Trinity Church (Tsminda Sameba) near Mt. Kazbegi, Georgia. Photo: flickr/Lidia Ilona
Trinity Church (Tsminda Sameba) near Mt. Kazbegi, Georgia. Photo: flickr/Lidia Ilona

The ESI South Caucasus Project (which we launched with the support by the OSI Think Tank Fund in 2007) is aimed at building local empirical research and policy analysis capacity in the three South Caucasus countries.

In addition, we work to increase understanding of developments in the region elsewhere in Europe. We present our analysis of relevant developments in the Balkans and in Turkey in Tbilisi, Yerevan and Baku. We organise presentations related to Armenia. ESI analysts have given a lot of interviews in Armenian and international media on issues related to Armenia's relations with Turkey and Europe. We organise a series of events for policy makers - including a high profile seminar on the EU and the South Caucasus in Barcelona. We work on understanding the impact of Russian policy – often in competition to that of the European Union – on the democratisation of the region.

We closely follow developments in both Georgia and Azerbaijan related to their internal political developments. We are producing background sections for a wider European audience to introduce the dramatic post-communist history of this region.

Restroom sign for women. © flickr/LOOMstudio

In Azerbaijan, ESI is undertaking research on the position of women and the impact of the recent oil-driven economic boom on their welfare across the country.

Sevan Highway sign in Armenia. © flickr/Thomas Frederick

In Armenia, ESI is working with local researchers to understand local development trends across the country. At the same time we are undertaking a larger research to better understand Turkish-Armenian relations.

SBasar in Tbilisi. © flickr/henning(i)

In Georgia, ESI has set out – together with a team of local researchers – to better understand the impact of the reforms undertaken since the Rose Revolution in late 2003.