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Caucasus Studies

Karta över Kaukasus

Caucasus Studies at Malmö University is a study area, an interdisciplinary field of research and education. The staff consists of multidisciplinary researchers with solid knowledge of the Caucasus region – its languages, religions and ethnic groups, its historic development, complex political situation and many unresolved conflicts.

The Caucasus Region

The Caucasus region is located at a crossroad between Europe, Central Asia and the Middle East. Historically, the region has been dominated by different empires, including the Ottoman Empire, Persia, the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. Ethnically, the Caucasus is one of the most complex regions of the world. More than 50 languages, including Turkic, Iranian, Slavic and indigenous tongues, are spoken in the region. The Caucasus is also a meeting place for different Islamic, Christian and pre-Christian religious traditions.

Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, the Caucasus region has gained a new strategic significance. Regional great powers again compete for political influence in the regionand for control over its strategically important energy resources. New external actors, notably the USA and the EU, also seek to obtain influence in the region.

The need for specialist knowledge on the Caucasus is growing

After the dissolution of the Soviet Union and theend of the Cold War the Caucasus region hasobtained a new strategic significance. Regionalgreat powers compete for political influence in the region and for control over its strategicallyimportant energy resources. New external actors,notably the USA and the EU, seek to obtain influencein the region.The newly independent states in Post-Soviet Caucasusare weak states, characterized by unresolvedviolent conflicts, high numbers of refugees andinternally displaced persons, high unemploymentand weak democratic institutions. Despite theseproblems, the societies are involved in reformprograms and foreign presence and investment isincreasing.

Several of the conflicts in the region are highly internationalized. Many internationalorganisations and actors are engaged in theregion, such as the UN, EU, Council of Europe,OSCE, Swedish International Development Agency(Sida), USAID, and the World Bank. NGOs andInternational companies are increasing their presencein the Caucasus region.

Russian and the Caucasus Regional Research (RUCARR)

This research platform is an intellectual hub for scholars at the Faculty of Culture and Society building on an established and well-recognized area studies tradition that attracts a wide array of researchers and students both locally and internationally.RUCARR has its research focus on political, social, cultural, economic and other relations of significance within and between Russia and the Caucasus, on the one hand, and with neighbouring states, on the other. Areas of expertise include, but are not restricted to, political, social and cultural dynamics and history, nationalism, ethnic and national identity, security issues, civil society development, authoritarianism and post-authoritarian transition and transformations. 

More about (RUCARR)

Last updated by Sarah Stancs