During the 1990s, the re-territorialisation of politics in Western Europe on the one hand and the break-up
and democratisation of multi-national states in Central and Eastern Europe on the other hand both increased
the importance of ethnicity and territory in party competition. With an additional ethnic issue dimension
structuring the policy space and the fragmentation of party systems into segmental and/or regional
subsystems, party competition in the multinational democracies of wider Europe takes the form of a
complex multi-dimensional game played in multiple, territorially nested arenas.
We argue that fresh analytical approaches bridging the fields of territorial, ethnic, and party politics are
needed to deal with this complexity. So far, however, research on ethnicity has remained largely
disconnected from the field of party politics. Additionally, a heterogeneous use of terms has detached
scholars working on 'ethnoregionalist' parties in Western Europe from scholars focussing on 'minority'
parties in Central and Eastern Europe. The workshop seeks to overcome scholarly insulation and kickstart
a debate that explores the possibility of a unified analytical approach to ethnicity and territory in