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Emancipatory Rural Politics Initiative: Call for Conference Participation/Papers

The Emancipatory Rural Politics Initiative (ERPI) focuses on understanding the rise of ‘authoritarian populism’ in rural settings across the world, as well as the forms of resistance occurring and the alternatives being built. New exclusionary politics are generating deepening inequalities, jobless ‘growth’, climate chaos, and social division. The ERPI is focused on the social and political processes in rural spaces that are generating alternatives to regressive, authoritarian politics. The goal is to provoke debate and action among scholars, activists, practitioners and policymakers from across the world who are concerned about the current situation, and hopeful about alternatives.

To debate these themes, ERPI is organizing an international conference on the theme of 'Authoritarian Populism and the Rural World' on 17-18 March 2018 at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) in the Hague, Netherlands. Confirmed plenary speakers include: Michael Watts, Dzodzi Tsikata, John Gaventa, Katherine Cramer, Burak Gurel, Eduardo Gudynas, Issa Shivji (tbc), Raj Patel (tbc). There will be more, to be announced soon, so keep a lookout on our social media accounts!

You can read more about the ERPI in the framing paper, available here. Please note the three sub-themes which will also be the key sub-themes of the conference:

  1. The current conjuncture: rural roots and consequences;
  2. Resisting, organising and mobilising for an emancipatory rural politics;
  3. Alternatives: understanding, supporting, creating, deepening and scaling 

Submission dates: To present a paper at the conference, please send your abstract by 15 November 2017: 350 word abstract and 150 word short bio in one Word file.

Submit your abstract to with the subject: "abstract submission'". Collaborations between researchers and activists are encouraged. Suggestions for presentations in diverse media and formats are also invited. 

Full papers due no later than 15 January 2018

For queries: Get in touch with any member of the coordinating collective or send an email to

ERPI Coordinating Collective: Ian Scoones (IDS, Sussex), Marc Edelman (CUNY), Wendy Wolford (Cornell University), Ruth Hall (PLAAS, South Africa), Lyda Forero (Transnational Institute), Ben White and Jun Borras (International Institute of Social Studies, ISS, The Hague).

Follow updates on Twitter and Facebook (ERPI)


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