briefing papers

  • Throughout the duration of the project, a series of six briefing papers has been published.

  • They focus on delineating vulnerabilities in the region in particular social domains such as politics, economics and finance, religion and culture, or extremism. This sphere-focused approach makes it possible to bring to the fore differences and similarities between individual foreign power’s strategies and objectives.

Description:

The first briefing paper provides the background of the project topic and positions the debate within the political and geostrategic context of today’s Western Balkans. Unlike the next briefing papers, it also focuses on the EU, NATO and US influence in the region and elaborates on them in more detail.​

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Description:

The second briefing paper focuses on Russian, Chinese, Turkish and Gulf States’ influence and activities in the political arena of the Western Balkan countries. Particularly, it assesses foreign powers’ activities aiming to achieve political gains – to influence political decision-making and voting in international bodies.

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Description:

The third briefing paper covers external influence in the economic and financial sphere. It focuses on FDI and mutual trade, identification of main investors and forms of dependencies, especially in the energy sector and control of strategic assets. In addition, the briefing paper investigates economic activities undermining rules-based market competition such as corruption and non-transparent purchases.

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Description:

The fourth briefing paper covers Russian, Chinese, Turkish, the Gulf States’ and Iranian influence in the cultural, academic and religious sphere, areas most often associated with the notion of soft power in international relations.

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Description:

The fifth briefing paper covers Russian, Chinese, Turkish, the Gulf States’, and Iranian influence in media and elections aiming at shaping public opinion and creation of a more accommodating environment to achieve own goals.

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Description:

The sixth briefing paper covers Russian, Turkish and the Gulf States’ influence in spreading extremism and radicalism. It mostly explores and analyses Russia’s influence in the spread of right-wing and nationalist extremism and Gulf States’ imprint in support of the Islamist extremism. Turkey’s role in spreading religious or nationalist radicalism has turned to be very limited. Chinese involvement in this sphere has not been identified, so it is not discussed in the paper.

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