News archive - [Event Review] Conference: 3rd RRPP Annual Conference

On May 25 and 26, 2011, the third Annual RRPP Conference "Social, Political and Economic Change in the Western Balkans" was held in Sveti Stefan, Montenegro. About one hundred researchers from the Western Balkans, as well as from Austria, Bulgaria, France, Italy, Poland, Switzerland and the UK, attended the conference to exchange scientific findings and discuss challenges, contradictions and ambivalences resulting from the transformation process in the Western Balkans. The conference additionally served as a forum for international exchange and networking.The discussion of scientific research projects presented in the eight workshops was complemented by introductory keynotes held by prominent academics and experts working in the region.

Sanja Vlahović, the Minister of Science of Montenegro, underlined the importance of social science research for the development of Montenegro and shared some interesting and comparative information about the current status and possible future of science and research development, especially in light of the EU-integration processes. Ralph Friedländerfrom the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation spoke about the Swiss contribution to the development of the region in general and social science research in particular; emphasizing that Switzerland will remain a dedicated partner in the years to come, investing among other areas into social sciences-especially with regard to research projects that are relevant to both transformation and policy. Tim Judah, a prominent journalist who covers the region for The Economist and The New York Review of Books (NYREV), offered an insightful overview on recent developments in the Western Balkans. His speech was complemented by lectures from academics Vesna Bojičić-Dželilović and Adam Fagan. Ms. Bojičić-Dželilović, a Senior Research Fellow at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), held an inspiring speech focusing on transnationalism and informal structures. Concerned with the issue of civil society, Adam Fagan of Queen Mary, University of London, reviewed the impact of foreign donor aid and civil society development in the Western Balkans.

The University of Fribourg, upon mandate of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), manages the Regional Research Promotion Programme in the Western Balkans (RRPP). It was established with the objective to advance Social Science research in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia. This partnership programme was created following a wide consultation process involving well-respected researchers and research institutions in the region, Switzerland and other European countries. The RRPP operates through three inter-related pillars:

1. The allocation of research grants for projects that deal with issues related to transformation in individual countries and the region;

2. The organization of methodological colloquia and thematic trainings;

3. The enabling and strengthening of regional interaction and cooperation.

This year's conference has been organized in close cooperation with, and with great support from, the Institute of Economic Sciences from Belgrade, which is also operating as the RRPP Local Coordination Unit in Serbia.

Link to conference website

Source: Email from Jasmina Opardija-Susnjar, RRPP.

From: 25 May 2011
To: 26 May 2011

Geographical focus
  • International; Other

Entry created by Ines Marinkovic on June 2, 2011
Modified on June 2, 2011