This work was inspired by the interest shown in the current situation in Bulgaria by a few colleagues from The Frankfurt Institute for Transformation Studies (F.I.T.), European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder), Germany.  The manuscript was completed during the author’s stay in F.I.T. (Fall, 2001). The full version of the paper is posted at: and will also appear as an issue of the discussion paper series of the F.I.T. and copies can be downloaded from .


Prof. Dr. Nikolai Tilkidjiev was head of the Department “Communities and Social Stratification” at the Institute of Sociology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences Currently lecturer at the St. Kliment Ohridski University in Sofia.

( See also:


Nikolai Tilkidjiev (1953)  

·         Professor, Dr.Sc. Head of the Department “Communities and Social Stratification” at the Institute of Sociology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (1993-2008).

·         University education: Philosophy and Sociology at the Sofia University “St. Kliment Ochridski” (1975), Ph.D. (1979), Professor at the Institute of Sociology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (1989-now); second doctoral (the highest scientific degree) – Doctor of Sciences (since January 2003). Full Professorship (since January 2004).

·         Member of the Scientific Council of the Institute of Sociology and of the Specialized Scientific Council in Sociology and Political Sciences, approving scientific degrees and professorships (1993-now). Participant in a lot of international sociological conferences, congresses.

·         More than 70 publications in the fields of social stratification and the middle class, communities, social groups, classes, strata, social inequality. He is the compiler and co-editor of the Bulgarian “Encyclopedic Dictionary of Sociology”(in two editions – 1996; 1997).

·         Specializations in Germany (Cologne and Mannheim - 1997), the Netherlands (NIAS-Wassenaar - 1999), UK (Nuffield College, Oxford - 2000). He delivered lectures on social stratification at universities in Bulgaria - Sofia, Plovdiv and Blagoevgrad, also abroad - at universities in Germany, Finland, Russia, Israel.

·         He is an author, participant and leader of teams of several tens of field sociological surveys of research and applied Bulgarian and international projects; the current is the international project “Democratic Values” to the FP5 of European Commission.

·         He is a chairman of the Research Committee “Social Stratification” at the Bulgarian Sociological Association (1997-now), vice-president of the Agency for Social Analyses - the Bulgarian member International Social Survey Program(1993-now) and president of the Association for Middle Class Development (1998-now) – non-governmental think tank organizations.

·         For more information see:

·         For contacts:

             Phones: GSM: 0889 24 90 42

                            (00 359 2) 973 41 40 - home;

                            (00 359 2) 980 90 86 – at the Institute of Sociology.


             Fax: (00 359 2) 980 58 96 – at the Institute of Sociology

            Postal address:

Nikolai Tilkidjiev

Department “Communities and Social Stratification”

Institute of Sociology, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences

13A, Moskovska str., 1000 Sofia, Bulgaria                            



Books (in Bulgarian):

Tilkidjiev, N. 1989. Social Groups. Sofia: Science and Art, 238 p.

Michaylov, S. and Tilkidjiev, N., eds. 1996/1997. Encyclopaedic Dictionary of Sociology. Sofia: M-8-M. 1996 - first edition, 1997 - second edition, 648 p.

Tilkidjiev, N.(ed.), Koleva, S., Zlatkov, Tz., Keliyan, M., Kostova, D. 1998. Social Stratification and Inequality. Sofia: M-8-M, 232 p. (Under sponsorship of the Fund for Central and East European Book Projects – Amsterdam)

Tilkidjiev, N.(ed.), Keliyan, M., Koleva, G., Stoilova, R. 2000. Peripheral Communities: Resources for Local Development, LIK Publishing house, 208 p.

Tilkidjiev, N. 2002. The Middle Class and Social Stratification. Sofia: LIK Publishing House, 512 p.

Ttilkidjiev, N. and M. Dimov. 2003. Status Basis of Democratic Consolidation under Post-Communism. Sofia: East-West Publishing House, 182 p.

Some studies and articles (in Bulgarian):

Tilkidjiev, N. 1987. “Strata Structure of the Socialist Society”. In: Sociological Problems, ¹ 3, pp.15-42.

Tilkidjiev, N. 1994. “Social Stratification: its Character and a Way of Measuring”, In: Bulgarian Journal Sociological Problems, ¹ 4, pp. 130-143.

Tilkidjiev, N. 1995. “Social Stratification in Post-communist Bulgaria: a Drama of Crystallization”. Free Initiative. Sofia. 53 p.

Tilkidjiev, N. 1999. “Stratification Dissection of a Separate Village”. In: Sociological Problems, ¹ 1-2, pp. 7-21.

Books (in English):

Tilkidjiev, N.,ed. 1998. The Middle Class as a Precondition of a Sustainable Society. Sofia: LIK Publishing house, 495 p.

Studies and articles (in English):

Tilkidjiev, N. 1996. “Social Stratification in Post-communist Bulgaria”. In: Bulgaria at the Crossroads, Jacques Coenen-  Huther, ed., New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., pp.78-97.

Tilkidjiev, N. 1998. “Risky Ambiguities in the Analysis of East-Europen Social Stratification”. In: Slovak Sociological Review, 1998, Fall'98, Vol. 30, ¹6, pp. 601-622.

Tilkidjiev, N. 1998. “Emerging of the Middle Strata in Post-Communist Bulgaria”. In: Open Society Foundation Bulletin. Budapest. RSS ¹1297.

Tilkidjiev, N. 1998. “Bulgarian Middle Strata: A Subculture in Formation”. In: Tilkidjiev, N.,ed. The Middle Class as a Precondition of a Sustainable Society. Sofia: LIK, pp. 232-248.

Tilkidjiev, N. 2000. “The New Social Group Convergence and the ‘Shy Middle Class’”. In: Vladimirov, J., ed. Contribution of Social Research to the Economic and Social Recovery Policy. Sofia: Sofiiski Novini Edition, pp. 191-205.

Tilkidjiev, N. 2000. “Bulgarian Women under Conditions of Social Restructuring”. In: Fotev,G. and Stoilova, R., eds. Women: Justice Today. Sofia: Institute of Sociology, pp.140-159.

Tilkidjiev, N. 2000. “Social Stratification: Occupational Status”. In: Genov, N., Krasteva, A., eds. Recent Social Trends in Bulgaria 1960-1995. Montreal&Kingston-London-Ithaca: McGill-Queen's University Press, pp. 180-191.

Tilkidjiev, N. 2001. “The King as a Premier: Peculiarities of the Bulgarian Case or a Lesson for Post-communist Transformations”. In: Discussion Papers 12/2001. Frankfurter Institute for Transformation studies - European University Viadrina. A short version In: South East Europe Review, Vol.4, ¹4, December 2001.  

Tilkidjiev, N. 2002. “Secondary Legitimacy of the Past: A Looking-Back Person Has Appeared?”. In: Democracy in Mind: Democratic Values in Central and Eastern Europe (D. Pollack, ed.). Ashgate.