The BRICS in the spotlight – An interdisciplinary approach

University of Parma

6-7 November 2014


The conference aims to encourage a systematic, interdisciplinary conversation about the importance of BRICS vis-à-vis contemporary debates in the socio-political, economic, geopolitical and legal studies realms.

We propose a sequence of five panels in exploration of macro themes (BRICS and global politics; sustainable development, agriculture and food security; the economic dimension; energy and the green economy; socio-economic rights and social inequalities) aiming as far as possible to engage cross-national as well as country-specific issues. A sixth panel to present papers that do not fit into the five macro themes might be organised.

The panel chairs: Lucia Scaffardi (University of Parma), Paulo Luiz Moreaux Lavigne Esteves (Supervisor General BRICS Policy Center, Rio de Janeiro), Niu Haibin (Shanghai Institute for International Studies), Tasheen Jafry (Yunus Center-Glasgow Caledonian University); Patrick O’Sullivan (Director Grenoble Ecole de Management GGSB); Danny Pieters (University of Leuven).

The multidimensional framework of analysis requires an interdisciplinary methodological approach and a multidimensional strategy: from legal theory to development studies, from international relations, to socio political analysis, from economics to sustainable development. Thus, we invite paper proposals that cover this wide range of approaches, theories and comparative studies. In particular, we are interested in developing research in the following areas:

  • the nature of the BRICS group and the group members cooperation strategies;
  • future development of the group (evolution/involution);
  • public health;
  • the economic performance of BRICSs: the role of institutions;
  • cooperative capital blueprint, the case of BRICS;
  • inequalities and poverty reduction policies and strategies;
  • labor conditions and labor rights;
  • policy transfer and circulation of legal models;
  • food security and agricultural policies;
  • sustainable development, environmental policies;
  • energy, renewable energy, energy security and green economy.


The conference offers a forum for innovative empirical and theoretical research and encourages a range of disciplinary perspectives and methodological approaches, deploying a variety of evidence and methodologies. Regarding geographical scope, the conference accepts country case studies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Intra-BRICS comparative studies are particularly welcome, as well as papers analyzing EU-BRICS multidimensional relations.

The preliminary program will be published on the BRICS-Parma website ( by end of June 2014. The working language is English. The conference will be held in the University of Parma, Italy, 6-7 November 2014.
The deadline for the submission of Papers proposals is 30 May 2014. The proposal should indicate the name, institutional affiliation and contact details of the author and the paper title and abstract (300 words max), as well as 3 keywords, and it should be sent to

Accepted papers will be noticed by 30 June 2014.

Final papers must be submitted by 30 September 2014 at the latest. All accepted papers will be published on the Conference website. Papers should not exceed 8.000 words (about 20 pages). There are not conference fees.

The Convenors

The Conference is organised by the “BRICS Parma“, the observatory of BRICS Countries legal systems and their legal development.

While focusing mainly on legal aspects, the observatory is open to political, economic, social and cultural analysis and is strongly characterized by a comparative approach. BRICS Parma has been created in 2011 with a first series of seminars held in the frame of the course of Public Comparative Law in the Department of Law at Parma University. The observatory is coordinated by Prof. Lucia Scaffardi and its overall objective is to monitor, to analyze, to study comparatively and to foster debates on the existing and future legal networks among BRICS Countries.

For further details and additional information, please contact: