Call for papers Sociologie Românească Special Issue

Title: “Romanian workers, home and abroad: inequalities, social rights and labor struggles”

Planned Date of Publication: First half of 2023

Keywords: fair mobility; freedom of movement; inequalities; labor relations; migration infrastructure; care work


Cătălin Buzoianu, Institute for East European Studies, Free University of Berlin,

Christian Sperneac-Wolfer, Institute for Social Research, Goethe University of Frankfurt am Main,

Sebastian Țoc, National University of Political Science and Public Administration, and Research Institute for Quality of Life, Romanian Academy,


Since 1989 Romania has experienced one of the largest emigration processes worldwide, with an estimated 3 million citizens leaving the country (Anghel et al. 2017, 35). The Enlargement process of the European Union with its freedom of movement has gradually expanded the possibilities of finding work abroad in Europe for Romanians.  However, many recent studies have shown the challenges faced by Romanian workers abroad: insecure and exploitative work relations (Hopfgartner et al. 2022; Cosma et al. 2020), difficult access to healthcare and social protection (Ratzmann 2022; Scheibelhofer 2022a; Blauberger and Schmidt 2014), institutionalized racism and racializing media discourses (Fox et al. 2012), criminalization and deportation practices (Vrăbiescu 2019) etc. Theoretically, scholars have focused on the regime of social rights for mobile EU citizens in destination countries (Scheibelhofer 2022b; Schmidt et al. 2018; Bruzelius et al. 2017), the transnational migration infrastructure enabling mobility (Voivozeanu 2021) as well as the role of knowledge asymmetries in administrative procedures for social entitlements (Ratzmann and Heindlmaier 2022).

Building on the “transnational turn” in critical migration studies (Yeates 2012; Anghel 2008; Levitt and Schiller 2004) as well as previous work on Romanian migrants (Culic and Anghel 2012) our planned special issue of Sociologie Românească takes a look at the experiences of Romanian workers abroad as well as the impact this migration has on their origin country. We welcome empirical contributions as well as theoretical contributions.

Concretely, we are interested in the experiences and possibilites of action of Romanian workers in the context of multiple dimensions of inequality (ethnicity, institutional discrimination, class, gender, skills, education), infrastructures and technologies dealing with the consequences of migration by multiple stakeholders (receiving urban/rural spaces, local bureaucracies, enterprises etc.), different labor and social legislations at national and european level as well as the possibilities of action of migrants in labor conflicts (trade union organization, individual patterns of resistance etc.). For example, potential articles may focus on topics such as the question of “fair mobility” in the European Union (Barslund and Busse 2016), the experience of women care workers abroad (Țoc and Guțu 2021), the strategies of mobile workers in destination countries (Voivozeanu 2020) or the more broad consequences of migration on the origin society (Sandu 2010; Horváth and Anghel 2009).

Furthermore we invite potential authors to submit theoretical articles on the salience of concepts such as “precarity”, “marginalization”, “brain-drain/brain-gain”, “welfare migration” etc. with respect to Romanian migrants. Theoretically-focused contributions on social relations of power and domination that shape the process of integration into labor markets and work processes are also welcome.

Submission process: potential contributors are invited to submit abstracts in English (200 - 250 words) and 4-6 keywords by using the following online form on the journal website:

Abstracts should contain a succinct and precise specification regarding the motivation of the study, research questions, methods used, results and their implications. If accepted, the authors will be invited to submit a first draft of full-length articles based on the abstracts. The articles are expected to be submitted in English and should not exceed 25 pages, with Times New Roman 12 p., double spaced, and page size: A4. Notes, if any, should appear at the end of the article. For more submission details, please consult the official webpage at

Deadline for submission of abstracts: 31st of July 2022

Deadline for submission of first draft of articles: 15th of December 2022

Cited references:

Anghel, Remus, Alina Botezat, Anatolie Coșciug, Ioana Manafi, and Monica Roman. 2017. „International Migration, Return Migration, and Their Effects: A Comprehensive Review on the Romanian Case“. SSRN Scholarly Paper ID 2895293. Rochester, NY: Social Science Research Network.

Anghel, Remus Gabriel. 2008. „Changing Statuses: Freedom of Movement, Locality and Transnationality of Irregular Romanian Migrants in Milan“. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 34 (5): 787–802.

Barslund, Mikkel, and Matthias Busse. 2016. „Labour Mobility in the EU: Addressing Challenges and Ensuring ‘Fair Mobility’“. CEPS Special Report 139. Brussels: Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS).

Blauberger, Michael, and Susanne K Schmidt. 2014. „Welfare Migration? Free Movement of EU Citizens and Access to Social Benefits“. Research & Politics 1 (3): 205316801456387.

Bruzelius, Cecilia. 2019. „Freedom of Movement, Social Rights and Residence-Based Conditionality in the European Union“. Journal of European Social Policy 29 (1): 70–83.

– Constantin Reinprecht, and Martin Seeleib‐Kaiser. 2017. „Stratified Social Rights Limiting EU Citizenship“. JCMS: Journal of Common Market Studies 55 (6): 1239–53.

Cosma, Valer Simion, Cornel Ban, and Daniela Gabor. 2020. „The Human Cost of Fresh Food: Romanian Workers and Germany’s Food Supply Chains“. Review of Agrarian Studies 10 (2).

Culic, Irina, and Remus Gabriel Anghel, Hrsg. 2012. Ethnicity in Migration. Romanian migrants at home and abroad. Special Issue. 2. Aufl. Bd. LVII (57). Studia UBB Sociologica. Cluj-Napoca: Studia Universitatis Babeș-Bolyai.

Fox, Jon E, Laura Moroşanu, and Eszter Szilassy. 2012. „The Racialization of the New European Migration to the UK“. Sociology 46 (4): 680–95.

Hopfgartner, Lisa, Christian Seubert, Franziska Sprenger, and Jürgen Glaser. 2022. „Experiences of Precariousness and Exploitation of Romanian Transnational Live-in Care Workers in Austria“. Journal of Industrial Relations 64 (2): 298–320.

Horváth, István, and Remus Gabriel Anghel. 2009. „Migration and Its Consequences for Romania“. Comparative Southeast European Studies 57 (4): 386–403.

Levitt, Peggy, and B. Nadya Jaworsky. 2007. „Transnational Migration Studies: Past Developments and Future Trends“. Annual Review of Sociology 33 (1): 129–56.

Levitt, Peggy, and Nina Glick Schiller. 2004. „Conceptualizing Simultaneity: A Transnational Social Field Perspective on Society (1)“. International Migration Review 38 (3): 1002–40.

Ratzmann, Nora. 2022. „“No German, No Service”: EU Migrants’ Unequal Access to Welfare Entitlements in Germany“. Social Inclusion 10 (1).

- and Anita Heindlmaier. 2022. „Welfare Mediators as Game Changers? Deconstructing Power Asymmetries Between EU Migrants and Welfare Administrators“. Social Inclusion 9 (4).

Sandu, Dumitru. 2010. „Modernising Romanian society through temporary work abroad“. In A Continent Moving West?, herausgegeben von Richard Black, Godfried Engbersen, Marek Okólski, and Cristina Panţîru, 271–88. EU Enlargement and Labour Migration from Central and Eastern Europe. Amsterdam University Press.

Scheibelhofer, Elisabeth. 2022a. „Migrants’ Experiences With Limited Access to Social Protection in a Framework of EU Post‐National Policies“. Social Inclusion 9 (4).

  -. 2022b. „Transnational Social Protection: Inclusion for Whom? Theoretical Reflections and Migrant Experiences“. Social Inclusion 10 (1): 161–63.

Schmidt, Susanne K., Michael Blauberger, and Dorte Sindbjerg Martinsen. 2018. „Free movement and equal treatment in an unequal union“. Journal of European Public Policy 25 (10): 1391–1402.

Țoc, Sebastian, and Dinu Guțu. 2021. „Migration and Elderly Care Work in Italy: Three Stories of Romanian and Moldovan Care Workers“. Central and Eastern European Migration Review, 1–20. 10.17467/ceemr.2021.15.

Voivozeanu, Alexandra. 2021. „The migration infrastructure of posting: Transnational informality“. In Labour, Mobility and Informal Practices in Russia, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Power, institutions and mobile actors in transnational space, edited Rano Turaeva and Rustamjon Urinboyev, 69–86. London; New York: Routledge.

- 2020. „“I Wanted to See How to Make Money There Too”: Mobility Strategies of Romanian Seasonal Workers in the Agricultural Sector Abroad“. Social Change Review 18 (1): 13–38.

Vrăbiescu, Ioana. 2019. „Devised to Punish: Policing, Detaining and Deporting Romanians from France“. European Journal of Criminology, Juli, 147737081985946.

Yeates, Nicola. 2012. „Global Care Chains: A State-of-the-Art Review and Future Directions in Care Transnationalization Research“. Global Networks 12 (2): 135–54.