Violetta Zentai

Research Fellow

Contact information

Budapest, Nador u. 11
(36-1) 327-3000 /2166

Violetta Zentai is a cultural anthropologist with a PhD from Rutgers University (US). She has been the director of the Center for Policy Studies at CEU since September 2003 and currently serves as co-director. She is engaged in research focusing on ethnic and gender inequalities, European equality policies, and debates on post-socialist capitalisms and social exclusion/inclusion. She served as a team leader or lead coordinator of a number of larger comparative European research projects including “Employment 2025: How Multiple Transitions Will Affect the European Labor Market (NEUJOBS), “Ethnic Differences in Education and Diverging Prospects for Urban Youth in an enlarged Europe (EDUMIGROM), and worked in the core methodology team of the “Quality in Gender+ Equality Policies (QUING)”. She was leading the CEU team in two active Marie Curie international doctoral training networks in topics of critical labor studies and migrant inclusion studies (INTEGRIM, ChangingEmloyment). She has been one of the faculty members designing and launching public policy MA level teaching at the CEU. She supervises the coordinating team of the Civil Society Monitoring of the Implementation of National Roma Integration Strategies initiative (2016-2019)She is addiliated with the CEU’s Sociology and Social Anthropology Department as well as the School of Public Policy. She is member of the core team of CEU's Open Learning Initiative which provides teaching and training services to refugees and vulnerable migrants in Europe (OLIve) Dr. Zentai has been active in the Hungarian women’s movement; she worked with MONA (Foundation for the Women of Hungary) for many years and she was member of the Expert Forum of the European Gender Institute in its formative period. Parallel to her academic engagement, she worked as expert with the Open Society Foundations for two decades in initiatives related to democratic local governance, equality mainstreaming, and rights based development.


Ph.D. Cultural Anthropology, Rutgers University (2003)

File Attachments

Projects led by Violetta Zentai

Roma Placement Program , Nov 2014 to Jan 2016

Projects with involvement of Violetta Zentai

Roma Civil Monitor , Mar 2017 to Mar 2020


Book Chapter

Violetta Zentai, Julia Szalai, Tunde Virag, Monika Varadi , Faces and Causes of Roma Marginalization: Experiences from Hungary , 2014
Violetta Zentai, Julia Szalai, Eniko Vincze , Faces and Causes of Roma Marginalization: Experiences from Romania , 2014
Violetta Zentai, Julia Szalai, Slobodan Cvejic , Faces and Causes of Roma Marginalization: Experiences from Serbia , 2014
Violetta Zentai, Sylvie Contrepois, Violaine Delteil, Melinda Szabo , How French are the French Multinational Companies in Hungary? , 2010
Petra Meier, Violetta Zentai, Elin Peterson, Karin Tertinegg , The Pregnant Worker and Caring Mother. Family Policies Across Europe , 2007
Andrea Krizsan, Violetta Zentai, Noelia Igareda, Marta Cruells, Herta Toth , National report on Hungary , 2005
Andrea Krizsan, Violetta Zentai , Simon Maxwell, Diane Stone , From Civil Society to Policy Research. The Case of the Soros Network and Its Roma Policies , 2004
Andrea Krizsan, Violetta Zentai , Introduction , 2003
Janos Matyas Kovacs, Violetta Zentai , Átkelés a nyitott társadalomba (Trespass to an Open Society) , 2002
Violetta Zentai, Gabor Peteri , Lessons on Successful Reform Management , 2002
Violetta Zentai, Herbert Nikitsch, Peter Niedermuller, Konrad Kostlin , Loss or Overproduction of Culture , 2002
Violetta Zentai, Enyedi Gy. , Environmental Policy in Hungary , 1987


Andrew Ryder, Bernard Rorke, Boyan Zahariev, Deyan Kolev, Georgeta Munteanu, Jonathan Mack, Lidia Balogh, Marek Hojsik, Nada Greku, Violetta Zentai , Georgeta Munteanu, Marek Hojsik, Violetta Zentai , From the Shadow to the Limelight: The Value of Civil Society Policy Monitoring Knowledge in Roma Equality Struggles , 2022
Achim Kemmerling, Andras Tetenyi, Andrea Krizsan, Andrew Cartwright, B. Guy Peters, Agnes Batory, Daniela Craciun, Diane Stone, Dragos Adascalitei, Gergo Medve-Balint, Heather Grabbe, Kristin Makszin, Liviu Matei, Sara Svensson, Simona Torotcoi, Stefan Domonkos, Violetta Zentai , Andrew Cartwright, Agnes Batory, Diane Stone , Policy Experiments, Failures and Innovations: Beyond Accession in Central and Eastern Europe , 2018
Aidan McGarry, Alexandra Oprea, Angela Kocze, Anna Mirga-Kruszelnicka, Carmen Gheorghe, Carol Silverman, Debra Schultz, Eniko Vincze, Gwendolyn Albert, Jamen Gabriela Hrabanova, Jelena Jovanovic, Jelena M. Savic, Letitia Mark, Lidia Balogh, Lucie Fremlova, Margareta Matache, Nicoleta Bitu, Patricia Caro Maya, Sarah Werner Boada, Teodora Krumova, Vera Kurtic, Violetta Zentai , Angela Kocze, Eniko Vincze, Jelena Jovanovic, Violetta Zentai , The Romani Women’s Movement: Struggles and Debates in Central and Eastern Europe , 2018
Eniko Vincze, Julia Szalai, Monika Varadi, Slobodan Cvejic, Tunde Virag, Violetta Zentai , Faces and Causes of Roma Marginalization in Local Contexts: Hungary, Romania, Serbia , 2014
Janos Matyas Kovacs, Violetta Zentai , Capitalism from Outside? Economic Cultures in Eastern Europe after 1989 , 2012
Violetta Zentai, Gabor Soos , Faces of Local Democracy , 2005
Violetta Zentai, Eniko Vincze, Margit Feischmidt , Men and Women in East European Transition , 1997

Conference Paper

Journal Article

Violetta Zentai, Schorske Carl , Fin-de-Siecle in Vienna , 1993

Journal Editor


Policy Brief

Olena Fedyuk, Tibor T. Meszmann, Violetta Zentai , Unionisation of Non-Local Workers: Capacity Building Opportunity for Trade Unions? , 2020
Agnieszka Chlon Dominczak, Agnieszka Kaminska, Attila Bartha, Iga Magda, Jan Baran, Maciej Lis, Monika Potoczna, Olena Fedyuk, Piotr Lewandowski, Violetta Zentai , Women on the European Labour Market , 2014
Janos Matyas Kovacs, Violetta Zentai , DIOSCURI Policy Recommendations , 2007


Andrea Krizsan, Violetta Zentai, Tamas Dombos, Erika Kispeter , Report analysing intersectionality in gender equality policies for Hungary and the EU , 2008
Janos Matyas Kovacs, Violetta Zentai , DIOSCURI Final Project Report , 2007
Andrea Krizsan, Violetta Zentai , MAGEEQ State of the Art and Mapping of Competences in Hungary , 2003


Working Paper

Agnes Batory, Andrea Krizsan, Joanna Kostka, Nick Sitter, Violetta Zentai , Mapping Backsliding in the European Union , 2016
Violetta Zentai, Vera Messing, Zsuzsanna Arendas , ASSESS Kutatási Jelentés 1: A monitorozás kérdései és lehetőségei Magyarországon , 2015
Vera Messing, Violetta Zentai, Zsuzsanna Arendas , Integration of Vulnerable Migrants: Women, Children and Victims of Trafficking (Hungary) , 2015
Attila Bartha, Olena Fedyuk, Violetta Zentai , Gender equality and care choices in the light of population ageing , 2014
Attila Bartha, Olena Fedyuk, Violetta Zentai , Migrant domestic care workers: state and market-based policy mix , 2014
Attila Bartha, Olena Fedyuk, Violetta Zentai , The role of migrant labour in meeting European care demand , 2014
Eniko Vincze, Julia Szalai, Marcus Carson, Violetta Zentai, Zuzana Kusa , EDUMIGROM Comparative Papers: Comparative Report on Educational Policies for Inclusion , 2009