1st Edition

Pandemic-Era Civil Disorder in Post-Communist EU Member States

By Joanna Rak Copyright 2025
    400 Pages
    by Routledge

    As public order policing become more prominently widespread so is the need to better explain why some instances of collective action transform into civil disorder.  In this book, Joanna Rak advances a middle-range theory to better explain the sources of civil disorder in one of the pandemic-ridden regions of the European Union, the post-communist states. 

    Supported by systematic empirical evidence of protest policing in eleven countries in the region, Rak delves analytically into conditions of civil disorder in each state to test the hypotheses and offer an explanation. The analysis begins by discussing the demonstration events from the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project database. She then identifies conditions of civil disorder development for each demonstration event, including police partisanship, the dimensions of protest policing, and the aggregate model of protest policing.  The comparative analysis sheds light on the conditions under which collective action transforms into civil disorder and the outcomes vital for managing the relationship between law enforcement and public gatherings in a way that ensures the safe practice of civil rights.

    Pandemic-Era Civil Disorder in Post-Communist EU Member States offers a thought-provoking and nuanced understanding of civil order and democratic struggles in the region and will interest students and researchers of comparative politics, contentious politics, democratic theory, civil society, and post-communism.

    Part 1: Introduction 1. Towards Understanding of Civil Disorder during the Pandemic 2. Exploring Conditions of Civil Disorder Development: Theoretical Foundations Part 2: Case Studies 3. Estonian Proactive Policing: Balancing Negotiated Management and Neutrality to Prevent Civil Disorder 4. Unintended Consequences of Hybrid Protest Policing for Managing Civil Disorder in Latvia 5. Lithuania: Leveraging Negotiated Management and Non-Partisan Policing 6. Poland: Application of Partisan Policing and Negotiated Management in the Face of Civil Disorder 7. Czech Law Enforcement and the Benefits of Neutrality and Limited Intervention 8. Slovakia: Detentions, Force, and the Shift from Peaceful Protest to Civil Disorder 9. The Role of Hungarian Predictable Negotiated Management and Non-Partisan Policing in Maintaining Peaceful Protests 10. Inconsistent Law Enforcement in Romania: Civil Disorder Under Force-, Management-Based Hybrid, and Escalated Force Protest Policing 11. The Impact of Hidden Partisanship and Policing Countermovement Violence on the Dynamics of Civil Disorder in Bulgaria 12. Civil Disorder Dynamics in Slovenia: Protest Policing Resistant to Political Influences 13. Cohesive Law Enforcement: Sustaining Peaceful Protests through Negotiated Management and Apolitical Policing in Croatia Part 3: Conclusions 14. Causal Relationships Between Protest Policing and Civil Disorder in Post-communist European Union Member States during the Pandemic


    Joanna Rak is Associate Professor of Political Sciences at the Faculty of Political Science and Journalism of Adam Mickiewicz University (Poznań, Poland). She is the principal investigator of the research project “Civil Disorder in Pandemic-ridden European Union,” financed by the National Science Centre, Poland. The laureate of the Barbara Skarga Scholarship, the START Scholarship by the Foundation for Polish Science, and the POLITYKA Scientific Awards.