Unequal citizenship and transnational mobilisation

Unequal citizenship and transnational mobilisation of Polish, Czech, and Ukrainian Roma in the face of war in Ukraine

Bilateral NCN-GACR Lead Agency Project

2024-2026

Partner organisation: Centre of Migration Research, University of Warsaw and Seminar of Romani Studies, IECEBS, Faculty of Arts, Charles University

Project team at the IE CAS: Martin Fotta, Jan Ort, Kateřina Joštová

The solidarity shown towards Ukrainians fleeing the war by Poland and Czechia was unprecedented, but not everyone was treated equally. This bilateral Polish-Czech project involving three institutions focuses on the migration experiences and trajectories of Ukrainian Roma, that is those who did not fit the dominant racial and gender profile of a deserving Ukrainian refugee. It also examines the actions of Czech and Polish Roma who mobilized to assist them. The study looks at the unequal nature of citizenship in Central and Eastern Europe and how antigypsyism affects and is reproduced in different relationships and dynamics that emerge in the context of war, such as refugee relief. By comparing Poland and Czechia, countries with a significant Ukrainian population and a high proportion of Ukrainian refugees, the research provides a unique perspective. Moreover, both countries have complex and specific histories of Romani and non-Romani relations. Mixed Romani and non-Romani research teams will use various ethnographic methods to highlight Romani agency and challenge the legacy of methodological nationalism that reproduces the exclusionary nature of the nation-state towards ethnic minorities.