This project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no 320294

EU

EU Citizenship Teaching Packages for secondary school pupils (Deliverable 11.6)

In this paper we present the outline of a series of five teaching packages for secondary school pupils in the age group of 14-16/17. These teaching packages all address a specific dimension of EU citizenship. More attention for EU Citizenship is relevant for several reasons. It first refers to the set of civil, political, economic and social rights that all citizens of EU countries possess in addition to the rights that come with their national citizenship. Secondly, it refers to the membership of a European political community in which each citizen of an EU country can participate actively; next to or intertwined with, being active in a local or national political community.

One of the conclusions from a comparative study of civic education in 7 EU-countries (D8.10 bEUcitizen), is that adolescents are hardly educated in what their EU citizenship rights are, nor are they trained in competencies to realize or enforce these rights. Parallel to this, young adults leave secondary school without being taught the civic and political competencies to participate in the variety of political communities on different levels they belong to.

EU citizenship is relevant when you stay in your country of origin and in the town you grew up in. For instance, in one’s role as a consumer. Furthermore, political participation manifests itself on the local level in different forms. On the one hand, during elections: local, regional, national or European. On the other hand, in many forms of collective action by citizens who organize themselves in protest movements, around opinion leaders in the public sphere, interest groups and NGOs. Often when there is a European dimension, the action starts at the local level. For that reason, it is important that citizens both understand their rights and that a more lively European public sphere emerges. As a result, we choose to develop teaching materials for secondary school pupils that contribute to the EU dimension of their civic competencies.

With these teaching packages we do not intend to lobby for or create support for EU citizenship. Our goal is to make EU citizenship visible in a realistic way, showing concrete relevance not only for ‘movers’ but especially for those who stay at home; show how EU citizenship is directly related to one’s daily life and how one can influence these choices.

After having outlined the goals, target group and didactics, in the appendix a summary of the five teaching packages are presented:

  1. Getting my rights: Europeanization at home
  2. Lobbying and getting in touch with the EU
  3. Organizing our interest
  4. Travelling around
  5. Advising the EU in solving Global Problems

Read the paper here

Scenarios for EU citizenship in 2030 – Repertoires for action in thinkable futures (Deliverable 11.5)

Authors: Wieger Bakker and Marlot van der Kolk

European Union (EU) citizenship is both about a legal status – a set of civil, social, economic and political rights complementing one’s national citizenship – and about being an active participating member of the EU political community. EU citizenship includes therefore influencing decisionmaking on rules, policies and practices that effect one’s own national and local societies. The opportunities and capacities to exercise these rights and to participate differ between countries, between groups and in time. Social, cultural and economic trends, national or regional crises, as well as national and EU policy responses to these trends and crises, create potentially new inequalities, new barriers, but possibly new opportunities too. Although we cannot predict the future, we can prepare ourselves for different thinkable futures. Through this study we intend to feed the discussion on what might happen with EU citizenship in different circumstances. Moreover, by doing so we also want to stimulate the discussion on what repertoires of action by which actors in what circumstances might protect, foster or boost EU citizenship in these alternative futures.

With that in mind, we conducted a scenario study. A scenario is a story about how the future might unfold for organizations, issues, nations or even for the world. The scenario method is originated in the military sphere and was adapted and further developed by consulting firms and companies in the 1950s and 1960s. Pioneering work was conducted in the 1970s by the oil company Shell (Meinert, 2014, p.8). According to Shell (2008, pp.12-19), a scenario study should be carried out to (1) confront assumptions, (2) recognise degrees of uncertainty, (3) widen perspectives, and (4) address dilemmas and conflicts. Over the years, many companies as well as public organisations and governments confronted with the necessity of long-term investment or strategic decisions in a rapidly changing environment followed Shell’s example and started to utilise scenarios for their strategy developments.

Based on the outcomes of the bEUcitizen project and five scenario workshops, we developed four thinkable future scenarios for how the EU, or the part of Europe which now is the EU, might look like in 12 to 15 years (and beyond). These scenarios are not predictions, preferences or forecasts for the future. The scenarios represent plausible, relevant and challenging possibilities, and are a starting point for thinking about possible implications for EU citizenship as well as repertoires of action. In the workshops more than sixty researchers, students and (young) professionals were engaged. Together we looked into how the future might unfold for EU citizenship: how might the world look like in 2030 and what could this mean for EU citizenship? Is it likely that EU citizenship will change, will become broader, more specific, and more exclusive or not survive at all? Who will be more or less vulnerable? What in those different situations should and can be done by whom to safeguard EU citizenship or the values it stands for? What repertoire of action is needed and/or is possible in different circumstances and who is able to perform these actions? In this report we present a synthesis of the insights gained from the scenario workshops as well as the outcomes of the bEUcitizen project.

 

Download the report here

Final Report on dissemination activities (D12.5)

The purpose of Deliverable 12.5 – Final Report on Dissemination structure is to report all dissemination activities and communication tools which have been developed, implemented and applied during the project lifetime. In particular, bEUcitizen dissemination instruments and activities include:

– a dedicated project website (www.beucitizen.eu) allowing for fast and easy communication of the most relevant information and news to a wide audience;

– a newsletter, which has been issued biannually during the project to inform relevant stakeholders about the key achievements and the next activities planned;

– a number of 7 Policy Briefs have been released during the project with the aim to spread policy scenarios and recommendations; – a series of five teaching packages for secondary school pupils in the age group of 14-16/17, which will be distributed via the project website;

– public workshops and events have also been organized with the main purpose of getting potential stakeholders directly involved in the work, but also for gathering feedback about the activities performed by the Consortium;

– representatives of the bEUcitizen Consortium have also attended external public events presenting the activities performed and the results achieved by the project.

Furthermore, the most relevant outcomes, which will be presented during the Final Conference, to be held in Brussels on 26-28 April 2017, have been collected in a book series that will be published in September 2017 by Edward Elgar Publishing.

Download the report here

Research paper on Cross-task analysis: “The practical linguistic barriers faced by economically active EU citizens” (D5.6)

Multilingualism shapes the European cultural identity as well as its legal system. Nonetheless, some aspects of the EU’s plurilingual character do not simply represent a cultural enrichment, but are also of crucial importance in dealing with the exercise of European citizenship rights and may turn into practical hindrances to their full enjoyment. At the same time linguistic diversity in Europe is constantly increasing due to mobility and new immigration phenomena, and to the strengthening of individual and collective language rights (also linked to the protection of national linguistic minorities, such as, for instance, parity of languages, right to use one’s own language in oral and written relationships with the public administration and with judicial authorities, etc.).

This Deliverable aims to provide a systematic survey of the linguistic barriers arisen from the multilingual drafting of EU law, as well as from some national contexts with specific reference to the exercise of EU citizens’ economic rights.

From the latter perspective, the research will describe how a lack of a clear linguistic policy might transform the regulations of language use into barriers to the effectiveness of EU citizens’ rights. The analysis is carried out from a comparative and interdisciplinary perspective and deals with, on the one hand, the linguistic obstacles affecting the main fields of survey on economic rights chosen by the project (professionals, consumer rights and IPR) and, on the other hand, some specific linguistic barriers autonomously highlighted by national reports as particularly challenging in a given Member States.

 

Read the report here

Comparison of different experiences and rivalling identities and claims to citizenship elsewhere (D4.10)

Executive Summary: Lessons for the EU
1. Accommodating diversity by balancing the claims of constituent political entities and citizens
This report builds on the results of WP4 and provides a succinct summary of the deliverables D4.1 to D4.9 focussing on the lessons they contain for the European Union. The EU has followed a process that is similar to our case studies (Switzerland, Canada, Spain, Czechia, Turkey, Estonia, Croatia, Israel) yet a few things have to be borne in mind before drawing conclusions:
– There is no broad consensus on EU integration as state-building
– The time-span in which the EU has evolved is much shorter than our case studies
– The speed at which the EU has integrated is also much faster than our case studies
Our case studies reveal two fundamentally different paths of addressing diversity and delivering solutions to respond to the rivalling claims of different communities. A first path consists of emphasizing and protecting differences, while at the same time building a common set of values that encompasses all communities within the territory. This is done either by a symmetrically federal (Switzerland) or asymmetrically decentralized constitutional design of statehood (Canada, Spain). The second path consists of emphasizing and protecting unity and homogeneity, whereas at the same time trying to minimize differences. Again with different degrees of success, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Estonia, Israel and Turkey are examples from our case studies.
As for the EU, it seems that the model that comes closer to the integration process is the one that accepts and tries to protect diversity, while building a common set of values, a common identity and common political institutions. The common identity can only be a civic or political meta-identity and it needs to be embedded in a political model in which the EU is designed and perceived as the guarantee and not source of threat to the existence and identity of constituent communities. The resulting federal system must attach great value to the self-government of its constituent parts all the way down to the level of the city. By giving such top down guarantees the EU can foster bottom up support.
Freedom of movement is fundamental as a formal right, but it cannot be the overarching paradigm of citizenship that trumps all other collective and individual rights. Any federalist structure implies manifold formal and material barriers to movement that can sometimes only be removed at the cost of threatening self-government of the constituent parts. Two aspects are to be highlighted from our case studies in this respect: First, the Swiss case has shown that Swiss movers (equivalent to intra-EU movers) experience difficulties related to different languages and education/job systems, etc. These issues have been dealt with at the federal level. Yet overall, the Swiss state continues to promote commuting instead of moving, so that each canton can maintain autonomy in policy-making. Second, as for the outsiders (the equivalent of the non-EU migrants), Canada has applied a strong policy of control over immigration (in numbers) in coordination with the provinces, while at the same time promoting policies of non-stigmatization of immigrants.
2. Language policy at the core of multiculturalism
The EU has adopted a multicultural discourse that attempts to protect the culture of all member states, but official EU languages are determined by the nation-states as members and therefore possible internal discriminations in the nation-states are projected on to the European level. There is no apparent cultural discrimination by the EU, but languages that are not recognized as official languages by the nation-states are not official European languages, such as for instance Catalan. More recognition of the regional and municipal realities by the EU is advisable also in this respect.
3. Lessons from federal an unitary models for the EU
To apply lessons from the federal and confederal case studies that have been successful in accommodating rivalling claims of citizenship:
1. Reduce the centralistic element of intergovernmental centralism by further measures of decentralization in which the member-states are formally equal (ad opposed to ad hoc opt-outs);
2. Reduce the intergovernmental element of intergovernmental centralism by introducing double-majority schemes of direct democracy and other institutional linkages between the national and European levels of democracy such as competencies of national parliaments in European affairs. As the Swiss and Canadian cases show, this can lead to centralistic redistributive measures, but these are channelled through democratic procedures that respect the vertical structure of multi-layered governance.
3. To learn lessons from the unitary case studies that have been successful in accommodating rivalling claims to citizenship continue to reduce complexity as in the successful unitary cases such as Czechia. Many more exits of EU-sceptic states as the UK would be necessary in this unitary perspective. Ultimately, it this not viable for the EU.
4. To continue with ad-hoc agreements with single member states and start with de-centralization from the EU level to the member states. Larger asymmetries between member states might result in further discrimination of some citizens against others.
5. To promote solidarity and identity in the EU: Canada and Switzerland have been extremely successful in promoting a common national identity that is complementary with the regional one via the promotion and securitization of local autonomy, whereas it is much less so in the EU (Spain as another case that seems to have been less successful in this regard – also related to linguistic policies).
Since the EU is framed as a multicultural system, our case studies confirm that it plays a relevant role in protecting specific communities within the EU. It is the case of Roma, for example in the Czech Republic (also Croatia; also Turkey even if outside of the EU).
The EU helps to make the problems of these communities visible and to keep member states responsible about their rights.

For the full report please click here

Constraints imposed by financial markets on political choice in the EU (D8.1)

This report outlines an analytical framework through which constraints imposed by financial markets on decision-making in the European Union (EU) both at the national and at the EU level can be understood in the context of the latest economic and financial crisis. The report departs from the notion of ‘political citizenship’ as an analytical device for understanding how financial market constraints are reflected in political decisions and discusses in how far such constraints restrict or are compatible with European political citizenship rights. This aspect remains an under-studied element of EU decision-making. The report concludes that the question of in how far financial markets constrain political decision-making cannot be treated separately from understanding how financial market developments are translated into specific policy options by executive and legislative decision-makers in the context of the decentralised and multi-level economic governance architecture of the euro area. In this context a small transnational elite group of senior civil servants and central bank officials plays a particular role as they interpret financial market developments and map out policy options for elected executive and legislative decision-makers. This report is related to the bEUcitizenship report ‘Democratic parliamentary control in times of crisis’ which covers a comparative case study on four different countries which is built upon the framework advanced in this report.

Click here for the full text: D8.1 FINAL

The EU and the Canadian mirror: citizenship, evolution and minorities (D4.4)

This deliverable aims to analyse how Canada deals with diversity, internal minorities and immigration at legal and political levels. This exercise is intended to be a source of inspiration for EU policies in the field of diversity. The text is divided in six sections on history of the case study, minorities and diversity at legal and political levels, challenges and general policy recommendations. We draw our conclusions based on a systematic analysis of the recent bibliography and data on this topic.

Features such as diversity in immigration policies, internal minorities and majorities, multiple historical interpretations and constitutional debates on how to accommodate this diversity are common both in Canada and the EU. Moreover, the Canadian case, as we show, is probably among the most relevant examples of federalism and multiculturalism among the world. The main questions guiding the chapter are related to diversity managing. What are the origins of diversity in Canada? Why is history relevant for understanding diversity? How the federal structure shapes immigration policies? Which are the main demands among ethnic and cultural minorities?

In the last section, we point out aspects that coincide or could inspire the European Union institutions. Canada and the EU somehow reflect the Tocqueville’s paradox, while become more mixed and cosmopolitan, national and territorial identities become stronger and more relevant in politics. Both the origins of the EU and Canada and also their institutional structure differ. However, several aspects can be a mirror for European institutions. For example, the capacity of the Canadian federal model to accommodate multiple citizenship regimes, the development of a decentralized immigration policy and, most importantly, its multicultural approach while maintaining its internal diversity concerning the francophone minorities, the First Nations and immigration. These policies and constitutional arrangements are not absent of political tensions but we claim that could be a source of inspiration for the EU, a Canadian mirror.

For the full text click here: D4.4 – Canada_20170221

Switzerland: A Future Model for the European Union? Similarities and Differences (D4.2)

1. EU integration is trying to achieve more political integration and accommodation of a much higher degree of diversity in much less time than has ever been the case in Switzerland. Integration and expansion processes that were slower and non-linear in Switzerland and that happened in separate phases (e.g. religious diversification, linguistic diversification, territorial expansion, etc.) are all going on at the same time in the EU. Especially integration and accession with enormous shocks of diversification are engineered at the same time in the EU. From this point of view, the EU has already tried to go beyond many stages that took centuries to be completed in Switzerland.
The speed and intergovernmental method of European integration and accession has been marked by relative success in times of peace, stability and economic growth. But what has been achieved seems less politically stable and consolidated in time of crisis. The contextual differences between the EU and Swiss integration process notwithstanding, we think it is fair to say that the consolidation of the EU integration process may also be achieved by de-acceleration and by abolishing the doctrine of strict process-linearity of ever more integration of all policy areas. The integration process should rather concentrate on policy areas that are directly relevant to overall territorial security and economic stability as the background conditions to European citizenship. Secondly, the comparison shows that the foundation of a few but robust federal state institutions in Switzerland in 1848 was a moderately coercive act that should not be romanticized by calling Switzerland a “nation of will”. The “will” to be a nation was construed post factum by a slow process in which the introduction of a coherent system of direct democracy at all levels of integration was key.
2. The institutional design of the European Union seems to echo quite well the federal state formation process in Switzerland. The following precisions are however necessary in the comparative perspective. First, the momentary stage of European Integration, characterized by intergovernmental crisis management, resembles the (dysfunctional) intergovernmental centralism of the Swiss cantons during the decades before the formation of the federal-state in 1848. Second, due to the greater diversity of the European Union, this quasi-federal system has derived in extreme asymmetries between the member states. Since EU identity is not well entrenched among European citizens (and politicians), it has been hard to design institutions and policies of common territorial protection and redistribution and there is mistrust towards centralistic EU institutions (specially in the countries more affected by the economic crisis). Most European citizens do not feel that their interests are taken into account by the European Union. Third, it is important to note that in Swiss federalism the municipalities play an important role, they are much more than just administrative districts. This city-centred and bottom up construct of citizenship is guaranteed by the Swiss federal constitution. Citizens feel that their most immediate and local identity is not jeopardized but rooted in and guaranteed by the Swiss federal constitution. Compared to sub-national Swiss federalism, EU federalism is entirely focused on the nation-state and the EU institutions. Serious consideration ought to be given to the idea that European citizenship is not only about bringing citizenship to a higher European level but also about bringing it more to the root-level of citizenship: the city.
3. Direct democracy has acted as a federator in the Swiss context. Switzerland made direct democracy and direct democracy made Switzerland. There has been a slow and iterative process of adaptation of structurally similar institutions of direct democracy at all levels (communal, cantonal, federal) of all units (all communes, all cantons, confederation roughly between 1830-1891. To the contrary, the EU is only incipiently in a process of introducing direct democracy (in some member-states and ECI), and so far direct democracy is mainly practiced as national plebiscitary democracy. Under this guise it is seen as a threat to EU integration and probably not without good reason.1 While in Switzerland the coherent introduction of direct democracy at all levels of the polity in the long run served as an important unifier, direct democracy has even not been considered as integrative part of all levels of political integration in the EU.
4. It is of great interest that the one element in which the European Union has based the construction of EU citizenship and identity – mobility of residence – has been implicitly discouraged in Switzerland. The institutional design as incorporated in Swiss multicultural identity (which aims fundamentally at the protection of cantonal autonomy, culture and language) has facilitated that Switzerland is called today a successful multicultural society. Most citizens identify with Switzerland as a country and they like it as it is, but they do not want to take advantage of their formal right to move to other parts of the country, especially not across language borders. The same institutional design that has made of Switzerland a successful case of multiculturalism and democracy poses important barriers that make it difficult for the Swiss to move their residence across their country. Considering that one of the main features of European citizenship is the freedom of movement and residence, this poses a main concern. The Swiss compromise between the formal right and economic necessity of mobility on the one hand and the protection of political and cultural sub-identities on the other hand, is commuting. Due to the vast size, this is of limited applicability in the EU. However, in a Europe of cities and trans-border regions, commuting is an important option provided that every European citizen lives reasonably close to an important economic centre. Here again there is reason for the EU to not only focus on the member-states economies but on the urban centres and regions.
The necessary infrastructure for swift commuting (and change of residency) is not only transportation. Supporting the Swiss system of commuting is fiscal federalism and shared fiscal revenue, a welfare arrangement for all Swiss citizens and a system of redistribution of funds among cantons. Moving one’s residence is formally possible, bureaucratically difficult, and culturally burdensome. There is reason to believe that this is even more the case in the EU with 24 languages. In short, the Europe of commuters deserves attention in the context of EU citizenship.

 

Download the full report here: D4.2 – Switzerland

 

 

 

 

Turkey: Minorities, Othering and Discrimination, Citizenship Claims (D4.9)

This paper will first offer, in PART 1, an account of the recent developments and the present situation in the areas of minorities (their numbers, locations, socioeconomic positions) and minority rights (their legal, constitutional, cultural, religious, linguistic, educational, property rights).
Secondly, in PARTS II and III, we will discuss two contemporary issues, as they relate to minorities and minority rights, based on the findings of two nation-wide opinion surveys we have designed and conducted in 2010 and 2014: first, othering and discrimination in Turkey today; second, the Kurdish question and its possible solutions.
Thirdly, in PARTS IV and V we will present a historical and theoretical account of the problematic concepts of minorities, minority rights, and in general the concepts of rights and freedoms in Turkey, placing it in the context of the historical interactions between Turkey and Europe, starting from the decline and collapse of the Ottoman Empire.
Finally, in the concluding PART VI, we will have a brief look at the major historical turning points in the 20th century, i.e. World War I, World War II, the Cold War and the beginning of the post-Cold War period, and examine the synchronisation and de-synchronization between the Turkish and European paradigms vis-à-vis the issue of rights and freedoms in general and collective rights and freedoms in particular.

 
Click here for the full text: D4.9 Turkey – final

Linguistic policies and citizens’ claims in a multi-national state: The case of Spain (D4.3)

Over the last decades, questions about managing linguistic pluralism and multilingualism have become a major political and scholarly concern. Linguistic diversity constitutes a salient dimension of the new social and political contexts of complex cultural diversity or ‘super-diversity’ (Vertovec 2007). Thus, a great political challenge emerges in the articulation of the functional character of different languages as a medium of social integration and of expression of collective identities.
In contexts of plurilingualism, the distribution of linguistic rights has to do with which linguistic communities, out of those co-existing in the private sphere, find recognition in the public domain. The extent to which different vehicular languages, taken as the languages used for communication among people that may have different or more than one mother tongues, may become part of a common or standardized communicative framework depends upon how linguistic policies are defined. Yet, language has both an instrumental and an expressive dimension. Whereas from an instrumental perspective, language is primarily understood as a medium that denominates things and facts, allowing thus people to communicate, the expressive aspects are crucial to how the members of a community conceive of themselves and frame their way of life (Taylor 1985). The instrumental and expressive dimensions cannot be separated easily; nor can one be reduced to the other. Linguistic policies need to be sensitive to both. However, managing the relationship between these two dimensions of language appears to be a terrain of dispute, in particular when subject to multiple political levels and actors:
Under democratic conditions, language policy is not only a tool for establishing an extensive frame of communication but it is also directed towards protecting the status or the “honour” of the members of the linguistic community and overcoming collective resentment in institutional contexts marked by cultural heterogeneity (Kraus 2008, 77).
Language is a key component of citizenship rights in a double sense. First, linguistic rights largely enable the exercise of other citizenship rights due to the ubiquity of language in all dimensions of collective life, and second, they strongly facilitate the configuration of a shared sense of community since social cohesion is not possible among a community that cannot speak fluently. Yet citizenship is a multi-layered phenomenon (Kymlicka 1995; Yuval-Davis 1999), which clearly exceeds the limits of the nation state, and has relevant developments at the sub-national level. Building on this assumption, the objective of this paper is to assess whether and how the current Spanish political regime has managed to accommodate the various linguistic communities, which in some cases overlap with the formal limits of the sub-national units, i.e. the autonomous communities (regional governments), whereas in others they do not coincide at all. More specifically, this paper aims to disentangle the political dilemmas and multifaceted claims regarding linguistic policies in Spain, being this a rather complex and subtle policy area in which multiple layers of national identity, social conflict and value formation converge. Additionally, linguistic policy often creates political tensions in the territory, not only across the national and regional levels, but also within the regional arena itself. Given these circumstances, the nature of linguistic conflicts and their political underpinnings have continuously generated controversy in both scholarly and policy debates in Spain.
There are four official languages in Spain, but only Castilian is official in the entire territory. Basque, Catalan and Galician are only co-official in certain regions, i.e. autonomous communities, and thus subject to a specific legal framework. Each of these languages, in turn, entails particular conflicts and debates in terms of which linguistic policy to follow, on the one hand, and of how to balance the use of these various languages, on the other. In addition, there are minorities in other regions, placed in well-defined territorial areas, which use any of these co-official languages, enjoying lower and dissimilar levels of protection. Finally, during the 2000s Spain received several millions of migrants coming from different countries of the world, enriching thus the linguistic diversity of the country, while also creating new challenges for already existing linguistic policies and legal frameworks. Furthermore, in recent decades the push for globalization added pressure to acquire a third language, making it still more difficult to keep the fragile equilibriums in place within and across regions.
A main outcome of this paper is that the linguistic policies established in Spain to manage the diversity of languages that exist at multiple levels since democratization are constantly exposed to political conflicts. This is because they occur at the crossroads where different types of communities interact (a la Kymlicka). First, these ‘linguistic communities’ are not always a majority in the regions where they are placed, and obviously they are a minority all-together in respect to Castilian. These linguistic communities call for recognition, linguistic rights and guarantees, including affirmative action. Second, in a number of cases they coincide with ‘sub-national communities’. These have their own identities – relying on regional institutions and policies in many areas – and which implement linguistic policies to support co-official languages to assure and expand their use vis-à-vis the use of Castilian, as far as the linguistic preferences of the majority of the population and their capabilities would allow in the short run. Third, Castilian has a powerful but undefined status in Spain: a linguae francae for some, a linguistic community of a majority of the population, and a ‘nation-state’ language in many respects. In all, there is not a consensus on the role of Castilian, which all linguistic communities in Spain accept. Finally, there are ‘migrant’ communities – internal movers, European Union (EU) movers and third-country nationals. These have expanded enormously all over the Spanish territory during the last decades, and have thus come to share spaces with most of the already existing ‘linguistic communities’, while also reshaping the sociolinguistic context to some extent. This third type of community requires a different set of policies, whose implementation lie in the hands of national and sub-national or local governments, and which should be attentive to multiculturalism and ethnic diversity, including but also going beyond linguistic issues.
A number of sub-national governments in Spain face the challenge of addressing various linguistic communities and their claims. Their policies and models attempt thus to accommodate pressures arising from different organized actors and social groups. Whereas the national government’s policies would favour the status quo where Castilian remains as the dominant language, or develop policies to expand Castilian across the map, we expect some constituencies to support political parties defending policies that attempt to strengthen co-official languages. To the extent that they are politically organized, immigrant communities might also ask for linguistic protection, multiculturalists’ rights and direct support to their cultural activities, depending on the social context and existing cleavages. Given this social and cultural complexity, defining a political strategy capable of keeping linguistic policies away from political conflict seems rather impossible.
To clarify the political dilemmas emerging from these issues, the empirical part of this paper focuses on the identification of claims made in the public sphere by representatives of any of the linguistic communities that coexist at the sub-national level in Spain regarding linguistic rights of citizens (increasing rights, protection of existing rights and claims against discrimination). Our analysis delves into four Spanish regions: Catalonia, the Balearic Islands, the Basque Country and Galicia, each of which displays very different characteristics regarding their sociolinguistic situation. In our analysis, we look more closely into the linguistic claims made in recent years (from 2005 onwards) by different actors involved in linguistic conflicts, with a particular focus on the areas of public education, media and the public space. We make use of media and document inquiry mechanisms. This information constitutes the empirical basis upon which we then provide a comparative assessment of the selected regions. We expect to find variation across the cases regarding the extent to which political and social conflicts increased, or on the contrary, they turned out to be cases of accommodation and claim reduction. Under which circumstances each of the cases falls is a matter of discussion in the comparative analysis, while the extent to which these responses can be transferred to the EU level are assessed in a specific section.

Click here for the full text: Deliverable 4.3 Spain – FINAL