The Turkish Community in Bucharest. A Sociological Overview

What is the profile of the Turkish immigrants in Romania? Most of them were born in the less developed regions of Turkey, such as the Eastern Anatolia or the South East. The main reason for the decision to leave Turkey was an economic one. Romania provided the first experience of leaving in a foreign country for the vast majority. This research revealed not only the rich, complex and multi-colored human universe of the Turkish community in Bucharest. It also provided another way of looking at the Romanian world and the direction in which it is changing.

Dialogue for Changing Stereotypes. Tuna Forum as a Social Innovation

The paper presents an analysis of the impact of the activities, developed and carried out by Tuna Forum in Romania in the last two years regarding the promotion and development of a basis for intercultural dialogue. Tuna Forum represents the institutionalization of a cultural project of Tuna Foundation in Romania; one of its main objective is to promote and facilitate the intercultural dialogue.

Incentives and sanctions for achieving parental participation in the school life

In the last years, beginning with the political and economical changes following the post-communism period, the educational system in every South East Europe (SEE) country changed constantly. A multitude and overlapping short term and long term reforms took place in the past two decades in the educational systems of the SEE countries, which encountered numerous challenges and demands. New regulations and legislative improvements had been enforced. Part of these regulations are structural and comprehensive aiming to decentralisation of the educational system for example, while others are focused on particular issues, such as inclusive education for the minorities and vulnerable, socio economically disadvantaged children as well as children with disabilities. There were national reforms in education and training, as well as regional platform and initiatives of cooperation among countries in the field of education and training. For example, for the period 2005-2010, the thematic areas of interest for educational reform is SEE region were quality of education and equity in education, lifelong learning, and European and national qualification frameworks2. There were structural changes in educational systems from preschool level to higher education. The implementation of the new educational policies at the school level was not every time successful. There are few evidences of the results of the implementation of anti-discrimination legislation and new democratic school governance rules and the general achievement of the pupils in schools are still poor. Researches made both by governmental institutions and civil societies organizations often showed the inequality of access to quality education for minorities, as well as for the children with disabilities. The weakness of pupils and parents participation in school life is also identified by the educational experts and Open Society Institute (OSI) representatives as a common shortcoming for the education in the SEE countries.

A new threat: bounded rationality produces monsters. A theory construction exercise

The present study has two objectives. First, it presents a fundamental hypothesis: the configuration of knowledge represents a determinant factor of many social facts. The entire structure is based upon the dichotomy certainty/uncertainty. Inside it we differentiate between irreducible certainty and reducible certainty. If we accept this typology, some very important arguments may be made and other explanatory opportunities may be created. Finally, we present an analysis which proves that the certainty/uncertainty situation generates different strategic options for social actors. Secondly, we propose an exercise for constructing a theory. To dramatize it, we present some so-called Propositions that are actually logically deduced hypotheses from the initial model. This endeavour should be viewed more as a challenge. I am convinced that sociology should, at this time, give more credit to building theories.

A typology of virtual religious communities of Christian orientation

The present article provides an introduction into the subject of virtual communities with emphasis on the religious oriented ones. It describes this social form of virtual organization through a series of paradoxes, which reveal the contradictions between premises or expected results and the present state of religious communities online. The final part suggests a typology for the virtual religious communities based on a two bipolar dimension frame: denominational and value orientation, resulting in four community types, metaphorically entitled „reinforcement”, „reformer”, „fight for the Truth” and „no frontiers.

The population’s consumption basket regarding decent and subsistence minimum living standard

The minimum living standard is an economic and social concept, with a high complexity and relativity and which measuring poverty. Complexity comes from the multitude of material, cultural, educational, health, etc.. entering in its composition and relativity, from interaction and changes of those elements, that show us the needs of human consumption and its dependents (family, household) and interdependence between these needs and economic and social framework where there is.

A framework for social innovation identification: a case study

Sometimes, in promoting a solution, a policy or strategy, its innovative character is used to legitimize its implementation based on the fact that the effort needed to verify such an assertion is relatively high not only epistemologically speaking, but ontologically, as well. On the other hand, as the conditions that stimulate innovation are yet to be clearly established, although there are efforts made in this direction, innovation cannot be assumed to appear automatically, if some efforts are made to support it. This issue is even more acute when it comes to social innovation. Consequently, in researching social innovation it is important to be able to decide which innovations should be disseminated based on a relevant set of criteria. Moreover, as most areas of the social sciences have overlapping elements, and thus, as one cannot simply assume that what is not an economical, political or other type of innovation is necessarily a social innovation, it becomes useful to integrate the links between these areas into the analysis. In the first section I propose a working definition and contrast it with existing ones. The second section will use the working definition to give an example of how we might classify innovations. After constructing the framework, in section three, I shall give, in the fourth section, one example of how it might be used, based on an analysis of two community projects. The concluding remarks will summarize the ideas of the project and suggest further development of the framework.

Social economy – a solution to social inclusion on the labour market

The current strategy of the European Union is strongly related to a new solution that is based on the force given by the so called “European social economy” platform. The social economy is initiated by a humanist philosophical principle that aims equal opportunities for all the social categories. The European institutions, their initiatives and the approach itself alleged by European projects depend on this reformative model of thought that has been adopted through the Lisbon Treaty in December of 2009. The study has as main goal to analyze this principle, by taking into account its connections with the social inclusion aspects and its approach as a major ethical and social integration on the market labor for those who have been isolated in the current context of the crisis. Moreover, the main objectives, the institutional characteristics and also the theoretical and philosophical backgrounds of the social economy will be highlighted.