Gia (Gaioz) Japaridze

Professor at the International Relations and Political Sciences Department

The University of Georgia (UG)

One page BIO

Gaioz Japaridze is a former Georgian Diplomat. Current professor at the University of Georgia’s Department of International Relations and Political Science of the School of Social Sciences; Former Senior Fellow at GRASS (Georgia's Reforms Associates); Senior Fellow at GSAC (Georgian Strategoc Analysis Center) and Ilia Chavchavadze Center for European Studies and Studies and Civic Education. He also teaches in Georgian Politics and Governance at Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA) and Caucasus University (CU).

As a former Diplomat, Japaridze represented the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia in numerous capacities during a distinguished career: Consular officer and Counselor of the Embassy of Georgia to the Hellenic Republic; Counselor, Department of European Affairs, Division of Balkan States; Charge d’Affaires and Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of Georgia to the Republic of Portugal; Charge d’Affaires and Head of the Diplomatic Mission of Embassy of Georgia to the Republic of Cyprus. Japaridze attended Tbilisi State University (graduating in 1996) and the University of Athens, Athens, Greece (graduating in 2007). His formal studies include: classical philology, international relations, political theory, international law, European integration and United States foreign policy.

Dr. Shalva Dzebisashvili

Associate Professor and the head of the Political Science and International Relations Program

The University of Georgia (UG)

received a doctoral fellowship (GEM) from the European Commission in September 2012, successfully defended his thesis and was awarded the doctoral degree with Summa Cum Laude at the Institute for European Studies (IEE-ULB, Brussels) in January 2016. In 2008–09 he successfully completed an M.A. course in Strategic Security Studies at the NDU (Washington D.C.) and consequently took over the position of Senior Civilian Representative of Georgian MOD (Defense Advisor) to the Georgian Mission to NATO. From 2003 - to 2012 and from 2016 - to 2019 he served at various senior defense policy and planning related positions at the Georgian Ministry of Defense. In October 2017 he assumed the capacity of a program manager for developing courses on Strategic Policy and Planning, and Public Policy and Reporting at the Defense Institution Building School (DIBS). He is an associate professor and the head of the Political Science and International Relations Program at the University of Georgia. Dr. Dzebisashvili is a member of various Georgian non-governmental organizations and think-tanks such as the Civil Council on Defense and Security (CCDS) and the Georgian Strategic Analysis Center (GSAC), and author of multiple academic publications and articles.

Crisis Response Simulation Report (CRSR -2021)

This report reflects the results of a practical training and simulation course, "Crisis Simulation and Response 2021", held by the University of Georgia, using a specific scenario for simulating a crisis situation; it is a first attempt by an academic institution in Georgia to reflect the results of such exercise. Although the essence of a simulation is to imitate a scenario, simulations with a wide focus, as the one conducted by the University of Georgia, contribute significantly to gaining a better understanding of the threats facing the country and increase societal awareness about them; they also help identify the main challenges and problems that the Georgian state and various state agencies may face in a crisis situation. The results of the simulation, outlined in detail in this document, describe how the threats facing Georgia could potentially play out and identify the potential challenges that state structures would face. In order to assess the effectiveness of crisis response mechanisms in different areas, one must first identify shortcomings and gaps in their application (normative-procedural and competence-related). Respectively, this report also reflects a formalized list of recommendations to address shortcomings identified during the simulation, making the report useful not only for relevant state agencies but also for the wider public and for national security experts.

Gela Merabishvili

Orbán’s three perspectives on the Russian-Ukrainian War

Executive Summary

Hungary stands out from other Eastern and Central European states in the context of the Russian-Ukrainian War. While Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic have provided plenty of political and military support to Ukraine and significantly reduced economic ties with Russia, Hungary’s Fidesz-led government has tried to maintain trade and diplomacy with Moscow while showing only tepid solidarity with Ukraine. This article explains the reasons behind Hungary’s particular position by analyzing Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s discourse.

By categorizing Orbán’s discourse into local, national and global geographical scales, the article identifies three main factors shaping the Hungarian response to the war:

1.      The distrust between Hungary and Ukraine derives from the several years of politicization of the Hungarian transborder community in Ukraine’s westernmost region of Transcarpathia.

2.      Hungary’s reliance on the Russian oil and gas led to Orbán’s decision to stick with Russia as an economic partner. Simultaneously, the April 2022 election period encouraged his populist narrative, prioritising Hungary’s economic needs over solidarity with Ukraine.

3.      Orbán’s long-existing geopolitical vision of a multipolar world led him to view the Russian-Ukrainian War as a materialization of the great power rivalry between the US and Russia, where each seeks to expand its zone of influence. This geopolitical view then justifies Hungary’s neutral role. Orbán reframes Hungary’s neutrality in the discourse of peace versus war, whereby Hungary represents an “island of peace” and himself ­– a promoter of peace. At the same time, the great powers and their local proxies are only interested in continuing the war.

UG Security Platform