The Caucasus Region at the Geopolitical and Security Crossroads

Sergey Markedonov, visiting fellow in the Center for Strategic and International Studies Russia and Eurasia Program

Sergey Markedonov focused on the transformation of the Caucasus region from periphery to one of the focal points of the Eurasian, European and Transatlantic security. His presentation examined the role of various states (USA, Turkey and Iran), the integration communities (European Union), and international organizations (OSCE, NATO and UN) since the USSR dissolution. Special attention was paid to Russia’s position and its desire for the keeping of an exclusive role in the Caucasus geopolitics.

The talk stressed the new status quo shaped by the August War of 2008, including the political agenda for South Ossetia and Abkhazia, new Western strategies on engagement/non-recognition, the impact of the war on Nagorno-Karabakh conflict resolution, and the Turkish-Armenian rapprochement.

Sergey Markedonov is a visiting fellow in the CSIS Russia and Eurasia Program (since May, 2010). He is an expert on the Caucasus, as well as Black Sea, regional security, nationalism, interethnic conflicts and de-facto states in the post-Soviet area. His publications include several books, chapters and reports, about 100 academic articles, and more than 500 press pieces. Recently published books and reports include De facto states of the Post-Soviet Space: particularities of the nation-building (Caucasus Institute, 2012), The Turbulent Eurasia (Academia, 2010), The Big Caucasus: Consequences of the “Five Day War,” New Challenges and Prospects (International Centre for Black Sea Studies, 2009).

From 2001 to 2010, Sergey Markedonov worked as head of the Interethnic Relations Group and deputy director at the Institute for Political and Military Analysis in Moscow and he also held teaching positions at the Russian State University for the Humanities, the Moscow State University, and the Diplomatic Academy.

Information on the “Connecting with the Caucasus” 2012 speaker series
Growing out of the tradition of more than four decades of scholarship and conferences on the Caucasus at the University of Chicago, the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies (CEERES) will host a speaker series entitled “Connecting with the Caucasus” during the 2012-13 academic year. We hope to build on the results of our highly successful 2007 conference “The Caucasus: Directions and Disciplines” which outlined the critical agendas that orient regional studies and achieved a high level of inter-disciplinary cross fertilization. Our proposed series will bring together both younger and senior scholars from a variety of fields (Linguistics, History, Politics, Anthropology and Sociology, Literature/Music/Art) to revisit the histories, analyze the contemporary situations, and encourage the creation of new knowledge with regard to an area of considerable humanistic, social scientific, and strategic significance. The speaker series will set the stage for a follow-up to the 2007 conference in winter 2014. The “Connecting with the Caucasus” speaker series is presented by CEERES, with generous support from the Norman Wait Harris Fund and the Franke Institute for the Humanities.


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