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Communities and Identities

Communities and Identities

The Communities and Identities department was created in 2008 as a result of the merger of the then Communities and Social Stratification and Ethnosociology and Social Psychology sections, in which scientists such as Stoyan Mihailov, Mincho Draganov, Nikolay Tilkidzhiev, Veska Kozuharova worked – Zhivkova and others.

The scientific issues of the section are in current areas, leading and significant for modern sociological science, as well as in research fields related to the peculiarities of Bulgarian society in the context of globalization, glocalization and EU membership, understood as complex social processes of transformation and postmodernisation, covering all social structures, institutions, social groups and strata. In the theoretical searches and scientific developments of the scientists from the “Communities and Identities” section, the inherited traditions and modern achievements of the sociological, ethnosociological and socio-psychological studies of the challenges faced by the modern Bulgarian society are built upon. Following national priorities in science (social relationships, structures, communities and groups, national identity, history and culture, re-evaluation of social values, social construction, education, problems of ethnic communities and cultural interaction).

The main areas of work are also defined in the department:

  • Social groups, communities, social stratification and inequalities; Middle classes and strata; Elites;
  • Ethno-sociology and ethno-psychology – ethnic communities, nation, nationalism, inter-ethnic relations and cognitive communication, ethnic tolerance in the context of ideas about one’s own and other ethnic groups, models of inter-ethnic communication; ethnic tension, ethnic cohesion, ethnic exclusion;
  • Social distances, We-and-Them-images, social representations, prejudices and stereotypes in late modernity;
  • Identities – national, ethnic, and cultural identities;
  • Historical sociology of nationalisms in the Balkans;
  • Social psychology, cognitive psychology, comparative sociocultural psychology – social communication, social cognition, intelligence, socialization;
  • Demographic policy, migrations and refugees; fluid identity in the context of return migrants.
  • Urban sociology; town-rural relations;
  • Sociology of the village and rural communities, regional inequalities, analyzes of agrarian policies and the social context of innovations in agriculture; urban agriculture;
  • Entrepreneurship, small and medium business; entrepreneurial models; sustainable development, informal economy and employment;
  • Gender Studies;
  • Education, educational policies and their connection to the labor market; inequalities in access to education by gender, ethnicity, place of residence, etc.;
  • Lifestyle, consumption and leisure patterns;
  • Middle classes, local communities; consumption patterns, lifestyle and social structures in a comparative perspective: Bulgaria, Japan, China and Taiwan;
  • Local holidays;
  • Local resources to deal with crises, including the Covid-19 pandemic;
  • Historical sociology of socialism and post-socialist politics of memory, social history and memory of the wars in the Balkans in the twentieth century.
  • Social capital and its transformations;
  • History of Sociology;
  • Historical sociology, populism, critical theory;
  • Human resource Management;
  • Media studies: community media and programs about Roma, image of Roma in the media; gender responsive and gender sensitive communication for community media workers; spaces of ethnic silence and inter-ethnic dialogue; food, nutrition, media;
  • Sociology of Medicine and Healthcare; childhood studies; parenting studies.

2017-2021 “Refugees in the perceptions of Bulgarians – fears, understanding and empathy”, financed by the the Bulgarian National Science Fund (BNSF).
2017-2020 “Urban agriculture as a strategy for increasing the quality of life in cities”, financed by the BNSF.
2018-2021 “LIAISON: Better Rural Innovation: Linking Actors, Instruments and Policies through Networks”, funded under Horizon 2020.
2018-2019 “Local Communities Religious Festivals in Japan and Bulgaria: Comparative Study”, funded by Hakuho Foundation, Japan.
2019-2022 “Anti-immigrant sentiments in Bulgaria”, planning topic.
2019-2022 “Civilizational challenges facing Bulgaria and the European Union: conflicts, risks and transformations”, planning topic.
2019-2023 “Ethnicization and politicization of Roma identity in Bulgaria”, planning topic. 2020-2024 “Local holidays: resource of local communities to deal with crises”, financed by the BNSF.
2020-2024 “EFUA: European Forum for Urban Agriculture”, funded under Horizon 2020.
2020-2021 Is It Possible to Measure Nationalism? Recent Theories of Pervasiveness and Intensity of Nationhood: A Critical Appraisal’, funded by Center for Advanced Study Sofia, Pforzheimer Fellowship.
2021-2025 “Balkan History Wars”, National Scientific Program “Whirlwind-2021”.
2022-2023 “National Indifference” as a Modern Phenomenon? Theories of the Pervasiveness and Intensity of Nationalism and Their Application in the Field of Balkan History”, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin.
2022-2023 “Loneliness in people with mental disorders – social aspects of the inability to express the experience”, planning topic.


Urban Agriculture for Improving the Quality of Life
Examples from Bulgaria

This book presents the findings of a multidisciplinary study on the effects of urban agriculture (UA) on the social, economic and environmental aspects of the quality of life in Sofia – the capital of Bulgaria.


“Communities and identities: Jubilee collection in honor of Prof. Tanya Nedelcheva”

The collection is dedicated to Prof. Ph.D. Tanya Nedelcheva, a leading scientist in the field of sociology of communities and ethnosociology, a researcher of identities and a long-time head of the “Communities and Identities” section at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology at the BAS.


“Local Holidays: Resources, Traditions, Changes”  proceedings from the international conference of the same name, held June 5 – 7, 2023.


The Department organises and conducts a regular Communities and Identities webinar:


Head of Department
Technical Assistant
Correspondence PhD student