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Dr Maria Xenitidou

Research Fellow
+44 (0)1483 683762
24 AD 03

Academic and research departments

Department of Sociology.


My publications


Sapountzis A, Xenitidou M (2017) Criteria of citizenship and social inclusion in immigrants' discourse in Greece.,Qualitative Psychology 5 (1) pp. 155-171 American Psychological Association
Naturalization criteria play an important role in who can be accepted as a member of a national polity. In the political and social sciences often a distinction is drawn between the right of blood- jus sanguinis- and the right of soil-jus soli- as guiding principles for naturalization. This distinction corresponds to the two different types of nationalism and national belonging identified by Kohn (1945, 1955) namely ?ethnic? nationalism and ?civic? nationalism. In social psychology this distinction has been used to examine which type of national belonging is more often associated to prejudice against immigrants and their exclusion. Recently approaches informed by social constructionism and discourse analysis examine how citizenship and the exclusion of immigrants are articulated in talk and what interactional goals seem to serve in each occasion. In this paper we examine how immigrants in Greece construct naturalization criteria in talk and how these may relate to the inclusion or exclusion of immigrants. Participants were 25 immigrants who participated in an interview on the current situation in Greece and the new naturalization law. Analyzing the interviews using Rhetorical Psychology, Ideological Dilemmas and Discursive Psychology we argue that participants by ridiculing citizenship criteria they legitimated their own presence within Greece. At the same time, they seemed to exclude other immigrant groups using discourses of legality/illegality. A possible reason for this dilemma, we maintain, is the diverse ideological background of the notion of citizenship, which allows its mobilization towards different ends.
Xenitidou M, Gilbert N (2012) Introduction to the Special Issue: The Processes of Methodological Innovation Narrative Accounts and Reflections,Methodological Innovations Online 7 (1) pp. 1-6 ESDS
Gill AJ, Xenitidou M, Gilbert N (2011) Understanding quality in science: A proposal and exploration, Proceedings - 2010 4th IEEE International Conference on Self-Adaptive and Self-Organizing Systems Workshop, SASOW 2010 pp. 116-121
Quality is a concept or characteristic that everyone knows, but yet is not well understood or defined. In many cases it is simply recognised as the absence of defects. Indeed when specific criteria are provided this is often in such as way as to enable personal preferences or prejudices to inform the decision. In this paper, we present an overview of the work that we are embarking upon examining quality in science. We propose three analysis approaches that integrate conceptual, functional, and perceptual levels, and combine both qualitative and quantitative techniques. In addition to providing small-scale case studies, we outline future work which is guided by an understanding of quality as a collective process. © 2010 IEEE.
Xenitidou M, Kokkali I (2016) The regularities of migration? Thematic and discursive interplay in the talk of Greeks and Albanians in Greece,In: Danesi M, Greco Morasso S (eds.), Case studies in Discourse Analysis Lincom Europe
Xenitidou M, Emde M, Villard R, Lotzmann U, Troitzsch KG (2013) Demonstrating the Theory: The case of Wikipedia,In: Andrighetto G, Campennì M, Conte R (eds.), Minding Norms, Oxford Series on Cognitive Models and Architectures Oxford University Press
Marangudakis M, Rontos K, Xenitidou M (2013) State Crisis and Civil Consciousness in Greece.,GreeSE Paper No.77(Hellenic Observatory Papers on Greece and Southeast Europe LSE European Institute
Xenitidou M, Elsenbroich C (2011) Construct Validity and Theoretical Embeddedness of Agentbased
Models of Normative Behaviour
The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences 5 (4) pp. 67-80 Common Ground Publishing
In this paper we assess the construct validity and theoretical emdeddedness of agent-based models of normative behaviour drawing on experimental social psychology. We contend that social psychology and agent-based modelling share the focus of ?observing? the processes and outcomes of the interaction of individual agents. The paper focuses on two from a taxonomy of agent-based models of normative behaviour. This enables the identification of the assumptions the models are built on and in turn, reflection on the assumptions themselves from a socio-psychological perspective.
Xenitidou M, Elsenbroich C (2010) Construct validity and theoretical embeddedness of agent-based models of normative behaviour, International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences 5 (4) pp. 67-79 Common Ground Publishing
In this paper we assess the construct validity and theoretical emdeddedness of agent-based models of normative behaviour drawing on experimental social psychology. We contend that social psychology and agent-based modelling share the focus of 'observing' the processes and outcomes of the interaction of individual agents. The paper focuses on two from a taxonomy of agent-based models of normative behaviour. This enables the identification of the assumptions the models are built on and in turn, reflection on the assumptions themselves from a socio-psychological perspective. © Common Ground, Maria Xenitidou, Corinna Elsenbroich, All Rights Reserved.
Xenitidou M, Greco-Morasso S (2014) Parental discourse and identity management in the talk of indigenous and migrant speakers in Greece and the UK,Discourse & Society 25 (1) pp. 100-121 Sage
This article integrates discursive psychology and argumentation studies to discuss the regularities identified in two sets of data ? focus group discussions amongst indigenous Greeks residing in Central Northern Greece and interviews with non-indigenous women with children, resident in the greater London area. The initial regularity identified consisted of participants talking as parents and talking about children mobilizing the normative expectations of parenthood in voicing strong views about ?others? from ethnic, cultural and racial backgrounds other than those of the speakers. This seemed to function as a form of denial, identifying further regularities in the discursive strategies used by participants and in the lines of arguments developed. Furthermore, two themes emerged as commonplace in talking about ?others? in the lines of argument developed by participants ? security/insecurity and hierarchies. These regularities are considered and the potentials of analysing discourse from two integrated approaches are discussed.
Xenitidou M, Elsenbroich C (2011) Three kinds of normative behaviour: minimal requirements for feedback models, Proceedings of the Epistemological Perspectives on Simulation
Xenitidou M, Sapountzis A (2017) Qualitative methodologies in the study of citizenship and migration: Introduction to the special issue,Qualitative Psychology 5 (1) pp. 77-84 American Psychological Association
This special issue brings together contributions on citizenship from social psychology. The six papers that make up the special issue focus on different cases but they all share in common: (i) a focus on studying citizenship and migration albeit different aspects and in different contexts; (ii) an approach to citizenship from the ?ground?, focusing on the ways in which social actors understand, negotiate and enact citizenship; (iii) the use of qualitative research to study citizenship and migration; (iv) and a social psychological perspective. Expanding on recent contributions on the study of citizenship in social psychology (Condor, 2011; Stevenson et al., 2015), the contributions in this special issue display a preoccupation with social actors? own orientations towards citizenship in particular, using mainly discursive methods to analyze them.
Xenitidou M (2011) National identity and otherness in Greek speakers' talk about immigration: Methodological and transdisciplinary reflections, Migration Letters 8 (2) pp. 121-131 Migration Letters & The London Publishers
The aim of the paper is to present the potential contribution of using Critical Discursive Psychology to study national identity and immigration. It draws upon a study on Greek national identity negotiations in relation to immigration. The study was guided by the perspective of banal nationalism which treats national identity as a form of life in a world divided into nation-states (Billig, 1995). In terms of Greek national identity and immigration, the study drew similarities between the perspective of banal nationalism and the critique of methodological nationalism (Wimmer and Schiller, 2002).
Andreouli E, Kadianaki I, Figgou L, Sapountzis A, Xenitidou M (2017) ?Europe? in Greece: Lay constructions of Europe in the context of Greek immigration debates,Journal of Community and Applied Social Psychology 27 (2) pp. 158-168 Wiley
In this paper, we analyse discourses about Europe in Greek debates about immigration and citizenship and highlight the complexities of ?Europeanness? as a symbolic resource for argumentation in these debates. Our data consist of lay discourses from two rounds of online public deliberation (2009/2010 and 2015) about a controversial new citizenship law in Greece. Our analysis shows that Europe is an ambivalent category. On the one hand, Europe symbolises progress, but, on the other hand, it is also constructed in terms of decline and ?contamination? by multiculturalism. Further, our analysis shows that the category of Europe can be mobilised in contradictory ways, in order to support arguments for and against citizenship rights for migrants. The paper concludes with a discussion of the ways in which constructions of Europe are implicated in processes of othering and inclusion in the context of current immigration debates.
Elsenbroich CJ, Xenitidou M (2012) Three Kinds of Normative Behaviour: Minimal Requirements for Feedback Models,Computational and Mathematical Organization Theory 18 (1) pp. 113-127 Springer Verlag
We present an analysis for modelling social norms. In social psychology three different normative behaviours have been identified: obedience, conformity and compliance. We show that this triad is a useful conceptualisation of normative behaviour and that current models only ever deal with conformity and obedience two, neglecting compliance. We argue that this is a result from modelling having so far focussed too much on agent behaviour rather than agent knowledge and that cognitive models of normative behaviour are needed to capture this third and arguably most interesting normative behaviour.
Andreouli E, Kadianaki I, Xenitidou Maria (2016) Citizenship and social psychology: an analysis of constructions of Greek citizenship,In: Howarth C, Andreouli E (eds.), The Social Psychology of Everyday Politics pp. 87-101 Routledge
Xenitidou Maria, Sapountzis Antonios (2018) Admissions of racism in discourse on migration in Greece: Beyond the norm against prejudice?,European Journal of Social Psychology 48 (6) pp. 801-814 Wiley
The turn to language in social psychology is closely related to the study of prejudice as racist discourse has been the subject matter of some of the ground?breaking discourse analytic work. A widely accepted argument was that there seems to be a norm against prejudice informing Western societies: people commonly engage in denials of prejudice when they make negative comments about minorities. Recent work has argued that, due to ideological shifts in the wider societal context or because denying prejudice may not be people's only rhetorical concern, it is possible to find people admitting prejudice. We examine how people in Greece, Greek majority and immigrants, formulate admissions of racism in interviews on migration and citizenship in Greece. Drawing on Ideological Dilemmas and Critical Discursive Social Psychology, we argue that these admissions ironically operate within the norm against prejudice and discuss our findings in relation to the wider socio?political Greek context.

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