Dr. Marek Mikuš (former Research Fellow)

Email: mikus@eth.mpg.de

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/marek.shin.7

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MarekMikush (@MarekMikush)

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/marekmikus/

Academia.edu: https://tcd.academia.edu/MarekMikuš

ResearchGate: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Marek_Mikus

Current project: https://www.eth.mpg.de/peripheral-debt


Marek Mikuš is a social anthropologist with a research focus on finance, civil society, the state and public policy in former Yugoslavia, specifically Serbia and Croatia. As a graduate student of ethnology in Prague, Marek studied and published on policy and academic representations of Roma in the Czech and Slovak Republics and worked for one of the leading Czech NGOs providing services to socially excluded people, mostly Roma. He completed another Master’s degree in anthropology and development studies at the London School of Economics (LSE) with fieldwork-based thesis about participatory biodiversity conservation programmes in the Comoros. Marek’s PhD (LSE, 2014) studied the roles of civil society and the state in “reforms” of the government of society and individuals and wider social transformations in Serbia. In 2014–15, he worked as a Lecturer and Research Fellow at the Institute of Social Anthropology at the Faculty of Social and Economic Sciences of the Comenius University in Bratislava. In 2015–18, Marek was a Research Fellow in the Financialisation Research Group at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology with a project on household debt in Croatia. At the same time, he was a Lecturer at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology of the Martin Luther University in Halle (Saale). His first monograph, Frontiers of Civil Society: Government and Hegemony in Serbia, was published by Berghahn Books in 2018. Marek has also published on LGBT politics and disability in Serbia. 

In 2019 he was awarded a prestigious Emmy Noether grant from the German Research Foundation (DFG) on “Peripheral Debt: Money, Risk and Politics in Eastern Europe”. His new project is based at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology (Halle, Germany). Marek remains connected to the GEOFIN project as a member of the Academic Advisory Panel.

GEOFIN research

Within the GEOFIN project, Marek’s research focus was on the financialization of states in East-Central Europe.

GEOFIN-related publications, presentations and working papers

Bobek, A., Mikuš, M. and Sokol, M. (2023) Making sense of the financialization of households: state of the art and beyond, Socio-Economic Review, 21 (4): 2233–2258, https://doi.org/10.1093/ser/mwad029 [OPEN ACCESS] | PDF

Pataccini, L, Sokol, M and Mikuš (2022) Growth models, dependent financialization and financial infrastructures in CEE: the case of the baltic states. RSA Central and Eastern Europe conference in Leipzig 2022. Special Session: Infrastructures of finance and finance as infrastructure in eastern Europe. | PDF

Mikuš, M. (2020) Financialization of the state in Croatia: findings of an interview-based case study. GEOFIN Working Paper No. 9. Dublin: GEOFIN research, Trinity College Dublin.

Mikuš, M. (2019) Contesting household debt in Croatia: the double movement of financialization and the fetishism of money in Eastern European peripheries. Dialectical Anthropology 43(3): 295-315. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10624-019-09551-8

Mikuš, M. (2019) State financialisation in Croatia: Preliminary Findings of an interview-based case study. GEOFIN Seminar on “Financialisation”. Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland, 19 September. | PDF

Mikuš, M. (2019) Financialization of the state: preliminary analysis for Croatia. 30th Economics Workshop of the Croatian National Bank, Zagreb, 6 June. (Original Croatian title: Financijalizacije države: preliminarna analiza za Hrvatsku) | PDF

Mikuš, M. (2019) Moral economies of housing in post–credit boom Croatia (and Hungary): disentangling core-periphery relations, national trajectories, and class. Workshop on “Moral Dimensions of Economic Life in Eastern Europe, Russia, and Eurasia”. St Antony’s College. Oxford, UK, 20–21 March. | PDF 

Mikuš, M. (2019) Public debt, capital flows and financialization of the state in East-Central Europe. Paper for the 6th FinGeo Global Seminar. University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil, 15–17 May. | PDF

Mikuš, M. (2019) Financialization of the state in post-socialist East-Central Europe: conceptualization and operationalization. GEOFIN Working Paper No. 3. Dublin: GEOFIN research, Trinity College Dublin.

Mikuš, M. (2019) Financialization of the state in post-socialist East-Central Europe: analysis of secondary quantitative data. GEOFIN Working Paper No. 4. Dublin: GEOFIN research, Trinity College Dublin.

Mikuš, M. (2019) Financialization of the state in Croatia: a preliminary analysis. GEOFIN Working Paper No. 5Dublin: GEOFIN research, Trinity College Dublin.

Mikuš, M. (2018) Debt collection innovators or extortionists? Foreign debt collection agencies and household financialization in Croatia. Paper for the 5th Global Conference on Economic Geography (GCEG), Specialist session on: Finance and financialisation in post-socialist Central and Eastern Europe. University of Cologne, Germany, 24–28 July.

Mikuš, M. (2018) Contestations of household financialization in Croatia (and Hungary): disentangling semi-peripherality, national politics and movement trajectories. Paper for the “The financialization of housing in the semi-periphery” Workshop. Central European University (CEU), Budapest, Hungary, 20-22 July.

Mikuš, M. (2018) Flows and chains, integration and fragmentation: politics of space and the boom-and-bust cycle of household lending in Croatia. Workshop on “Household and Personal Debt: International Perspectives”. London School of Economics, UK, 11 December.

View Marek’s blogs


Other publications



Mikuš, M. (2018) Frontiers of Civil Society: Government and Hegemony in Serbia. New York, Oxford: Berghahn. (URL: https://www.berghahnbooks.com/title/MikusFrontiers)

Refereed Journal Articles

Mikuš, M. (2018) Between recognition and redistribution: disability, (human) rights, and struggles over welfare in Serbia. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 24(2): 293–312.

Mikuš, M. (2016) The justice of neoliberalism: moral ideology and redistributive politics of public sector retrenchment in Serbia. Social Anthropology 24(2): 211–27.

Mikuš, M. and Dokić, G. (2016) ‘Nobody’s stronger than the state’: hope and crisis among Serbian NGO workers and war veterans. Ethnologia Balkanica 18: 385–403.

Mikuš, M. (2015) Indigenizing ‘civil society’ in Serbia: what local fund-raising reveals about class and trust. Focaal – Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology 71: 43–56.

Mikuš, M. (2015) Informal networks and interstitial arenas of power in the making of civil society law in Serbia. Sociologija 57(4): 571–92.

Mikuš, M. (2011) ‘State Pride’: politics of LGBT rights and democratisation in ‘European Serbia’. East European Politics and Societies 25(4): 843–51.

Mikuš, M. (2009) Naprieč hranicami, mimo autentického a falošného: transnacionálna antropológia, turizmus a identita. Sociální studia 5(4): 193–216.

Mikuš, M. (2008) Diskurzívna (de)konštrukcia kolektívnej identity: súperiace obrazy ‘Rómov’. Český lid: Etnologický časopis 95(3): 251–72.

Book Chapters

Mikuš, M. (2015) Civil society and EU integration of Serbia: toward a historical anthropology of globalizing postsocialist Europe. In Hana Cervinkova, Michal Buchowski and Zdeněk Uherek, eds., Rethinking ethnography in Central Europe, pp. 147–71. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.

Mikuš, M. (2015) ‘Faggots won’t walk through the city’: religious nationalism and LGBT Pride Parades in Serbia. In Srdjan Sremac and R. Ruard Ganzevoort, eds., Gods, gays, and governments: religious and sexual nationalisms in Central and Eastern Europe, pp. 15–32. Leiden: Brill.

Book Reviews

Mikuš, M. (2017) Bojan Bilić (2016) (ed.) LGBT activism and Europeanisation in the post-Yugoslav space: On the rainbow way to Europe. Intersections. East European Journal of Society and Politics 3(2): 89–92.

Mikuš, M. (2017) Ondřej Horký-Hlucháň, Tomáš Profant a kol.: Mimo Sever a Jih: Rozumět globálním nerovnostem a rozmanitostem. Praha, Ústav mezinárodníh vztahů 2015, 328 s. Czech Sociological Review 53(5): 10–12.

Mikuš, M. (2016) McFall, Liz. 2015. Devising consumption: cultural economies of insurance, credit and spending. London: Routledge. 203 pp. Hb.: US$119.48. ISBN: 978-0-415-69439-1. Social Anthropology 24(4): 537–38.

Conference Proceedings

Mikuš, M. (2010) Rerunning the transition: democratisation, civil-society building and Europeanisation in Serbia. 1st Joint PhD Symposium on Modern and Contemporary South East Europe, London, 18 June.

Web-Based Publications

Crehan, K. and Mikuš, M. (2018) Gramsci, ethnography, and ‘class’. Anthropology News 59(5): e251–e254.

Mikuš, M. (2017) Public advocacy in Serbia: translating democratisation in a double semiperiphery. Working Paper 180, Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology.

Mikuš, M. (2013) ‘European Serbia’ and its ‘civil’ discontents: beyond liberal narratives of modernisation. Working Paper 7, Centre for Southeast European Studies, University of Graz.

Mikuš, M. (2011) Civil-society building, ‘advanced liberal’ governmentality and the state in Serbia. QEH Working Paper 185. Department of International Development, University of Oxford.

Mikuš, M. (2009) Transnacionálne siete a diskurzy v participatívnej ochrane morských korytnačiek na Komorách. AntropoWebzin 2–3: 43–52.

Other Publications

Mikuš, M. (2017) Slovak Spring? Not really, though the weather is changing. April 27, LeftEast.

Mikuš, M. (2016) Ulazak podzemlja u visoku politiku. Le monde diplomatique: hrvatsko izdanje 48: 20–21.

Membership of professional organizations and networks

  • European Association of Social Anthropologists
  • Global Network on Financial Geography (FinGeo)
  • International Association for Southeast European Anthropology
  • International Society for Ethnology and Folklore