EU Restrictive Measures – What should we know about them

In the context of current conflicts and changes in the international environment, European Union sanctions are becoming an increasingly frequent topic in the domestic public. In this article, we show you what EU restrictive measures mean, who they apply to, and how they are established.

Boko Haram as a threat to the stability of Nigeria

This article will show how extremist religious movements can destabilize a sovereign state. In this case, we are talking about the Boko Haram movement, which is portrayed as a destabilizing factor in the Federal Republic of Nigeria, in the West African region.

Analysis of the conflict arising from the negotiations between Belgrade and Pristina

The genesis of the conflict between Serbia and Kosovo covers a long period of time in which its escalation was determined by different social contexts. Historically speaking, the current conflict is based on the Constitution of the SFRY from 1974, the NATO bombing of the FRY in the 1990s, the pogrom of the Serbs in 2004. and the unilateral declaration of independence of Kosovo in 2008. With the necessary mention of these events, but without delving deeper into their interpretation and significance, this analysis focuses on the period that followed. A period during which the two sides, official Belgrade and Pristina, tried, honestly or not, under the patronage of the West, to overcome their mutual disagreements. This paper considers some of the most important elements of that process, how they unfolded, their consequences and why relations have not yet been normalized and are causing friction in the politically always fragile Western Balkans.

Can there be a dilemma in 21st century civilization: economic development or a healthy environment?

As a result of the conference “Environmental Protection and Economic Growth: Experiences from Japan, the EU and Serbia”, ISAC presents a paper “Can there be a dilemma in 21st century civilization: economic development or a healthy environment?” Dr. Vladimir Medjak writes how Japan has aligned economic growth with the environment; why not doing and not calculating people’s health is more expensive than investing in cleaner technologies and what society can do in order for the Government to change its approach in this field.

Available only in Serbian language.

Views towards Europe: Is a carbon neutral, green future planned for Serbia?

As a result of the conference “Environmental Protection and Economic Growth: Experiences from Japan, the EU and Serbia”, ISAC presents the paper “Views towards Europe: Is a carbon-neutral, green future planned for Serbia?”

In this paper, Mirjana Jovanović talks about the EU Green Agreement and the Green Agenda for the Western Balkans and the implications that these policies have on Serbia’s European path and the everyday life of its citizens; the green transition to renewable energy sources and Serbia’s readiness for a carbon-neutral future.

Available only in Serbian language.

Towards responsible practice with a positive example – foreign investment in Serbia and environmental protection

As a result of the conference “Environmental Protection and Economic Growth: Experiences from Japan, the EU and Serbia”, ISAC presents the paper “Towards responsible practice with a positive example – foreign investment in Serbia and environmental protection”. Are foreign investments which do not respect environmental regulations really a precondition for economic growth and development? Is there a different way of doing business that involves protecting environment? Read what the international community says, and what is the practice of Serbia, in this political perspective from Dr. Marina Savković.

Available only in Serbian language

Chapter 30: Another Political Obstacle

Chapter 30 – External Economic Relations has been treated as “technical” by the public and the expert community in cases of accession processes, and therefore easy to close. However, in the case of Serbia, this chapter can easily become a political issue, as it relates, among other things, to the adoption of regulations concerning genetically modified organisms (GMOs), as well as economic aspects of cooperation with certain third countries, including certainly the most important Russia.

In this publication, you can see what are the elements of Chapter 30 with which Serbia must comply with the European Union; a tabular presentation of the comparative analysis of the Progress Report for 2019 and 2020 and an explanation of how Serbia’s readiness for economic relations with foreign countries was assessed in these two reports. Also, they talk about the advantages of membership in the World Trade Organization, but also why the position on the issue of Serbia’s membership does not change from year to year, despite the benefits that it would bring.

Chapter 31: A Stumbling Block?

Chapter 31 deals with the Common Foreign, Security and Defence Policy of the European Union (EU).

The condition for joining the EU is the acceptance of all rights and obligations on which the union is based, as well as the institutional framework which it consists of. In this paper, you can read how the process of harmonization of legislation with the European Union is going and where Serbia is on that path, what are the main obstacles for progress in the integration and harmonization process. Finally, it talks about how the European Commission’s Progress Reports assess Serbia’s readiness in terms of foreign, security and defence policy.

EU Civilian Crisis Management: A Chance for Serbia?

In the past period, the security environment at the external borders of the European Union has changed significantly, and the migrant crisis and terrorist attacks have put the internal security of the Union on the agenda. Organized crime, migration, terrorism in the neighborhood and within the Union itself, pandemics, have increased the importance of civilian crisis management and influenced greater cooperation between different levels of the EU’s policies.

This publication provides a brief overview of the development of the EU’s civilian crisis management system, its tasks and main shortcomings in the context of changed security circumstances. It also gives recommendations for overcoming these challenges. The paper also talks about the ways in which candidate countries can get involved and give their contribution, how to adjust the training of civilian experts to the new conditions and how Serbia can get involved and what benefits participation in missions would bring.


Integrating the Western Balkans: Completing Future Europe

Recommendations for the European Union

Contributing to the debate about the future of EU integration of WB countries, a group of leading Serbian think tanks and civil society organizations specialized in EU integration presents its own recommendations to the EU, aimed at improving the effectiveness of the integration process and reconfirming the sustainable and tangible EU perspective of the region.

These recommendations are submitted by the following think – tanks and civil society organizations from Serbia: Belgrade Centre for Security Policy (BCSP), Belgrade Fund for Political Excellence (BFPE), Centar za savremene politike, Evropski pokret u Srbiji, European Policy Centre/ Centar za evropske politike – CEP, International and Security Affairs Centre – ISAC, YUCOM Lawyers’ Committee for Human Rights.

What does the Japan-EU Trade Agreement Mean for Serbia?

At the beginning of this year, Japan and the European Union finalized the largest bilateral free trade agreement in history. This policy perspective focuses on the steps Serbia ought to take to capitalize on this monumental economic opportunity. The main obstacles Serbia must address in order to maximize the benefits of this deal are Serbia’s status regarding the World Trade Organization, its struggles to guarantee security of investments, and the inability of its foreign policy to consistently remain on the European path. By implementing the solutions laid out in this policy perspective, Serbia could drastically expand its market access and foreign investment.

Last EU Membership Train Leaving for 2025 – Will Serbia be On-board?

With less than 6 years to go before Serbia’s earliest EU entry date arrives, can Serbia meet all the requirements by then? This short opinion paper takes a look at the pace of opening negotiating chapters, the messages delivered in the 2019 Serbia Progress Report and what are some urgent steps Serbia needs to take to put the accession process back on track.

European Union and Russian Federation – The Issue of Sanctions

One of the most frequently asked questions about the foreign policy orientation of Serbia is the relationship between the European Union and Russia after the outbreak of the crisis in Ukraine in 2014, and the way this relationship is reflected in the position of Serbia, primarily in the context of the EU accession process. Specifically, under Chapter 31 (Common Foreign, Security and Defense Policy), Serbia is obliged to comply with the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy, which consists largely of joining the foreign policy declarations and measures that arise from them. In the process of Serbia’s pre-accession negotiations with the EU this Chapter has not yet been opened. Serbia’s non alignment of the restrictive measures introduced by the EU against the Russian Federation remains one of key issues regarding this Chapter.

As there are large unknowns in the Serbian public about this topic, this document explains the reasons why the EU has applied restrictive measures against Russia, the nature of these measures, and the way in which the Russian Federation responded to these measures.

Berlin Process and Bilateral Issues 2.0

This policy opinion deals with the Declaration on bilateral issues regarding the Berlin process and the need for a fresh impetus which should come from the EU
Member States. It emphasizes the necessity for  the EU to show commitment to its own policies a well as a real incentive for the Western Balkans to engage more regarding their obligations stemming from the same document.

Serbia and the Selection of “Areas of Expertise” for Participation in Civil Peacekeeping Missions

This short political opinion deals with the issue of Serbia’s selection of “area of ​​expertise” for  participation in civil peacekeeping missions. It offers short overview of Serbia’s needs in that context, areas of expertise that Serbia already has, interests that Serbia achieves by selecting individual areas of expertise as well as potential costs of making these choices.

Only Serbian version available.

Should Serbia apply the process of “strategic reflection” in compiling its new strategic documents in the area of security and defense?

This practical policy proposal is a contribution to a debate that should begin once the process of compiling a new national security strategy and a new defense strategy is initiated. It presents an innovative approach of “strategic reflection”, i.e. “participation stages” in preparing strategic documents, which calls for the inclusion of a wider, expert community in the process, instead of the habitual, relatively narrow expert team tasked with the job.

Crimea and Russia’s “new” attitude towards Kosovo

The topic of this analysis is the question of Serbian-Russian relations and the direction of Russian policies towards Serbia and Kosovo after the recognition of independence and annexation of Crimea. Author lists all of the inconsistencies of these relations after the recent events in Ukraine, and points to possible open issues that can become obstacles on Serbia’s EU Path.

Relations between Serbia and Bulgaria, position of Bulgarian minority in Serbia and process of European integration

In obtaining EU candidate status and with the start of the accession negotiations, the relations with neighboring countries vis-à-vis the rights of national minorities in Serbia became one of the most important foreign policy challenges for Serbia. This document covers one of the recently opened questions, that is the relations between Serbia and Bulgaria and the issue of the respect of rights of the Bulgarian national minority in Serbia. The authors approached this topic in a comprehensive and balanced manner, with an aim to give concrete policy recommendations for overcoming this situation.

“Serbian-Albania trade tripled since 2006: Why there is room – and need – for more?”

In the light of the experience of European integration in the past fifty years, mutual trade and economic integrations have been the basis for the improvement of relations between Serbia and Albania through a so-called spill-over effect. In the same manner, these states should push for the further development of trade relations, which could then serve as the basis for the improvement of overall relations and for a reconciliation process between the two nations on their path towards the EU. ISAC Fund has prepared a set of policy recommendations having in mind the need for even tighter economic connections with Albania.

CEFTA 2006 – Just a phase in transition or a springboard for the EU membership?

CEFTA 2006 is one of the most important regional initiatives in the Western Balkans. In the last 4 years, CEFTA has helped reestablish the political and economic cooperation between the countries of the region, thus contributing to their preparations for the EU membership. However, there are provisions outlined in the CEFTA 2006 agreement that have still not been put into practice, due to the lack of political will. Accordingly, ISAC Fund has prepared a set of policy recommendations that would help with the full implementation of the CEFTA 2006 capacities.

(available in the Serbian language only)


The text comments the arguments for and against accession to NATO used during the recent debate in Serbian public (2010).  The author lists all of the positive effects and benefits that Serbia could obtain from membership in NATO. The paper also contains a set of practical foreign and security policy proposals if the country remains neutral.

ISAC Fund launches a new publication, the ISAC POLICY PERSPECTIVE

In order to attain one of its key goals – the qualitative improvement of public policy development in Serbia – as well as to provide timely commentary of important developments and policy issues in Serbian, regional and European affairs with its unique point of view, the ISAC Fund is launching its new publication: the ISAC POLICY PERSPECTIVE. The first ISAC Policy Perspective, titled “Defining the Anti-reformers, Redefining the Reformers”, written by Milan Pajevic, Chairman if the ISAC Fund International Advisory Board, also marks the beginning of Mr Pajevic’s full-time engagement with ISAC.

The ISAC Policy Perspective will be published when events warrant it, rather than on any regular timeline. It is ISAC Fund’s aim to engage firstly its International Advisory Board members as authors of the ISAC Policy Perspective, but also the like-minded experts, ISAC Fund alumni, friends and other reform-oriented individuals.

Introduction to the negotiations on Chapter 30 – Economic Relations

As a result of the conference “Introduction to the negotiations on Chapter 30 – Economic Relations” which was held in October 2014 as a part of the activities of the Working Group on chapters 30 and 31 of the National Convention on the EU, ISAC Fund, as the coordinator of the working group presents the first policy paper devoted to preparations for the opening of the negotiations on this chapter

Turkey and the Western Balkans – a view from Poland

LectureResume – Turkeyand the Western Balkans – a view from Poland, by Adam Balcer, Programme Director of the Centre for European Strategy Demos Europe from Warsaw, held on June 23rd, 2011at the Institute for European Studies in Belgrade.
In this lecture, Mr. Balcer referred to the radical shift in foreign policy of Turkey, and made observations about its possible effects on the Western Balkans.

ISAC’s CFSP Policy Opinion/2

ISAC continues publishing the most relevant speeches and discussions from its “CFSP and Serbian Accession to the European Union” conference. The second publication will cover the presentation by Mr. Karsten Voigt, Former Member of the German Bundestag.

ISAC’s CFSP Policy Opinion

ISAC is pleased to announce that in the following period, as part of its overall Chapter 31 activities, it will publish the most relevant speeches and discussions from its “CFSP and Serbian Accession to the European Union” conference. The first publication will cover the presentation by Ms. Rebecca Harms, Member of the European Parliament.