Crossing Borders Conference

The Cooperative Institute for Transnational Studies in collaboration with the University of Aegean (Laboratory EKNEXA-Department of Sociology) announce the world conference

Crossing borders
Lesvos, 7-10th July

Behrakis - Reuters

Yannis Behrakis - Reuters


Tariq Ali,  Tony Bunyon,   Francesca Coin,  Mike Cole,   Dilar Dirik,  Loic Jaeger,  Feyzi Ismail,   Stratos Georgoulas,  Andrej Grubacic,   Dimitris Lascaris,  Zoe Konstantopoulou,  Kostas Lapavitsas,  Vicki Macris,   Antigoni Memou,   Mike Neary,  Maria Nikolakaki,   John Rees,  Denis O' Hearn,  Richard Pithouse,  George Pleios,  Kenneth Surin,  Aimilia Voulvouli.

Special contributions from activists, volunteers and refugees. 

Sponsored by Stop the War Coalition (UK), Peoples' Assembly Against Austerity, Real News Network,, National Greek Television (ERT).

DOWNLOAD THE PROGRAM HEREcrossing program2.compressed

DOWNLOAD THE ABSTRACTS HEREAbstracts booklet final (4)




Today, “the West” is facing the worst crisis of human dispossession since the aftermath of the Second World War. Neocolonial exploitation, authoritarian regimes, imperialist wars, economic crises and ecological disasters have displaced over 60 million people, triggering a huge humanitarian crisis. Thousands of people, many of them children, have lost their lives in the attempt to reach safety. Yet  Fortress Europe, whose imperialist actions have driven this crisis, keeps its borders shutfor the refugees except for a tiny few, and even they must still endure dehumanizing conditions and policies. Meanwhile, ultra-right and fascist parties around the world are manipulating this situation for political gain and many countries, including Australia and the USA, are already considering closed-border policies. Within the EU, border-controls have been reintroduced by more and more member states. By linking terrorism with migration, governments and media are spreading a politics of fear that not only targets refugees and immigrants, but curtails basic democratic rights for all citizens.

These conditions demand that radical scholars and thinkers reimagine our paradigms, our methods and our priorities.  How do the border-crossing actions of migrants force us to rethink the power and violence of borders, the definition of “illegal, “forced” vs. ”voluntary” migration and the power of “status”? How do these conditions, along with the drama of austerity, necessitate a reconsideration of the power and potential of the state, political parties and the promise of “democracy.” ? What can we learn from the transnational solidarity efforts that have arisen in Lesvos, Eidomeni and elsewhere to meet common needs beyond the capacities and imagination of NGOs and the state? How can we find new ways to care for the dispossessed in an age of widespread and deepening inequalitiesn? How can we understand today’s crises as continuous with global legacies of imperialism, capitalism, colonialism, racism, ecological destruction and primitive accumulation? How are they ideepened and ishaped by the dynamics of gender, sexuality, (dis)ability and other forms of oppression and exploitation? How can we build solidarity networks capable of not only providing the necessities of life but creating the transnational movements of systemic transformation that can overturn the forces that lead to displacement, neocolonial and imperialist exploitation and austerity?

These urgent questions and conditions necessitate that radical activists, artists, politicians, refugees, scholars and students a gather, discuss and debate. We are hosting this conference on Lesvos, where for months now all these urgent questions are being addresse and negotiated in practice, making ita space to share, to learn and to develop a common and collective courage and knowledge for the struggles to come.



We are also welcoming artistic interventions, and invite artists to contribute their works for the conference. There will be an arts/photo exhibition at Ηalim Bei Building in Down Town Mitilini during the conference. All artists who are interested to exhibit their work are welcome.

The Committee for the organization of the art exhibition is coordinated by Dr. Dimitris Papageorgiou, Professor of the University of Aegean.


Citizenship/ de-citizenship
Human rights/ dehumanization
Refugees/immigrants/ displaced
Borders and identity
Gender issues of the refugee crisis
Childhood and immigration
Volunteerism and NGOs
State crime and immigration
Refugee and asylum law
Education and immigration
Space and immigration
Immigration and Latin America, Africa, EU, USA, Australia, Canada, the world.
Incarceration and refugees
Ecosocialism, Global Justice, Climate Change
Historical dimensions of immigration flows
The Global Debt Crisis and migration
The Rise of Fascism in Europe
Uniting the Workers, activists with the Intelligentsia
Organizing Locally & Globally
International law and human protection of immigrants
Returnable/ undesirable immigrants
Coordination of solutions


Organising Committee

Maria Nikolakaki, Stratos Georgoulas, Francesca Coin, Dimitris Lascaris, Eleni Drongiti, Aimilia Voulvouli,  Evi Zevgiti, Dimitirs Papageorgiou, Christos Kouroutzas, Dimitris Paraskeuopoulos, Kostas Leros, Anastasia Tsakaloglou

Media and Communications Consultant: Alex Politaki


To propose a paper, please send an abstract of up to 250-word abstract for a paper and a 500-word proposal for a panel by email no later than 15th May.
Please include a photo and a very short bio in your submission.  Please also state in the subject title of your email either “Paper” or “Panel Proposal”

The presenter fees are 30 Euros per person or 50 Euros per panel presentation. Each panel should include 3 papers at least.

For students presenter fees are 20 euros.

The papers accepted will be published in the Conference Proceedings, while selected papers will be published at CITS Journal "Cooperatives and the Commons".



Check out and airbnb
Elysion Hotel
Single room : 70€
Double room: 90€

Heliotrope Hotel

Single room: 70€
Double room: 80€
Triple room: 95€

Hotel Lesvion
Single room: 45€
Double room: 65€

Blue Sea Hotel
Single room: 65€
Double room: 90€



Form for Papers

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Institutional Affiliation (required)

Position Title (required)

Country of residence (required)


Photo - CV (jpg,doc,docx,pdf - 1MB Max file size)

Form for Panel

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Institutional Affiliation (required)

Position Title (required)

Country of residence (required)

Abstract 1

Abstract 2

Abstract 3

Abstract 4

Photo - CV (jpg,doc,docx,pdf - 1MB Max file size)

Photo - CV (jpg,doc,docx,pdf - 1MB Max file size)

Photo - CV (jpg,doc,docx,pdf - 1MB Max file size)

Photo - CV (jpg,doc,docx,pdf - 1MB Max file size)

Abstract and submission requirements are described below:

Papers will be limited to 20 minutes with five minutes reserved for questions afterwards, a total of 25 minutes per paper. Panel Papers will last up to 1.15 minutes with 15 minutes for questions/ comments.

Conference attendees who are not submitting papers can skip that step and register below.

Participants should submit an abstract up to 250 words for a single paper (excluding references).
You can submit your abstract using the "Submission Form" button.

Your abstract should include the following:

A. Contact Information*
First Name:
Last Name:
Institutional Affiliation:
Position Title:
Country of residence:

B. Abstract

Proposal Title: