Articles by Rossella Vignola

Bringing care in. The meaning of care in refugee solidarity movements

26/03/2024 -  Rossella Vignola

Chiara Milan and Chiara Martini, 'Bringing care in. The meaning of care in refugee solidarity movements', forthcoming, Journal of Refugee Studies


This article investigates the meaning that refugee solidarity activists supporting people on the move across the Western Balkans migratory route and at the Italian-French border attribute to the notion of “care”, which they use to define their solidarity practices, particularly in the aftermath of the global pandemic. By means of a content analysis of in-depth interviews with representatives of grassroots solidarity groups, the article demonstrates that “care” is conceived of as having a political character, as it responds to both the crisis of health care and to the restrictions on freedom of movement; a non-hierarchical connotation, which informs in- and out-group relationships, and a transformative orientation, as acts of care prefigure a society in which freedom of movement and health rights are granted to all, in contrast to the existing model of migration governance.

Civil Society and Municipal Activism Around Migration in the EU: A Multi-Scalar Alliance-Making

05/07/2023 -  Rossella Vignola

Federico Alagna (2022), Civil Society and Municipal Activism Around Migration in the EU: A Multi-Scalar Alliance-Making. Geopolitics.


Civil society and municipal actors – and the interaction between one another – have become increasingly relevant in EU migration governance. Moving from this understanding, this article explores instances of migration activism in connection with the proactive and contentious role of cities. It does so through the in-depth analysis of the dual EU-wide network From the Sea to the City/International Alliance of Safe Harbours, which gathers numerous civil society initiatives and municipalities and aims to achieve a radical change in EU migration policies. Based on extensive empirical research, my contribution illustrates why the emergence of a multi-scalar alliance between civil society and municipal actors around migration is the result of the interaction between the political agency of these actors and the changing institutional opportunities and constraints at different governance levels. In doing so, it explores different spatial and political dimensions, from cities to transnational arenas, reflecting on their significance in the construction of an EU-wide contentious politics of migration.

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Varieties of criminalization: Italy’s evolving approach to policing sea rescue NGOs

01/06/2023 -  Rossella Vignola

Federico Alagna & Eugenio Cusumano (2022), Varieties of criminalization: Italy’s evolving approach to policing sea rescue NGOs. Contemporary Italian Politics


The appointment of a new right wing cabinet in Italy has caused non-governmental search and rescue organizations once again to be condemned as a supposed pull factor encouraging undocumented migration, and to be subjected to new restrictions on their activities. The attempt to restrict non-governmental sea rescue is, however, far from new. This article describes the evolution of this criminalization process by comparing the policies enacted under four different Italian Interior ministers: Marco Minniti, Matteo Salvini, Luciana Lamorgese and Matteo Piantedosi. We argue that, although important analogies can be found in Salvini’s and Piantedosi’s political discourses, the latest Interior minister has departed from Salvini’s confrontational but ultimately unsuccessful ‘closed ports’ policy by strategically developing some of the subtler tactics adopted by Minniti and Lamorgese. These include, for instance, the imposition of burdensome requirements on organizations rescuing and disembarking migrants and the use of administrative rather than criminal legal instruments to impound ships. As they are less likely to face judicial review and/or cause political backlash than direct criminalization, these indirect hindrances provide more viable avenues for restricting NGOs, but also threaten dire humanitarian consequences, exacerbating the gap in rescue capabilities off the Libyan coast.

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Surveillance and abuse: a European Parliament inquiry commission to shed light on the Pegasus scandal

28/04/2022 -  Rossella Vignola

The European Parliament approved by a large majority the establishment of a commission of inquiry to shed light on the abuse of Pegasus and other digital surveillance tools against journalists, critical voices, and opposition figures in the countries of the European Union

Human rights violations: Frontex knew and did not react

19/07/2021 -  Giulia BassettoRossella Vignola

The European Parliament published its report on the work of Frontex and the violations of the rights of migrants. Numerous issues were highlighted

Majorino: shared responsibility is needed on the rights of migrants

21/05/2021 -  Rossella Vignola

With the suspension of the Frontex budget and the launch of a parliamentary commission to shed light on alleged human rights violations in illegal pushbacks at European borders, the European Parliament affirms the political will to acknowledge the rights of migrants. We talked about it with MEP Pierfrancesco Majorino

Libertà dei media: dall'iniziativa dei cittadini europei alla nuova Commissione

23/09/2019 -  Lucia BruniRossella Vignola

Nel 2013 250.000 cittadini europei hanno aderito ad un'iniziativa civica su pluralismo e libertà dei media, senza però raggiungere l'obiettivo del milione di firme necessarie. Il problema di armonizzare le normative europee sul tema della libertà e del pluralismo dei media resta all'ordine del giorno. Quale la situazione alla vigilia della nuova Commissione europea? Un'intervista a Lorenzo Marsili

Elections at the time of social media, speakers' talks

02/07/2019 -  Chiara Sighele, Rossella Vignola

We publish the detailed report of the speakers' talks at the policy workshop "Elections at the time of social media. European elections, disinformation, micro-targeting: what to do?", which took place last May 14th in Rome, within the project ESVEI promoted by OBC Transeuropa/ CCI

Hate speech: what it is and how to contrast it

01/02/2018 -  Marzia BonaIrene DioliLorenzo FerrariFazıla MatNicola PedrazziRossella Vignola Valentina Vivona

As hate speech is being debated more and more both online and offline, we decided to devote a special dossier to it, building on the materials of the Resource Centre on Press and Media Freedom in Europe.

Sofia edit-a-thon: for a plural ecosystem of information

14/12/2017 -  Rossella Vignola

Media freedom, public interest, transparency, data journalism, facts-based information: all these issues have been dealt with in Sofia, during the Wiki4MediaFreedom edit-a-thon, a writing marathon on media freedom-related issues in Wikipedia which gathered journalists, experts and activists

Wikipedia edit-a-thon in Sofia to support media freedom and democratic commons

14/11/2017 -  Rossella Vignola

The second edition of the Wiki4MediaFreedom edit-a-thon will take place in Sofia on November 27th. It will boost the availability of accurate knowledge on media freedom and pluralism in the largest open encyclopedia worldwide

Serbia: propaganda and control on the web

28/03/2017 -  Rossella Vignola

The impact of cyber-attacks, digital surveillance and sophisticated techniques of computational propaganda is growing. The case of Serbia in an interview with Vladan Joler, director of Share Foundation

Wiki4MediaFreedom in 10 points

16/11/2016 -  Rossella Vignola

On November 21st, OBC Transeuropa organises in Belgrade a writing marathon of Wikipedia entries on press freedom. The initiative is part of a larger project – here it is, in 10 points

Disabili in Croazia: fuori dalle istituzioni, nel mondo

19/11/2014 -  Rossella Vignola

Come altri paesi europei, la Croazia ha iniziato un processo di deistituzionalizzazione delle cura e dell'assistenza alle persone disabili. Tuttavia, come denuncia un recente rapporto di Human Rights Watch, sono ancora 8200 le persone che vivono in strutture residenziali e ospediali psichiatrici in condizioni dure e spesso disumane.


11/09/2014 -  Rossella Vignola


Le fiamme di Euromaidan, i social media e il dolore degli altri

12/03/2014 -  Rossella Vignola

Le fotografie di Euromaidan in Ucraina ci interrogano sulla violenza e la sua rappresentazione. È possibile trattare questioni geopolitiche complesse sui social media senza perdere di vista il contesto e la sostanza politica degli eventi?

New Forms of Censorship in Serbia

06/03/2014 -  Rossella Vignola

Attempts at media reform in Serbia appear to have run aground. International organizations are denouncing a number of abridgments of press freedoms within the country, which are slowly amounting to a new form of control

Kosovo: una critica alla Corte costituzionale “internazionale”

29/01/2014 -  Rossella Vignola

E' il cuore della fragile democrazia kosovara e non è esente da ingerenze politiche e assenza di indipendenza. Un'analisi dell'operato della Corte costituzionale - a firma di Andrea Capussela e pubblicato da EURAC - mette in luce il grave problema di governance del Kosovo indipendente