President’s Young Leaders, 6 May 2017 Sunday, May 7 2017 

Romania postcomunista already in Romanian bookstores Saturday, May 6 2017 

A big thank you to Oana Suciu, who took some photos of Romania postcomunista displayed prominently in some bookstores in Bucharest. I am happy to see the volume is out and making some buzz:

New event Friday, May 5 2017 

AfisRomaniaPostcomunista

Research Handbook of Transitional Justice Wednesday, May 3 2017 

Happy to add the final touches to my chapter on transitional justice in post-communist Central and Eastern Europe for the forthcoming Research Handbook of Transitional Justice. Edited by C. Lawther, L. Moffett and D. Jacobs, this handbook will be published with Edgar Ellen Press this coming June. The price is exorbitant, but hopefully it will be well received by those with an interest in this field.

Providing detailed and comprehensive coverage of the transitional justice field, this Research Handbook brings together leading scholars and practitioners to explore how societies deal with mass atrocities after periods of dictatorship or conflict. Situating the development of transitional justice in its historical context, social and political context, it analyses the legal instruments that have emerged.

The handbook is already posted on the website of the press: http://www.e-elgar.com/shop/research-handbook-on-transitional-justice.

Interview in Adevarul Monday, May 1 2017 

Denis Grigorescu was kind enough to publish this past week-end an interview with me in the Romanian newspaper Adevarul. Given the recently made changes to the composition of key Romanian research bodies, his questions about plagiarism and corruption are highly pertinent. The first paragraphs of the interview are pasted below. The entire text is available, in Romanian, at http://adevarul.ro/locale/pitesti/lavinia-stan-doctor-Stiinte-politice-universitatea-toronto-Inromania-plagiatul-reevaluat-devineacceptabil-1_5901e34f5ab6550cb898e510/index.html.

646x404“Plecată la puţin timp după Revoluţie din 1989 în Canada, Lavinia Stan (50 de ani) a ajuns să aibă foarte repede o carieră universitară la cel mai înalt nivel. Într-un interviu acordat pentru „Weekend Adevărul“, Lavinia Stan vorbeşte despre modul diferit în care sunt tratate plagiatele în lumea universitară: în Canada eşti exclus din învăţământ, în România nu rişti aprope nimic.

Doctor în Ştiinţe Politice la Universitatea din Toronto, Lavinia Stan este de mai mulţi ani directoarea Centrului de Studii Postcomuniste de la Universitatea St Francis Xavier din Canada şi şefa Departamentului de Ştiinţe Politice de la aceeaşi universitate. De asemenea, este şi preşedinta Society for Romanian Studies, constituită în USA în 1973, de un grup care îl includea şi pe Mircea Eliade. Între anii 2001 şi 2003, Lavinia Stan a predat şi la Dalhousie University, iar între 2006 şi 2008 a ţinut cursuri la Universitatea Concordia din Montreal. Într-un interviu acordat pentru „Weekend Adevărul“, Lavinia Stan a abordat teme foarte interesante precum reconsiderarea trecutului comunist al României, marile hibe ale democraţiei în România, schimbarea culturii politice din ţara noastră şi lipsa culturii sancţionării drastice a furtului intelectual.

Weekend Adevărul: Aţi absolvit Academia de Ştiinţe Economice în România, dar doctoratul vi l-aţi luat în Canada. Cât de diferite sunt cele două sisteme educaţionale şi care ar fi plusurile şi minusurile lor?

Lavinia Stan: Diferenţele ţin nu atât de geografie, cât de sistem politic. Am absolvit ASE-ul în 1988, când regimul comunist părea a fi o fortăreaţă inexpugnabilă. Educaţia nu se ridica la nivel universitar. Nici nu avea cum, de vreme ce ne lipseau cărţi fundamentale şi materiale didactice indispensabile, memorizarea era principala metodă de evaluare, profesorii erau slab pregătiţi şi împărtăşeau poziţii ideologizante. Încă îmi aduc aminte cursurile de merceologie despre conserva de peşte, o materie care cu greu poate fi inclusă în vreo programă universitară. Întrebările fundamentale fie erau ignorate, fie nu erau niciodată ridicate. Dar situaţia s-a schimbat după 1989, odată ce corpul profesoral a acceptat profesori mai tineri, unii educaţi în străinătate. În Canada, am avut norocul să lucrez pentru doctorat în cel mai mare Department de Stiinţe Politice din America de Nord. Universitatea din Toronto s-a numărat recent printre primele într-un clasament internaţional. Nu clasamentul a contat pentru mine, ci faptul că departamentul oferea un program riguros, finanţat adecvat. Dacă în Statele Unite politologia era studiată din punct de vedere comportamental, voturi şi alegeri, Toronto îmbrăţişa o pluralitate de modele de analiză. Încă lucrez în paradigma aceasta pluralistă. Cele două sisteme de educaţie prezintă diferenţe semnificative. Şi noi ne izbim de austeritate, dar avem acces la fonduri de cercetare care nu sunt disponibile în România. Unii decani din România încurajează notele mari, pentru a atrage cât mai mulţi studenţi. La noi „grade inflation“ este un indicator urmărit îndeaproape. Îmi aduc aminte că acum vreo 15 ani decanul nostru mi-a atras atenţia că notele pe care le acordăm erau mai mari decât media pe universitate. Analiza critică este baza învăţământului şi cercetării din Canada, într-o măsură mai mare decât în România.”

My last class of PSCI 335 in the soon-to-be-demolished NH Friday, Apr 7 2017 

PSCI 335

And the party after… Friday, Apr 7 2017 

Thesis presentations a huge success Friday, Apr 7 2017 

Last month we had two sets of thesis presentations in the department. Besides the traditional presentations attended by students and professors from the Department of Political Science, we tried for the first time ever 90-second thesis presentations. We even had prizes for the best presentations. Good luck, to all our graduates!

Some photos from the event:

 

Delayed recognition for CUP anniversary book Friday, Apr 7 2017 

Post-Communist Transitional Justice: Lessons from Twenty-Five Years of Experience, a title I co-edited with Nadya Nedelsky for the 25th anniversary of the collapse of the communist regimes in Romania, has been included in a short presentation of books recently published by StFX faculty. Published by Cambridge University Press, the volume includes chapters signed by reputable experts in the field.

51E+aX30XvL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_

Taking stock of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the collapse of the communist regimes of Central and Eastern Europe, this volume explores the ways these societies have grappled with the serious human rights violations of past regimes. It focuses on the most important factors that have shaped the nature, speed, and sequence of transitional justice programs in the period spanning the tumultuous revolutions that brought about the collapse of the communist dictatorships and the consolidation of new democratic regimes. Contributors explain why leaders made certain choices, discuss the challenges they faced, and explore the role of under-studied actors and grassroots strategies. Written by recognized experts with an unparalleled grasp of the region’s communist and post-communist reality, this volume addresses far-reaching reckoning, redress, and retribution policy choices. It is an engaging and carefully crafted volume, and it covers a wide variety of cases and discusses key transitional justice theories using both qualitative and quantitative research methods.

Romanian civic spirit at its best Tuesday, Feb 14 2017 

A short piece I wrote for EUCAnet, a Canadian-EU network. Thanks to Beate Schmidtke at the University of Victoria for soliciting this piece:

Romanian civic spirit at its best

Feb 14, 2017 – by Lavinia Stan, President, Society for Romanian Studies, Department of Political Science, St. Francis Xavier University

For almost two weeks now, hundreds of thousands of Romanian ordinary citizens and civil society activists have taken to the street in Bucharest, across the country, and even in cities like London where significant numbers of Romanian migrants live and work to protest against the Social Democratic government of Sorin Grindeanu. A little known politician with no previous ministerial experience, Grindeanu was nominated as prime minister by the Social Democrats, who in the December 2016 elections won almost half of all seats in the bicameral parliament. Grindeanu’s name might have never been proposed if President Klaus Iohannis had accepted Social Democratic Party leader Liviu Dragnea as prime minister. But Dragnea was under investigation for fraud, and thus Iohannis warned that unscrupulous corrupt politicians should not occupy high-ranking government positions.

When it joined the European Union ten years ago, Romania was urged to step up its anti-corruption fight as it was registering high levels of political corruption that gripped everyday life at all levels. The country remains the second most corrupt EU member state. Corruption levels have not skyrocketed mainly because the National Anti-corruption Department has investigated, indicted and brought before the courts numerous politicians, party leaders, government officials at national and local level, judges, prosecutors, university presidents, and police officers. More Social Democratic Party leaders have been found to engage in bribery, embezzlement, influence peddling, and misconduct than members of any other political party in Romania. That is hardly surprising, since the Social Democrats have held a tight grip on the Romanian post-communist state institutions for most of the past 28 years. Social Democratic cabinets have ruled the country in 1989-1996, 2000-2004, 2008-2009, and 2012-2015, and they controlled the local administration for most of the remaining years. Whereas other parties responded to anti-corruption calls by screening their electoral candidates to sideline corrupt politicians, the Social Democrats adamantly refused to blame even leaders convicted by the courts.

Read more at: http://www.eucanet.org/news/media-tips/351-romanian-civic-spirit-at-its-best

« Previous PageNext Page »