2018 International Neighbourhood Symposium (INS)

19-24 June 2017

Odesa, Ukraine

“Managing Change in Europe’s Neighbourhoods”

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The 8th International Neighbourhood Symposium (INS) will be held in Odessa on 19-24 June 2018. The Symposium theme for 2018 is “Managing Change in Europe’s Neighbourhoods”. It will be organized by the Center for International and European Studies (CIES) in partnership with Foreign Policy Council “Ukrainian Prism”,  UA: Ukraine Analytica, and Quadrivium.


The setting

The INS aims principally to contribute to further cooperation and understanding in Europe’s Neighbourhoods, by providing a forum for study and dialogue in a multicultural and interdisciplinary environment.

The Eastern Neighbourhood, the Mediterranean South, and Southeastern Europe are shared neighborhoods of the European Union, its member states, and Turkey. While each is distinct with its own historical, political, social, cultural, and economic characteristics; their proximity suggests synergies across many sectors such as energy, sustainable development, and migration as well as more immaterial concepts such as identity, culture, and democracy.

Europe’s neighbourhoods have serious security considerations to deal with implications on the rest of the world. While understanding the key dynamics is essential, it is also important to debate and explore the potential and opportunities for change and the role of changemakers in these regions and how they can positively manage change.


The 2018 International Neighbourhood Symposium aims to discuss, assess, and understand the recent political and security developments in the three regions as well as around the globe with a particular focus on the role of the European Union and NATO. The INS will also enable participants to debate and understand the value of being a changemaker and managing change be it societal, economic, or political in a fluid security environment. The objective is to increase the knowledge and awareness of the participants while inspiring them as they develop action plans. Finally, the participants will develop joint action plans to contribute for change in the three regions in Peer to Peer Workshops, led by expert trainers and facilitators and present them for discussion and evaluation during the INS. The participants will be encouraged to stay in touch with their group members to find ways to implement their action plans post-Symposium.

During the first two days of the symposium, expert discussions led both by experienced and junior experts/practitioners/educators will bring the spotlight on a number of societal, political, and security concerns such as Europe in flux; developments in the Eastern Neighbourhood and the Mediterranean South; the security context; the energy dynamics; civic engagement, democracy, and individual freedoms; sustainable development; migration; and youth empowerment. Days 3 and 4 will be dedicated to the Peer to Peer Workshops and whereby participants will prepare project proposal concepts emanating from the cooperation with each other.


Young professionals and graduate students primarily from the countries of the Black Sea area; Central Europe; Southeastern Europe; the Mediterranean; the Middle East; Central Asia; other EU member states; and the United States are the Symposium target group. Applicants with an interest in international relations, public policy, politics, journalism, civil society, and business are encouraged to apply. The target age group in 22-35 years of age (those born between 1983 and 1996).

Draft Agenda




The partner institutions currently invested in the 2018 International Neighbourhood Symposium include:

  • Center for International and European Studies, Istanbul
  • Foreign Policy Council “Ukrainian Prism”, Kyiv
  • UA: Ukraine Analytica, Odessa
  • NGO ”Quadrivium”, Chernivtsi
  • Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation, a project of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, Bucharest
  • Harvard University Black Sea Security Program, Cambridge, MA
  • Kadir Has University, Istanbul
  • Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Liberty (FNF), Istanbul
  • International Institute for Peace, Vienna
  • Federation of NGOs for Development (FOND), Bucharest
  • Black Sea NGO Network, Bucharest
  • The Center for Education, Research and Action FOTOESSA, Athens
  • Experts for Security and Global Affairs (ESGA), Bucharest
  • The House of Europe in Rhodes, Rhodes
  • Rhodes Model Regional Cooperation (RhodesMRC), Rhodes
  • The People for Change Foundation, San Gwann, Malta
  • Center for European Studies, Alexandru Ioan Cuza University, Iasi
  • International Relations Council of Turkey, Istanbul