Geopolitics and Confidence Building in the OSCE Region

Since 2016, I have been working on several papers in the area of geopolitics confidence building in the OSCE region as part of my engagement in the OSCE Network of Think Tanks and Academic Institutions, in which I represent the Institute for Conflict, Cooperation and Security.

Together with my colleague Dr Nino Kemoklidze, I contributed a paper on “Trade as a Confidence Building Measure” to the 2016 OSCE Network Project on “Protracted Conflicts in the OSCE Area: Innovative Approaches for Co-operation in the Conflict Zones“. A revised and updated version of this paper was subsequently published as freely accessible article in Eurasian Geography and Economics.

In 2017, I directed a follow-on project on “Confidence Building Measures in the OSCE Economic and Environmental Dimension“. This involved two workshops: a brainstorming workshop at the University of Birmingham in July 2017 and a further drafting workshop at the OSCE in October 2017 at which initial findings were presented to officials from the OSCE Secretariat and the Austrian Chairmanship. Both workshops contributed to the final project report presented at the December 2017 meeting of the Economic and Environmental Committee of the OSCE in Vienna.

Building on the work done in 2016 and 2017, I wrote a report on “Economic Diplomacy and Connectivity: What Role for the OSCE?” which I presented to an audience of senior OSCE officials and diplomats at the 25th OSCE Ministerial Council in Milan in December 2018.

In addition, I have been working with my colleague Dr Nadja Douglas from the Centre for East European and International Studies in Berlin on a paper that examines confidence and security building measures in the context of the conflict in the Transdniestrian region of the Republic of Moldova. A work-in-progress draft of this paper can be downloaded here.

Most recently, I completed a report on China’s Belt and Road Initiative: Implications for the OSCE, which is part of a broader project that examines the challenges and opportunities that arise from the growing presence and activities of China for the Organisation and its participating States.

In Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskiy must tread carefully or may end up facing another Maidan uprising

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Ukraine presidential election: young comedian leads polls, but country’s dangerous divisions are no joke

Ukraine’s presidential election campaign is a tragic indictment of the country’s current political state. Most candidates have adopted populist strategies, voters appear highly irrational in their preferences, trust in the political system and its leading representatives is extremely low, and the country remains deeply divided and perpetually stuck in a systemic social, political, and economic crisis partly of its own making.

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