ETC Home

ETHOS - Towards a European Theory of Justice

ETHOS is a Horizon 2020 research project that seeks to provide building blocks for the development of an empirically informed European theory of justice and fairness. Alongside the ETC Graz, five further research institutes are involved in the project: Utrecht University in the Netherlands, the Central European University in Hungary, the Centre for Social Studies in Portugal, Boğaziçi University in Turkey, and the University of Bristol in the UK. The research project lasts from January 2017 to December 2019.

‘Justice’ is a word that is widely used in politics and policies in many different countries and also in the European Union itself. We are interested in uncovering what different people ­- activists, policymakers, professionals, the person on the street– mean by ‘justice’ and ‘fairness’ to better understand the possibilities of justice, and also why for some people it seems so difficult to achieve. The study will inform a wide range of stakeholders (including, but not restricted to policymakers) about different understandings and experiences of justice with a view to supporting attempts to reverse inequalities and to promote justice.

In the framework of the project, the ETC has produced a number of studies on issues related to justice in Austria. While some of them together with the more theoretical papers about justice and the cross-country studies are available on the project website, we are also publishing the workpapers here on the ETC website to improve their overall dissemination. They are grouped according to disciplines (law, political science, social science and economics). While the workpapers were written in English, we have also prepared some short blog articles and infographics in German: they are available on the ETHOS Blog, which is curated by the ETC.



Law as or against justice for all?

This set of research papers aims to investigate theoretically as well as empirically whether and how different conceptions of justice are institutionalised in overlapping European human rights regimes.


Veronika Apostolovski and Markus Möstl (2018)

Right to Vote

Veronika Apostolovski and Markus Möstl (2018)

Right to Housing

Veronika Apostolovski and Markus Möstl (2018)

Right to Education



Political, Advocacy and Media Discourses of Justice and Fairness

This series of papers aims to uncover the discursive construction of boundaries to justice in politics, civil society (advocacy) and in the (social) media, and with respect to various types of claims to justice.


Wanda Tiefenbacher (2018)

The relationship between the EU and national political discourses on representative justice with regard to migration, ethnic, religious and regional minorities - Case study Austria

Wanda Tiefenbacher and Maddalena Vivona (2018)

Minorities and access to education in Austria

Wanda Tiefenbacher with Livia Perschy (2019)

Mapping the construction of justice claims in (traditional) media and social media

Isabella Meier, Wanda Tiefenbacher and Maddalena Vivona (2019)

Commemoration in the public space: Mapping moral sentiments with a historical vignette in Austria



Justice as Lived Experience

These papers focus on the tensions in European ideals of justice and fairness from the perspective of groups who experience or are vulnerable to injustice (ethnic, racial and religious minorities intersecting with gender and age).


Bridget Anderson, Sara Araújo, Laura Brito, Mehmet Ertan, Jing Hiah, Trudie Knijn, Isabella Meier, Julia Morris and Maddalena Vivona (2018)

Reference document on the histories of minoritisation in Austria, Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Turkey and the United Kingdom

Isabella Meier and Maddalena Vivona (2018)

The tension between institutionalised political justice in Austria and Roma’s experienced (mis)recognition

Isabella Meier (2018)

“You really need to hold back, you are only the surrogate eye” – personal assistance in Austria

Isabella Meier, Wanda Tiefenbacher and Maddalena Vivona (2019)

The development of welfare restrictions in Austria, their promotion and contestation, with focus on key fault lines of justice and the shifting capabilities of those most affected by the welfare changes



Struggles for Justice

This part of the project focuses on justice in the context of distributive effects of the recent crises – financial, economic, euro-zone, social – that have been troubling Europe and the way these relate to the recognition and representation of the interests of the categories of the population that are hit by these crises.


Isabella Meier and Veronika Apostolovski (2018)

Universal minimum wages as instruments to foster just income distribution on the Austrian labour market?

Isabella Meier and Wanda Tiefenbacher (2018)

The effectiveness of social dialogue as an instrument to promote labour justice – Country report Austria

Maddalena Vivona (2019)

Alternative disputes resolution in the Austrian labour market





Check out the ETHOS Blog!




Check out the Landscapes of Justice!



Follow ETHOS on Facebook!