Justice, citizenship and Democracy

Justice and citizenship have a major role to play in contemporary society: how to fairly (re)distribute wealth? What is national identity based on? How can democracy and human rights be defended? Are we at risk of being governed by judges?

At the ULB, jurists, criminologists, philosophers, sociologists, political scientists and historians are looking at these issues from different angles, ranging from political philosophy and legal theory to the study of institutions in Belgium and abroad. The judiciary and the prison system are also an integral part of the study of democracy, being specifically addressed by several ULB research teams.

Electoral systems constitute a special focus, part of a broader research focus on politics. Changes in democracy and social relations and the democratic transition in Eastern European and Mediterranean countries represent further key focuses of the work conducted by our research teams. S imilarly, ULB researchers are conducting in-depth analyses of issues involving gender and minorities.

Finally, particular attention is accorded to communication, new information technologies, social networking, and organisation and management of digital information in knowledge sharing and data transfer, many of which have the potential to help construct new forms of citizenship and democracy.

Main research projects (since 2010)

Actions de recherche concertée, ARC

Interuniversity Attraction Pole, IAP

European projects (7th Framework programme, > 200 Keuros)

  • TRANSIT: Transformative Social Innovation Theory project

  • INFOCORE: (in)forming conflict prevention, response and resolution : the role of media in violent conflict

  • SURVEILLE: Surveillance: Ethical Issues, Legal Limitations, and Efficiency

  • SHEMERA: Euro-Mediterranean research cooperation on gender and science: SHE Euro-Mediterranean Research Area

  • GENDERACE: The use of racial anti-discrimination laws: gender and citizenship in a multicultural context

ERC Grants

  • Justine Lacroix, starting grant 2010: Human Rights versus Democracy?