The participants of the Eastern Partnership (EaP) Think Tank Forum, held for the very first time in Chisinau on 21-23 September 2017, reviewed the challenges and perspectives of the future relations of the EaP countries with the EU and drafted a set of Policy Recommendations for the upcoming EaP Summit to be held in late November in Brussels.
The overall aim of the Forum, which gathered more than 60 international and local experts, was to create a platform for new partnerships between the think-tank community from the EU and six EaP countries in order to generate a maximum impact on their research, policy making and advocacy efforts in promoting European values in our region.
During the inaugural session of the Forum, moderated by Iulian Groza, Executive Director at IPRE, Chisinau, the opening remarks were delivered by Ms. Daniela Morari, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of Moldova; Amb. Peter Michalko, Ambassador, Head of the EU Delegation in Chisinau; Ms. Natalia Yerashevich, Director of the EaP CSF Secretariat; Ms. Polina Ojog, Programme Coordinator, Konrad Adenauer Foundation, Chisinau and Mr. Ion Manole, Executive Director, Promo-Lex, Chisinau.
The first discussion panel of the Forum offered the opportunity for an exchange of best practices and lessons learned from existing think-tank partnerships in Europe both, at regional and European level. During the discussions, the panellists have also outlined the main opportunities to be addressed by the research community in the EU and the EaP countries. Discussions also introduced ideas how to add value to the EaP Civil Society Forum in building capacity of policy research and advocacy activities by strengthening think-tank – NGOs partnerships. The panel was moderated by Mr. Balazs Jarabik, Non-resident, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Brussels, and it featured the following speakers: Dr. Maria Golubeva, member of the EaP CSF Steering Committee, Brussels; Mr. Hennadiy Maksak, PRISM, Kiev; Dr. Steven Blockmans, Head of EU Foreign Policy at CEPS, Brussels; Ms. Valentina Eigner, WeBuildEurope.eu, Vienna; and Dr. Olena Prystayko, Executive Director, Ukrainian Think Tanks Liaison Office in Brussels.
The second panel addressed the challenges and perspectives for the future of the EaP. Thus, the discussions focused largely on the main achievements and set backs of the EU’s EaP Policy, analysing the ways how the EU and EaP countries could work together to strengthen resilience and secure a sustainable Europeanisation process in the region, taking into account as well different political aspirations of the countries concerned. The session was moderated by Mr. Dmytro Shulga, Director of the European initiative programme at the International Renaissance Foundation, Kiev, and had the following contributors: Dr. Oleksandr Sushko, International Renaissance Foundation, Kiev; Dr. Igor Munteanu, Executive Director, IDIS-Viitorul, Chisinau; Mr. Zaur Shiriyev, Academy Associate, Chatham House, London; Dr. Stepan Grigoryan, Chairman of the Board, Analytical Centre on Globalization and Regional Cooperation, Yerevan; Dr. Kerry Longhurst, Professor, Jean Monnet, Collegium Civitas, Warsaw; and James Nixey, Head of Russia and Eurasia Program, Chatham House, London.
During the third panel, the participants have analysed the 20 EaP deliverables for 2020, which were endorsed in June 2017 by the EaP Foreign Ministerial Meeting. The experts of the Forum have assessed if the suggested EaP deliverables are ambitious enough and resonate with the expectations of the EaP countries, looking beyond 2020. Dr. Kataryna Wolczuk, Associate Fellow, Chatham House, London has moderated the interventions of the following experts: Mr. Denis Cenușă, Programmme Director, Expert Group, Chișinău; Mr. Richard Giragosian, Founding Director, Regional Studies Center, Yerevan; Ms. Dovilė Šukytė, EESC, EaP CSF Steering Committee, Vilnius; Dr. Stanislav Secrieru, Senior Associate Fellow, EUISS, Paris and Mr. Paul Ivan, Senior Policy Analyst, European Policy Centre (EPC), Brussels.
The concluding panel of the Forum has reviewed the draft Policy Recommendations of the Forum for the EaP Summit in Brussels, presented by Mr. Leonid Litra, the Senior Research Fellow, New Europe Center from Kiev. The panel has gathered contributions from Ms. Iskra Kirova, Senior Policy Analyst, Open Society European Policy Institute, Brussels; Mr. Ivane Chkhikvadze, EU Integration Programme Coordinator, OSGF, Tbilisi; Mr. Uladzislau Vialichka, Director General, International Consortium “EuroBelarus”, Minsk; Mr. Boris Navasardian, President, Yerevan Press Club; Mr. Ziya Guliyev, Chair of the Board, Center for Legal Initiatives, Baku. The discussions were moderated by Mr. Irakli Porchkhidze, Vice-President, Georgian Institute for Strategic Initiatives, Tbilisi. All contributions during the event will be used to finalise the Policy Recommendations of the EaP think Tank Forum for the upcoming EaP Summit in Brussels from late November.
The Forum was held upon the initiative of the Institute for European Policies and Reforms (IPRE), the Georgian Institute for Strategic Studies (GISS) and New Europe Center (former Institute of World Policy (IWP)), in cooperation with the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP CSF). The Forum is organised within a project funded by the EU and National Endowment for Democracy (NED) through the EaP CSF Re-granting Scheme 2017 and co-financed by Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS).
The video web-streaming of the Forum is available here.
More photos in high quality from the event are available here.
The Background Paper that includes the Draft Policy Recommendations for the EaP Summit that shall be further updated and presented to the EU institutions, EU member states and EaP countries is available here.
About the organisers:
- Institute for European Policies and Reforms, Chișinău: ipre.md
- New Europe Center (former Institute for World Policy), Kiev: http://iwp.org.ua/eng/
- Georgian Institute for Strategic Studies, Tbilisi: http://giss.org.ge/eng
- EaP Civil Society Forum, Brussels: http://eap-csf.eu/
The project is supported through the EaP CSF Re-granting Scheme and co-funded by Konrad Adenauer Foundation (KAS). Within its Re-granting Scheme, the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP CSF) supports projects of the EaP CSF members with a regional dimension that contribute to achieving the mission and objectives of the Forum. The donors of the EaP CSF Re-granting Scheme are the European Union and National Endowment for Democracy.