Take Part - Social Learning to Take Part in Social Movements:

Understanding the Social Transformation of Civic Participation

The Role of Roma Leadership in the Process of Social Inclusion of Roma: Perspectives and Visions of Roma Citizens From Nușfalău and Șimleu Silvaniei, Sălaj.


Fernando Varga

Who has the power to decide for us? When a leader is not a member of the Roma community,
how can he deal with a problem? In the context of this study, I want to analyze how Roma
citizens perceive the role of Roma leaders in the process of social inclusion. 

This study uses a simple linear regression and crosstabs to investigate the relationships between the significance of Roma leadership, political representation, problem self-management and social inclusion of
Roma, based on a non-probability sample of 100 respondents from the commune of Nușfalău
and the city of Simleu Silvaniei. First, we investigate the relationship between ethnic identity and
political representation, then we analyze the most important factors that influence Roma
individuals in choosing Roma leaders. 

The results show that respondents recognize the importance of Roma leaders and there is a general tendency to recognize their role in protecting ethnic identity. Furthermore, a correlation was found between the belief that Roma leaders can manage the problems they face and the willingness to choose a Roma political party. Thus, the study highlights the importance of Roma leaders in the process of social inclusion. 

They have the responsibility to protect the ethnic identity and to develop policies that promote the culture,
language and history of the Roma people in schools. In addition, Roma leaders must be able to
manage the specific problems facing the community and provide appropriate solutions. The
collaboration between Roma leaders, community members and authorities is essential for the
successful achievement of the social inclusion of Roma in Romanian society

Photo source: European Commision

Conferences where the paper will be presented:

1. Conference – Identities, Representations and Policies: State-Minority Relations in
the 20th and 21st Centuries, Bucharest, 5 – 6 October 2023