Adriana Kemp is a political sociologist and the upcoming director of the School of Social Studies and Policy at Tel-Aviv University.
Her research addresses scholarship conducted at the crossroads of labor migration, citizenship, and civil society.
As a political sociologist, she approached both labor migration and civil society dynamics as empirical fields for analyzing transformations in the way in which state politics, and associated institutions such as citizenship and governance, are organized, conceived, put in practice and contested. In the past several years since her last promotion, she has expanded her focus of analysis on the following major dimensions of political transformation:
1. Changes in modes of governance: most of her analysis of labor migration policies in Israel traces the uneven and embedded transitions from state-centered forms of command and control over migration, considered by many as the “last” stronghold of state sovereignty, towards modes of “governing at a distance” based on the outsourcing of state capacities and on the activation of private actors, civil society organizations and subjectivities.
2. Re-scaling and de-centering: A second analytical dimension of her work centers on the re-scaling of politics. Kemp’s research on civil society and urban citizenship examines how the dynamics of rights formation, political participation and public recognition once associated mainly with the state, operate at multiple scales above, below and vis-à-vis the state.
3. Re-defining citizenship: One of the main questions underlying my research is, to what extent re-scaling and the ensuing de-centering of politics, translate also into a re-definition of citizenship as both a bundle of rights and a form of cultural and political subject-making.