Europe’s Futures Fellow 2023/24


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© Zsolt Marton
European Stability Initiative (ESI)
The Impact of the EU-Sponsored Basic Agreement between Kosovo and Serbia on Stabilization, Democratization, and Integration of the Western Balkans

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has mobilized the transatlantic community to address the unresolved issues, with destabilizing potential, in Southeast Europe. The EU-sponsored and US-supported Kosovo-Serbia “Basic Agreement” is expected to upgrade/normalize the relationships between the two and to advance security and stability in the Western Balkans. The prevalent thinking is that the Basic Agreement will enable a more predictable relationship between Serbia and Kosovo, paving the way for accelerated regional cooperation and integration, while fully anchoring the Western Balkans with the EU and the West. The work will also focus on whether this deal has strengthened democratization or authoritarian tendencies in the region.

Ilir Deda has extensive work experience in national, regional, and international public and nongovernmental institutions. His work has influenced decision-making and policy development at the national and international level in Kosovo and the Western Balkans within the framework of the Berlin Process and the implementation of the Common Regional Market. He has worked at the Regional Cooperation Council, served as a two-term elected member of the Assembly of Kosovo, led the KIPRED Institute in Pristina, and been a researcher at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy and an analyst for the International Crisis Group in Kosovo. He has also served as chief of staff to Kosovo’s President Atifete Jahjaga. He has extensive knowledge of national, regional, and international affairs; governance, democracy and security; and overall institution building.