Faces and Causes of Roma Marginalization in Local Context, E-book

This new e-book edited by Julia Szalai and Violetta Zentai has been published by CEU CPS.


The book resulted from the contextual inquiry about Roma marginalization conducted in three countries. Foundation Desire acted as implementing partner from Romania. The Center for Policy Studies at the Central European University (Budapest, Hungary) led the research initiative with contributions from experts of the UNDP Bratislava Regional Center. Two thematic programs of the Open Society Foundations—the Roma Initiatives Office and the Making the Most of EU Funds for Roma program—have provided support and funding.

The country reports presented as chapters in this volume are based on the much longer, English language final reports drafted for Phase 2 on Hungary, Romania, and Serbia. These reports are available upon request from the local organizations that implemented the research in the three target countries. The report on Romania (refering to 25 localities where we have conducted the Phase 2 research) is available in Romanian in a book published at EFES Cluj-Napoca (online accesibility: https://www.desire-ro.eu/wp-content/uploads/volum-marginalizare-romi-studii-de-caz_EFES-Desire-iunie2o14.pdf).


Marginalizarea socio-teritorială a comunităților de romi din România. Studii de caz

Fundația Desire pregătește spre publicare volumul colectiv MARGINALIZAREA SOCIO-TERITORIALĂ A COMUNITĂȚILOR DE ROMI DIN ROMÂNIA. Studii de caz în județele Alba, Arad, Călărași, Dolj și Iași, editori: Enikő Vincze și Iulia-Elena Hossu. Volumul va fi publicat la editura EFES din Cluj-Napoca.

Volumul a rezultat din faza doi a investigației coordonate în România de către Fundația Desire, participantă la cercetarea contextuală “FACES AND CAUSES OF ROMA MARGINALIZATION. Tools and methods for evaluation and data collection. Contextual inquiry to the UNDP/World Bank/EC Regional Roma Survey 2011, focusing on Hungary, Romania, Serbia. A joint initiative of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the Open Society Foundation’s Roma Initiatives Office (RIO) and the Making the Most of EU Funds for Roma Inclusion program, and the Central European University/Center for Policy Studies (CEU CPS).”

Apariția volumului la EFES financiar a fost susținută din regia cercetării cu tematică similară, “Spațializarea și rasializarea excluziunii sociale. Constituirea socială și culturală a ‘ghetourilor țigănești’ din România în context European” (proiect finanțat de CNCS – UEFISCDI, PN-II-ID-PCE-2011-3-0354), pusă la dispoziția echipei de cercetare SPAREX de către Universitatea Babeș-Bolyai.

Roma marginalization and local under-development

The contextual research on “Faces and Causes of Roma Marginalization in Local Settings” identified a series of intersecting factors in Romanian localities that (re)produce the ethno-spatial segregation or separation of Roma. These sometimes are interwoven with economic deprivation or extreme poverty. By analyzing data collected in 25 settlements (placed in five of the eight Romanian development regions) our aim was to offer insights into the ways advanced marginality created economically deprived and excluded (Romani) communities at local level.

roma-marginalization-Romania-local-contexts (2)

As post-socialist Romania aligned to the current global trends of neoliberalism, inclusion and exclusion (of Roma) reflect a new societal order also manifested in spatial (urban) arrangements. This order privileges the winners of the privatization and marketization of public goods, and it is inclusive for people, places, and societal areas that might be better included into the political economy of capitalism (as a labour force, as geographical zones worthy of investment, as domains which deserve development – all of these as sources of profit). But it is exclusive towards those who were rendered “surplus” and “needless” from the point of view of those in power and of the capital, or who became so vulnerable that their labour rights could be exploited due to their socio-spatial position, wedged in between the borders of legality and human dignity.


A (self)-reflexive account – through documents and pictures –  on the visions, aims and actions of anti-segregation activism in the city of Cluj-Napoca since 2010. This is based on the interconnectedness between (1) learning about the production of social exclusion and marginalization, (2) building up solidarities across ethnic groups and people occupying different positions in hierarchies of power, and (3) participating on the empowerment of the disadvantaged.


Mapping Roma Marginalization in Local Contexts

Based on the long version of the final Romanian report accomplished  in June 2013 as an outcome of the contextual inquiry Faces and Causes of Roma marginalization. Tools and methods for evaluation and data collection (December 2012 – June 2013), a scholarly article with the title Mapping Roma Marginalization in Local Contexts was published in the Special issue of Studia UBB Sociologia (Volume 58 (LVIII) 2013, December, Issue 2), pp. 111-155, alongside with the first results of the SPAREX researchon the Spatialization and racialization of social exclusion.