From the unitary to the pluralistic, Fine-tuning minority policy in Romania

This chapter constructs a typology of the principal minority groups in Romania, incorporating three types—the Hungarian minority, the Roma minority and the ‘smaller’ minority groups (comprised of fewer than 100,000 members). The purpose of this typology is to highlight the fact that the various minority groups in Romania should not simply be ‘lumped together’ in one monolithic category. These three types of minority groups in Romania are highly distinct and are characterised by varying degrees of social, political and economic integration. Furthermore, these three groups have diverse needs and enjoy disparate levels of political mobilisation. The chapter puts forth the argument that Romanian policy-makers and administrators must take into account the plurality of the country’s minority groups when addressing challenges and issues relevant to these three diverse types. This kind of typology can be useful to policy-makers at both the local and central level of government, and can inform those responsible for the management of
multi-ethnic communities in Romania. The chapter analyses and assesses both centrally
directed and locally initiated minority policies in Romania since 1989, emphasising particular problem areas and policy challenges in the fields of legislation relevant to minority communities, minority rights, the institutional framework for minority protection,
minority issues in post-1989 public administration reform and minority education. The
study concludes by offering a number of policy recommendations for each of these issue
areas.

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