2021 Summer School

Mücahid Aykut is a research assistant at Altınbaş University (Turkey). He is a PhD student of Political Science and Public Administration at Istanbul Medeniyet University. He received his BA degree in Political Science and Public Administration with double major in International Relations, and MA degree in International Relations from the Kadir Has University. He studied for a term at the Coventry University (the UK) as an Erasmus student. His research interest areas are political parties, political participation, voting behavior, political violence and terrorism.

Elnar Bainazarov is a special correspondent for the Russian newspaper “Izvestia”, covering Middle East and Post-Soviet countries. He works as the war reporter for the newspaper, covering the civil unrests and military operations in the Middle East (e.g. Israel and Gaze) and CIS countries. In August 2020, he worked in Belarus and was reporting the protests in the country right from its capital Minsk and witnessed the attempts of the government to forcibly end the demonstrations. He himself was arrested by the police at one of the demonstrations in Minsk and was departed from the country. Elnar is a member of the press-pool of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia. Elnar is a graduate of Moscow State University, he holds MA in Middle Eastern Studies and speaks Arabic, Turkish and German languages. In 2016, he took part in Summer School of Leipzig University “Arabic and Islamic Studies”.

Venelin Bochev is a PhD candidate within ‘Université libre de Bruxelles’ political science research centre CEVIPOL as part of the Project “Defending democracy: resistance strategies against autocratization attempts” (RESAUT). He is also the coordinator of the AGORA Portal for Parliamentary Development. He is interested in parliaments and autocratization, particularly in Southeast Europe.

Mersida Crneta is an experienced Professor of English Language with a demonstrated history of working in the education management industry. Mersida is skilled in Language Development, Translation, Lesson Planning, International Relations, and English. Mersida is a strong education professional with a Master’s degree focused in European Regional Master’s Programme in Democracy and Human Rights in South East Europe from Center for Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Studies of the University of Sarajevo and Alma Mater Studiorum – Universita di Bologna.

Fjola Dacić has BA in International Relations and European Studies and a MA in International Relations from the Faculty of Social Science (Masaryk University-Brno). She obtained Czech government and UNESCO scholarship for studies in Czech and English language. Currently, she is a PhD student at Faculty of Political Science (University of Zagreb). Her research interests include economic diplomacy, political parties and peacebuilding.

Selbi Durdiyeva is a PhD candidate at Transitional Justice Institute, Ulster University, Northern Ireland. Her PhD is on reimagining the role of civil society in transitional justice processes in Russia with respect to the Soviet repressions. She has an LLM in International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law from the University of Essex. Previously she worked as an adjunct lecturer at the School of Law at KIMEP University, Kazakhstan.

Soso Dzamukashvili is a research assistant at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, where he conducts research on issues including and not limited to issues, such as democratic resilience, media freedom and rule of law in Europe. He is a contributor researcher at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies and regularly publishes op-eds and analytical papers in various regional magazines. Soso has experience working on European integration and democratisation with the Parliament of Georgia as well as civil society initiatives and regional platforms. He has been a visiting research fellow at the Kosciuszko Institute (Krakow, Poland) and Media Development Foundation (Tbilisi, Georgia). He is an MA graduate of an international joint degree in Central and East European, Russian and Eurasian Studies from the University of Glasgow, University of Tartu and Jagiellonian University in Krakow. He holds a BA in International Relations from Tbilisi State University and has been an Erasmus+ exchange student at the Charles University in Prague and Comenius University of Bratislava.

Michal Gulczynski is a PhD Student of the Bocconi University in Public Policy and Administration. My main research interest are the European integration and relationships between gender, politics and policies. He holds bachelor’s degrees in International Economics and Iberian Studies from the University of Warsaw and master’s degrees in East European Studies from the Free University Berlin and in European Interdisciplinary Studies from the College of Europe. He was a trainee in DG Trade of the European Commission and in three Polish embassies.

Teona Lavrelashvili is a project manager of the European Party Monitor and a Doctoral Researcher at the Public Governance Institute since 2019. Her research interests include political parties at the EU level, party assistance and EU enlargement. Prior to joining KU Leuven, she worked at the European Commission’s DG NEAR (Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations) as a policy officer, at the European Parliament and at the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies. Teona holds a master’s degree in EU’s Political and Administrative Studies from the College of Europe, Bruges, and another master in Public Administration from Tbilisi State University.

Emiralda Leti is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Teaching. From 2019 until today she is part of civil society and issues that directly affect the country where she lives. In 2019 she decided to establish a non-profit organization which would focus on creating models of civic activism, which would include young people in my city and beyond. Thanks to the organization and the young volunteers who work in it, today they have managed to have a project supported by the EED European Endowment for Democracy, which supports the growth and strengthening of democracy and institutional transparency.

Adela Methasani is a student of the LL.M. Program at the University of London. She graduated with a Bachelor of Law and a Master in Private Law from University of Tirana. Her research interests cover anti-corruption and anti-money laundering areas. Currently she works as a Project Assistant for the Action against Economic Crime in Albania and has previously worked as a legal assistant in different law offices in Tirana.

Victor Pruteanu works in elections since 2014, when he has been selected and trained to work for the Centre for Continuous Electoral Training (CICDE) by the Moldovan CEC, with a wide range of responsibilities – project management, writing training methodologies and materials, preparing, organizing, and delivering training and communication/ civic campaigns at the national level, etc. In 2017, he started to work for the Moldovan Parliament within the communication Directorate, aiming to enhance his political analysis skills, while working on a part-time basis for the CICDE. He is also participating in national and international EOMs. Victor holds a Bachelor’s in Law and a Master’s in Political and Electoral Management.

Altanchimeg Purevsuren is an MA student in ICT Techno Policy at the Soongsil University in South Korea. She is doing a study on implementing Blockchain-based I-Voting in Mongolia. She has more than seven years of work experience in General election commission of Mongolia, working on election automatic systems. Her research interests are ICT technology in the election sector, election automatic systems, I-Voting, voter education, and political parties fund. She participated voter registration research project in 2020. That project brings good results for the presidential election in 2021. She also interesting in political party funds, she had written some papers about ensuring the transparency of political parties’ fund. Altanchimeg is also a member of the NGO, which is to strengthen democracy and support civic participation. She has 3 years of volunteer job experience, related to the election sector. Such as observer of the overseas voting process, improving voter education, ensuring transparency of the election process. Her purpose is making contributions to make updates for the election process and legal environments.

Uuganbayar Tumurkhuu is an Associate Professor in International Politics, Political Economy, and Public Policy Analysis in the Graduate School of Business, Mongolian University of Science and Technology. His research focuses on the relationship between internationalization and domestic politics, democracy, and public policy. He is particularly interested in understanding the patterns and potential causal factors in the evolution of political parties and democracies in post-communist countries when there is an exposure to global political and economic changes.

Marta Vukovic received her BA in Economics, Politics, and Social Thought from Bard College Berlin and her MA in Nationalism Studies from Central European University (with distinction). Her broad interests include European party politics, globalization, migration, and democratic backsliding. In her research, Marta uses multi-method approach and her training ranges from quantitative statistical analysis to qualitative methods. She has presented her work at academic conferences at the University of Belgrade, Utrecht University, and Smolny College (Saint Petersburg), among others.

Alimana Zhanmukanova is a Research Assistant at the Oxus Society for Central Asian Affairs. Her topics of interest are the issues of ethnic minorities, ethnic Russian community, questions of national identity and nation-building in Kazakhstan. Alimana earned her Master’s Degree from the OSCE Academy in Politics and Security with a special focus on Central Asia and Afghanistan. She is also an Alumna of the US State Department program “Global UGRAD”, which allowed her to study in the Northern Michigan University in the USA. She has an extensive experience in project management and have organized dozens of projects with the support of donors like Embassy of the United States in Kazakhstan and Freedom House organization.

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