Contentious Politics and Neo-Militant Democracy

Registration Number: 2018/31/B/HS5/01410

The Type of Research Grant: OPUS 16

Funding: National Science Centre

Duration: 24.06.2019-23.06.2022

Principal Investigator: Assoc. Prof. Joanna Rak

Research Co-investigators: Prof. Roman Bäcker, Prof. Przemysław Osiewicz, Kamila Rezmer-Płotka MA, Maciej Skrzypek MA

The research is motivated by the following observations: during the past decade, European democratic regimes began to take on the features of non-democracies by using legal restrictions on contentious politics, constitutional amendments, refusals of party registration, and restrictions on referendums. The systems have taken these measures to guard themselves against anti-democratic forces and to survive in a new social milieu. Nowadays, the regimes fail to meet the essential features of the old neutral model of liberal democracy which assumed that all political views give people the same rights of expression and association. These factors have brought about the rebirth of the studies on militant democracy understood as the democratic system that legally restricts certain democratic freedoms in order to protect itself from the threat of being changed by legal means. However, contemporary political regimes are substantively different from the system which was the subject of the first study of militant democracy, namely the political regime in a time of Adolf Hitler’s Germany. This project uses the category of neo-militant democracy to differentiate between the phenomena which existed in various historical contexts.

The main research objective is to formulate the middle-range theory that determines the causal relationships between contentious politics and neo-militant democracy in Europe. This theory is to explain why particular European neo-militant democracies emerge, while others decline, how they differ from each other, what brings the differences and similarities between them, how and why they change over time.

The research covers the neo-militant democracies that occurred in the 28 member states of the European Union (EU). Their membership in the UE provides a common ground of experience for political subjects, which is of vital importance to control the analysis for confounding factors. Additionally, these political regimes were faced with “the crisis of democracy” after the 2008 financial crisis. The qualitative regime change was not rapid, but clearly visible after the imposition of austerity measures by the EU and governments on the states since it was reflected in the discourse on citizenship, rights and freedoms, and austerity policies. Although the static approach allows us to observe neo-militant democracies over the particular critical juncture, the dynamic approach enables us to understand the nature of their changes. Therefore, it is important to delve analytically into the trajectories of the regimes’ continuance to capture what and how has shaped the neo-militant aspects of democracies over time. Thus, the research field encompasses the period from 2008 (the great economic crisis) to 2019, which is the expected date for the implementation of the EU’s procedures against the violations of political rights of citizens and denizens of the EU. The proceedings may contribute to the significant change of the quality of European neo-militant democracies and the end of the particular phase of the regimes’ continuance.

The analysis makes use of desk research. It employs a qualitative method of written sources analysis. This methodological choice is followed by a need for conceptual qualitative content analysis. The research techniques of data collection are the following: an analysis of secondary data gathered in the state police databases, reports, and records, the GDELT database, Eurostat, Europe, Venice Commission, state statistical offices, IMF, Countryreports, Earthtrends, Infoplease, Ameco, the Freedom House reports, non-governmental organization databases; secondary literature on neo-militant democracies and indicators involved in explanatory frameworks; and articles and visual materials published in public, commercial, and social media. The sources triangulation aims to verify the reliability of data, generate reliable databases, and facilitate the creation of statistical software for data analysis. The major criterion for sources selection is their utility to verify the hypotheses effectively, so the principle of theoretical sampling drives the collection of data. The research uses fuzzy set Qualitative Comparative Analysis to verify the hypotheses. This technique allows us to accept or reject assumptions on the causal relations between the types of neo-militant democracy and the features of contentious politics.


Articles in journals:

  1. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “Quasi-Militant Democracy as a New Form of Sacred in Poland during the Corona Crisis.” Journal for the Study of Religions and Ideologies 19(57): 111-128.
  2. Osiewicz Przemysław, Skrzypek Maciej. 2020. “Is Spain becoming a militant democracy? Empirical evidence from Freedom House Reports.” Aportes. Revista de Historia Contemporánea (Madrid, Ed. Actas) 35(103): 7–33.
  3. Skrzypek, Maciej. 2020. “The Banning of Extremist Political Parties as a Measures of Neo-Militant Democracy: The Experience of Post-Communist States.” HAPSc Policy Briefs Series 1(2): 67–73.
  4. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Policy on Public Assemblies in Times of Crisis: Recommendations Concerning the Strategy of Militant Democracy.” HAPSc Policy Briefs Series 1(2): 201–207.
  5. Osiewicz, Przemysław. 2020. “Limitations to the Right to Freedom of Assembly in Poland during the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Case of Women’s Strike.” HAPSc Policy Briefs Series 1(2): 195–200.
  6. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “Conceptualizing the Theoretical Category of Neo-militant Democracy: The Case of Hungary.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(2): 61–70.
  7. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “Repression and Blockupy Radicalization in Austerity-Driven Germany.” Przegląd Zachodni 2(375): 189–204.
  8. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2019. “Trajektoria trwania opancerzonych demokracji.” Studia nad Autorytaryzmem i Totalitaryzmem 41(3): 63–82.
  9. Skrzypek Maciej. 2020. “Ograniczanie prawa do zgromadzeń w nowych demokracjach opancerzonych na przykładzie Marszu Niepodległości 2019 we Wrocławiu.” Refleksje. Pismo naukowe studentów i doktorantów WNPiD UAM (21): 85–99.
  10. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Possibility of Implementing the Concept of the Intermarium in the Context of Militant Democracy in Poland during and after the Coronavirus Pandemic.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(3): 96–110.
  11. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Restrictions of freedom of press as an indicator of militant democracy in Lithuania.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(4): 204–210.
  12. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “The Effects of Crises in the European Union as a Manifestation of the Militant Democracy Rule Implementation.” Przegląd Prawa Konstytucyjnego 6(58): 615–621.
  13. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “Restrictions of Religious Freedom as an Indicator of Militant Democracy: Instrumental Treatment of Religion in Spain in 2009-2019.” Aportes. Revista de Historia Contemporánea 36(107): 69–98.
  14. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Self-Defense Mechanisms of Democracy during the Crisis: The Baltic States in Comparative Perspective.” HAPSc Policy Briefs Series 2(1): 17–23.
  15. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “Contentious Politics in Defense of Neo-Militant Democracy in Poland: The Rationale Behind Fighting a Quasi-Militant Democracy.” HAPSc Policy Briefs Series 2(1): 24–29.
  16. Skrzypek, Maciej. 2021. “Democratic Backsliding in Poland on Example Draft Amendments in Electoral Code During the COVID-19 Pandemic.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 50(2): 37–50.
  17. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Why Did Italian Democracy Become Vulnerable? Theorizing the Change from Neo- to Quasi-militant Democracy” Polish Political Science Yearbook 50(2): 51–61.
  18. Rak, Joanna and Roman Bäcker. 2021. “Editorial. Facing Zeitgeist: The World between Neo- and Quasi-militant Democracy.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 50(2): 5–8.
  19. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Ograniczanie praw człowieka podczas kryzysu uchodźczego w Grecji (2014-2019) na podstawie analizy raportów Human Rights Watch.” Alcumena. Pismo Interdyscyplinarne – Alcumena. Interdysciplinary Journal 1(1): 53–65.
  20. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Autokreacja ról politycznych Komitetu Obrony Demokracji w mitycznym uniwersum polskiej sceny politycznej.” Historia i Polityka 35(42): 31–45.
  21. Rak, Joanna. 2022. “The Global Authoritarian Turn, Democratic Vulnerability, and Geo-digital Competition.” Geopolitics 27(2): 680–686.
  22. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Policing Anti-Government Protests During the Coronavirus Crisis in Poland: Between Escalated Force and Negotiated Management.” Teorija in Praksa 58(SI): 598–615.
  23. Rak, Joanna, Roman Bäcker, and Przemysław Osiewicz. 2021. “The Right to Exercise Protest Under Threat? Between the Rise of Autocracy and Democratic Resilience in Crisis-Driven Poland.” Political Life 3: 5–10.
  24. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “Abusing a Neo-militant Democracy or Becoming a Quasi-militant Democracy: The Caste Study of Denmark in Times of Crisis.” Political Life 4: 37–40.
  25. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “What Factors Determine and Facilitate a Departure from a Neo-Militant Democracy? The Case Study of Bulgaria.” Przegląd Prawa Konstytucyjnego 6(64): 269–280.
  26. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “Restrictions of Religious Freedom and the Implementation of Neo-Militant Democracy Rule in Crisis-Driven Poland.” Bulletin of the Vasyl. Stus Donetsk National Univeristy. Series Political Sciences 6: 51–54.
  27. Bäcker, Roman. 2021. “Krzysztof Bosak’s Political Views: Targeting Enemies in Anti-democratic Political Thinking.” Przegląd Politologiczny 3: 59–68.
  28. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2021. “Challenging the Theoretical Framework of the Totalitarian Syndrome.” Studia nad Autorytaryzmem i Totalitaryzmem 43(2): 7–17.
  29. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Partisan Journalists on Duty: Political Gnosticism as a Means of Legitimating Quasi-militant Democracy in Crisis-driven Poland.” Siyasal: Journal of Political Sciences 30(2): 207–224.
  30. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Framing Enemies by the State Television: Delegitimization of Anti-Government Protest Participants During the First Wave of the Pandemic in Poland.” Journal of Contemporary Central and Eastern Europe 29(2-3): 157–175.
  31. Rak, Joanna and Przemysław Osiewicz. 2021. “The Populist Response to the Covid-19 Pandemic: A Comparative Analysis of the Positions of Duda and Fernández.” Serbian Political Thought 74(4): 5–32.
  32. Skrzypek Maciej. 2022. “Between Neo-militant and Quasi-militant Democracy: Restrictions on Freedoms of Speech and the Press in Austria, Finland, and Sweden in 2008-2019” European Politics and Society.
  33. Skrzypek, Maciej. 2022. “A Hybrid Strategy of Restricting Freedom of Assembly in Modern Militant Democracies. Experiences from Austria, Finland, and Sweden.” Journal of Comparative Politics 15(2): 24–38.
  34. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “The Sovereignty of the Visegrád Group Political Nations in 2008–2019: From Abusing Neo-Militant Democracy to Quasi-Militant Democracy.” Parliamentary Studies 31: 65–84.
  35. Skrzypek, Maciej. 2022. “Ineffective Means of Militant Democracy as Factors in Creating and Consolidating Dysfunctional Democracies: Evidence from the Experience of Post-communist States.” Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Politikwissenschaft 16: 247–264.
  36. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “‘I Am Not Going’: Determinants of Social Activity before Poland’s Ghost Election.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 51(3): 97–105.
  37. Rak, Joanna and Kamila Rezmer-Płotka. 2022. “Civic Education for Democracy During Crisis: Measuring State Media Engagement.” The New Educational Review 69(3): 82–94.
  38. Rak, Joanna. 2022. “Neo-militant Democracy and (Un)fulfilled Destination of Consolidated Democracies? The Inner Six in Comparative Perspective.” Historia i Polityka 40(47): 9–24.
  39. Rak, Joanna. 2022. “Delegitimization Strategies as A Means of Policing Protesters Online during the Pandemic in Poland.” Revista de Sociologia e Política 30(7): 1–19.
  40. Osiewicz Przemysław and Joanna Rak. 2022. “The Intercommunal Relations in Cyprus during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Towards a Fait Accompli Policy?” Mediterranean Politics: 1–10.
  41. Rak, Joanna. 2022. “What Was Behind Escalated Force in Crisis-Driven Spain? Explaining the Policing of the Indignados’ Protests.” Aportes. Revista de Historia Contemporánea (Madrid, Ed. Actas) 37(110): 229–259.
  42. Rak, Joanna. 2022. “The Use of Medical Populism to Claim the Right to Rule in Poland during a Public Health Emergency.” Journal of Populism Studies 1(1): 1–19.
  43. Skrzypek, Maciej. 2022. “Limitations on the Freedom of the Press in the Face of Corruption Scandals as Instruments of Quasi-militant Democracy in Malta.” Studia Securitatis 2: 192–216.
  44. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “Violations of the Religious Freedoms in the European Union Member States in 2015–2019: Self-Defence Under a Neo-Militant Democracy Rule?” Studia Securitatis 2: 181–191.
  45. Skrzypek Maciej. 2022. “The Illiberal Turn and Quasi-militant Democracy Measures During the Coronavirus Crisis in the Czech Republic.” Democracy and Society 19: 22–25.
  46. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “Why Women Became the Enemy of Democracy in Poland? The Illiberal Regime’s Response to the Women’ Rights Movement.” Przegląd Politologiczny 3: 95–103.
  47. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “Restricting the Press and Neo-militant Democracy: The Comparative Analysis of the Ireland and the Great Britain.” Athenaeum: Polskie Studia Politologiczne 73(2): 195–207.
  48. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “The Sovereignty of the Political Nation Under Threat? Portugal Between Neo- and Quasi-militant Democracy.” Przegląd Prawa Konstytucyjnego 6(70): 521–528.
  49. Bäcker, Roman. 2022. “Cuba and Poland: An Outline of Comparative Analysis of Totalitarian Regimes.” Przegląd Strategiczny 15: 333–350.
  50. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2022. “(Dis)engagement in the Russia-Ukraine War.” Political Life 4: 18–21.
  51. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2022. “Why Did Putin Go Too Far? The Rationality of Vladimir Putin’s Decision to Begin a War with Ukraine.” Society Register 6(3): 57–72.

Books and chapters in books:

  1. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Становится ли польша воинствующей демократией?” (“Is Poland Becoming a Militant Democracy?”). In Проблемы Стран Постсоветского Пространства, Центральной И Юго-Восточной Европы. Сборник научных статей. Выпус к4, edited by A. A. Slinko, O. Yu. Mikhalev, V.I. Salnikov, pp. 252–264. Voronezh: Voronezh State University Publishing House. ISBN 978-5-9273-3082-9.
  2. Osiewicz Przemysław, Skrzypek Maciej. 2020. “Эмпирический анализ ограничения свободы печати в польше в 2008-2019 гг. На примере отчетов Freedom House” (“Empirical Analysis of the Limitation of Freedom of the Press in Poland in 2008-2019 on the Example of Freedom House Reports” In ПроблемыСтранПостсоветскогоПространства, ЦентральнойИЮго-ВосточнойЕвропы. Сборникнаучныхстатей. Выпуск4, edited by A. A. Slinko, O. Yu. Mikhalev, V.I. Salnikov, pp. 239-251. Voronezh: Voronezh State University Publishing House. ISBN 978-5-9273-3082-9.
  3. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2020. “Между сакрализацией и возрождением: патриотизм партии «право и справедливость»” (“Between Sacralization and Revival: The Patriotism of Law and Justice”). In ПроблемыСтранПостсоветскогоПространства, ЦентральнойИЮго-ВосточнойЕвропы. Сборникнаучныхстатей. Выпуск4 (Problems of Post-Soviet Countries, Central and South-Eastern Europe. Collection of Scientific Articles. Volume 4.), edited by A. A. Slinko, O. Yu. Mikhalev, V.I. Salnikov, pp. 187–199. Voronezh: Voronezh State University Publishing House. ISBN 978-5-9273-3082-9.
  4. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Neo-Militant Democracies in Europe: Revival of Inter-War Political Tendencies.” In Тринадцатые Байкальские Социально-Гуманитарные Чтения Материалы (Thirteenth Baikal Social Sciences and Humanities Studies), edited by А. В. Врон (A.V. Vron), pp. 172–178. Irkutsk: Irkutsk State University Publishing.
  5. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2020. “Polski autorytaryzm lat 2015-2019.” In W kręgu doktryn politycznych i prawnych. Księga jubileuszowa dedykowana Profesorowi Markowi Maciejewskiemu, edited by Radosław Antonow, Łukasz Machaj, Maciej Marszał, Mirosław Sadowski, Tomasz Scheffler, pp. 77–85. Wrocław: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Wrocławskiego.
  6. Bäcker, Roman. 2020. “Myślenie polityczne Jarosława Kaczyńskiego.” In Wokół teoretycznych i praktycznych aspektów stosunków międzynarodowych. Księga jubileuszowa dedykowana Profesorowi Mieczysławowi Stolarczykowi, edited by Tomasz Kubin, Justyna Łapaj-Kucharska, and Tomasz Okraska, pp. 438–447. Katowice: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego. ISBN: 978-83-226-3919-1.
  7. Bäcker, Roman. 2020. “Kategoria narodu politycznego.” In Polska i Europa w perspektywie politologicznej. Księga jubileuszowa dedykowana profesorowi Konstantemu Adamowi Wojtaszczykowi z okazji 45-lecia pracy akademickiej. Tom II, edited by Jacek Wojnicki, Justyna Miecznikowska, Łukasz Zamęcki, pp. 35–46. Warszawa: Oficyna Wydawnicza ASPRA-JR.
  8. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. Kościół katolicki przeciwko nowej demokracji opancerzonej? Realizowanie wolności religijnej w Kościele katolickim poprzez nowoczesne technologie podczas pandemii COVID-19.” In Wykorzystanie dronów i robotów w systemach bezpieczeństwa. Studia interdyscyplinarne, edited by Rafał Kamprowski and Mirosław Skarżyński, pp. 253–264. Poznań: Wydawnictwo Wydziału Nauk Politycznych i Dziennikarstwa Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu.
  9. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Robots as a Threat to Neo-militant Democracies: Advancing Theory-Driven Hypotheses.” In Wykorzystanie dronów i robotów w systemach bezpieczeństwa. Studia interdyscyplinarne, edited by Rafał Kamprowski and Mirosław Skarżyński, pp. 239–252. Poznań: Wydawnictwo Wydziału Nauk Politycznych i Dziennikarstwa Uniwersytetu im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu.
  10. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Establishing Relationships between the State and (Un)civil Society within the Framework of Neo-militant Democracy.” In Cовременная политическая наука о траекториях развития государства, бизнеса и гражданского общества (Modern Political Science on the Trajectories of Development of the State, Business and Civil Society), edited by N. Yu. Veremeev, O. G. Kazak, A. A. Kiselev, O. A. Postalovskaya, pp. 31–35. Minsk:  Belarusian State Economic University, Institute of Social and Humanitarian Education, Department of Political Science. ISBN 978-985-596-901-4.
  11. Bäcker, Roman and Joanna Rak. 2021. “Польша между новой и квазивоинствующей демократией.” (“Poland between Neo- and Quasi-militant Democracy”) In Проблемы стран постсоветского пространства, Центральной и Юго-Восточной Европы. Выпуск5, edited by A. A. Slinko, O. Yu. Mikhalev, V.I. Salnikov, pp. 181–193. Voronezh: Voronezh State University Publishing House. ISBN 978-5-9273-3279-3.
  12. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “Предлагаемые и применяемые средства новой воинствующей демократии, использованные Польшей и Венгрией во время миграционного кризиса (“Announced and Applied Neo-Militant Democracy Measures Against the Influx of Refugees Adopted by Poland and Hungary During the Refugee Crisis”) In Проблемы стран постсоветского пространства, Центральной и Юго-Восточной Европы. Выпуск5, edited by A. A. Slinko, O. Yu. Mikhalev, V.I. Salnikov, pp. 249–259. Voronezh: Voronezh State University Publishing House. ISBN 978-5-9273-3279-3.
  13. Rak, Joanna and Roman Bäcker (Eds.). 2022. Neo-militant Democracies in the Post-communist Member States of the European Union. London and New York: Routledge.
  14. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. Naruszanie wolności religijnej w kontekście demokracji opancerzonej: studium przypadku Indii.” In Dynamika procesów politycznych i społecznych w państwach południowej i wschodniej Azji, edited by J. Marszałek-Kawa and A. Stelmach, pp. 126–139. Toruń:Wydawnictwo Adam Marszałek.
  15. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2021. “Respecting Religious Freedom in India 2014-2018.” In Selected Socio-Economic and International Relations Issues in Contemporary Asian States, edited by J. Marszałek-Kawa and T. Dmochowski, pp. 182–192. Toruń: Wydawnictwo Adam Marszałek.
  16. Rak, Joanna. 2022. “Drawing on Fear and Stereotypes to Win Hearts and Minds: The Development of Anti-Muslim Attitudes in Election Campaigns in Poland.” Proceedings of the First Annual International Conference on Religion, Culture, Peace, and Education, edited by Rey Ty, pp. 65–70. Chiang Mai: Payap University in Thailand.
  17. Bäcker, Roman. 2022. “Demokracja a naród polityczny.” In Prawo, państwo, polityka. Monografia dedykowana Profesorowi Markowi Żmigrodzkiemu, edited by Marta Michalczuk-Wlizło and Małgorzata Podolak, pp. 39–52. Lublin: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Marii Curie-Skłodowskiej.
  18. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “The State of Emergency in Poland Against Afghan Refugees – Neo-Militant Democracy Characteristic Solutions.” Between Idea and Practice: An Asian Perspective, edited by Joanna Marszałek-Kawa and Renata Podgórzańska, pp. 176–187.Toruń: Wydawnictwo Adam Marszałek.
  19. Rak, Joanna and Maciej Skrzypek. 2022. “Stosowalność kategorii demokracji opancerzonej: krytyczna analiza koncepcji Karla Loewensteina.” In Ziemie Zachodnie i Północne, Niemcy, mniejszości i migracje, bezpieczeństwo międzynarodowe, edited by Andrzej Stelmach, Adam Barabasz, and Cezary Trosiak, pp. 579–587. Poznań: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Wydziału Nauk Politycznych i Dziennikarstwa.
  20. Skrzypek, Maciej. 2022. “Konstytucja RP jako źródło legitymizacji stosowania środków demokracji opancerzonej.” In Konstytucja jako efekt kompromisu politycznego. W setną rocznicę Konstytucji marcowej 1921 roku, edited by Marcin Wichmanowski, pp. 335–345. Lublin: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Marii Curie-Skłodowskiej.

    Book reviews and conference reports:

    1. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “The European Union safeguards human rights and the ongoing process of militant democracy in the member states: Stanisław Adam Paruch: Efektywność ochrony praw człowieka Rady Europy i Unii Europejskiej.” Środkowoeuropejskie Studia Polityczne 2: 215–217.
    2. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Report from 1st International e-Conference “The world in the Age of Pandemic and Post-Pandemic Period, Poznań, May 20-21, 2020.” Studia Orientalne 1(17): 145–147.
    3. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2020. “Political Decisions and Potential Threats to EU Countries in the Ongoing Procesess of Militant Democracy.” Historia i Polityka 32(39): 163–166.
    4. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “The Freedom of Movement in Times of Neo-militant Democracy. Book review: Monika Bator-Bryła, Public Order and Public Safety – Free Movement of Persons: The Case Law of the CJEU, Adam Marszałek Publishing House, Toruń 2019, pp. 239.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(1): 115–116.
    5. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “Handbook of Social Science Methodology for Students and Course Instructors. Book review: Dawn Brancati, Social Scientific Research, SAGE Publications, Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, Washington DC, Melbourne 2018, pp. 384.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(2): 191–193.
    6. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “Contemporary Challenges to Security Sciences. Book review: Daniel Kawa (ed.), International Security and State Borders, Adam Marszałek Publishing House, Toruń 2019, pp. 277.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(3): 189–191.
    7. Rak, Joanna. 2020. “The Nation State and Its Enemies: Towards Reflection on the Future of Europe. Book review: Magdalena Ziętek-Wielomska and Adam Wielomski, Państwo narodowe i jego wrogowie, Fundacja Instytut Badawczy Pro vita bona, Warszawa 2020, pp. 340.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 49(4): 213–215.
    8. Rak, Joanna. 2021. “Putting the Terror Management Theory to Work: Exploration and Explanation. Book review: Bartosz Bolechów, Gdy światło się mroczy: Światopogląd Państwa Islamskiego w perspektywie teorii opanowywania trwogi, Wydawnictwo Adam Marszałek, Toruń 2020, pp. 276.” Polish Political Science Yearbook 50(1): 177–180.
    9. Rezmer-Płotka, Kamila. 2022. “Report: 1st International Conference: Neo-militant Democracies in the Post-Communist Member States of the European Union, February 12, 2021, Poznań.” Przegląd Prawa Konstytucyjnego 2(66): 383–386.

Principal InvestigatorAssoc. Prof. Joanna Rak

Associate professor at the Faculty of Political Science and Journalism, Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań. In 2016-2020, she was a visiting researcher and professor at CEU San Pablo University in Madrid and Charles III University of Madrid. She worked on the following research projects: „Researching Anti-austerity Movements in Comparative Perspective”, „Basque Revitalization: The Continuance Trajectory of ETA” i „Współczesna Rosja: między autorytaryzmem a totalitaryzmem?”. The author of books and articles on contentious politics. The laureate of, i.a., Scholarship by the Minister of Science and Higher Education for outstanding young scientists, the Barbara Skarga Scholarship, START Scholarship by the Foundation for Polish Science, and Scholarship for young researchers from the Poznań scientific community. She obtained the first place in the competition of the Polish Political Science Association for the best scientific article published in the peer-reviewed scientific journal or collective work in Polish in 2016-2017 as well as a distinction in the Czesław Mojsiewicz All-Polish Competition for the best doctoral dissertation in the discipline of political sciences in 2016. Research interests: cultures of political violence, contentious politics, and social mobilization. Contact:

Research Co-investigatorProfessor dr hab. Roman Bäcker

The head of the Department of Theory of Politics at the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń. For several decades, he has been dealing with the issues of non-democratic political regimes, and above all totalitarianism. A special area of interest are the processes of the collapse of political regimes. The basic theoretical models, in this case, are the author's theories of political bifurcation and the concepts of militant democracy modified together with Joanna Rak. In addition, he created original frameworks of theoretical categories allowing for conducting explanatory studies of political thought (typologies based on the Pareto division, according to the types of relations between subordinate and dominant cultures, etc.). Together with the team, he wrote a handbook on the methodology of political science research (open access, 2016). He is the author of seven books including Nontraditional Theory of Politics (Toruń, 2011); Interwar Eurasianism. Between Counter-acculturation and Totalitarianism? (Łódź 2000); Russian Political Thinking under President Putin (Toruń 2007).

Research Co-investigatorAssoc. Prof. Przemysław Osiewicz

Assoc. Prof. at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. FULBRIGHT Senior Award Visiting Scholar at Georgetown University, Washington D.C. (2016-17). Non-Resident Fellow, at the Middle East Institute, Washington D.C. His research interests include analysis of foreign policy of the Middle Eastern states and political systems of non-democratic states as well as the EU’s external relations. Among his publications are EU-Iran Relations in the Post-JCPOA Period: Selected Political Aspects (2018); Ideological Determinants of the Current Saudi-Iranian Rivalry in the Middle East (2016); Transformation Processes in Egypt After 2011 – the Causes, Their Course and International Response (2015); Stanowiska tureckich partii politycznych wobec kwestii cypryjskiej po 2002 roku. Od nacjonalizmu do pragmatyzmu? (2015); Geneza i ewolucja systemu partyjnego Islamskiej Republiki Iranu (2014); Social and Political Changes in the Arab States After 2010: A Critical Analysis of Terms Applied (2014); Konflikt cypryjski (2013); Konstytucja Republiki Cypryjskiej. Wstęp (2013); Powstanie i ewolucja systemu politycznego Islamskiej Republiki Iranu (2012); Wybory w państwie nieuznawanym na przykładzie Tureckiej Republiki Północnego Cypru (2007).

Research Co-investigatorKamila Rezmer-Płotka, MA

PhD student in political science at the Faculty of Political and Security Sciences (Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń) in the Department of the Political System of the Republic of Poland, as well as Secretary of the Board in Polish Political Science Yearbook. A graduate of master’s studies in political science and undergraduate studies in public policy. During studies she was awarded the title of the best student of the faculty, and later the best graduate. Her research interests include mainly internal and foreign policy, churches and beliefs around the world, the political system of the Republic of Poland and research in the field of agenda-setting. Analytical skills, knowledge of English, interests and completed studies allow her to efficiently obtain data, build databases, as well as verify and develop them under the grant OPUS 16. Privately she is intrested in contemporary theather, art, literature, and in her free time paints and takes care of two beloved dogs from the city-shelter.

Research Co-investigatorMaciej Skrzypek, MA

Graduated in International Relations at the Faculty of Political Science and Journalism at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań. He actively participates in scientific conferences on political sciences and contemporary history. He is an author of publications about contemporary politics. His scientific interest focuses on new types of legitimization of power in contemporary Europe, limitations of the right to assembly in new militant democracy, and delegitimization of political transitions in Central and Eastern Europe.