The Regional Studies Center (RSC) is an independent think tank engaged in a wide range of strategic analysis and research, developing policy initiatives aimed at bolstering political and economic reform and conflict resolution in the broader South Caucasus region.
As a leading think tank based in Armenia, the RSC strives to elevate the level of political discourse and deepen civic activism while broadening engagement in the public policy process. One of our core longer-term goals is to serve as a catalyst for reform and sustainable development by contributing to the formulation of public policy through innovative research and objective analysis.
Our research and project activities consist of five main program areas:
(1) Regional analysis of political, economic and security issues in the South Caucasus, but also including Iran, Russia and Turkey;
(2) National security and defense reform;
(3) Democratization and good governance;
(4) Economics and sustainable development;
(5) Educating and empowering youth as an “agent of change.”
Since our founding in 2012, the RSC has also offered a regular series of certificate-based professional development training courses, analytical briefings and interactive “focus groups,” and convenes simulation exercises focused on diplomatic negotiations and “war gaming” models.
Regional Studies Center (RSC)
60 Aram Street, #53, 3rd floor
0010 Yerevan, Armenia
Tel: (+374) 11 70 99 69
In an interview with the Ukrainian weekly “Mirror of the Week” newspaper published on 18 July, RSC Senior Analyst David Shahnazaryan was cited for his critical analysis of the outlook for the Russian-led Eurasian Union project. According to Shahnazaryan, it is now increasingly unlikely that Armenia may join the Customs Union/ Eurasian Economic Union in the current year. Further, he argued that actually “it is very likely that Armenia will return to the Association Agreement with the EU.”.
In an interview with the Armenian “1in.am” electronic news agency, RSC Senior Analyst David Shahnazaryan offered extensive analysis assessing the impact of the tragic downing of a civilian Malayasian Airlines Being 777 over Ukraine. According to Shahnazaryan, the civilian aircraft was most likely downed by pro-Russian militia units in Donetsk in the eastern part of Ukraine, probably using the Russian “Buk” anti-aircraft missile system..
In a two-part interview published on 16 and 17 July by the Armenian daily newspaper “Aravot,” RSC Project Director Haykak Arshamyan offered his analysis of developments in Armenian foreign policy, with a focus on the new security environment in the wake of Russian aggression against Ukraine, and also assessed the current state of domestic politics.
According to Dr. Arshamyan, the resilience of Armenian civil society has changed the internal political dynamic of the country, to the point where the Armenian government has become unable to effectively limit or silence civic activism. He further noted the demise of the Armenian government’s stated ambition to join the Russian-driven Eurasian Union project, and stressed that the future of Armenian relations with the European Union (EU) remains promising, despite the setbacks form the Armenian president’s blunder to sacrifice the Association Agreement with the EU.
www.aravot.am/2014/07/16/479964/ (first part)
www.aravot.am/2014/07/17/480280/ (second part).
At the invitation of the Georgian government, RSC Senior Analyst David Shahnazaryan attended a two-day international conference in Batumi, Georgia from 10-11 July and delivered a presentation on regional security and public diplomacy. The conference, entitled “Georgia’s European Way,” was opened by the Georgian Prime Minister and Foreign Minister and brought together a number of senior officials and representatives from civil society, as well as leading analysts to “discuss issues related to the implementation of the Association Agreement, including the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA), and the EU-Georgia cooperation agenda ahead of the Eastern Partnership (EaP) 2015 Riga Summit.”.
RSC Director Richard Giragosian presented a “critical assessment” of proposed amendments to the Armenian constitution at a public event on 10 July organized by the Apella Institute for Policy Analysis and Dialogue in partnership with the Open Society Foundations- Armenia. The international conference, entitled “Rethinking Constitutional Reforms in Context,” included presentations by Gagik Harutyunyan, the Chairman of the Armenian Constitutional Court, and the head of the Armenian government-formed Constitutional Reforms Commission, Professor Miroslaw Wyrzykowski, Professor, Chair of Human Rights, University of Warsaw, former Judge, Constitutional Court, Poland, Dr. Daniel Smilov, Programme Director, Centre for Liberal Strategies, Bulgaria and Professor of Comparative Constitutional Law, University of Sofia and CEU, and Dr. Alexei Pikulik, Director, Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies, and Assistant Professor, European University in Saint Petersburg, Russia.
Giragosian’s formal presentation will be posted shortly..