Towards Social Stability and Democratic Governance in Central Eurasia. Challenges to Regional Security

Irina Morozova
Volume 49 NATO Science Series: Science and Technology Policy
Through invasions, migrations, trade and cultural exchange, developments in Central Eurasia have, for millennia, impacted upon the history of both Europe and Asia. For the last three hundred years, Central Eurasia has been the stage upon which great empires clashed. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Central Eurasia has once again emerged as a region of geopolitical concern with various new international actors involved: the USA, international monetary organizations, strategic alliances, TNCs, NGOs, regional blocks, as well as criminal groups and ethno-religious movements. The new ‘centrality' of Central Eurasia brings new security threats to the region's population, to Europe and to the rest of the world. Repressive political regimes and marginalisation of whole groups of the population inflame conflicts that spill across national borders. Migration to Europe, both legal and illegal, the illicit production and trade of drugs are the direct outcome of social-economic destabilization in Central Eurasia. Territorial disputes, border conflicts and competition for resources among the Central Eurasian ethnicities have become the unfortunate reality. Post-Soviet Central Eurasia, as a direct neighbour to the turbulent Middle East, is a potential playground for extremist movements: radical Islamic groups and terrorist organizations. The contributors to this book, coming from various theoretical schools and presenting innovative interdisciplinary approaches, provide their views on the socio-political challenges confronting the nine Central Eurasian states - Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Mongolia, Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. The book presents scientific discussions on the historical development of Central Eurasia and its sociocultural legacies; Soviet and contemporary state organization, social transformation and communal structures; the current economic conditions as a precursor to social stability and development; and geo-political arrangements and political changes over the last two decades.


Part I. Central Eurasian History and Societies in the longue durée Approach

  • Central Eurasia: Historical Centrality, Geostrategic Condition and Power Model Legacy/ A. Fursov
  • Nomadic Pastoral Societies-the Importance of Compromise in Dealing with Tension, Conflict and Security/ J. Legrand
  • Islam in Post-Soviet Central Asia: Democracy Versus Justice?/ C. Poujol

Part II. Modern State-Building and Communities in Central Eurasia

  • Nation-Building in Central Asia: Creating New State Mythologies/ I. Morozova
  • Post-Soviet Central Asia: From Nationhood Mythologies to Regional Cold Wars?/ A. Ilkhamov
  • Regionalism and Statehood in Soviet and Independent Turkmenistan/ P.G. Geiss
  • De-Authoritarization in Uzbekistan?: Analysis and Prospects/ R.M. Cutler

Part III. Economic Reform and Social Security

  • Growth Accounting for Eight Eurasian Economies: Factors Differentiating Future Prospects from Soviet and Transition Experience/ M. Kaser
  • Living Standards and National Security of Central Asian Countries/ L. Friedman
  • Gradual Economic Reform in Uzbekistan: Two Steps Forward, One Step Back/ M.C. Spechler
  • Labour Migration and Its Impact on Social Stability in Central Asia/ E.Y. Sadovskaya

Part IV. Political Development and Prospects for Democratisation

  • Political and Economic Development: Correlation in Southern Caucasus/ N. Imanov
  • Georgia-Challenges to Internal Security Through the Prism of External Political Priorities/ N. Dyulgerova
  • The Gap Between de-jure and de-facto Democratization in Uzbekistan. Nine Problems of Proto-Democracy/ F. Tolipov