Explaining access to citizenship in Central and Eastern Europe

Bartasevičius, Vainius (2020) Explaining access to citizenship in Central and Eastern Europe. Doctoral thesis (PhD), University of Sussex.

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Abstract

The thesis seeks to explain why some CEE countries adopted more inclusive access to nationality rules for non-ethnic immigrants than others. Encompassing the period from 1990 to 2014, the analysis focuses on four factors – left–right ideological position of governments, electoral strength of far-right parties, the size of expatriate/kin minority populations, and the importance of national minority issues. The 2014 MIPEX Access to Nationality index is used for measuring the inclusiveness of access to nationality rules. Using fuzzy-set Qualitative Comparative Analysis (fs/QCA), the study identifies three different causal paths leading to restrictive access to nationality rules, and one that is associated with an inclusive citizenship outcome. The working of each causal combination is explored in country case studies.
The thesis finds that, despite the obvious differences in agenda of far-right parties in Western and Eastern Europe, the electoral success of these parties has a negative effect on the inclusiveness of citizenship policies in both parts of the continent. However, the analysis also points to factors that hardly featured in previous cross-national citizenship studies. Importantly, the study finds that sizable kin minorities and important national minority issues may lead to restrictive access to citizenship rules, provided that other relevant factors are in place.
The analysis of citizenship policies offered in this thesis is framed within a broader structure–agency debate – a theoretical framework that has rarely been adopted in previous comparative citizenship studies. The thesis provides evidence for the interaction between structure and agency, and uncovers the mechanism in which they reinforce each other. Therefore, the findings of this thesis point to the importance of analysing combinatorial causality. Finally, echoing Rogers Brubaker, the thesis shows how debates on citizenship in the CEE region are linked to a deeper and a more far- reaching discussion on nationhood and the definition of nation.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Politics
Subjects: J Political Science > JC Political theory. The state. Theories of the state > JC311 Nationalism. Nation state
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 30 Jan 2020 16:02
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2022 13:10
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/89577

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