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Energy Security

The energy sector plays a key role in the Bulgarian economy. It concentrates sizable state and private financial and human assets. Energy resources represent 20% of Bulgarian imports and 15% of the country’s exports. The energy sector is dominated by heavily regulated state-owned and private monopolies, thus providing a favorable environment for a lack of transparency, pervasive private political and economic vested interests, fraud, corruption, overinvestment and under-servicing, and disregard of state and consumer interests. The consequences of bad governance are enhanced by a lack of clear strategic and legal framework. Bulgaria’s EU membership, and the increasing role of the European Commission in forming a common energy policy based on market liberalization, energy efficiency and renewables, creates the opportunity for adopting better governance practices and opening up of the Bulgarian energy sector. A key objective of the Center for the Study of Democracy’s research and advocacy is to improve energy sector governance for a transparent and sustainable economic development.


New Measures to Counter Russian Influence Adopt the Recommendations of the Kremlin Playbook Report
Ten bipartisan US Senators tabled comprehensive Russia sanctions legislation, the Countering Russian Hostilities Act of 2017, which aims to introduce comprehensive sanctions on Russia for their cyber intrusions, aggression and destabilizing activities in the US and in Europe. The proposed legislation has recognized some of the key findings and policy recommendations from the recent report by CSD and CSIS The Kremlin Playbook: Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe including that Russia had tried to exert influence in Europe by sowing “distrust in democratic institutions” and “engaging in well-documented corruption practices” to increase Russian influence in European countries. more »
A Revanchist Russia versus an Uncertain West
An aggressive Russia, a divided and unsettled Europe, and a distracted and unpredictable United States have created an unprecedented and perilous confluence of events that could undermine the European security architecture and the liberal-democratic order. This was one of the main conclusions of a round table on Russian influence in Europe in the aftermath of the Ukrainian crisis, organized by the Center for the Study of Democracy following the publication of the Kremlin Playbook: Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe report. more »
Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe
CSD presented the Kremlin Playbook report at the Wilfried Martens Centre for European Studies in Brussels together with researchers from leading European think-tanks examining the malign Russian influence in Europe. CSD speakers debated how Russia has leveraged its economic presence to cultivate an opaque web of economic and political patronage across the region that the Kremlin uses to influence decision-making. more »
The Russian Economic Footprint in Central and Eastern Europe: Addressing Strategic Vulnerabilities in Hybrid Warfare
In the last decade, Russia has used a range of tools to amplify its economic footprint in Central and Eastern Europe and achieve its political goals. These were some of the issues discussed at an international conference in Sofia, co-sponsored by the NATO Public Diplomacy Division. more »


all publications

The Kremlin Playbook: Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe

CSD Policy Brief No. 67: Turkey in The Framework of the EU Energy Union: Energy Security and Governance Risks

A Revanchist Russia versus an Uncertain West: An Appreciation of the Situation since the 2014 Ukrainian Crisis

CSD Policy Brief No. 65: The Wind that Blows from the East: Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe

   Economic Program

Bulgarian Energy Policy

Copenhagen 2009: Outliers among CO2 emitters: choose your pick





Are Bulgarian consumers willing to pay for clean energy?






National Energy Strategy 2020

National Action Plan on RES


Think Tank Fund