Publications

Kosovo

Why Kosovo needs migration - From research to policy

23 Apr 2015

In 2005 ESI undertook research on rural poverty, migration and remittances in Kosovo. Our conclusions were published in 2006 in a report called “Cutting the Lifeline” that showed how migration had been a necessity for many generations of young men in particular. The report also examined how after 1999, the European doors to legal work migration closed, and only the lucky few with close family in the diaspora could migrate through family reunification schemes. In the report, we described in detail the economic realities of two villages that are representative of the wider social and economic situation in Kosovo: Cerrce, located in north-west Kosovo on the border with Albania, and Lubishte, situated in the mountainous southeast. Our findings clearly showed that economic development, without significant numbers of people leaving such villages to find work, skills and capital elsewhere, is simply inconceivable.

Bosnia

Bosnia as Wunderkind of Doing Business - Outline of 14 steps to take – A Proposal to the presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina

19 Mar 2015

In this letter we would like to suggest how to change this situation within a very short period of time and without a huge effort. We carefully studied the astonishing rise in Doing Business rankings by Georgia and Macedonia. Here we outline how within one year Bosnia can reach a better rank than the Balkan average; and it will help you understand how within another year Bosnia could overtake the EU. The objective is to make Bosnia another global Wunderkind of Doing Business.

Corruption

Yolsuzluğu Ölçmek - Derin bir analizin gerekliliği ve basit bir öneri

19 Mar 2015

Bugün Avrupa Birliği’nin Güneydoğu Avrupa’da yolsuzluğa dair hangi açıklamaları derinlik arz ediyor? Hangileri ciddi bir çalışma ve somut bulgulara dayanıyor? Bu husus önemli, çünkü AB sadece durumu tasvir ile yetinmemeli, bu alanda kuralları da koymalı… sadece olanın resmini çekmemeli, nasıl olması gerektiğini de söylemeli.

Corruption

Measuring corruption – The case for deep analysis and a simple proposal

19 Mar 2015

Which statements the European Union makes about corruption in South East Europe today have depth? Which are based on serious reflection and hard evidence? This matters because EU statements on corruption should be not only descriptive but also prescriptive not only pointing out how things are, but also how they ought to be.

Greece

The good news from Greece – Can Thessaloniki point the way?

22 Feb 2015

He has always been a man of the left. He entered politics with the backing of the Communist Party in local elections in 2002. In his campaigns he promised liberation from a conservative status quo that had kept society “dwelling in darkness.” He assailed the corruption of his predecessor, who is now in jail. In 2010 he won the election for mayor by a mere 300 votes. He rejected his predecessor’s expensive limousine and is often seen on a bike. He never wears a tie. In 2014, he was re-elected as mayor of Greece’s second city by a huge margin.

Paris Paper: Enlargement and impact. Twelve ideas for 2015 - Dummy report

28 Jan 2015

For reformers anywhere time is the scarcest resource. Leaders everywhere today face the risk of drowning in information, being swamped by articles, conversations, emails and occasionally reports and books. Active people live on top of ever-growing mountains of words. And “a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.”

Bosnia

Protests and Illusions – How Bosnia and Herzegovina lost a decade

23 Dec 2014

Bosnia and Herzegovina is the only country in South East Europe were it is possible to publish a report first published in 2004 as relevant in 2014. No other country lost a full decade. We hope that this will help new governments in Bosnia – and international policy makers – to also avoid the traps into which they fell during the past ten years.

Bosnia

Protesti i iluzije – Kako je Bosna i Hercegovina izgubila desetljeće

23 Dec 2014

BiH je jedina država u jugoistočnoj Europi za koju je moguće 2014. godine ponovno objaviti izvještaj koji je objavljen 2004. godine, a da i dalje bude relevantan. Niti jedna druga država nije izgubila čitavo desetljeće. Nadamo se kako će ovo pomoći vlastima u BiH, ali i međunarodnim akterima, da izbjegnu zamke u koje su upadali tokom zadnjih deset godina.

Kosovo

Books and Teachers – The Great Debate on Education Kosovo needs in 2015

22 Dec 2014

Kosovo has the youngest population in Europe, with half its population under the age of 26. A quarter of the population is in schools at any given time. In the coming decade, these students will be leaving schools and will face a most uncertain future. If things go well, today’s students will help their country catch up with the rest of Europe. If things go badly, they will be deprived of prospects, short of jobs and income, tempted to take to the streets in protest or to seek to emigrate.

Kosovo

Librat dhe Mësimdhënësit – Për një debat kombëtar mbi arsimin

22 Dec 2014

Kosova ka popullsinë më të re në Evropë, me gjysmën e saj nën moshën 26 vjeçare. Një e katërta popullsisë së Kosovës janë në shkollë. Në dhjetëvjeçarin e ardhshëm, këta nxënës do të përfundojnë shkollën dhe do të përballen me një të ardhme të pasigurt. Nëse gjithçka shkon mirë, nxënësit e sotëm do t’i ndihmojnë shtetit të tyre të arrijë nivelin e shteteve tjera Evropiane. Nëse gjërat nuk shkojnë mirë, nxënësit e sotëm do të mbesin pa perspektivë, punësim apo të ardhura, të shtyrë të emigrojnë apo do të dalin në rrugë të protestojnë.

Bulgaria

Bulgaria – Transition and happiness - a Bulgarian paradox?

1 Dec 2014

Bulgarians are famously unhappy. A few years ago their pessimism came to international attention. A Gallup Poll discovered in 2009 that the citizens of this small Balkan nation had lower expectations for how their life would be five years later than Iraqis and Afghans. Bulgarians were not surprised by this discovery. A leading Sofia-based think tank, the Centre for Liberal Strategies (CLS), had already published a paper in 2003 titled Optimistic Theory about the Pessimism of the Transition. The latest World Happiness Report confirmed this global reputation for morosity in 2013. Out of 156 nations it ranked Bulgarians 144th, behind Iraqis and Afghans, Congolese and Haitians.

Turkey

Türk Öğrenciler, Tecrit ve Erasmus Sorunsalı

24 Jul 2014

Türkiye’de 2002 yılında 76 üniversite vardı. Bu rakam 2013 yılında 175’e ulaştı (104 devlet üniversitesi ve 71 vakıf üniversitesi). Bu süre içerisinde, Türkiye’nin 1,2 milyon olan üniversite öğrencisi sayısıda 4,4milyonun üzerine çıktı. Buna rağmen hâlâ çok az Türk öğrenci eğitim hayatının bir bölümünü yurtdışında geçiriyor. 2011 yılında yapılan bir ankete göre, 15-35 yaşları arasındaki Türklerin yalnızca yüzde üçü eğitim veya staj için yurtdışına gitmiş.Bu çok düşük bir oran. Almanya’da ve İsveç’te rakamlar sırasıyla yüzde 21 ve yüzde 24.

Elinizdeki rapor yukarıdaki rakamların arkasındaki bazı nedenleri inceleyerek, daha fazla Türk öğrencinin yurtdışına gitmesinin önündeki engelleri ortaya çıkarıyor: yabancı dil eksikliği; pek çok üniversitenin yabancı üniversitelerle işbirliği anlaşmaları imzalamalarını zorlaştıran, yabancı öğrenciler için Türkiye’de sunulan ilgi çekici derslerin azlığı; Türk Erasmus öğrencileri için maddî destek yetersizliği ve karmaşık vize başvuru işlemleri. 

Turkey

Turkish Students, Isolation and the Erasmus Challenge

24 Jul 2014

In 2002, Turkey had 76 universities. In 2013 the number was 175 (104 public and 71 private). During this period the number of Turkey’s university students increased from 1.2 million to more than 4.4 million.

However, few Turkish students spend any part of their studies abroad. A 2011 survey found that only 3 percent of Turks aged 15-35 had been abroad for education or training. This is very low. In Germany and Sweden the numbers were 21 and 24 percent, respectively.

This paper looks at some of the reasons behind these numbers. It identifies major issues that prevent Turkish students from going abroad in higher numbers: a foreign language deficit; a lack of attractive courses for foreign students in Turkey, which makes it harder for many universities to sign cooperation agreements with foreign partners; a lack of funding for Turkish Erasmus students; and complicated visa application procedures.

Turkey

Turkey – Kafka's World and the Trial of Mehmet O.

24 Jul 2014

Turkey has a tradition of rough and ready criminal justice. Judges virtually never reject an indictment, including many unconvincing ones launched by overzealous prosecutors. With a population smaller than Germany, Turkey had five times more criminal cases in 2010. Germany has 24 judges per 100,000 inhabitants; Turkey only 11. The workload for every Turkish judge is thus more than ten times that of a judge in Germany. One can see the results in any ordinary criminal court across the country, where a judge hears up to 20 cases a day.

Turkey

Türkiye – Kafka'nın Dünyası ve Mehmet Ö.'nün Davası

24 Jul 2014

Türkiye özensiz ve vasat bir ceza yargısı geleneğine sahip. Yargıçlar -fazla istekli bazı savcılarca hazırlanmış inandırıcılıktan uzak olanlar da dahil- neredeyse hiçbir iddianameyi reddetmiyorlar. Kıyaslama yapacak olursak, 2010 yılında Türkiye’de, nüfusça daha küçük olduğu Almanya’ya oranla beş kat daha fazla ceza davası vardı. Yine Almanya’da her 100,000 vatandaş için 24 yargıç bulunurken, Türkiye’de bu sayı 11. Her Türk yargıcın iş yükü Almanya’daki bir meslektaşından on kat daha ağır. Sonuçta, Türkiye’deki her hangi bir ceza mahkemesi yargıcının günde 20 kadar davaya bakmak durumunda kaldığını gözlemlemek mümkün.

Macedonia

Vladimir and Estragon in Skopje - A fictional conversation on trust and standards and a plea on how to break a vicious circle

17 Jul 2014

There is no past, no future, just an endlessly repeating present. Characters are imprisoned in a single place, unable to leave. They inhabit a universe filled with futile dialogue and futile gestures. People are lost. We are on the set of Waiting for Godot. We are in the world of EU-Macedonian relations in 2014. Is this the future of European enlargement policy throughout South East Europe?

Kosovo

Kosovo – Of Patriarchs and Rebels

1 Jun 2014

Kosovo’s (male) politicians repeat on every occasion that they see their country’s future as a member of the European Union. For this to happen, however, not only will the five EU member states yet to recognise Kosovo’s independence need to change their position, but the country will need more people willing to challenge its taboos. It will need champions for girls’ education, a revolution in the labour market and new forms of family life and gender relations. It will need scholarships for young women to study abroad and young women willing to return to take on the patriarchal values that still set Kosovo apart. It will need more women like Jeta and Besa for a European Kosovo, Kosovo 2.0, to become a reality.

Romania

Timisoara 2.0

23 May 2014

Romania's membership of the EU in 2007 seemed to promise a continuation of the growth trajectory and an eventual catching up with EU living standards. It was a promise that seemed plausible until 2008. In the six years after Romania started its accession negotiations, GDP per capita rose from 30 to 47 per cent of the EU average. Romania remained poor, but salaries were rising. A new middle class – university graduates employed by multinational companies – found itself with money to spend. It began heading off with low-cost airlines for weekend trips. Timisoara airport offered daily direct flights to more than 20 European destinations.

Croatia

The difference leadership makes - Lessons from Croatia's EU accession process

2 Apr 2014

In the end it seemed almost inevitable. Croatia submitted its EU membership application to the Greek EU presidency in early 2003. At a referendum in January 2012 two thirds of Croatian voters supported their country's accession to the European Union as its 28th member. The referendum came after national elections in December 2011 in which all of the main political parties had backed EU membership. Although some observers noted that less than half of all eligible voters participated in the referendum, given the large number of "dead souls" in the voting registry and the fact that many Croatians living abroad did not vote, the percentage of resident voters who participated appears to have been above 61 per cent. Turnout was thus considerably higher than in Hungary (46 per cent) and comparable to Slovenia (60 per cent) and Poland (59 per cent). The January 2012 referendum concluded a decade in which successive Croatian governments had all assumed that there was no credible alternative to meeting the conditions put forward by the EU to become a full member. But there was nothing inevitable about Croatia's evolution: it took significant political leadership, as well as courage and perseverance, to repudiate the values and policies of the 1990s. It also took, at key moments during this period, smart EU interventions. The Croatian experience, as well as the lessons it holds for the rest of the Western Balkans, is worth exploring in more detail.

Turkey

Trust and travel - Easing the visa burden for Turks in five steps

24 Feb 2014

In December 2013 the EU-Turkey visa liberalisation process was launched. ESI recommends that EU member states now commit to five goals to support this process. These goals can be achieved by each member state through steps fully in compliance with existing EU visa rules.