17 February 2009
"Kosovo needs a revolution" Media reactions to ESI's Kosovo research one year after independence
Kosovo proclaimed independence on 17 February 2008. Photo: Wikipedia Commons
Kosovo proclaimed independence on 17 February 2008. Photo: Wikipedia Commons

In recent days, ESI analysts gave interviews to several media on Kosovo's situation one year after its declaration of independence. Here's a selection:

The Independent, "Expat cash for Kosovo stops flowing"

"Only if you have economic development will you have lasting stability in Kosovo. But now this lifeline is being cut and there is nothing to take its place," says Gerald Knaus, a Kosovo expert at the European Stability Initiative, a Berlin think-tank. "Most people are subsistence farmers who have to feed the largest families in Europe, with six or nine members. But there are no jobs, no real economy to speak of and most of them cannot meet their most basic needs without these hand-outs from abroad."

EUobserver, "One year after independence, Kosovo needs 'a revolution'"

"Many of the big problems that were there before… have not been addressed, obviously," said Verena Knaus, a Pristina-based analyst from the European Stability Initiative (ESI) – a non-profit policy institute known for its analyses and research work on South East Europe. Electricity problems, bad infrastructure, poor rural and economic development, high levels of poverty and unemployment still exist, she pointed out noting that a dramatic improvement in education is needed to build "a competitive Kosovo.".

Der Westen, "Die Mühen des Alltags"

Das Wohlergehen des Kosovo hängt wesentlich von den Überweisungen seiner Emigranten ab, sagt Gerald Knaus, Südosteuropa-Experte der Denkfabrik ESI. "Die europäischen Staaten in Randlage waren oder sind alle auf ihre Auswanderer angewiesen. Das galt für Irland und Portugal, das gilt jetzt für Rumänien und Bulgarien, das wird auch für das Kosovo gelten."

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Alan Grant is an Irish photographer who travelled extensively in the Balkans and other countries and regions of the world. Thanks to him, ESI is able to show fascinating pictures of the Balkans: the facades of Tirana, the painted mosques of Travnik, the fabulous old houses of Plovdiv and the spectacular blue of water - dark in the Bay of Kotor, emerald in the river valleys of Bosnia, deep blue in Ohrid, twinkling in the Aegean Sea and on the Bosporus.

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Jonathan Lewis lives between London and Istanbul. He moved to London and spent many years studying photography and now specialises in photojournalism, documentary photography and commercial work for a wide variety of private and commercial clients in the UK, Europe and Turkey. His work has appeared in a number of magazines and publications and is used on the ESI website as well.

You can find out more about Jonathan Lewis on his website www.jonathanlewisphoto.com