The Western Balkans Policy Review, launched by the CSIS Lavrentis Lavrentiadis Chair, is a unique publication that systematically examines the progress of the Balkan Peninsula and the challenges this unsettled region continues to face. The expert contributing authors focus on EU and NATO policies and examine the prevailing economic climate, together with more detailed country studies that also assess the evolution of U.S. interests while offering specific policy recommendations.
The Balkans contain at least three categories of states: those countries that are ensconced in both the European Union and NATO, including Greece, Slovenia, Romania, and Bulgaria; those states that are members only of NATO and are candidates or aspirants for EU accession, including Croatia, Albania, and Turkey; and those countries that do not presently belong to either multinational organization, including Montenegro, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, ROM/FYROM, and Kosova. By looking at this wider setting, valuable linkages and regional comparisons can be drawn in the hope of devising a sound international policy toward the region.
The Western Balkans Policy Review is planned as an annual publication to monitor and assess the region’s development and provide recommendations for policy initiatives by Western governments and multinational institutions. The authors have differing perspectives and prescriptions for the region; their opinions are as diverse as Balkan achievements and problems. Ultimately, the entire Balkan Peninsula needs to reach a sufficient level of stability and development if full integration into the two most-successful transnational organizations, NATO and the European Union, is to be assured. Simultaneously, both NATO and the European Union must remain closely involved in this process of engagement and incorporation.