Spoiler or ambivalent partner: the GOC and the fate of Georgia’s European future

Bidzina Lebanidze[1] Shota Kakabadze[2] The Georgian Orthodox Church (GOC) has long served as both a social glue in Georgia and a significant marker of the contemporary Georgian national identity. However, over the last few years, the GOC has been drifting away from its historical position of moral ...
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The “German Question” that baffles EU’s Neighbors: Can Berlin become a new center of gravity for Associated countries?

Bidzina Lebanidze Since at least the US ”pivot“ to Asia under the administration of Barack Obama the Associated countries in the Eastern Partnership (EaP)[1] initiative have found themselves stuck in a political and security limbo, defined by a resurgent Russia, the declining role of the US and ...
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Compendium of Policy Documents

Levan Kakhishvili, Salome Minesashvili, Bidzina Lebanidze, Shota Kakabadze The Georgian Institute of Politics is delighted to present Compendium 2021, the latest of our annual collection of policy documents dedicated to Georgia’s political processes, challenges, and prospects....
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Radicalization of Georgian Party Politics: in Search of Long-term Stability

Bidzina Lebanidze The recent post-election crisis highlighted the role of political radicalization as a major challenge for Georgia’s fragile democracy. Political radicalization in Georgia undermines the process of democratic consolidation and weakens state institutions in the country by contribut...
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The First 100 Days of Georgian Dream Government: Reality and Challenges

Authors: Bidzina Lebanidze, Elguja Khokrishvili, Salome Kandelaki, Nino Samkharadze, Givi Silagadze Georgia’s parliamentary elections in 2020 resulted in a new political crisis, which further complicated the grave situation in the country resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. In the context of the...
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The Judiciary Reform in Georgia and its Significance for the Idea of European Integration

Tinatin Erkvania, Bidzina Lebanidze The efficient functioning of the judiciary and justice system remains the Achilles’ heel of Georgia’s political system. While four recent waves of reforms have formally improved and refined the quality of the judiciary institutionally, these reforms have not i...
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A Region lost? In the South Caucasus: The West is out, Turkey is in, and Russia is stronger than ever

Op-Ed Bidzina Lebanidze[1] The South Caucasus region has recently witnessed significant upheavals: a war between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabagh, political chaos in Armenia, post-election turmoil in Georgia, and a shifting geopolitical dynamic between Russia and Turkey. As Armenia, Azer...
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Can Georgia Deliver Democratic Elections?

* The Blog is originally published by PONARS Eurasia (PONARS Eurasia Commentary) Recently, Georgia’s ruling party, Georgian Dream (GD), proclaimed its intention to formally apply for EU membership in 2024, against all odds. The statement was made at an important time: just as the Black Sea coun...
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