Saturday 18 November 2017 | 09:02

Andrei Kazakevich: Belarus’ expert community needs to step out of isolation

11.10.2016  |  Society   |  Zmicier Chvedaruk, "EuroBelarus" Information Service,  
Andrei Kazakevich: Belarus’ expert community needs to step out of isolation photo by nn.by

In Lithuanian Kaunas, 6th International Congress of Belarusian Studies has ended.

About 500 people attended the event. Within the three days, from October 8-10, the latest relevant research on political and social issues were discussed.

Andrei Kazakevich, the director of the Institute for Political Studies Palіtychnaya Sphera (Political Sphere) and the Chair of the Congress Organizing Committee, shared the results of the Congress with the EuroBelarus Information Service:

- First of all, we planned the Congress as an open platform for discussing current research and their results. The Congress provides our society with more open research results and makes academic community qualified, as well as enriches Belarusian culture. First of all, it should be noted that the Congress gives a clearer understanding of what is happening in Belarus. And, of course, promotes, if I may say so, certain people, who, in situation of absence of decent spaces in Belarus would simply remain invisible and would only be known to a narrow circle of experts.

- If such events are of great importance, why they are not organized in Belarus? And is one Congress enough?

- In Belarus, indeed, nothing like this happens. Unfortunately, because of a certain political situation, we cannot be sure about the safety and the possibility of a broad and uncensored discussion, which is available in Kaunas. It’s hard to say why else.

- How do you assess the current work of the Congress?

- The work has been extremely successful. We hosted many participants from different countries of the world. A third part of all the guests were foreigners and two-thirds were from Belarus. According to panel coordinators and researchers, discussions of narrow topics were extremely interesting. We are pleased that we have given researchers this opportunity, and hope that the materials of the discussions and presentations will be available for wide use in the media and on the Internet.

- This is the sixth Congress already - do you think that the political research has changed over this time?

- Indeed, over the past 5 years, much has changed. A number of research institutions and initiatives have been founded. We see that a new generation of analysts is growing. Expert community now looks stronger and more united; a wider range of problems is raised. On the whole, it should be noted that the Congress of Belarus researchers fosters the Belarusian expert community and expands its influence.

- Have you considered that the Congress will become that big over the years?

- Initially we hoped to launch small meetings for 50-100 persons. But with every year a growing number of researchers have been submitting their applications and abstracts for participation. Therefore, we can say that the Congress is constructed due to the need, not out of some well-established plan.

- You mentioned that special attention at the Congress was given to the research of Russian foreign policy and the situation in Eastern Europe.

- This issue is of concern for absolutely everyone now. The region recovers from the shock that began two years ago. New rules and security system should be built. Discussion of these aspects is important for the formation of expert opinion and its further impact on the foreign policy in the region.

- What else would you mention?

- Particularly impressive were the reports of Ananka and Parotnikau regarding weapons and the status of the Belarusian defense industry. The study of the post-Soviet area and disintegration processes in the region, the processes of cooperation, trade and economic partnership was extremely interesting. In general, we can say that now long-term strategies get increasingly smaller value in the region. This means that the processes of European and Eurasian integration have less impact on narrow interests.

Other news section «Society»

Statement of the BNP in connection with the prosecution of the Belarusan independent trade unions
Statement of the BNP in connection with the prosecution of the Belarusan independent trade unions
The Belarusan National Platform of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum issued a statement in connection with the criminal prosecution of the leaders of the Belarusan independent trade unions.
Sofia Sadovskaya: Parents do not understand why one needs contemporary Belarusan art
Sofia Sadovskaya: Parents do not understand why one needs contemporary Belarusan art
For the last five years, the Children's Creative Workshops (CCW) acquaints children with fine arts in a game form.
Larysa Bycko: Heritage can only be preserved together
Larysa Bycko: Heritage can only be preserved together
Many people came to the premiere of the play "Memory Shelter" to the village of Stuly in the Pruzany Rajon [District].
Zmicier Surski - We should pay tribute to the Belarusan poster
Zmicier Surski - We should pay tribute to the Belarusan poster
In 1991, poster artists from the Soviet Union sent 120 posters to the triennale in Japanese Tayama.
Oksana Gaiko - Our audio guide of Brest is a monument to Holocaust victims
Oksana Gaiko - Our audio guide of Brest is a monument to Holocaust victims
The center of Brest can now be studied with the help of an audio guide called Brest Stories Guide - however, meanwhile, only one of the city pages - anti-Semitism and the Holocaust.
To preserve heritage and to become valuable for each other
To preserve heritage and to become valuable for each other
On June, 16th, in the Minsk-based creative space CECH, the results of the work of the international program "CHOICE - Cultural Heritage - Opportunity for Civic Engagement" were presented.
Belarusan human rights defenders’ view on human rights activity and questions of cooperation
Belarusan human rights defenders’ view on human rights activity and questions of cooperation
We present a research results report of Belarusan human rights organizations sector.
Historical and Cultural Heritage and Its Substance
Historical and Cultural Heritage and Its Substance
Our expert in issues of forming identity on local visual codes, professional designer Michal Aniempadystau prepared a special report for our meeting in Brussels and further at a Belarusian discussion.
Social base of transformation programs in Belarus
Social base of transformation programs in Belarus
The Centre for European Transformation has prepared a sociological research report (abridged version) of social base of transformation programs in Belarus.
Opportunities for launching in Belarus the mechanisms to enjoyment of HR by persons with disabilitie
Opportunities for launching in Belarus the mechanisms to enjoyment of HR by persons with disabilitie
The Centre for European Transformation has prepared a research report of potential and opportunities for launching in Belarus the mechanisms to enjoyment of human rights by persons with disabilities.
Civil society’s role and place in the system of donor assistance to Belarus (2006-2014)
Civil society’s role and place in the system of donor assistance to Belarus (2006-2014)
The Centre for European Transformation has prepared a working paper on civil society’s role and place in the system of external assistance to Belarus in 2006-2014.
Final event of project CHOICE – Paving the way to European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018
Final event of project CHOICE – Paving the way to European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018
The final event of the two-year EU funded project “CHOICE - Cultural Heritage: Opportunity for Improving Civic Engagement” was held on 6 June at the Committee of the Regions, in Brussels.
Heritage is a verb. The results of the CHOICE project were summarized in Minsk (Photos and video)
Heritage is a verb. The results of the CHOICE project were summarized in Minsk (Photos and video)
Does Belarus need a “Public Ministry of Culture” and “Ašmiany Charter” to deal with the historical and cultural sites?
Aliaksei Chubat: "Singing gatherings" do not teach singing, but acquaint with the tradition
Aliaksei Chubat: "Singing gatherings" do not teach singing, but acquaint with the tradition
Organizer of singing workshops within the framework of the “CHOICE-Belarus: Legacy and modernity” project reflects on how one can build a bridge between museum and people.
Aliaksandr Tamkovich:If someone had said we would build a NPP I would have sent them to psychiatrist
Aliaksandr Tamkovich:If someone had said we would build a NPP I would have sent them to psychiatrist
On April 12 a "Chernobyl: Between Past and Future" discussion as well as a presentation of the German translation of the book "Philosophy of kindness. From disaster to garden of hope" took place.
Andrei Kazakevich: The protests will inevitably fade due to the lack of organization
Andrei Kazakevich: The protests will inevitably fade due to the lack of organization
Continuation of street actions requires logistics, planning, and thoughtful information support. The authorities, in turn, do everything possible to prevent organizing the protests.
Gennadz Maksak: Europe must react adequately to the events in Minsk
Gennadz Maksak: Europe must react adequately to the events in Minsk
A new wave of political repressions should make the EU return to tougher policy towards the Belarusian regime.
Nasta Loika: We returned to strict measures towards the dissentient
Nasta Loika: We returned to strict measures towards the dissentient
The Belarusian authorities violate human rights and the state obligations by suppressing  protests, violent arrests and sentences.
Uladzimir Matskevich: Regions can become the main threat for the Belarusian system
Uladzimir Matskevich: Regions can become the main threat for the Belarusian system
There are still no clear instructions from the center while the wave of protest is rolling out from Minsk across the country.
Experts: Cancer is no longer considered a verdict in Belarus
Experts: Cancer is no longer considered a verdict in Belarus
World Cancer Day is celebrated on February 4. What do the Belarusian know about the oncological diseases and what is their attitude towards them?
Gintautas Mažeikis: The relation of political field and arena in the framework of information war

In his report, philosopher Gintautas Mažeikis discusses several concepts that have been a part of the European social and philosophical thought for quite a time.

"Vilnius Consultations": Key points and recommendations on the future of EU Eastern Partnership

On September 11, the inaugural „Vilnius Consultations“ conference was organized by Vilnius Institute for Policy Analysis and Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Belarus's Lukashenko alleges “fifth column” plot as unrest continues

Belarusan President Lukashenko said on Tuesday a “fifth column” was plotting to overthrow him with the help of foreign-backed fighters, days before a planned street protest in Minsk against a new tax.

From farewell to a new Eastern policy and towards a new development

Poland and Germany were both initiators and drivers of a New Eastern policy linked to the Eastern neighborhood and Russia/Soviet Union.