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Conf/CfP - Instrumentalizing the Recent Past in Foreign Policy, 20-21 October 2016, Romania


June 24, 2016

Opportunity Cover Image - Conf/CfP - Instrumentalizing the Recent Past in Foreign Policy, 20-21 October 2016, Romania

Call For Papers. Instrumentalizing the Recent Past in Foreign Policy – The Legitimization of External Intervention in the Former Soviet Space

2016 marks the 25th anniversary of the collapse of the Soviet Union. The quarter of a century that has followed has witnessed a series of events that had a great impact on the evolution of the former Soviet space. The countries that once constituted the border of the Soviet world are now at the direct borders of the European Union and NATO. However, the shadows of the past have not disappeared completely. Since 2008, with the independence of Kosovo, the war in Georgia and the NATO Summit in Bucharest, many voices started to invoke the revival of Cold War rhetoric in foreign policy decisions, a rhetoric that became more actual than ever with the events in Crimea and southeastern Ukraine.

Both scholars and practitioners in the field have highlighted that the post-Cold War period was marked by multiple references to the politics of the Cold War. The annexation of Crimea and the ongoing war in Ukraine have strongly reiterated those analogies, transforming them into potential instruments of legitimization. Within this context, we are especially focused on bringing together different international experts and scholars who are interested in the recent events in the former Soviet space and the foreign policy decisions that have invoked the past for justifying an aggressive action.

The Topic

The conference will focus on the analysis of the current events in Eastern Europe, with the aim to more precisely evaluate the topicality of the lessons learned from the Yugoslav secession wars and external intervention, as well as their use and possible misuse in the context of Russian resurgence in the former Soviet space. We aim at a multi-disciplinary approach to the subject and we invite scholars from international relations, conflict resolution, international law, etc. who work on the former Soviet space, Russia’s foreign policy, the implications of legitimization on foreign policy decisions in Eastern Europe, from various theoretical and methodological perspectives to submit paper proposals that focus on the following issues, broadly conceived:

  • Strategies of foreign policy legitimization in the EU neighbourhood after 2008
  • (Mis)-uses of the narratives of the past in the secessionist conflicts of the former Soviet space
  • Russia’s lessons learned from conflict management in the Western Balkans
  • The radicalization of East European politics and foreign policy in the so-called ‘new Cold War’ context

Please also note that a selection of papers will be considered for publication as part of an edited book.


There is no participation fee. A limited number of scholarships covering the transportation and/or accommodation costs will be available. Applications for scholarships should include a CV and a motivation letter demonstrating financial need. Please submit your application together with the abstract to by 24 June 2016.


Please send an abstract of between 300-500 words, containing the author’s full name, affiliation, email address, and short bio to The deadline for paper proposals is 24 June 2016. The organizing committee will notify all applicants of the outcome of their paper proposal submission by 1 July 2016.

Paper submission: 20 September 2016.

Eligible Countries
Host Country
Conference Type
Publish Date
May 10, 2016


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