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In: Migration and Autonomous Territories
In: Pro-independence Movements and Immigration

South Tyrol has been referred to as a model to deal with ethnic diversity and resolving ethnic conflicts. This article explains the South Tyrol model’s success by blending ethnic politics with concepts from security studies: societal security and securitization. Societal security refers to threats that emerge from the fact that humans belong to communal groups that do not correspond to defined state borders. Securitization is the process by which an issue is considered as an existential threat that requires emergency measures. The article develops a framework to identify which dynamics made South Tyrol successful, analyzing factors that sparked security concerns and processes of securitization and highlighting actions and measures that tackled these dynamics. Concurrently, South Tyrol is used as an empirical case to expand our understanding of societal security and elaborate (and test) a detailed toolkit to prevent or dissolve the violent mobilization of ethnic diversity and societal security threats.

In: European Yearbook of Minority Issues Online
In: Minority Self-Government in Europe and the Middle East
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With the ‘Troubles’, Northern Ireland has long reflected the problems of divided societies due to the presence of competing nationalisms. The deep divisions caused by the civil war and political stalemate could only be surmounted by the introduction of a European solution negating the binary and diametric opposition between Protestants and Catholics, unionists/ loyalists and nationalists/ republicans. Though many issues continued to affect Northern Ireland and its society, the 1998 Good Friday Agreement and its consociational power-sharing institutions managed to bring peace to the country within the EU framework. Recently, however, Brexit and the reestablishment of borders between the UK/ Northern Ireland and the EU (and thereby Ireland) are posing new challenges, reintroducing jingoistic and narrow- minded nationalist thinking. This article presents the development of the Northern Ireland issue, focusing on the impact of Brexit on the peace process in recent years and, in particular, exploring its effects from the perspective of identity and security.

In: European Yearbook of Minority Issues Online


The Covid-19 pandemic has become the fifth documented one in the 100 years since the 1918 flu pandemic. Its disproportionate impact was quickly recognised, showing how it aggravated long-standing systemic health and social inequities and placed racial and ethnic minority groups at increased risk of getting sick and dying. Securitized state responses and disproportionate employment of police and army to ‘combat the virus’ only amplified the pandemic outcomes. This article aims to investigate these securitized responses towards citizens and, more specifically, securitization of minority communities in the name of the pandemic, as one of the most challenging aspects of the societal shifts under Covid-19. We also offer comparative historical perspective of securitization of minorities during the past pandemics, showing that discourses and practices witnessed under the present Covid-19 pandemic are not new, and neither are the actors. This article makes theoretical contributions to understanding securitization, particularly by showing that Copenhagen and Paris Schools are not methodologically incompatible, and to the field of minority studies.

In: European Yearbook of Minority Issues Online
Migration is an increasingly important reality for sub-national autonomous territories characterized by large historical communities or minorities. The diverse claims of these groups, on the one hand, and of new communities arising from migration, on the other, bring complexity to the management of migration issue in the territories.
Migration and Autonomous Territories, edited by Roberta Medda-Windischer and Andrea Carlà, draws on the fields of migration and minority studies, to analyze the challenges associated with the need to reconcile diversity and unity in autonomous territories. The volume compares the cases of South Tyrol and Catalonia, characterized both by the presence of large historical communities and minorities, and significant migration aims, and sheds new light on how sub-national units deal with migration.
In: Migration and Autonomous Territories