RC06 - Political Sociology

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21Sep 2015



Founded in 1960 by Seymour Martin Lipset and Stein Rokkan, the CPS comprises both political scientists and sociologists. It represents them as IPSA (International Political Science Association) Research Committee 06 and ISA (International Sociological Association) Research Committee 18.

The board elected for the period 2014-2018 can be viewed here.

Past boards can be viewed here.

Letters from the Former and Current Chair

Piero_Ignazi.jpg          Laurence_Morel_website.jpg



Dear members,
after eight years of chairmanship I leave the
charge to Laurence Morel, elected by the new CPS
board as chairperson (continue reading).

Dear CPS members,
it’s a great pleasure and honor to take over from
Piero Ignazi at the head of the Committee of
Political Sociology (continue reading).

Latest News

  • Call for Panels and Papers: IPSA World Congress in Istanbul (detail)
  • Call for Panel(s) on 'Referendum as Problem-Solving Devices' (detail)
  • New Working Group on 'Democratic Procedures' (PROCEDEM) (detail)
  • Book on 'The Presidentialization of Political Parties' published (detail)
  • CPS Newsletter - September 2015 (detail)
  • Call for Panels: APSA Annual Meeting in Philadelphia (detail)

21Sep 2015

CPS Newsletter September 2015

CPS released the September 2015 issue of its newsletter. You can read it here.

18Sep 2015

Call for Closed Panels and Papers: IPSA World Congress 2016

The next IPSA World Congress of Political Science will be held in Istanbul (Turkey) from July 23 to July 28, 2016. The theme of the 2016 edition is 'Politics in a World of Inequality' (link). CPS will be present with the following 13 panels:

  • Class voting in a Post-Piketty World
  • Contested Hybrid Democracy: Endorsing or Revisiting the Liberal Model in non-Western Countries?
  • Displacement, Social Movements and Contested Meaning of Land and 'Home': The South Asian Experiences
  • Inequalities in Coalition Governments
  • Land Inequality, Violence, and the State
  • Non-elective Procedures in Divided Societies
  • Political Parties in 'Post-Communist' Europe: Old 'Specifities', new 'Normalities'?
  • Political Sophistication as a Resource of Unequal Political Participation in Democracies
  • Presidential Re-election in Latin America
  • State Responses to Digital Dissent in an Unequal World in the Twenty-first Century
  • Studyng Asylum Adjudication from Below: North American and European Perspectives
  • The Performance of Prime Ministers in Comparative Perspective
  • 'Riots' and Mobilizations against Violent Police Deviances: An International Comparative Perspective

The CPS encourages paper submissions for one of these open panels. The deadline to submit a paper is October 7, 2015. You may find instructions at this link.

The call for open panels is now closed, but the call for closed panels is open until October 7, 2015.
Please, do not hesitate to propose a panel under the auspices of RC06. You may find instructions at this link.

18Sep 2015

Call for Panel(s) on Referundums as Problem-Solving Devices

The CPS  would like to organize one or two panels at the IPSA Congress in Istanbul on the referendum as a crisis-solving device. Everybody who is interested to participate is invited to submit a short written proposal within September 25th (laurence.morel@eui.eu).

Description of the call:
'We see the referendum as a continuation of the negotiations by other means', said Greek Minister George Katrougalos, alluding to Clausewitz famous definition of war. The recent Greek referendum on the debt resolution plan proposed by European bodies and the IMF has revived the much debated issue of the potential impact of referendums on crisis resolution. Admittedly, referendums have often be called in the last decades, especially in Western Europe, to solve problems of internal party or coalition crisis - often on EU issues. But one has probably to come back to Gaullist referendums, or to the referendum on Monarchy in post-war Belgium, to find in Europe a use of the device with such a clear function to unblock a serious crisis at national and international level.
This panel is seeking theoretical and empirical papers about the crisis-solving - or crisis-worsening - potential of referendums, the factors on which it depends, and the ex-ante or ex-post legitimacy of such referendums even when they do not fully meet the requirements of democracy. Beyond the Greek case, case-studies refering to other referendums held in all parts of the world in a context of severe crisis will be very appreciated.

18Sep 2015

New Working Group on 'Democratic Procedures'

PROCEDEM is a new working group of the Centre de Recherches Politiques de Sciences Po Paris (CEVIPOF) affiliated to the CPS. Please, find below its official presentation:


Research Group on Democratic Procedures (PROCEDEM )

Centre de Recherches Politiques de Sciences Po Paris(CEVIPOF)/CNRS UMR 7048


During the last decades a number of experiments in participatory democratic procedures have taken place. Some of these, such as citizens’ juries or neighbourhood councils, have been quite new, while others, such as public consultations and public inquiries, have been more conventional. Some success notwithstanding, the record of these experiments has been mixed, and the fact that interest in such procedures remains low seems to confirm the prediction, voiced by their critics, that these processes often fall into the hands of minorities. This in turn suggests a renewal of interest in those more traditional procedures that have the capacity to involve a large number of citizens in public and political life. The most prominent example of this is election, but the regular use of referendums and the systematic use of random recruitment of citizens to public office also belong in this category. Each of these procedures refers to a different kind of democracy. Representative democracy, the historical source and symbol of which is the parliamentary organisation – including a protected legal opposition – is based on elections. The direct type of democracy is based on popular votes through referendums while the sortive type of democracy is characterised by the use of sortition or random selection in the choice of officials or representatives (this can operate at a local, regional or national level).

Continue reading

18Sep 2015

New Book on 'The Presidentialization of Political Parties'

A new book on The Presidentialization of Political Parties. Organizations, Institutions and Leaders, edited by Gianluca Passarelli, has been published by Palgrave Macmillan.

This book considers why the level of party presidentialization varies from one country to another, and how constitutional structures and party genetics affect both the level and the degree it is present. 
Presenting an international collection of case studies from the US, Latin America, Australia, Japan and Europe, including France, Italy, Germany, Poland and the Ukraine, it examines how the presence of presidential features in political parties varies in terms of the constitutional framework. 
Highlights the importance of institutions in political life, the case studies provide empirical evidence that no stable presidentialization is possible outside regimes where a presidential dynamic is introduced by the institutions.

Further details can be found here.

18Sep 2015

Call for panels at next APSA Annual Meeting (September 1-4, 2016, Philadelphia)

The Committee for Political Sociology (CPS) has the mission to establish a community of scholars who have scientific interest in examining the relationship between political and sociological phenomena. We invite proposals for panels that are broadly relevant to this area. Given the nature of the Committee, comparative panels will be favored. Proposals that are submitted to other divisions/related groups, as co-sponsored panels, will be given top priority in the final selection process.
We also invite offers to serve as panel discussants and chairs.
Organizer & Contact:
Emilie van Haute, Université libre de Bruxelles (Belgium) evhaute@ulb.ac.be
CPS President & Secretary:
Laurence Morel, University of Lille (France)

06Jun 2015

Call for Panels for the Next IPSA World Congress (Istanbul, 2016)

Event sponsored by CPS


Call for Panels Now Open!

The Call for Submissions (link) for the next IPSA World Congress of Political Science, to be held in Istanbul (Turkey) from July 23-28 2016, is now open! The theme of the 2016 edition is “Politics in a World of Inequality”.

The website for the 24th World Congress of Political Science is now accepting panel proposals (open and closed). Please visit the website http://www.ipsa.org/istanbul2016 for complete details on the congress and its main themes as well as important deadlines and submission guidelines.

*Please note that the Call for Paper submission will open on August 7, 2015. Currently, paper proposals may be submitted to closed panels only, by invitation from the panel convenor.


Appel à contributions en ligne!

L'appel à contributions (lien) pour le prochain Congrès mondial de science politique, qui se tiendra à Istanbul (Turquie) du 23 au 28 juillet 2016 est maintenant ouvert! Le thème de la prochaine édition est « La politique dans un monde d’inégalités ».

À ce titre, le site Web du 24e Congrès mondial de science politique est maintenant ouvert aux propositions de panels (ouverts et fermés). Veuillez visiter le http://www.ipsa.org/istanbul2016 pour plus d'informations concernant le congrès et ses thèmes principaux, de même que les dates importantes et les modalités de soumission.

*Veuillez prendre note que l'appel à soumission de communications sera ouvert à partir du 7 août 2015. Présentement, seules les communications liées à des panels fermés pourront être soumises, sur invitation de l'organisateur du panel.

Continue reading

16May 2015

Call for Papers: Sessions at ISA Forum of Sociology in Vienna, 10-14 July 2016

Event sponsored by CPS
Call for papers - Deadline September 30, 2015 
The ISA/IPSA Committee of Political Sociology will be present with 12 sessions and 3 joint sessions at the next ISA Forum of Sociology in Vienna, 10-14 July 2016. Everybody interested is kindly invited to submit an abstract before September 30, 2015 directly on the ISA Website: http://www.isa-sociology.org/forum-2016/
List of sessions:
  • Citizenship: Dynamics of Choice, Duties and Participation (organizer: Jurate Imbrasaite)
  • Futures and Pasts in the Future of Political Sociology (organizer: Robert M. Fishman) NOT OPEN FOR ABSTRACT SUBMISSION
  • How the Past Shapes Struggles for Equality: Contrasting Legacies of Reform and Revolution (organizer: Laurence Morel) NOT OPEN FOR ABSTRACT SUBMISSION
  • Is Political Inequality Rising, Falling or Staying the Same? (organizer: Joshua K. Dubrow)
  • Parties as Membership Organizations: A Longitudinal Perspective (organizer: Giulia Sandri)
  • Political Sociology and the War on Terror (organizer: Michael Blain)
  • Regionalism Old and New: Between Economy and Geopolitics (organizer: Mikhail A. Molchanov)
  • The Poli-tics/-tricks of Development and the Plight of Marginal Communities in 21st Century South Asia (organizers: Eswarappa Kasi and Julia Guenther)
  • The Political Consequences of Precarious Employment (organizer: Giedo Jansen)
  • The Regulation and Funding of Political Parties in Comparative Perspective (organizers: Piero Ignazi and Eugenio Pizzimenti)
  • The Right in the Southern Cone: Power Dynamics within Political Parties in Brazil, Chile and Argentina (organizer: Stéphanie Alenda) NOT OPEN FOR ABSTRACT SUBMISSION
  • Transnational Social Movements and European Democratization (organizer: Paul Blokker and Ondrej Cisar)


List of joint sessions:
  • Economic Inequality, Distributive Preferences and Political Outcomes (with RC42 Social Psychology)
  • Elites, the Poor and the Welfare State in Unequal Democracies (with RC07 Futeres Research)
  • Expertise and Interests: For a Sociology of Think Tanks (with RC14 Sociology of Communication, Knowledge and Culture)


Further details on sections and organizers' contacts can be found here.


09Apr 2015

Call for Papers: Workshop on Personalization and Politics

Event organized by CPS


Call for Papers

IPSA/ISA Workshop on “Personalization and Politics”

Sponsored by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD), Leuphana University, November 5-8, 2015 at Leuphana University in Lüneburg, Germany


The Research Committee on Political Sociology (IPSA RC06/ISA RC18) is pleased to announce the first international workshop on “Personalization and Politics”. The workshop is intended to bring together a selected audience of colleagues active and interested in this field. It will be a two days event held from Thursday (arrival in the afternoon/evening) until Sunday (departure in the morning). The workshop is limited to ten participants. All national and international travel as well as all local accommodation costs will be covered by the Center for the Study of Democracy at Leuphana University which is located near of Hamburg International Airport.

Continue reading

30Mar 2015

Job Announcement: one Post as Assistant Professor in Political Science: Political Behaviour

Sciences Po is recruiting an Assistant Professor in Political Science (Political Behaviour). The deadline for sending an application is May 10, 2015.

Details on the job description, the requirements and the recruitment procedure can be viewed here.

27Mar 2015

25th PhD Summer School on Political Parties and Democracy

Announcement by CPS

The CPS is glad to transmit to its members the following announcement:

25th PhD Summer School on Political Parties and Democracy (September 13 -19, 2015)

Center for the Study of Democracy, Leuphana University Lüneburg/Germany

We are pleased to announce that the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) at Leuphana University Lüneburg, Germany, will host the 25th annual PhD Summer School on Political Parties and Democracy of the European Consortium for Political Research (ECPR) Standing Group of Political Parties. Participants of the Summer School will have the opportunity to critically discuss current research on political parties and to present their own research projects. Classes will be taught by an international team of leading academics under the direction of Professor Ferdinand Müller-Rommel (Leuphana University Lüneburg).

Thematically focusing on the role and the function of political parties in contemporary democracies, the program is unique among international summer schools. Its theme is high on the agenda of young researchers, with an enormous increase in the number of doctoral dissertations dealing with political parties being observable in recent years.

Continue reading

27Mar 2015

Berlin Summer School in Social Sciences

Announcement by CPS


Linking Theory and Empirical Research Berlin, July 19 – August 1, 2015

We are delighted to announce the 5th Berlin Summer School in Social Sciences. The summer school aims at promoting young researchers by strengthening their methodological understanding in linking theory and empirical research. The two weeks program creates an excellent basis for the advancement of their current research designs.

Continue reading

24Feb 2015

Vienna 3rd ISA Forum of Sociology. Call for sessions – deadline: 15 March 2015

Event organized by CPS

The CPS will be present at the next ISA Forum of Sociology (10-14 July 2016) with 14 allocated sessions. Everyone wishing to propose a session under the auspices of the CPS should apply directly online by March 15th using the following link: http://www.isa-sociology.org/forum-2016/rc/rc.php?n=RC18. At this stage, the only requirement is a 250 words description of the proposed session with its submitter’s name.

The general theme of the Forum is: The Futures We Want: Global Sociology and the Struggles for a Better World

All relevant information, including the various deadlines and types of sessions which can be submitted, can be found on the Forum Homepage: http://www.isa-sociology.org/forum-2016/

Laurence Morel (CPS chair, Vienna Forum Program coordinator)

09Feb 2015

Workshop on Different Aspects of Policy Expertise in and for Political Parties

Event sponsored by CPS

On February 13, 2015, a workshop on Different Aspects of Policy Expertise in and for Political Parties will be held at the Faculty of Social Sciences (Institute of Political Studies and Institute of Sociological Studies) of the Charles University of Prague.

The workshop is organized within the frame of the research project Policy-Related Expertise in Czech Political Parties financed by the Czech Science Foundation and it is held under the auspieces of the CPS and the IPSA RC32.

Further information and the workshop programme can be found here.

20Jan 2015

Conference on Methods in Political Science: A Rainbow of Challenges

Event sponsored by CPS

The IPSA RC06 on Political Sociology is one of the supporting committees of the next conference on research methods in political science organized by the IPSA Committee on Research and Training. The conference will take place at the Faculty of Political and Social Sciences of the University of Antwerp (Belgium) on September 17-18, 2015.

The deadline for abstracts (250 words) is March 1, 2015.

More details can be found here. For any further query, please contact the IPSA Liaison Representative of the Research Committees at the IPSA EC, Prof. Christ'l De Landtsheer (christl.delandtsheer@uantwerpen.be).

20Jan 2015

CPS panel at the next APSA Annual Meeting

Event organized by CPS

The CPS, which has one reserved panel at the Annual Meeting of the APSA (San Francisco, September 3-6, 2015), has proposed this year a panel titled “How Party Organizations Shape Democratic Outcomes”, co-sponsored with the APSA organised section 5 on “Political organisations and parties”. The proposed panel will draw upon novel data on political party organization in modern democracies collected by a large international research group (the Political Party Database Project; http://www.politicalpartydb.org). The papers are expected to present comparative analyses on questions relating to the way political parties organize in contemporary democracies. These include patterns of party organizational strength, party membership, the degree of intra- party democracy (IPD), candidate selection rules and their impact on descriptive representation (particularly gender equality), and party linkages to social groups.

For more information contact Emilie Van Haute (evhaute@ulb.ac.be)

20Jan 2015

Farewell letter of the past Chair/Introduction letter of the new Chair

Letter of the past Chair

Dear members,

after eight years of chairmanship I leave the charge to Laurence Morel, elected by the new CPS board as chairperson. These years have been characterized by an intense activity of promotion and organization for increasing the CPS presence at the official conferences of IPSA and ISA. This aim has been met, in my opinion. As you can see below, the number of sessions we sponsored covered the maximum numbers of allotted sessions to CPS at each occasion. Moreover, as required by the statutes, we organized inter-congresses conferences. Some workgroups affiliated to CPS have also been particularly active, like the one on ‘Members and Activists of Political Parties’ now chaired by Emilie van Haute. This working group stands as a marvellous example of international cooperation and high quality scholar research. I hope Laurence Morel will stimulate and foster similar groups. CPS is in good health on both the financial and membership side. It has 110 members from ISA and 556 IPSA members interested in CPS activity. The Financial Balance at 31 July 2014 is 3,377 euro. I am totally confident that the new chairperson and the new board will increase the CPS activity on every aspect.

Piero Ignazi

Summary of Activities 2006 – 2014

Panels and conferences: International conference on "Political Parties: the challenge of organization and representation in a period of social and political malaise", University of Bologna, Italy, 10-11 June 2014 14 sessions at the World Congress of ISA in Yokohama, Japan, 13-19 July 2014; International workshop on “Religiosity, ideology and voting in Europe” Milan, 10-12 January 2013; 20 sessions at the World Congress in Madrid, 8-12 July 2012; 16 sessions at the Second ISA Forum of Buenos Aires, 1-4 August 2012; 16 sessions at the World Congress of ISA in Gothenburg, 11-17 July 2010; 5 sessions at the World Congress of IPSA in Santiago of Chile, 12-16 July 2009; 9 sessions at the First ISA Forum of Barcelona, 5-8 September 2008; International conference on “Class and religion in contemporary party politics”, University of Bologna, Department of Politics, Institutions, History, Bologna, 1-2 December 2006; 4 panels at the World Congress of IPSA in Fukuoka, 9-13 July 2006; 4 panels at the World Congress of ISA in Durban, 23-29 July 2006.

Newsletters: CPS has periodically sent official Newsletters to its members: usually twice per year plus a few extra Newsletters per year depending on the intensity of activities.

Letter of the new Chair

Dear CPS members*,

It’s a great pleasure and honor to take over from Piero Ignazi at the head of the Committee of Political Sociology, and let me first thank you all for having me elected in the new Executive Board, which in turn elected me to the Chair. With the help of Ferdinand Mueller-Rommel, who has kindly accepted to be the co-Chair of the Committee, I will do my best in this four years term to fulfill the main tasks assigned by IPSA and ISA to Research Committees, that is: running panels at the various Congresses and Forums of the two Associations, being present as well at other disciplinary meetings, possibly by means of institutionalized links (like we already have with APSA), organizing academic conferences and research activities through working groups, and disseminating information to members via our Website and periodic Newsletter. In this latter respect, I want to encourage all of you to send regularly to me and to the co-editor Michelangelo Vercesi news or relevant informations about the academic/research activities that you are conducing and wish to bring to the attention of CPS members, or other news you know about and could profitably be posted on our website (just published books, events like conferences, summer schools, Masters or Ph.D courses, vacant positions...). Regarding the CPS activities, the first announcement I want to make is the launching by Ferdinand of a new working group on “Personnalization and Politics”, which will start soon with a broad interdisciplinary call to everybody interested to participate. Beside the other CPS working groups on “Members and Activists of Political Parties”, “Social Movements and Contentious Politics”, and “Political Inequality”, this new working group will form the backbone of the scientific activity of the CPS in the next few years. I myself plan to create a fifth group on “The Transformations of Democracy”, at the crossroad of political theory and political sociology, which could be another pillar of our activity. The CPS is a “big” committee (more than 600 members), with a “big” history, since its foundation by Lipset and Rokkan in 1960, and the involvement of other giants of the discipline like Raymond Aron, Simon Eisenstadt, Mattei Dogan, Juan Linz or Giovanni Sartori, so we should prove worthy of our masters…on the shoulders of which we are now standing…In the meantime, let me wish a Happy New Year to everybody!

Laurence Morel

07Jan 2015

CPS Newsletter December 2014

CPS released the December 2014 issue of its newsletter. You can read it here.

31Oct 2014

CPS activities 2006-2014

ISA 2014



ISA 2012


ISA 2006

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