Conference main theme

Public Administration
in post-conflict reconstruction

Countries around the world still experience violent conflicts. In 2022 there were 56 instances of State-based violence, 83 instances of non-State violence and 45 instances of one-sided violence (UCPD, 2023). Moreover, It has become painfully evident by recent European history that bad governance leads to an unwarranted use of force and illegal military invasion of a peaceful neighbouring country, affecting economy, social foundation and governance in Ukraine and beyond, regionally and globally. While in post-conflict situations many sectors require reconstruction, governance and administration are central to the functioning and stability of the post-conflict society.

Therefore, consolidating peace after war and preventing renewed violence in countries that had recently experienced or are in conflict’ are of paramount importance for CEE region and beyond. The process of state reconstruction after the violent conflict (inter or intra state) is long and marred with challenges. It is expedient to revisit how public administration and governance can help create a foundation for a sustainable development to achieve a stable and sustainable state as well as prevent resurgence of violence post-conflict. PA literature on post-conflict reconstruction is centered around several wide-ranging topics: Security governance, Administrative-economic governance and political governance (Brinkerhoff et. al, 2007). There is also an important external aspect to post-conflict reconstruction throughout the history, which includes coordinated action for state-building and democracy promotion. Furthermore, EU’s conditionality and socialization has long been acknowledged as effective tools for democratization and progress, engendering more stable peace in Europe, while the United Nations has always relied on nation/state building as one of the pillars for its peacekeeping efforts. Despite, granted the number of ongoing or frozen conflicts in the CEE area, and varying degrees of state capacity to tackle them, it is imperative to revisit and envision new ways of sharing best practices in post-conflict reconstruction in terms of security, administrative and political capacity, as well as explore new, more effective avenues. 

All four broad dimensions - people’s protection, services to the people, legitimacy and external aid of post-conflict reconstruction can be explored to reveal some of the lingering challenges as well as opportunities for post-conflict state-building and/or reconstruction. Advent of technologies and their widespread use in PA needs to be incorporated into new polices in such broad areas where digitalisation and or AI will have a significant impact enabling technological leapfrogging, especially in such key areas for post-conflict reconstruction as jobs; decision-making and governance, education, energy, defence and security, public relations, healthcare, job safety and satisfaction, inclusiveness and legitimacy. These are essential pillars of democratic societies and good governance will be tightly interlinked with the effectiveness and progress in post-conflict public administration. 

The 2024 NISPAcee Annual Conference will revisit and compile an evolving perspective on the role of Public Governance and Administration in post-conflict reconstruction aiming  to take stock of decades of state building experiences,  revisiting and compiling some of the best practices as well as reflecting on the new and unique opportunities for build-up provided by digitalisation and artificial intelligence, producing theoretical and practical approaches to the most pressing post-conflict PG/PA matters in CEE region as well as globally.

REPORT

Keynote presentation: Ensuring Resilence of Public Governance: Digital Solutions for Ukraine in Times of War and Post-war Recovery

Kateryna Chernohorenko, Deputy Minister of Defense for Digital Development, Digital Transformations, and Digitization, Ministry of Defence of Ukraine (MPA, Andriy Meleshevych Kyiv-Mohyla School of Governance, National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy)


Presented papers:

1.The Role of External Allies in the Public Administration Performance Post-Conflict: The Comparative Case of Armenia and Georgia, Eka Akobia, Caucasus University, Tbilisi, Georgia; Rati Tvalavadze, Caucasus University, Tbilisi, Georgia

2. Navigating the Complexities of Post-Conflict Reconstruction: Strategies and Challenges in Aid for Ukraine's Rehabilitation, Mariam Tarasashvili, Caucasus University, Tbilisi, Georgia

3. Post-war reconstruction issues of newly independent RA within the context of Nagorno Karabakh conflict, Gyulnara Danielyan, Public Administration Academy of the Republic of Armenia, Yerevan, Armenia

4. Mechanisms for Managing Medical Institutions in Times of War Crisis, Tengiz Verulava, Caucasus University, Tbilisi, Georgia

5. The contractualization of environmental protection in international law: exploring legal and governance solutions for post-conflict reconstruction in Azerbaijan, Valentina Chabert, University of Rome "La Sapienza", Rome, Italy



Coordinators


Eka Akobia

Caucasus School of Governance, Caucasus University, Georgia, Current NISPAcee President

eakobia@cu.edu.ge


Eka Akobia is Dean of the Caucasus School of Governance and a Director of the Institute of Peace Studies (IPS) at Caucasus University. She is also an Associate Professor at Tbilisi State University (TSU). She teaches theories of international relations (MA and PHD), international organizations, EU external relations and UN Peacekeeping Operations courses. She has published a number of academic articles as well as contributed to three edited volumes in the European Union series. She also regularly contributes news analysis to such media platforms as civil.ge and the Clarion.

Eka Akobia obtained her PHD in International Relations from Tbilisi State University. She acquired her MA degree in International Relations from Baylor University, USA and her BA degree in Political Science from Hartwick College, USA. She has participated in several senior level non-degree programmes, such as the Qualitative Research Methods Course (ICQRM) from Syracuse University, USA (2011); the Summer University on "Federalism, Constitutionalism and Conflict Transformation in Multiethnic Societies” University of Fribourg, Switzerland (2005) and the NATO Senior Executive Master Course, Bucharest, Romania (2004).

Besides academia, Eka Akobia has extensive public service experience. She worked for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia from 2005 until 2016 and has a broad experience in Georgia’s foreign policy. She holds a diplomatic rank of Counselor. Amongst other positions, she has worked as the Deputy Director of the Department of the Americas (2009-2010), the Deputy Director of the Political Department (2010-2012) and as the Director of the Asia, Africa, Australia and the Pacific Department (2012-2016).



PS Reddy

Purshottama Sivanarain Reddy is an Emeritus Professor and subnational government specialist in the School of Management, IT and Governance at the University of Kwazulu Natal, in Durban, South Africa.


He has served as the Vice – President : Programmes; member of the Board of Management and founding Project Director of the Working Group on Sub – national Governance and Development of the International Association of Schools and Institutes of Administration (IASIA) (Brussels).

He has also served on an IASIA – UNDESA Taskforce for Effective Public Administration at the Local Level for the Achievement of the MDGs. In 2014, he received the Donald Stone Award for being “A Distinguished International Scholar/Practitioner” and for his “Contribution Towards Advancing the Wellbeing of IASIA”. Prof Reddy is currently the Vice - Chairperson of the Policy and Programme Committee (PRAC) of the International Institute of Administrative Sciences (IIAS) (Brussels). He has also served as a full/alternate board member of the Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF) (London), representing universities and research organisations.

Prof Reddy is a rated researcher with the National Research Foundation (NRF) in South Africa and previously served on its specialist committee representing the Discipline of Public Administration. He has published extensively nationally and internationally and is the editor/co – editor of twenty one books and currently serves on the editorial/advisory committee of seven journals. Prof Reddy has also served as an elected member of the University of Kwazulu – Natal Council representing academic staff.