The Center for Area Studies at the Freie Universitaet Berlin in cooperation with National University "Kyiv-Mohyla Academy" (NaUKMA) and the Institute of International Relations (IIR) at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv with the support of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) organizes the International Conference
"What Can Tempt Ukraine to Get back on the Democratization Path? Kyiv between the EU's Eastern Partnership and Russia's Eurasian Union"
An Investigation into the Influence of the EU- versus Russia-Driven Integration Projects on Ukrainian Domestic Affairs
to be held in Kyiv on September 12th-13th, 2013.
What could stop Ukraine move towards autocracy and tempt it back on the road towards democracy? How can one stop the pendulum-like behavior of Ukraine´s hybrid regime and move the country towards sustainable democracy? To answer these questions, one needs to look at how Ukraine´s domestic politics functions, identify the its structural context as well as determine the relative political impact of the Ukrainian political leadership, business community (ranging from small/middle-scale to those large-scale business groups, often called “oligarchs”) as well as civil society and the population, at large.
However, a full understanding of the prospects for a revitalization or further subversion of democratic institutions in Ukraine is impossible by merely analyzing domestic affairs. External factors too need to be considered. Indeed, Ukraine is a country at the crossroads of diverse diffusion flows coming from the European Union, on the one side, and Russia, on the other. These two external powers are influential not only concerning Ukraine´s foreign policy orientation, but also regarding her domestic development. Among other factors, the absence of an EU membership perspective, on the one side, and Russia´s energy leverage, on the other, have been identified as being responsible for repeated reform deadlocks and the paralysis of the democratization process in Ukraine. Arguably, in no other post-Soviet country, the impact of competing external powers on domestic politics and the interdependence of foreign policy orientations and democratization are so apparent and complex.
Hence, this conference concentrates on the roles of the EU and Russia, in shaping Ukraine´s domestic politics. In particular, it elaborates the effectiveness of the EU´s and Russia´s bilateral strategies and regional integration projects in empowering certain domestic actors, modifying the structural context and eventually influencing Ukraine´s institutional reforms. The conference will address the following questions:
- To which degree and through which mechanisms has the EU successfully diffused European institutions and norms in Ukraine? What is the value added and the potential of the EU´s regional approach - with a focus on the EaP - to foster democratization in Ukraine and in the post-Soviet area overall?
- Which bilateral and regional mechanisms are used by Russia to influence Ukraine´s domestic politics? Which domestic developments have been triggered this way? When and why has Russia been successful?
- What are the complementarities and/or rivalries of EU and Russia approaches to bilateral and regional cooperation schemes which can be exploited by Ukrainian elites, society, etc. to promote/shift institutional reforms?
- When and why have domestic actors have receptive to importing institutions or norms diffused from outside, by the EU and Russia? When and why have they been reluctant to do so?
- Which structural factors in Ukraine have in which way hindered or promoted domestic institutional reforms diffused from outside by the EU and Russia?
Contributions approaching these questions from the perspectives of Political Science (in particular, International Relations), Economics, Law, History and Culture are welcome. Although the conference concentrates on Ukraine, its area focus is not limited to this country case. Contributions comparing Ukraine with other cases in the post-communist region are welcome too. Please, note that the conference language is English only. Young as well as established researchers from all over the world are invited to send their abstracts (max. 300 words) by April 30th, 2013, at the latest, to Inna Melnykovska (email@example.com), or via snail mail either to the below German or Ukrainian address:
Chair International Integration with special focus on Eastern Europe
Institute of Political Science, FB 03
Justus Liebig University Gießen
Karl-Glöckner-Str. 21 E,
Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst
c/o German Embassy
Vul. Bohdana Khmelnitskoho 25
Due to limited funding and the rules of our major funding organization, the DAAD, the organizers are only able to provide accommodation and to cover partially travel costs for a limited number of researchers employed at German and Ukrainian universities. All other accepted paper-givers will have secure their own full funding for travelling to, and maintenance in, Kyiv.
Further details on the conference can be found here: http://www.fu-berlin.de/sites/cas/aktivitaeten/CAS-Themenworkshops/index.html
If you just want to attend the event as a listener, please, pre-register on this Facebook site.
Head Organizer: Inna Melnykovska (University of Giessen)
Co-Organizers: Iryna Solonenko (European University Viadrina of Frankfurt-Oder), Andreas Umland (National University of “Kyiv-Mohyla Academy”) and Sergey Makovskyy (Institute of International Relations (IIR) at Taras Shevchenko National University)
Post Scriptum for international students on a related
SUMMER SCHOOL AND DAAD PARTIAL SCHOLARSHIP:
Under- and post-graduate students, interested in attending the above conference, should note that this public meeting will be also an integral part of the 2013 Kyiv-Mohyla Academy Summer School “BETWEEN THE EUROPEAN AND EURASIAN UNIONS: DETERMINANTS, ASPECTS AND CONSEQUENCES OF UKRAINE'S POST-SOVIET TRANSFORMATION” that will take place in Kyiv on September 9th – 22nd, 2013. See http://dfc.ukma.kiev.ua/coming-to-naukma/international-summer-programs/between-the-european-and-eurasian-unions The deadline for application to this school is May 25th, 2013. The application form for this summer school is available here: http://dfc.ukma.kiev.ua/doc_new/2013/application_summer_course_NaUKMA_2013.doc
German under- and post-graduate students should simultaneously apply with the DAAD for a “Go East” Scholarship which will cover a part of the expenses (fees, travel costs) for attending this summer school https://www.daad.de/ausland/studieren/stipendium/de/18756-go-east-sommerschulen-01/ . The deadline for applying for DAAD partial scholarship is also May 25th, 2013.
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