Research directions of the Department for the Studies of Elites and Political Institutions in 2022
All tasks planned by the Department’s staff for 2022 fall within the area of research on elites and institutions of power. In the task entitled “Regional political elites: relations between the legislature and the executive branch,” carried out jointly by Dr. W. Betkiewicz and Dr. A. Radiukiewicz, the thesis on the professionalization of councilors as representatives of regional elites is being tested. The subject of the same study is decision-making processes at the level of local government institutions. M. Danecka, A. Machcewicz, E. Nalewajko and Z. Newlin-Mazaraki, in turn, plan to study the transfer of knowledge between local governments and civic organizations within the framework of the topic: “Local government and social partners in the event of migration crisis at the borders”. The project participants intend to develop interview scenarios and, depending on available resources, conduct pilot interviews with activists.
Elites are also the subject of research by members of the Department, focusing on political elites and social elites. In the task entitled “Discourse on civil society in Poland after 1989,” Dr. A. Radiukiewicz focuses attention on symbolic elites – political and civic, involved in the processes of discursive construction of the categories of civil society. Civil society elites are also studied from a different perspective in a project entitled “Civil Society Elites. “Civil Society Elites: Comparing Elite Composition, Reproduction, Integration and Contestation in European Civil Societies”. In it, Dr. D. Płatek puts them in a comparative perspective, focusing on the elites of Third Sector organizations. And Dr. Z. Newlin-Mazaraki, in a study entitled “Multicultural Issues in Australia,” observes the structures, leadership and activities of associations and Polish organizations.
Several projects in the Department’s plans are devoted to analyzing institutions. Dr. W. Betkiewicz is engaged in studying the nature and course of rule-making processes in the system, as well as the relations between the actors included in them. In a study entitled “Can liberal constitutionalism meet the challenges of the modern world?”, Prof. A. Kaminski seeks answers to important questions of a systemic nature by analyzing the institutional structures of the liberal-constitutional system. Prof. Kaminski also deals with the theory of “revolutionary constitutionalism” within the framework of the assignment titled “The legal theory of “revolutionary constitutionalism” and theories of modernization in the social sciences.” He also pursues the topic: “Liberal democracy in the face of modern challenges”. Besides that M. Danecka, E. Nalewajko and Z. Newlin-Mazaraki deal with the special institutions of ombudsman and ombudsman for children in liberal democracy. The determinants of the institutionalization of social rights advocacy in Poland are the subject of their team study, “Institutionalization of Social Rights Advocacy in Poland after 1989.” One of the Department’s ongoing projects is also devoted to the total institutions of the authoritarian state, viewed through the prism of relations between the authorities and society. This study entitled “Prisons in Poland 1944- 1956 – forms and mechanisms of building social relations and survival strategies under the conditions of the prison system shaped by the authoritarian state” is conducted by Dr. A. Machcewicz.
The Department for the Study of Elites and Political Institutions includes the Political Thought Research Group. The research conducted by its members has as its object thoughts and discourses relating to a number of concepts of political philosophy, useful for understanding contemporary socio-political phenomena and processes. Several projects are underway in this research field. Tasks: “Price as information – discourse analysis of neoclassical economics” and “Animal as a political metaphor – study of the functioning of the animal figure and the relationship between it and the way war and conquest are perceived” are being carried out by Dr. M. Olesik. A project on the political thought of Thomas Hobbes is being conducted by Prof. N. Gładziuk. The study of “Bellatrix Minerva: war and politics in Hegel’s philosophy” is being conducted by MA B. Wojcik. The ecological crisis and the Polish discourse of modernity – Dr. M. Pospiszyl. Chinese political thought is the subject of two projects by Dr. M. Janik: “Anthropological Difference and its Political Implications in the Thought of Zhu Xi and the Chines