BSF through the years     2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020

BSF 2018

Finding Answers Together to the New Normal

Continuing uncertainty and unpredictability is no longer a form of crisis; unpredictability has become “new normal” in international relations. Actors no longer feel committed to the rules and institutions of the post-Cold War period. This new balance can be observed in the phenomena and effects of first artificial intelligences as well as acceleration and greater automation of labor and the global economy overall. Powerful, growing economies of the Middle and the Far East mark the 21st Century as the ascending “Asian Century.”

In this new world, Europe and transatlantic relations are confronted with increasing pressure of populism that, along with nationalism, strikes at the foundations of the European project and relations formed after the fall of the Berlin Wall. In this new order, institutions must be re-designed in order to better understand and overcome challenges that threaten to collapse them.

The Balkans is at a turning point in 2018 – the new EU Enlargement Strategy has created a sense of urgency among regional leaders, primarily reflected in need to find solutions for old disputes. This year, from October 17 to 19, the Belgrade Security Forum will deal with the question – where are we in this state of “new normal”? Where do we go? How do we make progress for everyone in an unpredictable future?

This year’s Forum will traditionally start with the Academic Event, titled “How conflict sensitive is the EU crisis response”, which will gather young researchers.



Day 1
17 Oct 2018
Day 2
18 Oct 2018
Day 3
19 Oct 2018
09:00 - 10:00

Registration of Participants

Academic Event Welcoming Speech: How Conflict Sensitive is EU Crisis Response?

By combining bottom–up perspectives with an institutional approach, this panel aim at increasing our understanding of how EU crisis responses function and are received on the ground in crisis areas....
Read More

Academic Event Keynote Speech: How Do We Listen To the Local In Times of Crisis?

The term “local” has become a buzzword in policy and academic circles in recent years, with an emphasis on local participation, local buy-in, local legitimacy etc. But where/what is the...
Read More
Roger Mac Ginty

Academic Panel 1

Abstracts:  Title: The EU’s Integrated Approach to Crisis Response: Learning from NATO, UN and OSCE Abstract: While the EU implements a unique version of comprehensiveness to fit its sui generis...
Read More
Steven Blockmans
Jozef Bátora
Mateja Peter
Irena Mnatsakanyan
Discussant: Rok Zupančič
Moderator: Tijana Rečević
12:30 - 14:30

Networking Lunch

Academic Panel 2

Abstracts:  Title: The EU at the Borders: Crisis Response and Border Management in Libya and Ukraine Abstract: This paper discusses how and why the EU considers borders management concepts, the...
Read More
Chiara Loschi
Enver Ferhatović
Morten Bøås
Vsevolod Samokhvalov
Moderator and Discussant: Jelena Radoman

Academic Event Closing Remarks

Morten Bøås
Pernille Rieker

Plenary Panel 1: Balkans 2025 (Co-funded by the Europe for Citizens Programme of the European Union)

  Discussion Points: Will the EU remain committed to the enlargement, and will the Balkan leaders remain committed to the EU accession? What are the potential disruptive, and also potential...
Read More
Hedvig Morvai
Naim Rashiti
Robert Cooper
Vladimir Međak
Moderator: Zoran Nechev
20:00 - 21:30

Evening Sessions (simultaneously organized smaller sessions)

Session 1: What is a Way Forward for Bosnia?

Discussion Points: What has the 2015 Reform Agenda achieved, and how can it be built upon? Should the EU consider pressurising for major changes to the executive election system? How...
Read More
Alida Vračić
Dennis Gratz
Adnan Ćerimagić
Marika Djolai
Moderator: Vedran Džihić

Session 2: The Middle East: Making Sense of a Region in Turmoil

Discussion Points: Which are the main drivers of instability in the region today? Are there positive contributors? What role for the fast-increasing young population? And for the outside powers? Is...
Read More
Vuk Jeremić
Daniel Levy
Mark Fitzpatrick
Florence Gaub
Michael Young
Moderator: Hakim Khatib
8:00 - 9:00

Registration of Participants

Grand Opening: Western Balkans and the European Union

  Discussion Points:  Is necessity of enlargement one of core principles of the European Union? How does Serbia contribute to Europe? What are the values Austria aims to promote during...
Read More
H.E. Aleksandar Vučić
H.E. Alexander Van der Bellen
Moderator: Pavol Demeš
10:00 - 10:45

Coffee and Networking break

Plenary Panel 2: Reinventing the Union (in Partnership with the European Fund for the Balkans)

Discussion Points: (Re)Nationalization, Europe of Regions, or United States of Europe – what is the (best) future for Europe? From Eurozone to Migration and European Security Council: Which area should...
Read More
Emanuela Claudia Del Re
David Konecký
Guillaume Klossa
Nadiia Koval
Florian Bieber
Moderator: Srđan Majstorović
12:15 - 13:00

Coffee and Networking Break

13:00 - 14:30

Break-out Sessions (simultaneously organized smaller sessions)

Session 3: Where Is the New Phase of the Belgrade-Pristina Dialogue Taking Us? (In Partnership with the Council for Inclusive Governance-CIG)

Discussion Points: The dialogue has been in a limbo since 2016. Is the Brussels dialogue alive? Can different results be achieved while the facilitator and the sides are employing the...
Read More
Gordana Čomić
Sabine Stöhr
Ilir Deda
Agon Maliqi
Marko Đurić
Moderator: Alex Roinishvili Grigorev

Session 4: Beyond Ideology: West-Russia Relations and Political Pragmatism

Discussion Points: Is Russia the biggest opponent of the West in the international relations? What are the biggest conflict points in West – Russia relations? Are there any ways going...
Read More
Ulrich Kühn
Stefan Lehne
Pavel Luzin
Niklas Nováky
Clarissa Duvigneau
Moderator: Gordana Delić
14:30 - 16:00

Networking Lunch

Methods, Career and Networking Cafe

As in previous years, the BSF Academic Event will be complemented by a Methods, Career and Networking Café. It is an innovative type of conference session led by senior scholars...
Read More
Morten Bøås
Jozef Bátora
Discussant: Rok Zupančič
Roger Mac Ginty

Plenary Panel 3: The Asian Century

Discussion Points: Can we dispute the existence of the Asian Century? Who are the most important actors when we are speaking about Asian Century? What are the main characteristics of...
Read More
Leonard Benardo
Shada Islam
Jens Bastian
Alexander Gabuev
Harsh Pant
Seokwoo Kim
Moderator: Janka Oertel

Session 5: Balkans 2025: What Kind of Future Can We Expect? (in Partnership with Open Society Foundation)

Discussion Points: Rule of law and reconciliation – What can we expect in the next seven years? Freeing the captured states in the Balkans – What role for the EU...
Read More
Simonida Kacarska
Ana Marjanović Rudan
Gazela Pudar Draško
Giorgos Triantafyllou
Jelena Vasiljević
Discussant: Engjellushe Morina
Moderator: Nikolaos Tzifakis
17:30 - 18:15

Coffee and Networking break

18:15 - 19:45

Break-out Sessions (Simultaneously Organized Smaller Sessions)

Session 6: High Level Corruption and International Security

Discussion Points: In what ways is high level corruption related to international security? What are the most significant corruption risks in defence sector and how do they impact capabilities? Is...
Read More
Sarah Chayes
Katarina Đokić
Leanne Cross
Nataliya Shylo
Moderator: Boris Divjak

Session 7: Balkans 360: Reassessing German and the US Engagement in the Western Balkans (in partnership with the German Marshall Fund of the United States, the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, and the Balkan Trust for Democracy)

Discussion Points: How would you evaluate the state of transatlantic partnership between Washington and Berlin? What are the current priorities for the United States and Germany in their relations with...
Read More
H.E. Kyle Scott
H.E. Thomas Schieb
Andrew Michta
Moderator: Marko Savković

Session 8: Why More Women? (With the Support of the Swedish Institute and Canada Fund)

Discussion Topics: Can women in the Balkans rise up to become actors who will provide an alternate vision of the region? What is the developmental and political concept of the...
Read More
Amb.Andrea Orizio
Majlinda Bregu
Tatjana Macura
Daliborka Uljarević
Ana Trišić Babić
Moderator: Karolina Leaković
8:00 - 9:00

Registration of Participants

09:00 - 10:30

Morning Sessions (simultaneously organized smaller sessions)

Session 10: Prospects for Justice and Reconciliation in Balkans (In Partnership with the King s College London, War Studies Department)

Discussion Points: What is wrong with reconciliation as a concept and practice? What is its potential? What is the potential role of the creative arts? How can dialogue among different...
Read More
James Gow
Rachel Kerr
Jelena Petrović
Denisa Kostovicova
Iva Vukušić
Moderator: Ivan Zverzhanovski

Session 9: Propaganda and Disinformation: Will Technology Save Us?

Discussion Points: What triggered our transition to the post-truth era? Weren’t advances in technology supposed to alleviate, or eliminate the risk altogether? To fight propaganda and disinformation, what should we...
Read More
Amb. István Gyarmati
Oana Popescu
Piers Cazalet
Kateryna Kruk
Valbona Zeneli
Moderator: Nemanja Rujević

Session 11: Securing the digital transformation of the Western Balkans (in partnership with Democratic Control of Armed Forces DCAF)

In the past few months Western Balkan countries have made important commitments on increasing digitalisation and cybersecurity in the region. In February, the Digital Agenda for the Western Balkans was...
Read More
Keynote: H.E. Sem Fabrizi
Dejan Abazović
Tatjana Matić
Nataša Sekulić
Moderator: Amb.Thomas Guerber
10:30 - 11:00

Coffee and Networking Break

Plenary Panel 4: 4th Industrial Revolution

Discussion Points: What characterizes the fourth industrial revolution? How will labor (and labor market) change? Are there societies that are preparing for this? What does this mean for democracy?  ...
Read More
Anna Diamantopoulou
Gerard Owens
Dani Sandu
Victor Krasilshchikov
Seonjou Kang
Moderator: Lazar Džamić

Closing Panel: Towards a Better Connected Region

H.E. Ana Brnabić
Moderator: Natalie Nougayrède 
14:00 - 15:30

Networking Lunch

Organised by

Strategic Partners



Strategic Media Partners

Media Partners

Official Car

Technical Support

Audio Visual Support