma policies and politics in the 21st century

Course Level: 
Course Open to: 
Students on-site
Remote students
Academic Year: 
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Course Description: 

Please feel free to write to the Professor, Márton Rövid at 

Hybrid teaching:

- onsite at the Vienna Campus  room: QS D-212Thursdays 17.40-19.20

 - online participation: find link in the course description

The aim of this course is to introduce students to various forms of social exclusion Roma face in the 21st century, and the dilemmas policy-makers, NGOs and activists encounter when promoting the equality of Roma.

The course is composed of three parts.

   First, the debates on ‘Who are the Roma?’ are discussed. Shall the ‘Roma’ be seen as a non-territorial nation, the biggest European minority or as a label referring to diverse ethnic groups or a socio-ethnic class? Theoretical questions of labelling, group-making and self-determination are examined in view of the case of Roma. 

   The second part discusses the various patterns of exclusion Roma face (in the fields of education, labour market and residence). Debates on the relation between recognition and redistribution, as well as ethnicity and poverty are studied. Furthermore, the applicability of the analytical category of ‘underclass’ to case of Roma is examined.

  The third part of the course analyses the role of various actors and the dilemmas they face when promoting the participation, equality, and inclusion of Roma. The foremost theories of multiculturalism and the main forms of political autonomy are discussed. Particular attention is paid to the role of NGOs and international organizations in the codification, spread and acceptance of norms in relation to Roma. The challenges and shortcomings of Roma inclusion policies and National Roma Integration Strategies are discussed in depth. The course ends by reflecting on how to tackle enduring form of injustice.

Learning Outcomes: 

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • understand key concepts and theories in the fields of social exclusion and self-determination
  • analyse international, European and national policy-making processes
  • critically reflect upon academic and policy papers on Roma
  • present coherent arguments in both oral and written forms in English

Each student will be assessed through a combination of seminar contribution, oral presentation and written works.


  1. Active participation: 15% of the final grade.
  2. Class presentations: 30 % of the final grade.
  3. Research proposal: 15% of the final grade.
  4. Research paper: 40% of the final grade. Students write a research paper of up to 2000 words length on a topic related to the course that is approved by the instructor. The paper should follow the genre of academic essay with appropriate references and a bibliography.

no prerequisites required