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On June 30, CPR representatives Levan Kakhishvili and Tamar Bitsadze conducted a workshop in the framework of the Summer School organized by the Faculty of Social Sciences, for 11th grade students from high schools.

The topic of the workshop was inequality and types of violence as a problem of public policy-making. The workshop emphasized the importance of distinguishing different types of discrimination which take place in everyday life within society, to which people do not usually pay attention. However, if one wants to become a future public administrator, they have to be vigilant. During the workshop, with the help of a simulation game, participants differentiated between physical, cultural, and structural types of violence and discussed possible solutions to this problem in the context of public administration. The discussion also touched the challenges public administrators face while trying to come up with or implement solutions to such sensitive problems.

 
 
 

On May 16, 2017, Georgian Institute of Politics hosted the international conference – “Georgia at the Nexus of Democratization and Europeanization: Prospects and Challenges “. In the first panel of the conference, “Party Politics and Democratization”, Levan Kakhishvili, a Researcher at the Center for Political Research delivered a talk about the importance of stable political parties for democracy. Other speakers included:

Davit Usupashvili – Former Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia;
David Bakradze – Former Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia;
Dr. Max Bader – Lecturer at University of Leiden;
Levan Tsutskiridze – Executive director of the Netherlands Institute for Multi-Party Democracy (NIMD) in Tbilisi.

The theme of the conference was democratization and included three panels:
1. Party Politics and Democratization – addressing issues related to further development and strengthening of political parties in Georgia;
2. Parliamentarism – devoted to the discussion of the role that parliament can and does play in Georgia’s political system;
3. Europeanization and Democracy – panelists discussed how Georgia can develop a coherent strategy to guide its relations with both the EU and NATO.

Panelists of the conference:

The conference featured such well-known experts and practitioners as Charles Fairbanks, Senior Fellow at Hudson Institute; Laura Thornton, Resident Director in Georgia for the NDI; Dirk Schuebel, Head of the Eastern Partnership Bilateral Division of the European External Action Service, etc. The panelists discussed various challenges for Georgia’s democratization process including Hhow Georgia can develop a stronger and more effective parliament, a more stable and sustainable system of political parties that are defined by coherent ideological programs, and how  Georgia should guide its relations with the EU and NATO.

The conference was made possible through the financial support of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED).

 

Series of trainings for students initiated by the Center for Political Research (CPR) together with the Faculty of Social Sciences were conducted from April 25 to May 27. Six training sessions covered three modules: Public Speaking; Critical Thinking and Reading, and Time Management. Trainings were delivered by Grigol Julukhidze (Public Speaking) an Invited Lecturer at IBSU, Levan Kakhishvili (Critical Thinking and Reading) a Researcher at CPR, as well as two invited trainers Teona Buadze and Sopho Balanchivadze (Time Management).

In the framework of the Public Speaking training, apart from discussing the importance of public speaking in today’s world, students learned how to make public speech effective; what skills a good speaker should have, etc. The second training, delivered by Levan Kakhishvili, covered the issues related to thinking critically and reading effectively. During the two-day training students learned what criticism means and why it is important; that criticism is not necessarily a negative phenomenon; and that there are barriers that prevent people from thinking critically. Furthermore, the second part of the training referred to effective reading strategies related to how it is possible to process a large amount of reading materials efficiently. The last training covered tips tricks regarding Time Management during which two invited trainers, showed the participants that efficient time management is the key to getting the most out of one’s day and generally life. During the course students with the help of different vivacious activities and theoretical information realized how much time people waste unproductively. With the help of various exercises like rethinking and reorganizing priorities, the participants learned ways of managing their time effectively.

The trainings were concluded with a concluding ceremony on May 30, during which students were awarded with certificates and shared their opinions with CPR’s team regarding the trainings. In future too, the Center for Political Research will offer students various interesting activities.

 
 
 

 
Another research conducted by Levan Kakhishvili, a Researcher at the Center of Political Research, was published by the Netherlands Institute for Multiparty Democracy in Georgia. The research concerns the political participation of national minority women in Georgia.
 
According to the research, minority women’s involvement in politics is extremely limited and there are two types of impeding factors structural and cultural. Structural factors include the type of electoral system, recruitment practices within political parties, and knowledge of the state language. Cultural factors include perceptions and fear of politics among minority women, and gender prejudice and stereotypes within the minority communities and generally in Georgia.
 
Based on research conducted in Armenian and Azerbaijani populated towns of Akhalkalaki and Marneuli, a set of recommendations were developed. First, reforming the electoral system and establishing regional proportional representation with closed lists is likely to provide a better institutional framework for minority women’s political participation. Second, institutionalisation of recruitment practices and establishment of women’s councils within political parties will promote minority women’s representation in politics. Third, ensuring that minority women know the state language will be a step forward in this process. Fourth, frustration and fear currently present among minority women should be eliminated in order to ensure that these women are willing to participate more. Finally, gender prejudice and stereotypes that keep minority women under pressure have to be eradicated in order for minority women to enjoy the opportunity of involvement in politics.
 
For the full policy paper in English please visit the website of the Multiparty Democracy Eastern European Neighborhood Office. The paper is also available in the Georgian, Armenian, and Azerbaijani languages.
 

On May 24th practical seminar for students and administrative staff about Online Data Analysis (ODA) platform was organized by the Center for Political Research in partnership with the Caucasus Research Resources Center (CRRC) in Georgia. 
 
CRRC-Georgia has developed the ODA to ease access to its rich empirical data about the South Caucasus. The tool was designed primarily for those who are not familiar with statistical software and lack sophisticated data analysis skills. 
 
The workshop enabled participants to understand importance of data analysis; learn such terms as cross-country (Azerbaijan, Georgia, Armenia) and time-series (2008-2015) data analysis. Consequently, participants will be able to integrate statistical data easily into their researches. 
 
The workshop was practical, which means that during the seminar attendees were able to conduct all operations on the computer themselves. 
 
Activity was conducted by Rati Shubladze the Researcher at the Caucasus Research Resource Center.
 
 
 
 
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