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[Podcast Series] An eighth woman: the changing worlds of labour and migration, social reproduction, and capitalism in CEE – Episode 3

Episode 3. Organising collective responses among temporary agency non-local workers in Hungary: Conversation with Tibor T. Meszmann

Host: Olena Fedyuk

Drawing on his experience as a researcher, an activist and a trade unionist, Tibor talks about the role trade unions (could) play in organizing migrant and temporary work agency workers. With Hungary being both migrant-sending and migrant-hosting country, we discuss what kind of challenges workers’ transnational mobility presents for the unions, especially in the context of the growing staffing industry and mediated employment. How do trade unions respond to the growing presence of agency and non-local workers? And what other circumstances accompany the organization of migrant workers in these conditions?

An Eighth Woman: Podcast Series · Episode 3. Organising collective responses among temporary agency non-local workers in Hungary

Olena Fedyuk is a MSCA Fellow at the University of Padua. Her project “RightsLab: Towards Transnational Labour Rights?” looks into temporary work agencies and third-country national workers in the EU. She is an anthropologist by training with research areas in gendered migration flows, migrant labour, and moral economy of migration. Since 2012, she’s turned to documentary filmmaking as a way to grasp humour and contradictions of migration stories and speak of complicated life journeys, both emotionally and geographically.

Hannah Schling is Lecturer in the Human Geographies of Work and the Economy in the School of Geographical and Earth Sciences at the University of Glasgow. Her ethnographically driven research focuses on labour migration in CEE’s export manufacturing and distribution sectors, with a focus on social reproduction and employer-provided accommodation such as dormitories. She has previously held posts at Queen Mary University of London, and holds a PhD in Human Geography from King’s College London.

Dumitrița Holdiș is a sociologist who worked for CEU’s Center for Media, Data and Society’s in Budapest, Hungary and for the Center for Independent Journalism in Bucharest, Romania where she managed projects on media freedom, journalism and hate speech. She conducted research on media funding disinformation and media representation in the past. She is also a podcast enthusiast. She created podcasts for the Central European University, the New Books Network and Radio Civic Sfântu Gheorghe, a community radio based in the Danube Delta in Romania.

Tibor T. Meszmann is a researcher and an activist. His work and studies mainly focus on collective labour rights, unionism, industrial relations, and employment policies in CEE, with a more particular focus on Hungary. Tibor is a member of the Working Group for public sociology “Helyzet” and a researcher at the Central European Labour Studies Institute, in Slovakia


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No 893032.

This project has suppored by UKRI Economic and Social Research Council award number ES/V011561/1.


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