2019 Conference

2019 Annual Meeting of the Gypsy Lore Society and Conference on Gypsy / Romani Studies

Veröld – House of Vigdís, University of Iceland, Brynjólfsgata 1, 107 Reykjavík

15-17 August, 2019

2019 Gypsy Lore Society Conference

About the conference

The 2019 Annual Meeting of the Gypsy Lore Society and Conference on Gypsy / Romani Studies will be held at the University of Iceland in Reykjavík, August 15 to 17, 2019.

The conference is being organised on behalf of the Gypsy Lore Society by the School of Humanities and Faculty of Sociology, Anthropology and Folkloristics at the University of Iceland, and is hosted by the Vigdís International Centre for Multilingualism and Intercultural Understanding.

Gypsy Lore Society conferences are the biggest annual scholarly events devoted to Romani Studies worldwide (see information about previous annual meeting above. We invite contributions on any aspect of Gypsy / Romani Studies and encourage participants from various disciplines, including history, ethnology, anthropology, sociology, political science, linguistics, international studies, security studies, area studies, economics, geography, literature, and other fields of humanities and social sciences. Panels and papers presenting interdisciplinary research, as well as synergies between academic research and practice are also welcome.

This year we would like to follow up on the need to initiate broad discussions on disciplinary approaches and terminology in Romani Studies as well as to take advantage of Iceland´s geographical location (Scandinavian region, between two continents). Thus, along with all other above mentioned topics we encourage also submissions of panel and individual paper proposals dealing with and reflecting on the following topics:

  • Perspectives in Romani Studies: Terminology, methods, areas of studies;
  • Antigypsyism: Historical and contemporary aspects;
  • Roma/Gypsies outside Europe (Asia, Africa, the Americas): Communities, identities and contemporary debates in academia;
  • Roma and Romani Studies in the Nordic context;
  • Children and young adults´ education: Academic, practical and policy aspects.

We look forward to welcoming you in Reykjavík in August 2019!

Academic Committee

Auður Hauksdóttir, Professor of Danish, University of Iceland

Elena Marushiakova, Professor of History, University of St Andrews

Guðmundur Hálfdánarson, Professor of History, University of Iceland

Marco Solimene, Postdoctoral researcher, University of Iceland

Marcos Toyansk, Senior researcher, SESC / University of São Paulo

Viorel Achim, Senior researcher, Nicolae Iorga Institute of History, Romanian Academy of Sciences

Conference Organizing Committee

Birna Bjarnadóttir, Vigdís Finnbogadóttir Institute of Foreign Languages

Þórir Jónsson Hraundal, Lecturer, University of Iceland

Sheila Salo, Treasurer of the Gypsy Lore Society

Sofiya Zahova, Vigdís Finnbogadóttir Institute of Foreign Languages

Valgerður Jónasdóttir, Event manager, Vigdís International Centre for Multilingualism and Intercultural Understanding

Conference Program and Abstracts

Conference program in pdf format.

Presenters will include 109 authors from 32 countries (Argentina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Mexico, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, UK, USA). 127 participants are registered.

Further information for registered participants

Find information for presenters and chairs, as well as details for coffee, lunch, and internet access.

Important dates

31 July 2019: Final program and abstracts posted

14 August 2019: Meeting of the Gypsy Lore Society Board of Directors

15-17 August 2019: Conference dates

Fees and registration

Registration is now open and will close June 14.

Please pay your participation fee and register for the conference at http://vigdis.hi.is/en/events/gls-2019/.

Your registration is not valid until a payment has been made. Registration and fee payment is done only online by June 14 at latest. Please note that registration/fee payment is not possible on the spot during the conference days.

The conference fee includes conference organization, conference materials, coffee-breaks and a reception. Accommodation, transport from/to airport and/or hotels and conference dinner are not included.

Reduced fees apply to students, Gypsy Lore Society members and University of Iceland employees. Please indicate your status in the "comments" section of the registration form. For example, if you are a member of the Gypsy Lore Society, write "GLS member."

An Icelandic fish buffet is planned at the Messinn Grana restaurant at the Old Harbor of Reykjavik on August 16. If you wish to join the dinner you should pay for your dinner while paying and registering for the conference.

A welcome reception will be held at the Municipal Hall of the City of Reykjavik on August 15. 


Reduced 21,000 ISK                     

Standard 28,000 ISK                     

Reduced with dinner 28,600 ISK      

Standard with dinner 35,600 ISK     

For details of membership see here. You should have paid membership for 2019 in order to be eligible for the reduced fee as a Gypsy Lore Society member. If you are joining now, you membership will be effective immediately.

Renew your membership or join as a new member here:


You may check your membership status by writing to the Gypsy Lore Society treasurer, sheila.salo@gmail.com.

Support for early career researchers

Recognizing the fact that costs for conference participation in Iceland might be an obstacle for early career researcher from underprivileged countries, we are currently raising funds to support the participation of such researchers by securing shared accommodation in a double room in the Student Hostel Gamli Garður for the days of the conference and by covering their conference participation fee. Support for travel costs and per diem, however, cannot be provided.   

If you are a young career researcher who would like to apply for such support you should indicate this in your abstract submission email. If your abstract is approved, you will receive an application form which you will be asked to fill in by 20 April 2019.

As we are not able to provide support for travel to Iceland, you may consider applying to the Gypsy Lore Society Fund for aid to early-career scholars to attend future meetings. See information below.

Practical information

Please check the conference website for practical information http://vigdis.hi.is/en/events/gls-2019/

Further information for participants.

Our advice is that you start planning your travel and accommodation for the conference as soon as possible due to the limited availability during the summer season.


The conference will be held at Veröld – hús Vigdísar, Brynjólfsgata 1 (corner with Suðurgata), 107 Reykjavík.

The venue is within walking distance from many hotels and accommodation options in downtown and west Reykjavík.

The closest bus-stops are Háskólabíó, Hótel Saga, Háskóli Íslands or Hagatorg.

Plenty of free parking spaces are at the venue. 



Tourism in Iceland has grown immensely and moderately-priced lodging is quick to fill up. We encourage conference participants to book accommodation as early as possible to avoid high prices and limited availability. Websites such as Booking.com and Airbnb.com will provide information about a range of accommodation possibilities. For more information about hotels and other types of lodging in Reykjavik, see here.

We have pre-booked 25 rooms for conference participants for 4 nights (14-18 August 2019) in the Student Hostel GamliGarður, a couple of minutes’ walk from the conference venue. The rooms are with shared bathroom and fully equipped kitchen at each floor. A room costs around 11,000 ISK (80 Euro) per night (note that the price can change slightly due to the currency exchange rate or due to changes in the hostel rooms price list). Rooms are suitable for both double and single use at the same price. Please note that there is WiFi internet access only in the common areas (which are wonderfully arranged and very cosy). Tea and coffee is also served at the common areas for free. 

If you´d like to book a room at the Student Hostel please first have a look at the website of the hostel which provides details and pictures. If you would like to share the room with someone, you have to arrange this on your own in advance as the hostel management cannot organize that for you. 

If you wish to book contact the hostel manager, Vala at info@studenthostel.is, referring to Gypsy Lore Society 2019 conference booking when you book. The booking is done on “first come first served” basis. Prepayment is not needed, but in case you are not able to attend please notify Vala as soon as possible, but not later than a week prior to the check in date. Vala will also answer all your questions regarding the accommodation facilities.   


Keflavík International Airport (KEF), the main airport in Iceland, is located 40 kilometres from Reykjavík, the capital city. Over 20 airlines offer flights to and from Iceland through the airport. For information about flights to Iceland, see here.

Transportation to Reykjavík from the airport is available by bus, Flybus or taxi, see here

The only public transportation in Reykjavík is the bus system, Stræto. See their website for information about fares, timetable, and a route planner, here.

The two main taxi companies in Reykjavík are Hreyfill, tel. +354 588 55 22 see here and Taxi BSR, tel. +354- 56 10000, see here (only in Icelandic) When calling for a taxi you can expect it to arrive within 10 minutes.

For a map of the University of Iceland see here.


Internet access will be provided at the conference venue through WIFI connection. Those who have Eduroam will be able to access the internet through the Eduroam system at the University premises.  


The official currency in Iceland is ISK (Icelandic krona). Recognised credit/debit cards are accepted in all restaurants, shops, hotels and cash machines. For the official exchange rate of ISK towards major currencies, see here.


For enquiries in relation to the conference, please contact Sofiya Zahova, conference coordinator, at zahova@hi.is.