Columbia University in the City of New York

Harriman Institute




The Rise of Russia and China in the Western Balkans: What Does this Mean for Democracy and European Integration?
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Please join the Harriman Institute for a panel discussion on the role of Russia and China in the Western Balkans, organized and moderated by Tanya Domi (Harriman Institute).

As the European Union has stepped back from the project of enlargement, Russia and China have ramped up their engagement in the Western Balkans, filling the geopolitical void left by the EU. During the past several years, the United States has also reduced its engagement in the region, along with the United Kingdom, whose attention has been focused on Brexit. Furthermore, no movement forward is expected during the remaining months of the Slovene presidency of the Council of the EU. Our panel brings together top Russian, China, and Balkan analysts to explore the dynamics of these superpowers who appear to be outflanking the EU at every turn.

Read the Voice of America report on this panel, published the following day.



Reuf Bajrovic, Co-Chairman of US-Europe Alliance
Allison Carragher, Visiting Scholar at Carnegie Europe
Ljubomir Filipović, Leader of the “May 21st” Civic Initiative, Montenegro
Ambassador Vesko Garčević, Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations at Boston University
Ivana Stradner, Jeane Kirkpatrick Visiting Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute

Moderator: Tanya Domi, Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs, Columbia SIPA; Harriman Institute Associated Faculty



Reuf Bajrovic serves as Co-Chairman of the US-Europe Alliance in Washington, DC. Previously, he served as Minister of Energy of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and as president of the Emerging Democracies Institute in Washington and the Civic Alliance political party in Bosnia Herzegovina.


Allison Carragher is a visiting scholar at Carnegie Europe, where she specializes in economic engagement in the Western Balkans and countries of the former Yugoslavia. Carragher is on leave from the U.S. Department of State, where she is an economic officer in the Foreign Service. She most recently completed a tour at U.S. Embassy Zagreb, and is preparing for a position at U.S. Embassy Sarajevo.


Ljubomir Filipović is a political scientist and activist from Montenegro. He works as a consultant and analyst for different governmental, non-governmental and private institutions. He is the leader of the “May 21st” Civic Initiative in Montenegro. He served his community as a Deputy and Acting Mayor of Budva and Political Advisor to Members of Parliament.


Ambassador Vesko Garčević is a Professor of the Practice of Diplomacy and International Relations at the Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, at Boston UniversityGarčević was Montenegrin Ambassador to NATO and Belgium; General Director for NATO and Security Policy in the Montenegrin Ministry of Foreign Relations and National Coordinator for NATO.


Ivana Stradner is a Jeane Kirkpatrick Visiting Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), where her research broadly focuses on cybersecurity and Russian hybrid warfare. Before joining AEI, Stradner worked as a visiting scholar at Harvard University and a lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt School of Law. Stradner has focused particular attention on Russian hybrid warfare in Eastern Europe, testifying at the EU Parliament and advising US government on this matter.



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