Jan Grill

Education and qualifications:

2012             PhD in Social Anthropology, University of St Andrews

Dissertation: On the margins of the states. Contesting Gypsyness and belonging in the Slovak-Ukrainian-Hungarian Borderlands and in selected migration contexts. Supervisor: Dr. Paloma Gay y Blasco

2003-2004     MA in Nationalism Studies, Central European University, Budapest, with distinction

1999-2003     BA in Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of West Bohemia, Pilsen, with distinction

Academic appointments:

2016 – to date         Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology

Faculty of Social Sciences and Economics, Universidad del Valle, Colombia

09/2013        Simon Research Fellow, Department of Social Anthropology

School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester

2012-2013      Temporary Lecturer in Social Anthropology

School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester

Visiting appointments:

2014             Visiting Research Fellow, Re:Work International Research Center: Work and Human Lifecycle in Global History, Humboldt University, Berlin

2007-08        Visiting Research Marie Curie Fellow, Institute of Ethnology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava

Honorary (other) affiliations:

2017 (to date)          Honorary Research Fellow, Department of Social Anthropology, University of Manchester

2017             Research group in Estudios Étnico-Raciales y del Trabajo en sus Diferentes Componentes Sociales (Faculty of Social Sciences and Economics, University of Valle, Cali)

2014             Centro de Estudios Afrodiaspóricos (CEAF), Icesi University, Cali, Colombia

2012             Center of Cosmopolitanism Studies, University of St Andrews

2012             SPOT, Centrum pro společenské otázky, Prague

Administrative appointments/experiences:

2017 -2019   Coordinator – MA programme in Relaciones Eurolatinoamericanas, Faculty of Social Sciences and Economics, Universidad del Valle, Colombia

Summer Schools:

2012             Confronting the Holocaust in Postwar Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Hungary, a Summer Research Workshop organised by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.

2007-08        Romani studies for 21st century – research, policy and teaching oriented, Central European University, Budapest/Cluj, Marie-Curie EU funded programme for early-career researchers and future lecturers

2006             Lifeworlds: Debating Authenticity. Socrates Intensive Summer Course organised by the Dpt of Anthropology, University of Vienna.

2004             Critical basis for 21st century Romani Studies. Organised by Central European University, Budapest.

Other trainings and courses:

2012             Course on ‘Effective Lecturing’, Centre for Academic, Professional and Organisational Development (CAPOD), University of St Andrews.

2006             ‘Oral History’ seminar/training, University of St Andrews & Aberdeen and Regional Oral History Association (AROHA).

2005/06        ‘Introduction to tutoring’; ‘Assessment and academic misconduct’, University of St Andrews

2005/08-11   Wardennial trainings (social and pastoral care for students) & students with disabilities


Czech (mother-tongue); English (fluent academic); Slovak (competent academic); Romani (fluent colloquial); Spanish (competent); German (reading knowledge), French, Hungarian, Swedish (beginner)


Edited Books and edited journal special issues:

2006             Migration Processes in Central and Eastern Europe: Unpacking the Diversity (eds). Co-edited volume with A. Sczepanikova & M. Canek. Multicultural Center Prague: Prague.

2005             Fieldwork and local communities (eds). Co-edited volume with Z. Uherek. Prague: Prague Occasional Papers in Ethnology No. 7.

Academic Journal Papers:

2018             Re-learning to labour? `Activation Works‘ and new politics of social assistance in the case of Slovak Roma. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 24(S1): 105-119. DOI: 10.1111/1467-9655.12802

2018             ‘In England, they don’t call you black!’ Migrating racialisations and the production of Roma difference across Europe. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 44(7): 1136-1155 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/1369183X.2017.1329007

TBA              ‘El Negro con carro grande!’ Unsettling rhythms, urban (im-)mobilities and the racial common sense on the streets of Cali, Colombia. (under revision)

2015             Struggles for the folk. Politics of culture in Czechoslovak Ethnography, 1940s-1950s. History and Anthropology 26:5, 619-638, DOI: 10.1080/02757206.2015.1070847

2012             ‘It’s building up to something and it won’t be nice when it erupts.’ Making of Roma migrants in “multicultural” Scottish neighborhood. Focaal. Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology 62: 42-54.

2012             ‘Going up to England’: Exploring mobilities among Roma from Eastern Slovakia. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies 38(8): 1269-1287.

2009             Performing Street Music-cum-begging in Switzerland: Negotiating and     Shifting of Social Categories among Hungarian Speaking Roma Migrants from Slovakia. Slovak Ethnology 5: 527–545.

Book chapters:

2015             ‘Endured Labour’ and ‘Fixing Up’ Money: The Economic Strategies of Roma Migrants in Slovakia and the UK. In: M. Brazzabeni; M. I. Cunha; M. Fotta, (eds), Gypsy Economy. Romani Livelihoods and Notions of Worth in the 21st Century. Oxford: Berghahn Books.

2015             Historické premeny štruktúry medzikultúrnych vzťahov. Formy spolužitia v prípade Tarkoviec na východnom Slovensku. In: T. Podolinská & T. Hrustič, (eds). Čierno-biele svety. Rómovia v majoritnej spoločnosti na Slovensku. Bratislava: VEDA, pp. 146-171.

2013             ‘Roma asylum migrations from Czech Republic to Canada and back. A case study of Roma migratory network from Bombary.’ In: Z. Vidra (ed.) Roma migration to and from Canada. The Czech, Hungarian and Slovak case. Central European University CPS, Budapest, pp. 89-128.

2011             ‘From street busking in Switzerland to meat factories in the UK.                        A comparative study of two Roma migration networks from Slovakia’ in D. Kaneff and F. Pine (eds). Emerging Inequalities in Europe: poverty and transnational migration. London: Anthem Press.

2005             ‘The Limits of Multiculturalism. What can we learn from the Fadime Sahindal’s murder?’ in Fieldwork and local communities, Prague: Prague Occasional Papers in Ethnology No. 7.

2002             ‘Consequences of Resettlement’, in I. Budil and M. Ulrychová (eds) Antropologické symposium II. Pelhřimov: Aleš Čeněk Publisher.

Policy papers:

2016             Exploring Field Social Work in Slovakia. Evaluation of the programme funded by the European Social Fund in 2007-2013. Bratislava: IA MPSVR SR& IVPR Social Development Fund (Slovak Ministry of Employment, Social Affairs and Family). (Co-author with J. Hurrle & D. Skobla)

2015             Evaluácia terénnej sociálnej práce na Slovensku (2007-2015). Social Development Fund (Slovak Ministry of Employment, Social Affairs and Family). (Co-author with J. Hurrle & D. Skobla)

2012             Uncertain Impact: Have the Roma in Slovakia benefitted from the European  Social Fund? Roma Inclusion Working papers. UNDP Europe and CIS: Bratislava Regional Centre. (Co-author with J. Hurrle, D. Skobla, A. Ivanov, J. Kling).

2009             Activating, Training and Employing. Social Enterprises as a Tool of Social Policy Towards Roma and other Marginalized Groups – Lessons Learnt from “Feder Dživipen” and other EQUAL projects. UNDP Office in Bratislava (Co-author with J. Hurrle).

Selected other publications:

2014             Roma Work, Gypsy Work.
 Ideologies of work, practices of labour among east Slovakian Roma. Working paper, Re:Work, Humboldt University, Berlin

2014/15        Butji pro výboris. Activation (works) without mobility, labour and structural vulnerability in neo-liberalising Slovakia. ERSTE Foundation (peer reviewed)

2013             Britain’s Gypsy moral paranoia. Open Democracy (11/12/2013). Reprinted in Newsletter of the European Academic Network on Romani Studies (Dec 2013/Jan 2014, Vol. 1, Issue 1)

2009             Mange mište pro Čechy: slovenští Romové na českých stavbách. Journal A2, 40. An extended version published for www.migrationonline.cz

2007             Book review of: D. Torsello, M. Pappová (eds.). Social Networks in Movement. Time, interaction and interethnic spaces in Central Eastern Europe. Sociologický časopis / Czech Sociological Review 43 (1): 252-254.

2005             ‘The Past and Present of Czech Multiculturalism-Pavel Barsa interviewed,’ available at www.migrationonline.cz; also published in proceedings Social and Cultural Diversity in Central and Eastern Europe, Multicultural Center Prague.

2004             Nucená migrace a rozvojové projekty-nástin problematiky [Forced migration and development projects – an overview]’, available at www.migrationonline.cz


2006-09        ESRC+3 award for doctoral research in Social Anthropology (3 years’ fees)

2005-08        Department of Social Anthropology, University of St Andrews, Doctoral Award

2007-08        Marie-Curie Fellowship, The European Doctorate in the Social History of Europe and the Mediterranean, “Building on the Past”, Institute of Ethnology, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava, Slovakia

2006-07        Wenner-Gren Foundation Fieldwork Research Grant

2006             Visegrad Foundation, International Visegrad Foundation

2005             Foundation Vize 97, Dagmar and Vaclav Havel foundation; financial support for 2005/06


2011             Radcliffe-Brown Trust Fund/Sutasoma Award, Royal Anthropological Institute

2006             Russell Trust Award, University of St Andrews

2004             Outstanding Academic Achievement Award (Rank/Class size 1/24), CEU, Budapest

2004             Academic Pro-Rector Excellence Award, CEU, Budapest

2004             Summer University Scholarship, CEU Budapest

2004             CEU MA thesis travel grant

2003-04        Soros Foundation, Open Society Foundation Scholarship awarded for MA in Nationalism Studies, CEU, Budapest

2003             Deans Award for Excellent Study’s Achievements, Highest award for undergraduate studies. University of West Bohemia in Pilsen, Czech Republic.

2001/02        Socrates/Erasmus programme for study abroad – Uppsala University, Sweden


2004-08        External Member, Editorial board, Migrationonline

2017 – to date         Member of Board, Prague Forum for Romani Histories, Prague


EASA (European Association of Social Anthropologists); Prague Forum for Romani Histories (Institute of Contemporary History in Prague); CEAF (Centro de Estudios Afrodiaspóricos de la Universidad Icesi); Roma Discussion Group
; European Academic Network on Romani Studies International Roma Research Network
Czech Association of Social Anthropologists (CASA), Slovak Association of Social Anthropologists (SASA); Glasgow Refugee, Asylum and Migration Network; Urba-Rom network, COST EastBordNet; SPOT (Centrum pro společenské otázky)


09/2017        Discussant at ‘Tracing the Legacies of the Roma Genocide. Families as Trasnmitters of Experience and Memory’, Prague Forum for Romani Histories, Institute of Contemporary History, Czech Academy of Sciences

06/2017        ‘Moverse y estar atascado? Movilidades diferenciadas en Cali, Colombia.’  XVI. Congreso de Antropología en Colombia & V. Congreso Asociación Latinoamericana de Antropología. Simposio: Aproximaciones antropológicas a los mecanismos de dominación estatal, Bogota, Universidad Javeriana

06/2016        ‘Synchronizing states and disruptive mobilities: Seaching for legible subjects, producing everyday insecurities between Slovakia and Great Britain’, Conference on ‘The Politics of Security: Understanding and Challenging the Securitization of Europe’s Roma,’ University of Giessen

10/2015        ‘In/out of states: ethnographic reflections on studying states, comparisons and connections in Roma migrations’, Communicating with States: “Underprivileged” Migrations within the European Union, Uppsala University.

09/2015        ‘Ambiguities of Work and (Re-)Learning to Labour’; ‘Work – non-Work’, International Conference of Labour and Social History (ITH), Berlin

06/2015        Ambiguities of Work. Activation, precariousness and making of (in-)active citizens in the case of Slovak Roma. Workshop on: The Re-configuring of labour: Reflections for contemporary anthropology, Dpt of Anthropology, University of Oslo.

06/2015        Roundtable discussant for ‘Fieldwork, security, and the security state,’ Dpt of Social Anthropology, University of Manchester

05/2015        ‘The Boot is on the other foot’. Re-configured home-making and houses among transnational Slovak Roma networks. Workshop: Home-Making as Work: Photographic and Ethnographic Portraits of Houses and Homes in Global and Historical Perspective, Re:Work Research Centre, Berlin.

04/2015        Uncertain Impact: How have the Roma in Slovakia benefitted from the ESF? . Organised by European Academic Network on Romani Studies (EARNS); Showcase event on ‘Policies for Roma inclusion: The contribution of academic research’  22 April 2015, Council of Europe, Strasbourg

04/2015        Work, politics of deservingness and unemployment among Roma in east Slovakia. Workshop: Righteous scroungers. Distribution, reciprocity and fairness after employment ASA conference, Exeter.

10/2014        EU Roma? Struggles for Europe and the subject of ‘ungovernable’ Gypsies. Presented at workshop on Political Desires in/of Europe: sites, subjects and forms of politics. Organised by COMPAS (Centre for Migration, Policy & Society), University of Oxford

08/2014        Aberrant subjects? Roma migrants as EU citizens and racialised others. EASA workshop on Crisis, intimacy, and the European subject, Tallin, Estonia.

06/2014        Re-learning to labour? From ‚inactive‘ Gypsies to Eastern European labour migrants in Britain. Workshop: The uncertain bodily relations of contemporary bodily economic practice. ASA conference, Edinburgh

06/2014        Politics of race and racialization of Roma migrants. The case of Czech and Slovak Roma in Britain. Conference: Race in/outside post-WWII Europe: On the politics of governing and knowledge production. CEU Institute for Advanced Studies & Dpt of Sociology and Social Anthropology, Budapest

06/2014        Roma Work, Gypsy Work.
 Ideologies of work, practices of labour among east Slovakian Roma. Presented at final conference at Re:Work research centre, Berlin.

11/2013        ‘Butji pro vyboris. Anthropological approaches to activation works.’ Presented at workshop organised by UNDP Bratislava and Institute for Labour and Family Research in Bratislava.

11/2013        ‘Inside the Grey Zones of Roma migrations. The Social Art of Navigation, Power and Complicity among Slovakian Roma.’ Presented at Exploring the Grey Zones: Governance, Conflict and (In)Security in Eastern Europe, University of Aarhus.

10/2013        ‘In-active’ Gypsies: Informal practices and ‘Roma work’ Presented at ‘Languages of informality’ workshop, CEELBAS interdisciplinary research network, University of Kent.

09/2013        ‘Roma migrations and socio-economic mobilities of labour markets in Central Eastern Europe’ ERSTE Foundation seminar, ILO, Torino.

08/2013        Between hopeful movement and immobilities. The case of Slovakian Roma migration to Great Britain. Paper presented at the panel ‘New Geographies of Hope and Despair’, IUAES conference Manchester.

03/2013        ‘Racialisation, ‘trafficking’ and the ‘Eastern European Roma/Gypsy’ migrants in the UK.” Paper presented at ‘Racialising the begging debate’ workshop, Uppsala University, Sweden.

02/2013        Presentation of evaluation report and its results – ‘Uncertain Impact: Have the Roma in Slovakia benefitted from the European Social Fund.’ Vybrané aspekty životných podmienok marginalizovaných rómskych komunít vo svetle empirických výskumov. Workshop organised by UNDP Bratislava and ‘Institut pre vyskum práce a rodiny’.

09/2012        “Endured labour” and “fixing up” money. Economic strategies and tactics of Slovakian Roma migrants in UK. Presented at ESF Exploratory Workshop: The Two Sides of the Coin: Gypsy Economies Between the State and the Market. Lisbon.

08/2012        Presentation on ‘ Violence and persecution during the WWII and its aftermath in the case of Roma in East Slovakia’, at: Summer Research Workshop: Confronting the Holocaust in Postwar Czechoslovakia, Poland, and Hungary, a workshop organised by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington.

06/2012        ‘Between invisibility and engagement: notes on studying state and Slovakian Roma migrants in Great Britain,’ Anthropology in the World conference organised by Royal Anthropological Institute, London

06/2012        ‘Roma Migrants and Economy of Suspicion: Reflections on Slovakian Borderlands of EU, Trading Cigarettes and Migration to UK’ – paper delivered at the Annual CREES Conference, Centre for Russian and Eastern European Studies, University of Birmingham

06/2011        ‘Gypsies with(out) an angel of history? State of exception, violence and movements of Slovakian Roma.’ international conference on Anthropology of Political Violence, Dept. of Social Anthropology, St Andrews University.

02/2011        “Roma – in or outside of Europe?” – lecture delivered for European Society, Czech and Slovak Student Society at St Andrews University.

10/2010        ‘Living like a raj. On self-inventive mastery of Roma’ at the postgraduate workshop, CAS centre, Dept. of Social Anthropology, St Andrews University.

10/2010        ‘On fragile hearts and heaviness among Slovakian Roma’ at the Lisbon-Rio-St Andrews Social Sciences Trilateral Meeting, hosted in St Andrews

08/2010        ‘It’s building up to something and it won’t be nice when it erupts.’ Contested modes of belonging in ‘multicultural’ and ‘run-down’ neighborhood of Scottish city;’ workshop on ‘In-migration, indigeneity and imagination: or class, community and crisis in Europe’ at EASA conference at the University of Maynooth, Ireland.

06/2010        ‘Roma movements and idiom of “going up” to England,’ follow-up workshop for the ‘Romani mobilities’ (Jan 2010) organised at Refugees Studies Centre, Oxford University.

01/2010        ‘Going up to England’ From Asylum seekers to EU labour migrants: the case of East-Slovakian Roma’; conference ‘Romani Mobilities in Europe: Multidisciplinary perspectives’, organised at the Refugees Studies Centre, Oxford University.

09/2009        Paper presentation at ‘Cosmopolitan anthropology’ conference, organized by University of St Andrews, Centre for Cosmopolitan studies.

06/2009        paper presentation at mini-conference organised as a part of the Romani studies Summer School, Central European University, Budapest

05/2009        ‘Social life of smuggled cigarettes. On Ukrainian cigarettes, Slovakian Roma and their migration networks to the UK’, at the EastBordNet meeting of Work Group 4, Theme: Passports and passing: everyday encounters with borders, University of Manchester.

08/2008        ‘Differentiating Gypsiness. The case of Slovakian Roma at home and in migration contexts’, workshop ‘Beyond Identity: new directions in the anthropology of Roma/Gypsy groups’ convened at EASA conference in Ljublana, Slovenia

11/2007        ‘Migration processes from the eastern Slovakia to the Great Britain. A case study of selected Roma groups.’ Presented at the conference ‘Labour Migration, Poverty and Possibilities of Integration’, organised by ProForum (NGO Progressive Forum), Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Foundation and Multicultural Centre Prague, Kosice, Slovakia.

2006/07/08    three presentations summarizing my research as a part of the European doctorate Fellowship scheme, University Ca Foscari Venezia (Italy), University of Athens (Greece) and University of Groningen (Netherlands)

07/2006        ‘Making a living, performing street music and social categories. Roma migrants in Switzerland’ presented at a conference ‘Global Connections and Emerging Inequalities in Europe’ organized at Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, Halle, Germany.

04/2006        ‘On the margins of the states’ presented at ‘Anthropology of Borders: work in progress’ workshop, arranged by Faculty of Humanities, Charles University in Prague/Valtice.

02/2006        ‘Re-defining the Folk: the case of Czechoslovak ethnography in the 1950s.’ presented at ‘Inclusion-Exclusion’ conference organized by School of Slavonic and East European Studies, University College London (UCL)

06/2005        workshop organised by HSP IOM in Geneva for regional IOM coordinators (organisation and participation)

07/2002        ‘Consequences of resettlement’ at “III. Anthropological Symposium”, Nečtiny, organised by Department of Social and Cultural anthropology, University of West Bohemia in Pilsen

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