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BSF 2019



This year, we at Belgrade Security Forum – same as so many around the world – seek justice as a basic human need and ask whether it is achievable in a world that has become this polarized.

Our quest comes at a time of crises of leadership; with nations confounded by threats now labeled as “hybrid”; but also continued crisis of the liberal model; uneven growth and rising inequality; demographic crisis; migration; the impact of climate change and the urgent need for action. Wider trends unfold in a context marked by increasing global competition (and confrontation), between the West and the East, the North and the South, but also internally, as “populist tide” shows no sign of receding. If the Trump phenomenon has further divided the USA, Brexit poses a similar challenge to the European Union, which will either find new strength, or face decline.

Can the international community overcome these differences, conflicts of different intensity as it seeks a more unified approach? Are the core values of international community endangered by the current state of international order?

How can international community protect and promote the values of peace and justice, and how can long lasting frozen conflicts be solved?

What is the role of regional actors in the process of surpassing the differences in their own societies and communities? Can an individual be certain in its personal safety in the time of new threats?

Once again, the place to have such discussions will be Belgrade Security Forum. From 16 to 18 October with relevant speakers, policy makers, experts, researchers, and civil society representatives we will strive for justice in a divided world.


Day 1
16 Oct 2019
Day 2
17 Oct 2019
Day 3
18 Oct 2019
8:00 - 9:00

Registration of Participants

Side Event: National Dialogue Platform – Dialogue for the Future

National Platform for Dialogue as a part of the Joint Regional Program “Dialogue for the Future: Promotion of the Dialogue and Social Cohesion in/and between Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and...
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Academic Keynote Speech: Ramifications of the Retreat of Liberalism for the EU and its Normative Power

  ‘Liberalism’, ‘European Union’, ‘international community’: touchstones of Western Europe for seven decades. Now all seem to be in retreat. In unison. How to address the ‘retreat of Liberalism? How...
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Ian J. Manners

Academic Panel 1: Regional Security and the Retreat of Liberalism in Europe

Abstracts Title: Eastern European democracies: “sovereign” and “illiberal”. The Russian-Hungarian game of adjectives and its implications for regional security The aim of this study is to explore the Hungarian discourse of...
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Moderator: Katarina Đokić
Aliaksei Kazharski
Michal Onderco
Patricia Greve
11:30 - 12:00

Coffee Break

Academic Panel 2: Regional Security and the Retreat of Liberalism in the Western Balkans

Abstracts   Title: Populism and Power: Regional Security and Democratic Backsliding in the Western Balkans The role of the European Union (EU) in regional and world politics is being transformed as...
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Moderator: Jelena Pejić Nikić
Milada Anna Vachudova
Neven Anđelić
Tena Prelec
Marika Djolai

Special Event: A Case for Military Neutrality in the 21st Century

Discussion points: What is the support for and do citizens understand your country’s military neutrality? Do they consider it as a foreign policy interest and value? How do you respond...
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Gen. Milan Mojsilović
Gen. Robert Brieger
Moderator: Igor Novaković

Plenary Panel 1: Overcoming Great Power Competition: The East, The West and The Rest (In partnership with the Balkan Trust for Democracy)

Discussion points: If we presume that great power competition exists, what are they competing for in the world of today? How different is this renewed rivalry (some would argue: confrontation)...
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Christopher Coker
Theresa Fallon
Alexey Kovalev
Michel Foucher
Peter Zwack
Discussant: Tony van der Togt
Chair: Vesna Pusić
20:00 - 21:30

Break-out Sessions (simultaneously organized smaller sessions)

Session 2: Our Own Migration Crisis: People are Leaving and What Can be Done About It (In partnership with Westminster Foundation for Democracy)

What should be our approach here? Should we focus on keeping the young people in our countries. or creating the opportunities for their development in the developed countries and subsequent return?...
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Alida Vračić
Paweł Kaczmarczyk
Natasha Kocsis
Ivan Brkljač
Peter Grk
Moderator: Emil Atanasovski

Session 1: The “Big Bang Enlargement”: 15 Years Since the EU’s Greatest Accomplishment (Co-funded by the Europe for Citizens)

Discussion Points: How has 2004 “Big-Bang” changed the EU? Is the perception of the past enlargement rounds selective? What were the benefits and costs for the so-called “old Europe?” How...
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Martin Povejšil
Ivo Vajgl
Nathalie Tocci
Bernd Hüttemann
Moderator: Jelica Minić
08:00 - 09:00

Registration of the Participants

Welcoming Speech

Sonja Licht

Grand Opening Event: Sustainable Solutions for the Western Balkans

Discussion points: What is your image of a prosperous Western Balkans? Where do you see the most pressing challenges? Do your countries’ policies take them into consideration? Skepticism surrounds the...
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Susanne Schütz
Amb. Frédéric Mondoloni
Rt Hon Catherine Ashton
David Kostelancik
Chair: Ivan Vejvoda
10:20 - 11:00

Coffee and Networking break

Special Event: Climate Security: Adapt, Mitigate, Change (in partnership with UNDP)

Keynote Speaker: Goran Trivan
Nedret Emiroglu
Vladimir Đurđević
Janez Kopač
Moderator: Francine Pickup

Methods, Career and Networking Café

Particia Greve, University of Toronto: “Doing interviews in IR research” Milada Anna Vachudova, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill: “The EU did it! Theorizing the impact of the European Union...
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Patricia Greve
Milada Anna Vachudova
Ian J. Manners
12:30 - 14:15

Networking Lunch

14:15 - 15:45

Break-out Sessions (simultaneously organized smaller sessions)

Session 3: Women’s Contribution to Peace, Democracy and Development in the Balkan Region (In partnership with the Slovak OSCE Chairmanship and Slovak Aid)

Discussion points:   How could women’s active participation in conflict prevention be promoted? What are the possibilities for active participation of women in conflict prevention and resolution? What is and...
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Despina Syrri
Igor Fedyk
Molly Montgomery
Valeska Esch
Moderator: Goran Svilanović

Session 4: Winter of Discontent in the MENA Region

Discussion points: Do you share the view that MENA region has for too long been observed solely from the standpoint of migration, conflict and stability? Which factors are omitted in...
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Hilary Kalmbach
Mohamed Anwar El Sadat
Tobias Schneider
Youssef Cherif
Moderator: Tijana Rečević

Side Event: Socio-Economic Aspects of Climate Change Impacts in Serbia in the Context of UNFCCC Reports (In partnership with UNDP Serbia)

This Side Event is being organized by the UNDP Serbia with assistance of the Belgrade Security Forum Team. The event will draw information and analysis from the draft Study on...
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Miroslav Tadić
Aleksandar Jovović
Vladimir Đurđević
Danijela Božanić
Moderator: Žarko Petrović
15:45 - 16:30

Coffee and Networking Break

Plenary Panel 2: Is There Hope for Justice in a Divided World? (in partnership with Embassy of the Netherlands)

Discussion Points: In the struggle for a more just world, how to defeat not only the status quo, but also the growing right-wing populism? How to restore the trust in...
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Tobias Flessenkemper
Danilo Ćurčić
Bibi van Ginkel
Barry Snelgrove
Chair: Jan Marinus Wiersma

Side Event: Women in Security Sector Reform – Promoting Inclusion of Women in Crisis Management Missions (Co-sponsored by Slovak OSCE Chairmanship, OSCE and UNDP)

Discussion Points: How can SSG/R contribute to a more gender-balanced and gender-responsive security sector? What institutional changes are needed to address barriers to the participation of women in the security...
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SGM Marijana Simonovska Trajkoska
Lt Col Marko Marjanović
Denise Mazzolani
Lt Col Egil Daltveit
Moderator: Igor Vencel

Side Event: BSF Discussion – Asia’s Delicate Security Architecture

Discussion points: What are the current challenges of the Asia’s delicate security architecture What can be done to get closer to solving some of the long lasting conflicts? Who are...
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Tae-Hyung Kim
Moderator: Dragan R. Simić

Side Event: Consequences of Delayed or Denied Balkan States EU Accession (in cooperation with European Academy for Diplomacy and Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland)

Discussion points:   Where is the Berlin Process currently standing? What are the consequences of delayed or denied WB6 countries accession to the EU? Quantify the risks of accession fatigue:...
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Zhidas Daskalovski
Edlira Gjoni
Milica Kravić
Borna Sor
Moderator: Patrycja Chomicka

BSF Presentation: Research Findings: Final agreement on normalization of relations between Belgrade and Pristina – Understanding Hearts and Minds (in cooperation with Center for Social Dialogue and Regional Initiatives

The dialogue led between Belgrade and Pristina – political and technical – has come to a halt more than a year ago. One side reactions have provoked responses by the...
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Milan Krstić
Nikola Jović
Dušan Vučićević
08:00 - 09:00

Registration of Participants

09:00 - 10:30

Morning Sessions (simultaneously organized smaller sessions)

Session 5: Belt and Road Initiative – European Perspectives

Discussion Points: What will be the consequences of increasing Chinese presence in European countries? Is China reliable partner for Western Balkans countries? What are the long term consequences of the...
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Ágnes Szunomár
Anastas Vangeli
Hana Semanić
Jacob Mardell
Moderator: Valerie Hopkins

Session 6: Image of the Future: A Green, More Developed Western Balkans (supported by UN Women and in partnership with Women’s Platform for Development of Serbia 2014-2020))

Discussion Points: What (economic) is Western Balkans development vision? Who should be at the core of investment in development? What are the missing ingredients? What role(s) for the state(s)? How...
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Irena Vojáčková-Sollorano
Majlinda Bregu
Blerta Cela
Julian Popov
Vlatka Matković
Moderator: Sanja Nikolin
10:30 - 11:15

Coffee and Networking Break

Plenary Panel 3: Belgrade and Pristina, Normalizing Comprehensively (supported by Canada Fund and in partnership with Council for Inclusive Governance)

Discussion points: Why has the previous dialogue failed? Is the process of normalization dead? Can it be revived? How to rebuild the trust between the parties? How to reset and...
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Stefan Surlić
Una Hajdari
Agon Maliqi
Milica Andrić Rakić
Chair: Alex Roinishvili Grigorev

Closing Address

Sonja Licht
Vladimir Međak
Sonja Stojanović Gajić
Moderator: Marko Savković

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