Welcome to the Movements and Morality conference, hosted by CISTAS at CBS

The impetus for the conference stems from the feeling of a need to revisit the normative foundations of collective action and research in social movements in light of a societal development that has been described as a return to the US ‘gilded age’: An age of increasing material inequality and concentration of power and influence within a small elite. At the same time, the financial crisis and the climate crisis, as well as war and conflict and the displacement of millions of people has led to mobilization and ‘populism’ on both the right and the left in the US and Europe. This situation calls for an evaluation of the moral principles that are acted upon and that may thwart or foster hopes of a better future.


While social movements studies have made great progress when it comes to questions of mobilization, identity, framing, spread, diffusion, recruitment etc. research into the moral and normative experiences and principles that collective action implicitly or explicitly relies upon has not received the same attention.  In addition, after the fear of the mob of the early 20th century had settled, social movement scholars have been motivated by a sympathetic attitude towards the movements studied. But this attitude has often not been supported by a developed normative position.


This conference aims to explore these matters: How can social movement scholars explicate the normative principles and experiences of those they study? How can scholars develop their own normative position? And could social movement scholars help locate, develop, and spread languages of collective commitment?


The call has received an overwhelming response and in addition to our three keynotes by Doug McAdam, Stanford University, Nina Eliasoph, University of Southern California and Jeffrey Alexander, Yale University, we are happy to include presentations of no less than 28 original papers distributed on four regular thematic sessions and two invited panels organized by respectively Lara Monticelli & Nicole Doerr and Andreas Møller Mulvad.


At this website you can you can register as regular participant, find the submitted abstracts and papers as well as updates to this preliminary program. We encourage all with an interest in the topic of the conference – from within as well beyond academia - to join us!


We look forward to two days of stimulating academic exchange!


Anders Sevelsted and Jonas Toubøl


Conference organizers





Registration deadline: 12 May 2019



Copenhagen Business School (CBS) - Solbjerg Plads 3 - 2000 - Frederiksberg - +45 38153815 - conferences@cbs.dk