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ISSICEU evaluates the different social dynamics that create military, political, economic and social security. Full information about the ISSICEU research focuses and its participant institutions can be found here.

A brief overview of the ISSICEU key elements is summarized below:

Hybrid political regimes

We address hybrid institutions in communal governance and their stabilising or destabilising role in intra-societal frictions. More information is here.

Civic participation

We look at how practices of civic participation are shaped by the interplay of societal organisations, religious and state actors. More information is here.

Economic interdependencies

By looking at patterns of economic interdependencies in the broader Caucasus region we assess the role of different economic interactions in creating stability/instability. More information is here.


We analyse influences from the geographical neighbourhoods with a particular focus on Turkey and Iran. More information is here.

The project is led by the Center for Governance and Cultureat the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland and further comprises the following organisations:

Ankara Policy Center, Turkey
GeoWel Research, Georgia
Kabardino-Balkarian State University, Russian Federation
Khazar University, Azerbaijan
Russian State University for the Humanities, Russian Federation
SWP – German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Germany
University of Fribourg, Switzerland

Analytical Approach and Georgraphic Focus

As an interdisciplinary endeavour ISSICEU is made up of political scientists, economists, anthropologists, human geographers and scholars of religious studies. We analyse sub-regions and study aspects of inter-societal relations in a comparative perspective. Cases will cover the entire Caucasus region, including Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, and the North Caucasus republics of Dagestan, Kabardino- Balkaria, Karachay-Cherkessia and Chechnya, as well as the neighbouring countries of Turkey and Iran. ISSICEU will also analyse the secessionist entities in the South Caucasus. The following map shows the region ISSICEU studies and highlights those entities, in which case studies will be performed:

Caucasus Map