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Social Mobility Barriers for Roma: Discrimination and Informal Institutions

  • Pavel Ciaian (a1) and D’artis Kancs (a1)


This article attempts to identify and document social mobility barriers for Roma. We have identified two types of social mobility barriers: the cost of exit from the traditional Roma community, and the cost of entry into the mainstream society. Most of the existing policy and academic debate on the social and economic marginalisation of Roma has focused almost entirely on entry barriers. The main contribution of the current paper to the existing literature is to draw attention to exit barriers, which usually are neglected in the public debate and the academic literature. In the current paper we show that understanding both types of social mobility barriers for Roma is crucial for designing effective policy measures.



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