Which statements the European Union makes about corruption in South East Europe today have depth? Which are based on serious reflection and hard evidence? This matters because EU statements on corruption should be not only descriptive but also prescriptive not only pointing out how things are, but also how they ought to be.
Bosnia as Wunderkind of Doing Business. Outline of 14 steps to take – A Proposal to the presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina
For reformers anywhere time is the scarcest resource. Leaders everywhere today face the risk of drowning in information, being swamped by articles, conversations, emails and occasionally reports and books. Active people live on top of ever-growing mountains of words. And “a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.”
Kosovo has the youngest population in Europe, with half its population under the age of 26. A quarter of the population is in schools at any given time. In the coming decade, these students will be leaving schools and will face a most uncertain future. If things go well, today’s students will help their country catch up with the rest of Europe. If things go badly, they will be deprived of prospects, short of jobs and income, tempted to take to the streets in protest or to seek to emigrate.
Bulgarians are famously unhappy. A few years ago their pessimism came to international attention. A Gallup Poll discovered in 2009 that the citizens of this small Balkan nation had lower expectations for how their life would be five years later than Iraqis and Afghans. Bulgarians were not surprised by this discovery. A leading Sofia-based think tank, the Centre for Liberal Strategies (CLS), had already published a paper in 2003 titled Optimistic Theory about the Pessimism of the Transition. The latest World Happiness Report confirmed this global reputation for morosity in 2013. Out of 156 nations it ranked Bulgarians 144th, behind Iraqis and Afghans, Congolese and Haitians.