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Nordic model for the Balkans?

Could the Nordic model be applied to the Balkans? Serbian diplomat and researcher Marina Jovisevic, who was stationed Copenhagen 2003-2007, thinks it could.

Jovisevic's doctoral thesis for the University of Belgrade studies the Nordic model for co-operation from both a historical and a modern perspective, focusing on collaboration on social affairs, business, culture and the environment.

"Regional co-operation and positive relations with our neighbours are top priorities in the foreign policy of all the Balkan countries," she stresses.

Jovisevic is also mindful of the fact that the Nordic countries have a bloody past too, and that despite centuries of war they have managed to establish a meaningful and effective partnership. It is true that the Balkans are less homogenous, e.g. in terms of a religion, and it is not long since the countries were waging war on each other. Politically sensitive issues, in particular the question of Kosovo's status, also continue to put a strain on relations.

"On the other hand, I'm convinced that the Nordic model is the only one for the Balkans," the researcher says.

Jovisevic hopes that her thesis will provide a useful run-down of the Nordic model, which she describes as the best one available for regional and European co-operation. Her aim is that the research will serve as the foundation and as a source of inspiration for politicians, civil servants and experts involved in regional co-operation in the Balkans.

by Solveig (link2ageataol.com) on Sat Dec 8th, 2007 at 07:58:34 PM EST
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