SA4G8 Half Unit
Social Movements, Activism, and Social Policy
This information is for the 2018/19 session.
Dr Armine Ishkanian OLD.2.54 and Dr Timothy Hildebrandt
This course is available on the MSc in Criminal Justice Policy, MSc in International Social and Public Policy, MSc in International Social and Public Policy (Development), MSc in International Social and Public Policy (Migration), MSc in International Social and Public Policy (Non-Governmental Organisations) and MSc in Social Policy (Research). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.
The course is capped at a maximum of 45 places.
The course begins by examining theories of social movements, collective action, and contentious politics. It then moves on to examine how social movements engage with the policy process and the ways in which social movement activism informs social policy formulation and implementation. It examines the nature, past and present roles of social movements and their potential capacity in shaping social policy in developed and developing countries, and in democratic, hybrid, or authoritarian regimes. The course covers theoretical arguments and examines empirical examples and case studies.
The course examines the following topics: the role and impact of social movement activism in identifying and meeting needs; the role of grassroots mobilizations and solidarity; how movements are affected by regulatory frameworks; how and when movements achieve their objectives; movements relations with other actors (including, NGOs, trade unions, political parties, etc.); populism.
It considers the development, transformation, autonomy, interdependence, and probity of social movements. The course draws on examples of social movements in different periods, countries, and areas of activity to examine and analyse how change happens and the obstacles to change.
10 hours of lectures and 15 hours of seminars in the LT. 1 hour and 30 minutes of seminars in the ST.
Students will be expected to participate actively in seminars and to complete one piece of written formative coursework
Castells, M. (2012). Networks of Outrage and Hope: Social Movements in the Internet Age.
Della Porta, D. (2015). Social Movements in Times of Austerity.
Fox Piven, F., & Cloward, R. (1978). Poor People’s Movements: why they succeed, how they fail.
Glasius, M., & Ishkanian, A. (2015). Surreptitious Symbiosis: Engagement between activists and NGOs. Voluntas.
Graeber, D. (2002). The new anarchists. New Left Review, 13, 61-73.
Hildebrandt, T (2013) Social organizations and the authoritarian state in China
Jasper, J. M. (2010). Social Movement Theory Today: Toward a Theory of Action?
Jenkins, J. C. (1983). Resource mobilization theory and the study of social movements.
Pleyers, G. (2011). Alter-Globalization: Becoming Actors in the Global Age.
Polletta, F. (2002). Freedom is an endless meeting: Democracy in American social movements.
Rochon, T. R., & Mazmanian, D. (1993). Social Movements and the Policy Process.Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science
Seckinelgin, H. (2017) The politics of global AIDS: institutionalization of solidarity, exclusion of context
Tarrow, S. (2011). Power in Movement.
Weldon, L. S. (2011). When protest makes policy: how social movements represent disadvantaged groups.
Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.
Student performance results
(2014/15 - 2016/17 combined)
|Classification||% of students|
Department: Social Policy
Total students 2017/18: 22
Average class size 2017/18: 11
Controlled access 2017/18: Yes
Lecture capture used 2017/18: Yes (LT)
Value: Half Unit
Personal development skills
- Team working
- Application of information skills
Course survey results
(2014/15 - 2016/17 combined)1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score
The scores below are average responses.
Response rate: 86%
Reading list (Q2.1)
Course satisfied (Q2.4)