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  Subjects -> SOCIOLOGY (Total: 553 journals)
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Studia Universitatis Babes-Bolyai Sociologia
Journal Prestige (SJR): 0.114
Number of Followers: 0  

  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Print) 1224-8703 - ISSN (Online) 2066-0464
Published by Sciendo Homepage  [389 journals]
  • The Elusive Relationship of State Power and Societal Peace: Reflections on
           the Case of Kosovo

    • Abstract: Twenty years ago, NATO’s intervention against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY), taking place without the approval of the UN Security Council (UNSC), challenged the sovereignty and non-interference norms the UN had perceived as international peace and order, until that moment. While the military action served to question existing principles, it simultaneously examined the effectiveness of non-authorization. Moreover, the Kosovo case stimulated one of the most important UN reforms that transformed the concept of sovereignty from right to responsibility. Conceptually, the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) has largely advanced since then. The transformation shifted the attention from political to sociological peace making society, gender and victims of conflict at the focus of peacebuilding and peace sustaining processes. The juxtaposition of state and societal peace continues in post-conflict Kosovo with both approaches being intermingled: the security debate covers attempts for a peace-building agenda, whereas the formation of a national army is pursued.
      PubDate: Sat, 15 Apr 2023 00:00:00 GMT
  • War and Sanctions. Some Economic and Political Lessons to be Learned From
           Materialist Anthropology

    • Abstract: The political field seems to prefer the intellectual resources offered by Political Sciences and Economic Sciences because they fit well into the habits created by the daily practice of power. Assuming that it is not just about self-censorship, the current perspective offered by these scientific fields has some blind spots, and risks legitimizing an unfounded optimism regarding the effectiveness of the means used in the crisis generated by the Russian-Ukrainian war. That is why I consider the perspective offered by materialist anthropology to be very useful for describing the complexity of the power relations, and for a fine-tuning of what-is-at-stake. This perspective, which looks at long-term trends, can highlight the differences between imagined power (given by habits, abstractions and the assumption of continuities) and real power (given by the technologies and resources that matter, real scarcity and international competition). I concluded that the imagined power relations of today are a survival of the real power relations from the near past (when the GDP in the Western world was correlated with powerful local manufacturing and a complete dominance in high-tech research). Our mindset, habits and biases created a blind-spot that made difficult to grasp the complexity of the situation and to react accordingly.
      PubDate: Sat, 15 Apr 2023 00:00:00 GMT
  • Demography and Population Growth in 1970’s Romania: An Overview of
           Demographic Studies Published in ‘Viitorul Social’ Journal

    • Abstract: This paper looks at how demographic knowledge was articulated in the 1970s in Romania in a context shaped by both a restrictive natalist agenda and the reestablishment of institutional affiliations with western academia. An account is given of the specific institutional affiliations that coordinated and made knowledge transfers possible between French and Romanian agencies. The text then focuses on the specific vocabulary and reasoning mechanisms employed in a series of texts published throughout the 1970s in the sociological journal Viitorul Social, a monthly magazine of socialist doctrine, culture and politics. The aim is to start a discussion about the possibility that the reestablishment of institutional connections with French demographic trends in the early ᾿70s lent Romanian demographers a type of conservative scientific reasoning and vocabulary that was attuned to the natalist politics of the time. In turn, this authorised a highly politicised portrayal of working-class women as culpable for the diminishing birth-rates in Romania. The text ends by suggesting other research paths that might help situate demographic knowledge production and its ties with reproduction politics.
      PubDate: Sat, 15 Apr 2023 00:00:00 GMT
  • Balancing Efficiency and Personal Time Requirements for Human Resources
           Professionals after Telecommuting

    • Abstract: The exploitation of work and household responsibilities among women and men remains a pressing issue with significant impacts on employee productivity and satisfaction. This study sheds light on the patterns of exploitation and their consequences, with a specific focus on the experiences of HR professionals. The research emphasizes the prevalence of the “flexibility stigma” in society, which views flexible work arrangements, including teleworking, as less committed, motivated, and productive compared to traditional 9-5 work hours. The study also highlights the tendency for workers to extend their work hours when boundaries between work and personal life become blurred. In particular, the study highlights the increased likelihood of working overtime as a result of teleworking, which can further contribute to the exploitation of work and household responsibilities. For HR professionals, it is essential to understand these challenges and develop strategies that support employees’ work-life balance and well-being. The study concludes by calling for a comprehensive approach that considers the institutional and cultural contexts in which employees operate and that prioritizes their well-being and productivity.
      PubDate: Sat, 15 Apr 2023 00:00:00 GMT
  • Book Reviews

    • PubDate: Sat, 15 Apr 2023 00:00:00 GMT
  • Occupational Stress and its Perceived Negative Impact on the Health and
           Performance of the Employees of a Banking Call Center

    • Abstract: Professional stress is a challenge for many companies that want to keep their employees within the organization on one hand and to ensure their performance through a comfortable working environment on the other. This study investigated and evaluated the perceptions of 14 male employees (French and Romanian speakers) working in the same banking call center in Timisoara regarding the causes and effects of work-related stress. The applicability of this study is to develop possible strategies and practices for controlling and reducing work-related stress in order to decrease the high staff turnover. The elaboration of this research is based on the concepts of occupational stress, its effects on the perceived emotional and physical health of the employees but also on their performance and motivation at work. To carry out this qualitative research, we used a semi-structured interview guide written in both Romanian and French, since half of the interviewees are Romanians, and the other half are North Africans from Tunisia, Morocco, and Algeria. The main topics on which the interview guide questions were developed are the following: personal and professional experience, working schedule, work rate, performance, motivation, mental and physical health and how all the aforementioned contribute to professional mobility. The research results show that the employees performance and motivation at work are indeed affected by the perceived occupational stress, but it is not the main reason why they consider changing the current job. For most of the interviewed employees, the individual life goals, ambitions, and future projections are the ones influencing them to look for another job position after gaining the desired experience within the call centers.
      PubDate: Tue, 23 Aug 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Social Policy Reform in Albania Stuck in Transition

    • Abstract: This article provides an analysis of social policy regarding social protection of vulnerable groups in Albania, by screening whether the welfare state has responded to the varying needs of socially excluded citizens. The scope is to explore how the consecutive reforms of social policy have addressed the social effects of poverty and social exclusion. The analysis delves into the welfare policy official documents to discover how the vulnerable groups needs are addressed and what is the impact of policymakers, service providers, and service users on social policy shape. Social policy reforms developed after the totalitarian regime and have promoted familialism and gender regime, which have reinforced gender stereotypes of women as primary caregivers and have denied them equal access and full participation in the free labour market. During the transition period, the reforms faced conceptual barriers delaying their application. The minimalist approach of social policy offered insufficient protection to vulnerable citizens from the adversities of life. Social care services for children, elderly and people with disabilities suffer from a persistent lack of funding. The social welfare is offered through few social services provided from civil society. Due to the lack of social care services, the users of the welfare state lack the substantial means for inclusion. The welfare state policies need a reformation to offer decent economic aid and social care services.
      PubDate: Tue, 23 Aug 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Furthering Social Justice for Disabled People. A Framework Based on
           Amartya Sen’s Capability Approach

    • Abstract: Understanding disability as a social phenomenon opened up the way for disability studies and social justice theories to mutually benefit from each other. One of the most significant recent advancements in the field of social justice has been the capability approach (CA) of Amartya Sen. The present paper builds on the CA to analyse disability form a social justice perspective. We argue that the CA provides several advantages when conceptualizing disability and furthering justice for disabled people. The objective of the paper is to develop a framework for analysis on the basis of the CA and to apply it through the case of D/deaf and hardof- hearing children and their carers in Szeged, Hungary. We demonstrate that the advancement of justice occurs through the scrutiny and comparison of feasible alternatives instead of arguing for principles or institutional guarantees of perfectly just societies.
      PubDate: Tue, 23 Aug 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Countering Illegibility: A Brief History of Forced Evictions in
           Postsocialist Romania

    • Abstract: Forced evictions have been recognised as a relevant process in Romanian post-socialist urban transformations. Housing privatization, including restitutions, represents the key driver. Some attempts in grasping the scale of the process have already been made. This article brings extensive quantitative data stemming from national and local levels, which can support improved estimations of the scale: reports of the National Union of Bailiffs and answers to public information requests from multiple municipalities; archival data, local press monitoring and accounts of the process in the city of Cluj-Napoca. At least 100 thousand forced evictions are estimated to have taken place at national level between 1990-2017, comprising several hundred thousand individuals, the Roma population being disproportionately affected. Qualitative data produced through activist research complements the picture. The findings contribute to the debate regarding postsocialist urban transformations, indicating that the role of the state in the production of the housing market through forced evictions-based gentrification has been insufficiently acknowledged. The results are relevant to policy debates, as well as to housing activist practices2.
      PubDate: Tue, 23 Aug 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Affordability Crisis and Gentrification in FDI Export-Led Economies:
           Prices in the Demanddriven Housing Market of Cluj-Napoca

    • Abstract: This paper examines the rapid increase of prices in the residential sector of Cluj-Napoca in the context of the housing affordability crisis (Wetzstein, 2017). By using insight from the Growth Regimes literature, we look at the internal demand as a main driver of rapid price rise. As Kohl and Spielau (2018) argue, the monetary conditions needed for export-led growth regimes are restricting the outputs of the construction sector, creating under-supplied, demand-driven housing markets. We propose three alternative hypotheses regarding the major agent driving the prices within the city as major source of demand: the employees in knowledge-intensive services, the diffuse regional savings of employees in search for some yields, the specialized real estate investors. We use OLS and spatial regression (lag and error) to model the price per square meter using the social composition of the neighbourhoods, the within and out-of-town origin of investors, and the source of money (bank loans vs. cash payment) to demonstrate that the existing crisis is driven by the middle class’s savings that also benefits from gentrification, while speculative investments in the housing markets are rather limited.
      PubDate: Tue, 23 Aug 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Distance and Boundaries Issues in the Transition from Face-to-Face Talking
           Therapy to Online Therapy in the Time of Covid-19

    • Abstract: The primary main aim of this article is to explore the changes and adjustments brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic to the therapeutic process in the transition from face-to-face talking therapy to online therapy. Online therapy sessions, once a niche, have now become the norm in therapeutic work. This, more than ever before, raises the question of the efficacy of online therapy compared to face-to-face talking therapy. A related question is how the “classical” elements of in-person therapies (especially the psychodynamic, affective and relational-based), such as: the therapeutic alliance, the therapeutic containing space, the therapeutic relationship, etc. work in the on-line setting. This article draws on a primary qualitative exploratory research carried among Romanian clients who undergo a psychodynamic type of therapy and who transitioned from face-to-face to online therapy as a reaction to the new constraints engendered by the COVID-19 pandemic and after the measures were relaxed, the transition from on-line to in-person therapy. Our focus is on how they experience online therapy compared to face-to-face therapy in terms of intimacy, therapeutic frame and efficacy, as well as on the boundaries challenged, erased and created by the switch between the two types of therapy settings.
      PubDate: Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Centralised Multi-National Practices of Transfer and Managerial
           Discrepancies: Evidence from a Romanian Call Center

    • Abstract: This paper describes workplace dynamics in a call centre located in Romania, a subsidiary of a multi-national corporation (MNC). Positing a centralised practice transfer and global management strategy, the company relies exclusively on home-country decision makers. Placed within Romania’s dependent economic profile alongside its deregulated employment relations, centralised managerial decisions create widespread organisational uncertainty with numerous hire and fire and downsizing procedures, followed by subsequent recruitment campaigns designed to replace the previously displaced workforce.
      PubDate: Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Semantic Ambiguities and Classification Struggles in the Post-Socialist
           Informal Medical Economy

    • Abstract: In this paper I will engage in a process of highlighting the way in which liberal and, later, neoliberal political agendas regulate and establish formal semantic registers in the field of medical informal economy within the Romanian public healthcare system. How accurate is the legalistic approach, which classifies any extra-payment as a bribe' Despite the questionable legal status, the voluntary informal economy acquires the role of establishing bridges at human level between doctor and patient. Far from pleading to accept the conditioning of the medical act by an additional payment from patients or their family members, facts that obviously fall within the scope of illegality, I claim that the labels of “corruption”, “bribe”, “informal payment” cannot be correctly applied to the whole phenomenon of informal exchanges. Moreover, the gifts offered as a form of gratitude or to tame the “medical gaze” even have a role of social link between doctor and patient, helping to bind an unwritten human contract between the two who, in fact, are victims of the same system and its political decision-makers.
      PubDate: Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • A Typology of Shrinking Cities: The Social and Economic Dynamic of
           Romanian Urban Network 2010-2020

    • Abstract: The aim of the paper is to open the issue of multiple shrinkage trajectories in a context of extended urbanisation (Keil 2018) by delineating the different trajectories of Romanian cities. We employed principal component analysis to allow for a multi-criterial classification of Romanian cities based on k-means cluster analysis. Beyond the dominant representation of shrinkage as a process that is mainly correlated with population loss and economic decline, this paper calls for bridging together distinct dimensions which have been either under-studied, such as the aspect of human development, or studied separately across the existing literature, such as governance of shrinkage and economic growth. Therefore, the typology developed here accounts for understanding the process of shrinkage as a complex process, having multiple causes, which determine peculiar trajectories. The outcome confirms the existence of distinct and highly localised shrinkage identities (Martinez-Fernandez, Audirac, et al. 2012). We show that regrowth is not strictly related to the urban core, but it has more to do with a process of complexification of the landscape and social relations existing at the periphery of the city. Shrinking core cities coexists with growing peri-urban areas.
      PubDate: Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Considerations on the Role of the School in Social Mobility

    • Abstract: The role of the school in the process of status attainment for individuals with different social origins should be analysed both from the perspective of social mobility flows (absolute rates of mobility) and inequality of social chances (relative rates and odds ratios). Inspired by Raymond Boudon’s earlier studies in the 1970s, the author scrutinises the complex relationships between expanding access to higher levels of education, social mobility trajectories, and inequality of chances of status achievement in the context of persistent inequalities in contemporary capitalist societies. He concludes that at the societal level, an increase of the dependency of achieved social status on educational qualification will lead to greater immobility if the inequality of educational chances remains constant. At the level of individuals, the same process will lead to greater probability of upward mobility in the case of people with higher levels of educational qualification, and greater probability of downward mobility for those with lower educational qualification.
      PubDate: Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • Book Review: (), Silviu Medeșan, București: Ozalid, 2021, 334

    • PubDate: Fri, 21 Jan 2022 00:00:00 GMT
  • The Creativity Turn in European Cultural Policies. Structural Changes in
           the Sector

    • Abstract: This paper aims to analyse the conditions that enable a double political-economic instrumentation of culture through European Union programmes, and their consequences for the cultural sector. The first European programmes focused on the symbolic value of culture which was perceived as an essential element for strengthening the European identity, and thus as a crucial tool in the project of building the European identity, which is part of a political integration programme. In the context of the development of the creative economy, which overlapped the 2008 economic crisis and a growing influence of the market ideology, a few years later, the European Union launched the Creative Europe programme, thus setting up a new development framework for the cultural sector. For culture, the economic and political arguments in the Creative Europe programme outline a future inherently connected to its contribution to these fields, leaving behind the symbolic and social value of culture characterised by non-lucrative purposes. The programme lays out a direction in which culture is monetized as competitive advantage and bets on the contribution of the cultural and creative industries to become a competitor on the global creative economy. The new framework offered by Creative Europe transforms the approach to culture, placing it in a landscape of global competition, in the company of creative industries, favouring the integration of culture by the latter, not the other way around, thus entailing structural changes in the cultural sector.
      PubDate: Fri, 13 Aug 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Max Weber’s Way from Social Economics to Sociology

    • Abstract: One of the most outstanding intellectual achievements in the history of classical thought in social sciences which have remained influential up until today are undoubtedly associated with the name of Max Weber. Through a detailed text analysis and a conceptual mapping of the logic of the argumentation, this paper sets out to offer a profound insight into the classical German sociologist’s approach to science, both “early” (about 1903/4) and “late” (post-1913), in terms of some fundamental matters of epistemology and methodology. The first part of this paper investigates social economics in terms of its theoretical and methodological foundations and applicability, while the second part looks at interpretive sociology from the same perspectives, with an emphasis on the differences between the two approaches. We argue that Weber’s dualist methodological attitude became explicit and dominant in his later writings. In addition, as he brought in focus the theory of social action, he not only became an explicit proponent of methodological individualism, but he also revisited and specified the logic and role of “causal explanation” and “interpretation”. Interpretive sociology no longer seeks a causal explanation for individual historical events by applying nomological knowledge, but instead commits itself to finding “causally adequate” explanation for the course and consequences of different types of social actions. Interpretation, in turn, no longer means an analysis of effects concerning the cultural significance of individual historical events in a special sense, but an interpretive understanding of various types of social actions, rational or “irrational”, directly or in a motivation-like manner. The paper concludes with a summary designed to highlight key legacies of Weber’s oeuvre that have remained valid and valuable for any analytical and empirical research in sociology.
      PubDate: Fri, 13 Aug 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Book Review: S by Emanuela Grama, Bloomington: Indiana University Press,
           2019, 247 pages

    • PubDate: Fri, 13 Aug 2021 00:00:00 GMT
  • Flexible Working Practices in the ICT Industry in Achieving Work-Life

    • Abstract: Flexible labour practices became increasingly institutionalized and professionalized (Aroles, Mitev and de Vaujany, 2019). However, mechanisms and motivations behind these practices have remained often unexplored. This paper discusses the flexible labour practices among ICT professionals with regard to their spatial and temporal dimensions, with the aim to identify the key-factors that improve work-life balance and overall well-being. The qualitative research is based on in-depth face-to-face interviews with ICT knowledge workers, using Grounded Theory in generating new theoretical approaches that connect flexible labour practices with work-life balance. The study reveals, on the one hand, that particular and adapted flexible arrangements contributes to the reconciliation of the working life with the personal life; on the other hand, had led to the rise of knowledge workers with power and influence over their own intellectual capital, with a richness in personal choices.
      PubDate: Fri, 13 Aug 2021 00:00:00 GMT
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