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The 4th Transylvanian Political Science Conference

Cluj/Kolozsvár/Klausenburg, 28-29 May, 2015


  • Association of Hungarian PhD Students and Young Researchers of Romania (RODOSZ)
  • The Regional Committee in Cluj of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (KAB), Political Science Section


  • Babeș-Bolyai University, Political Science Department, Hungarian Line of Studies
  • Sapientia – Hungarian University of Transylvania, International Relations and European Studies Department
  • Hungarian Political Science Association in Romania – POLITEIA
  • Association of Hungarian Political Science Students from Cluj (KoMPoT)

The „triadic nexus” at work
The impact of kin-state policies and nationalizing state policies on national minorities

Twenty years have passed since Rogers Brubaker’s National Minorities, Nationalizing States, and External National Homelands in the New Europe was published, suggesting an influential analytical framework that re-evaluated the study of state relationships and even foreign policies. As elaborated by Brubaker, the triadic nexus is a system with three actors: two states and a national minority which is linked to one state by citizenship and to the other by culture. In a dynamic system of interplay among the three actors the strategies, decisions, internal structure and social processes of each actor can be influenced by the behavior of the other two.

Brubaker did not conceive the states and the national minority as compact groups or fixed entities but as changing and recurrently redefined political fields which adapt to the situation. Every actor becomes involved in the triadic nexus through a “public claim” (formulation of the minority, kin-state or nationalizing state as a category), and the presence of a group of people who identify themselves with this category. Also, it assumes the existence of an elite that can formulate political and cultural claims in the name of the “group”.

Despite its logical coherence, many of those who have used the model as a methodological framework disregarded the inner dynamics of the involved fields. The main objective of the conference is to analyze how these internal layers of the triadic relations work, and what are the limits of the of the model’s heuristic potential. Another aim of the conference is to explore the relationships between the model of the triadic nexus and Brubaker’s more recent theory on “ethnicity without groups”.

We were looking for papers focusing on the following topics:

  • The micro levels of the triadic nexus: the impact of state policies (kin-state and nationalizing state) on the life of minorities (i.e. educational policy, cultural policy, integration policy with focus on different social categories: civil society, youth, migrants, etc.); the strategies chosen by minority elites in response to the relevant state policies.
  • Kin-state policies from financial support to citizenship policies: discourses, strategies, actors, experiences.
  • National and ethnic minorities within the Moldovan-Romanian, Romanian-Serbian, Hungarian-Romanian and Hungarian-Slovakian relations, from the perspective of the triadic nexus.
  • Nationalizing states in the context of the EU crisis: discourses, strategies, actors, experiences.
  • “Triadic nexus” and “ethnicity without groups”: mutually reinforcing or irreconcilable analytical frameworks?

The official working languages of the conference is English, in exceptional cases papers can be presented in Hungarian.

Programme >>


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August 2020