Populari’s Policy Researchers Katarina Cvikl and Ajdin Perčo participated at the conference „Leaving Europe’s Waiting Room. Overcoming the Crisis of EU Enlargement in the Western Balkans“ held from November 9 -11, 2012 in Graz, Austria and organized by the University of Graz, Centre for Southeast European Studies.
The conference was another opportunity for Populari’s policy researchers to engage in constructive discussion and exchange of opinions with world-class academics and practitioners in the Western Balkans.
The overarching theme of the event was the question whether EU enlargement in the region is in crisis and what type of reform would reinvigorate the process.
The conference was opened by the president of Macedonia with his elaboration of the position of Macedonia vis-à-vis EU enlargement and relations with Greece, through which Populari gained insight into recent political developments in Macedonia and its experience with the enlargement process.
Through drawing parallels and making comparisons, this knowledge is important as it can be used in our own research in BiH. A wide array of experts, for example Florian Bieber as one of the organizers, Kristof Bender from ESI, Milada Vachudova from the University of North Carolina, Joseph Marko, former judge at the Constitutional Court of Bosnia Herzegovina, and Tim Judah from The Economist, held panels further explaining their opinion on relevant topics. Their elaborations gave us the broader perspective on the EU enlargement process in the region of Western Balkans.
More importantly, informal discussions following the panels made possible for Populari’s researchers to encounter and debate with attendees personally and thus broaden their and Populari’s network.
Populari’s representatives recorded several statements from participants that were made public as we uploaded them to Populati TV Vimeo channel. The videos were later also used as materials of the conference by the organizers. You can find them on the right hand side along with other documents.
Finally, the participation at the conference was utilized for the purpose of promoting Populari’s activities and reports, thus enhancing our international outreach.
More details on the conference can be downloaded below: