CSD.BG RSShttp://csd.bg/en-ENCSD.BGTue, 26 May 2020 00:10:30 +0300Tue, 26 May 2020 00:10:30 +0300news-1000Tue, 19 May 2020 10:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 92: Lost in transition: Bulgaria and the European Green Dealhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-92-lost-in-transition-bulgaria-and-the-european-green-deal/The National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs) are supposed to be the member states’ roadmap for achieving the EU’s 2050 ambitious carbon neutrality goal. The policy measures within these strategic documents are meant to reconcile the tension between past path dependency on carbon intensive national energy sectors and economies and the drive towards new green technologies. The Bulgarian NECP reveals moderate progress on energy efficiency, renewable energy and regional power market integration goals. Yet it does not build a strong foundation for enabling a transformational policy path until 2050. Neither does it clearly outline the spill-over effects from the energy sector into all aspects of the economy and society.  This policy brief analyses the main elements of the final version of the Bulgarian NECP and proposes targeted policy measures on how to better implement it over the next decade.

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news-1002Mon, 11 May 2020 17:31:00 +0300Navigating through your supply chain: Toolkit for prevention of labour exploitation and traffickinghttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/navigating-through-your-supply-chain-toolkit-for-prevention-of-labour-exploitation-and-trafficking/In recent years, cases of labour exploitation in supply/subcontracting chains have been uncovered around the world, as well as in Europe. Outsourcing of work or services through subcontractors/suppliers or use of temporary workers in flexible employment relationships heighten the risk of exploitative working conditions. The working conditions in lengthy subcontracting chains might be difficult for companies to uncover. Everything may seem legal on paper but in reality, exploited migrant workers might work long hours in poor conditions, which are below national standards, and they have little or no possibility to change their situation. To protect the rights of migrant workers, to promote fair competition and decent work, as well as to avoid negative publicity businesses have a responsibility to address the risk of labour exploitation and human trafficking in their subcontracting or supply chains. 

This risk management toolkit has been developed with the purpose to give companies a brief overview of what labour exploitation and trafficking are, as well as to demonstrate the risks for businesses, and how involvement in such scenarios can be effectively avoided.

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news-998Mon, 04 May 2020 10:22:00 +0300Accelerated lignite exit in Bulgaria, Romania and Greecehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/accelerated-lignite-exit-in-bulgaria-romania-and-greece/In light of the ambitious targets for long term decarbonisation set by the European Green Deal, a critical question for decision-makers is how to sustain a coal phase-out that is as swift as possible while also ensuring security of supply, affordable electricity, and a just transition in regions dependent on coal. The aim of this report is to support decision makers in Bulgaria, Greece and Romania to implement a timely phase-out of coal by analysing the impact on electricity systems as well as the local economy, and highlighting policy recommendations to deal with potential issues related to compensation, system security and local economic impacts.

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news-960Mon, 06 Apr 2020 11:00:00 +0300Coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak in the EU - Fundamental Rights Implicationshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak-in-the-eu-fundamental-rights-implications/The outbreak of COVID-19 affects people’s daily life in the 27 EU Member States. As the number of infected people in the EU territory began to mount rapidly in February and March, governments put in place a raft of measures – often introduced in a period of only a few days – in an effort to contain the spread of the virus. Many of these measures reflect how, in exceptional emergency situations, the urgent need to save lives justifies restrictions on other rights, such as the freedom of movement and of assembly.

This report, published by the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA), outlines some of the measures EU Member States have put in place to protect public health during the COVID-19 pandemic in the period 1 February – 20 March 2020. It is based on 27 national background studies, provided to FRA by its interdisciplinary research network FRANET. The national report for Bulgaria, developed by CSD, offers an overview of the anti-epidemic measures introduced by the government and their implications on fundamental rights.

The report and all national background studies are available on the FRA website here.

 

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news-919Sat, 29 Feb 2020 14:48:00 +0200FAIRNESS: Comparative Legal Researchhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/fairness-comparative-legal-research/The present report emphasises the essential need for upholding the established principles and standards of criminal justice in the context of counter-terrorism and counter-radicalisation. In particular, the report argues that observing criminal justice requirements in radicalisation- and terror-rated cases is a key prerequisite for developing effective and sustainable counter-terrorism and counterradicalisation trust-based strategies and approaches that enhance civil and national security. The present report emphasises the essential need for upholding the established principles and standards of criminal justice in the context of counter-terrorism and counter-radicalisation. In particular, the report argues that observing criminal justice requirements in radicalisation- and terror-rated cases is a key prerequisite for developing effective and sustainable counter-terrorism and counterradicalisation trust-based strategies and approaches that enhance civil and national security. Part 2 of the report provides a thematic overview of the applicable international and EU, in order to examine how the concepts of terrorism and radicalisation are treated as legal subjects. Part 3 looks into the existing international, EU, and national legal instruments for protecting the criminal procedural rights of suspects and accused. Part 4 reviews ongoing international and national efforts that aim to safeguard criminal procedural rights in the context of counter-terrorism with a particular emphasis on the securitisation debate and its implications for the EU domestic and foreign policy.

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news-936Sun, 16 Feb 2020 13:52:00 +0200 Trafficking for Labour Exploitation in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/trafficking-for-labour-exploitation-in-bulgaria/Bulgaria remains one of the significant source countries for labour trafficking in Europe, although the problem has not been on the priority list of institutions for a long time being overshadowed by the problem with trafficking for sexual exploitation.  The predominant part of labour trafficking follows simple business models, whereby victims are recruited and exploited without any formal contracts in economic sectors such as agriculture, construction, cleaning and senior care. However there is a growing new trend of employing legitimate business structures in order to conceal trafficking activities. In many of these cases labour trafficking is intertwined with various forms of tax and social contributions evasion or fraud and traffickers make use of schemes for bogus self-employment or posting of workers abroad.

The working paper explores the modus operandi of traffickers, the business model and the financial flows associated with trafficking for labour exploitation.

 

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news-886Wed, 15 Jan 2020 10:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 91: Use of Corruption and the Illicit Market of Tobacco Products: Driving Factors and Trends https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-91-use-of-corruption-and-the-illicit-market-of-tobacco-products-driving-factors-a/Surveys of organised crime related to the illicit tobacco market in Bulgaria, conducted over the last 20 years, show an extremely intensive use of various corruptive practices at all levels of illicit trade. The record low level achieved at the end of 2019 - 3.3% according to the EPS, gave rise to a discussion regarding the risks of the market for illegal tobacco products growing again.

Expert estimates stipulate that unless there is an extremely dramatic change in taxation policy similar to these in 2006 or the 2009-2010 period, no significant shocks should be expected. The current analysis shows that criminal networks still active in the illicit trade in tobacco products have almost been completely destroyed at all levels. The fragmented residues that are still functioning do not have the capacity for significant expansion. In addition, market research shows that there has been a radical change in the attitude of Bulgarian consumers who have lost their habit of intensively searching for illegal tobacco products.

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news-884Fri, 10 Jan 2020 15:00:00 +0200The Kremlin Playbook in Southeast Europe: Economic Influence and Sharp Powerhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-kremlin-playbook-in-southeast-europe-economic-influence-and-sharp-power/The weakening of the EU gravitational pull leaves a power vacuum in Southeast Europe that is readily filled in by authoritarian powers such as Russia. The Kremlin is taking advantage of the democratic backsliding and the widespread state capture among dysfunctional institutions to enhance its economic and political influence in the region. While Russian economic power in Southeast Europe has visibly declined since the imposition of EU and NATO sanctions on the Kremlin in 2014, its overall ability to influence domestic politics has remained potent and has even gained effectiveness. 

Russia has preserved its sway over strategic decision-making in the region most notably in the energy sector where it has locked governments in costly infrastructure projects. By exploiting governance deficits, the Russian economic footprint has expanded to include some of the biggest companies in the region in oil refining, wholesale fuel and natural gas distribution, telecommunications and retail. Their strategic importance for the national economies in Southeast Europe has provided Russia with an outsized political leverage. To amplify its influence, Russia has aptly employed a range of sharp power instruments such as media propaganda, leveraging cultural and religious ties and sponsoring of civil society activities. This report looks into the Kremlin playbook instruments in eight Southeast European countries: Albania, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia.

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news-888Fri, 20 Dec 2019 16:11:00 +0200Judicial Training for Lawyers, Prosecutors, and Judges: Toolkithttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/judicial-training-for-lawyers-prosecutors-and-judges-toolkit/European judicial training represents a substantial tool in the process of building the European area of justice. Lawyers, prosecutors, and judges must have a good knowledge  of the EU acquis and its cooperation instruments, as well as an appropriate understanding and mutual trust in the different national systems. Judicial training represents a key tool for building such mutual trust and cooperation in order to protect victims of human trafficking, both European and foreign citizens, and to have an active contribution in the fight against the phenomenon. The purpose of this publication is to present in detail the way in which trainers and organisers can prepare a judicial training on such topics - from pre-training actions until the final evaluation to assess the events’ impact upon the target groups. The publication was elaborated within the framework of the initiative Training lawyers, prosecutors, judges to ensure better rights protection for migrants and refugees victims of human trafficking implemented by human rights and research organisations from five EU Member States with the participation of the Center for the Study of Democracy.

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news-878Tue, 10 Dec 2019 12:24:00 +0200Shady Business: Uncovering the Business Model of Labour Exploitationhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/shady-business-uncovering-the-business-model-of-labour-exploitation/Trafficking for labour exploitation is driven by the opportunity to make profit and in many cases businesses benefiting from this crime are not restricted to criminal organisations. In fact, it is often a chain of legitimate businesses that engage in labour exploitation, both knowingly and unknowingly. 

This toolkit describes the business model of trafficking for labour exploitation outlining how different legitimate business structures are used to conceal and further this crime. It also highlighs the links between labour exploitation, trafficking and economic crimes. The model is developed based on data collected in Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland and Latvia.

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news-909Mon, 09 Dec 2019 11:52:00 +0200Inclusivity Handbookhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/inclusivity-handbook/The MIICT Inclusivity Handbook tackles issues related to the incorporation and utilization of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) within the contextof public services, for the purpose of ensuring comprehensive inclusion of all individuals, irrespective of their personal characteristics and backgrounds. To this end, the report examines the fundamental notions of еquality and аntidiscrimination, emphasizing their utmost importance as catalysts for inclusion within public services and the indispensable roles they play in eradicating discrimination, marginalization and ostracization of individuals who want to avail themselves of such services but encounter various setbacks, ensuring they can access and navigate through them comfortably and with ease. In order to obtain an expansive understanding of the subject of inclusion, the report looks into the fields of gender equality, inclusion of migrants and refugees, inclusion of persons with disabilities and special needs, inclusion and e-governance, and inclusion and data protection. It identifies the main issues of ensuring inclusion within public services and it also elaborates on the various methods of guaranteeing such inclusion, accentuating on the multiple benefits ICTs have in this regard due to their widespread reach, as well as the versatility, simplicity and interactivity they provide. Incorporated into the report are examples of best practices on a global level, as well as checklists that summarise the main recommendations that authorities and private actors need to implement within their national frameworks in order to ensure the overall inclusion and equal participation of minorities, marginalized and disadvantaged people in the domain of public services.

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news-890Fri, 29 Nov 2019 16:47:00 +0200Contributions to the European Platform Tackling Undeclared Workhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/contributions-to-the-european-platform-tackling-undeclared-work/As part of the support team of the European Platform tackling undeclared work, CSD is developing a series of papers, analyses and toolkits, aimed at sharing good practices and experiences among the Member States. Since 2016, the European Platform tackling undeclared work provides an EU-level forum that allows different actors, including social partners and enforcement authorities, such as labour inspectorates, tax and social security authorities, to engage in closer cross-border cooperation and joint activities. The Platform’s 2-year work programme for 2019-2020 includes activities enabling Platform members to deal with undeclared work through a holistic approach. The new work programme is building on work to tackle bogus self-employment and fraudulent letterbox companies. Four sectors that are heavily affected by undeclared work have been identified for specific action: agriculture; aviation; tourism; and the hotel, restaurant and catering sector.

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news-771Thu, 28 Nov 2019 13:05:00 +0200Anti-trafficking stakeholders and economic sectors networking, cooperation to combat human trafficking https://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-trafficking-stakeholders-and-economic-sectors-networking-cooperation-to-combat-human-trafficki/The initiative Anti-trafficking stakeholders and economic sectors networking, cooperation to combat the business of human trafficking chain (NET-COMBAT-THB CHAIN) will be implemented starting September 2018 for a period of 20 months. The transnational project is coordinated by the Romanian organisation Association Pro Refugiu in partnership with the Center for the Study of Democracy Bulgaria, Centre for European Constitutional Law Greece, Italian Coalition for Civil Liberties and Rights, Verein für Internationale Jugendarbeit e.V. Landesverein Württemberg Germany.

The project starts from the premise that human trafficking in business enterprises occurs in every region of the world and the complexity of today's trafficking chain can result in otherwise well-intentioned companies to unknowingly, unintentionally support and participate in fueling the demand and supply chains. The failure to detect and address human trafficking and rights abuses, can have significant negative consequences. The economic sectors can have an important role to play in combating human trafficking in partnership with other anti-trafficking stakeholders.

Five newsletters will be published in the framework of this initiative, presenting the development of activities and results in each of the five participant countries.

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news-892Wed, 20 Nov 2019 13:15:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 90: A Comprehensive Model for Illicit Cigarette Market Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-90-a-comprehensive-model-for-illicit-cigarette-market-assessment/The model for illicit cigarette market assessment at regional level is a comprehensive approach to analyse the combined effect of two types of factors: the ones linked to law-enforcement bodies' performance and the region-specific drivers and barriers to the illicit trade in tobacco products. It was developed drawing on police and industry data from 4 countries – Bulgaria, Italy, Greece and Romania. The model not only allows to identify regions which are at high risk with regard to illicit trade in tobacco products, but also helps identify the measures needed to curb this illegal market.

 

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news-769Thu, 14 Nov 2019 17:34:00 +0200Justice for Women-Towards a more effective rights protection and access to judicial procedures for victims of crimeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/justice-for-women-towards-a-more-effective-rights-protection-and-access-to-judicial-procedures-for-v/The initiative Justice for Women-Towards a more effective rights protection and access to judicial procedures for victims of crimes will be implemented starting September 2018 for a period of 20 months. The transnational project is coordinated by the Romanian organization Association Pro Refugiu in partnership with the Center for the Study of Democracy Bulgaria, Association Demetra Bulgaria, Centre for European Constitutional Law Greece, Italian Coalition for Civil Liberties and Rights, Association Trabe Iniciativas para la Economia Social y Solidaria Spain.

The project aims to improve access to justice for women victims of violence, to increase the reporting of cases towards competent institutions, to improve the assessment process of damages suffered in order to receive appropriate financial compensation.

Four newsletters will be published in the framework of this initiative, presenting the development of activities and results in each of the five participant countries.

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news-876Wed, 13 Nov 2019 20:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 89: Russia’s Economic Influence in the Balkans: Tackling Kremlin’s Sharp Powerhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-89-russias-economic-influence-in-the-balkans-tackling-kremlins-sharp-power/The weakening of the EU gravitational pull leaves a power vacuum in the region that is readily filled in by authoritarian powers such as Russia and China. They are taking advantage of the democratic backsliding and the widespread state capture among dysfunctional institutions to expand their economic and political influence. This policy brief zooms in on Russia estimating its economic footprint in Southeastern Europe following the imposition of EU and US sanctions in 2014 and showcases the most important elements of the Russian strategy in the region.  Russian economic influence has declined since the imposition of U.S. and EU sanctions in 2014, but Russian companies still control between 5 and 10% of the regional economy, including strategic companies such as the largest refineries, fuel distribution networks, gas transmission and storage facilities, telecoms and retail chains. Meanwhile, the Kremlin has amplified its influence and yielded sharp power in the region through employing all instruments from its playbook, such as supporting mainstream and fringe political parties, employing media, cultural and religious ties, sponsoring civil society activities, and pulling former security services’ strings.

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news-875Fri, 01 Nov 2019 11:06:00 +0200Vigilantism against Migrants and Minoritieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/vigilantism-against-migrants-and-minorities/The edited volume "Vigilantism against Migrants and Minorities" traces the rise of far right vigilante movements – some who have been involved in serious violence against minorities, migrants and other vulnerable groups in society, whereas other vigilantes are intimidating but avoid using violence. Written by an international team of contributors, the book features case studies from Western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America, and Asia. This is a groundbreaking volume which will be of particular interest to scholars with an interest in the extreme right, social movements, political violence, policing and criminology.The edited volume "Vigilantism against Migrants and Minorities" traces the rise of far right vigilante movements – some who have been involved in serious violence against minorities, migrants and other vulnerable groups in society, whereas other vigilantes are intimidating but avoid using violence. Written by an international team of contributors, the book features case studies from Western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America, and Asia. This is a groundbreaking volume which will be of particular interest to scholars with an interest in the extreme right, social movements, political violence, policing and criminology.

Тhe chapter “Vigilantism against ethnic minorities and migrants in Bulgaria”, by Nadya Stoynova and Rositsa Dzhekova, analyses the rise of various formations in the country, which is located on the “Balkan migration route” and has significant Roma minority. This migration route provides the reason for the most recent manifestation of vigilantism in the country, namely anti-migrant patrols and arrests at the Bulgarian-Turkish border. Nevertheless, ad-hoc and less organized manifestations of vigilantism, predominantly against the Roma, have been observed prior to the migrant crisis. The wider political context is crucial in understanding the phenomenon in Bulgaria, as vigilantism should be considered as a phenomenon emerging in the context of the political, societal and economic crisis in the country during the post-communist period of the nineties and its lingering implications. The recent wave of anti-immigrant vigilante groups is also analysed within the context of a persistent “systematic crisis feeling”, which remains endemic in the country and which was exacerbated by the scale and intensity of the crisis.

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news-881Thu, 31 Oct 2019 14:50:00 +0200Vulnerable Offenders: The Rights of Suspects and Accused with Psychosocial and Intellectual Disabilitieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/vulnerable-offenders-the-rights-of-suspects-and-accused-with-psychosocial-and-intellectual-disabili/People with intellectual and/or psychosocial disabilities comprise a disproportionate number of the people who are arrested, who come before the courts and who are deprived from liberty. The reasons for this are complex, but are generally attributed to clinical risk factors, such as co-occurring substance use problems and treatment non-compliance, as well as social and systemic factors, such as improperly implemented deinstitutionalisation policies, homelessness and poverty, community disorganisation, poorly funded and fragmented community-based mental health and social services, hospital emergency room bed pressures, overly restrictive civil commitment criteria, intolerance of social disorder, and criminal law reforms.

This report strives to bring together strands of scientific research from various fields, in order to shed some light on people with intellectual and psychosocial disabilities and the challenges they face in their interaction with the police and judicial authorities during criminal proceedings.

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news-873Wed, 23 Oct 2019 17:33:00 +0300Bulgarian Organised Crime Threat Assessment 2019https://csd.bg/publications/publication/bulgarian-organised-crime-threat-assessment-2019/The 2018 Bulgarian Organised Crime Threat Assessment examines the major trends and dynamics in the country’s main criminal markets during the period. The current analysis indicates shrinking of traditionally robust criminal areas, such as the illegal trade in cigarettes and organised VAT fraud, while the illegal trade in fuels and the use and distribution of marijuana are experiencing growth. After the growing trend in the domestic market for sexual services in the 2012-2017 period, this year’s assessment registers a slight decrease in the market’s volume. At the same time cybercrime continues to be on the rise. New in this year’s edition is the inclusion of two previously unexplored criminal markets in the 2018 analysis: illegal logging and EU funds fraud.

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news-870Fri, 18 Oct 2019 11:58:00 +0300Assessing the Access to and Takeup of the Youth Guarantee Measures by Roma Youth in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assessing-the-access-to-and-takeup-of-the-youth-guarantee-measures-by-roma-youth-in-bulgaria/The 2008 global financial crisis resulted in economic challenges in the EU, one of which was a boom of youth unemployment. In response to the increase of youth unemployment, the EU designed the Youth Guarantee (YG), a scheme guaranteeing that every EU citizen between the ages of 15-24 who is out of employment, training and education, would receive support in finding temporary work, continuing education and practical training. With the initiation of the YG, the EU set expectations that every EU member state would implement the YG by introducing respective measures. In Bulgaria, a great portion of the YG target group are Roma youth. This publication reports on the results of research assessing the uptake of the YG among Roma youth in Bulgaria and offers recommendations to relevant stakeholders for the enhancement of such uptake.

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news-872Thu, 17 Oct 2019 16:49:00 +0300The Illicit Cigarette Trade along the Balkan Route: Measuring Vulnerabilities and Threatshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-illicit-cigarette-trade-along-the-balkan-route-measuring-vulnerabilities-and-threats/The current report focuses on the illicit tobacco market and the effectiveness of law enforcement against it in four EU countries along the Balkan route – Bulgaria, Italy, Greece and Romania. Having been affected by both illegal production and illegal trade, these countries face a number of vulnerabilities and threats in their capacities for effective law enforcement. In order to measure and design methods for improving these capacities, the study analyses two comprehensive datasets – the data collected by the tobacco industry on illicit consumption and the institutional data on seizures of illicit cigarettes. The result are several innovative instruments for assessing the illegal cigarette market, as well as police performance and corruption vulnerabilities in law enforcement and revenue agencies.

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news-868Thu, 17 Oct 2019 08:26:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 88: Energy Transition Governance for Better Energy Security in Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-88-energy-transition-governance-for-better-energy-security-in-europe/The European Green Deal1 pledge of the incoming European Commission confirms that energy transition and the European Energy Union2 will remain centre stage in European policy-making. The combination of new regulatory and technological innovations, the deepening of the interactions between energy and climate policies, and the corresponding shifts in individual and collective behaviour opens new opportunities for business and society to benefit from the energy transition. But they also provoke new governance challenges to both policy makers and citizens.The European Green Deal pledge of the incoming European Commission confirms that energy transition and the European Energy Union will remain centre stage in European policy-making. The combination of new regulatory and technological innovations, the deepening of the interactions between energy and climate policies, and the corresponding shifts in individual and collective behaviour opens new opportunities for business and society to benefit from the energy transition. But they also provoke new governance challenges to both policy makers and citizens. The advent of the prosumer, the energy producing consumer, as a foundation of successful energy transition, requires profound changes at the EU, national, local, and household level. In particular, the need for increasing the social acceptability and public awareness of energy transition policies, puts new emphasis on the energy security four-fold challenge of availability, reliability, affordability and sustainability. Solving this complex challenge requires understanding of the factors influencing household prosumption choices, in the first place. But it also calls for adequate energy transition policy choices and effective tools to steer quickly through the changing energy security landscape.

Europe, as a large energy consumer faces different choices from individual member states. Navigating these choices has become more complex and challenging amid continuing environmental challenges, the souring of US – China trade relations and the resurgent Russia confrontation. Consumers have grown more concerned with the rising cost of energy transition, in particular in lower income member states in Central and Eastern Europe. Russia’s strategic political projects in gas supply like Nord Stream 2 and Turkish Stream have divided the European Commission and member states. Similarly, LNG terminals and shale gas development have attracted supporters and opponents, with no common European policy in sight. New nuclear power plants such as Paks II in Hungary, Hinckley Point in the UK, Belene in Bulgaria have underscored the importance of designing and implementing socially inclusive and sustainable policies alongside the economic benefits and energy security.

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news-925Tue, 15 Oct 2019 13:44:00 +0300Advocacy to Prevent Intolerance, Discrimination and Group-focused Enmity of Youth in Bulgaria, Germany and the Visegrad Grouphttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/advocacy-to-prevent-intolerance-discrimination-and-group-focused-enmity-of-youth-in-bulgaria-germa/As part of the initiative “CEE Prevent Net”, CSD joined an interdisciplinary team of researchers and practitioners, which investigated advocacy and communication strategies for advancing prevention in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia. The team reviewed existing strategies and good practices, conducted field work and interviewed about 150 governmental and non-governmental stakeholders in youth affairs and prevention from different professions and ends of the political spectrum. As part of the initiative “CEE Prevent Net”, CSD joined an interdisciplinary team of researchers and practitioners, which investigated advocacy and communication strategies for advancing prevention in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia. The team reviewed existing strategies and good practices, conducted field work and interviewed about 150 governmental and non-governmental stakeholders in youth affairs and prevention from different professions and ends of the political spectrum. Their final report offers strategies and recommendations for practitioners and civil society to engage in political advocacy to prevent intolerance, discrimination and group hatred of youth. In particular, these recommendations focus on the possibilities for advocacy under unfavorable conditions in contemporary Central and Eastern Europe, such as growing levels of group hatred and right-wing extremism, shrinking civic space or the erosion of human rights standards, media independence and the rule of law, which pose a serious threat to peaceful and democratic societies in the region.

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news-865Mon, 09 Sep 2019 15:45:00 +0300Empowering EU against state capture through a new monitoring toolhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/empowering-eu-against-state-capture-through-a-new-monitoring-tool/State capture is a combination of different forms of corruption which have a single objective: to secure wholesale and long-term privileges to captors by exploiting the power of government for private benefit. This phenomenon is a specific security risk for the EU. The European Commission (EC) recently published a communication on the need to further strengthen the rule of law in the EU Member States (MSs) aiming to improve its existing policy instruments. Nevertheless, there is a lack of proper prevention and detection tools in place to curb corruption effectively in its many forms and across the different jurisdictions in the EU. While state capture problems vary in substance and intensity among MSs, the negative impact of corruption is felt across the EU. As corrupt practices evolve, EU Member States need to respond by deepening their capacity to tackle new and more complex forms but also to better share existing knowledge.

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news-861Fri, 30 Aug 2019 13:04:00 +0300Financial Compensation Guide Cases concerning Women Victims of Crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/financial-compensation-guide-cases-concerning-women-victims-of-crime/A significant percentage of all victims of crime are women. Violence against women is a widespread problem throughout the European Union and there is a need to do more in order to protect women, including better access to the criminal justice system. In practice there are still many challenges that women victims face when claiming compensation, such as: lack of comprehensive information on financial compensation, difficulties in receiving compensation from the offender, costly procedures, restrictive time limits, insufficient access to legal assistance.

This publication addresses judges and prosecutors involved in criminal cases, where financial compensation should be awarded to women victims of crime. It is also targeting lawyers that provide legal assistance to such victims. The publication addresses topics such as European and national legal framework concerning financial compensation, relevant indicators and evidence to assess  pecuniary and nonpecuniary damages suffered by women victims of crime. The publication was elaborated as part of the initiative JUSTICE FOR WOMEN – Towards a more effective rights protection and access to judicial procedures for victims of crimes.

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news-863Fri, 30 Aug 2019 12:50:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 87: Youth Guarantee Take-up among Roma in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-87-youth-guarantee-take-up-among-roma-in-bulgaria/The economic crisis of 2008 led to a drastic rise in youth unemployment throughout the European Union (EU), which continues to have effects a decade after the crisis. According to latest statistical data, by the second half of 2018 around 3.5 million people aged 15-24 within the Union have been unemployed. In response to that, in 2013 the EU initiated the Youth Guarantee (YG). According to a study by the Center for the Study of Democracy and World Without Borders, carried out in 2018 and 2019, the YG has low outreach among Roma youth in Bulgaria.The economic crisis of 2008 led to a drastic rise in youth unemployment throughout the European Union (EU), which continues to have effects a decade after the crisis. According to latest statistical data, by the second half of 2018 around 3.5 million people aged 15-24 within the Union have been unemployed. In response to that, in 2013 the EU initiated the Youth Guarantee (YG). According to a study by the Center for the Study of Democracy and World Without Borders, carried out in 2018 and 2019, the YG has low outreach among Roma youth in Bulgaria.

 

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news-859Fri, 23 Aug 2019 12:52:00 +0300Toolkit for the Economic Sectors to Combat Human Traffickinghttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/toolkit-for-the-economic-sectors-to-combat-human-trafficking/The toolkit was developed within the framework of the initiative Anti-trafficking stakeholders and economic sectors networking, cooperation to combat the business of human trafficking chain (NET-COMBAT-THB CHAIN).

The toolkit provides useful information to support the economic sectors to combat human trafficking in partnership with other relevant stakeholders. Traffickers frequently use the economic sectors to achieve their objectives. They make use of the lower costs for transportation, online recruitment websites, hotels and tourism industry, make payments through private financial entities and other illicit actions. National and international companies and their employees need to be aware of the negative effects of human trafficking and make the necessary efforts to ensure that the products and services are not obtained through exploitation of persons.

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news-852Mon, 29 Jul 2019 12:55:00 +0300The Prosecutor General: Six Years Laterhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-prosecutor-general-six-years-later/Full text - only in Bulgarian

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news-867Sun, 30 Jun 2019 16:38:00 +0300Mapping Report: State Capture Estimation and Monitoring of Anti-corruption Policies at the Sectoral Level in Europe /SceMaps/https://csd.bg/publications/publication/mapping-report-state-capture-estimation-and-monitoring-of-anti-corruption-policies-at-the-sectoral/The current report maps the policy, market, institutional, technical and data availability aspects, related to state capture (SC) assessment in three economic sectors (wholesale of solid, liquid and gaseous fuels; wholesale of pharmaceutical goods; and construction) in four European countries (Bulgaria, Italy, Romania, and Spain). The assessment is based on the State Capture Assessment Diagnostics (SCAD) methodology, which describes SC as institutionalization of corruption relations which lead to virtual privatization of governance and thus instead of public goods, the state capture process delivers systematically and permanently private goods to the captors (or privatizers) of the government functions. Processwise, state capture is the abuse of good governance rules (which includes abuse of power) in the process of drafting, adoption and enforcement of the rules themselves (including the laws) in favour of a small number of captors at the expense of society and business at large. SCAD models the abuse efforts by the business through national level indicators which reflect monopolization pressure and ineffectiveness of antimonopoly laws. At the sectoral level, additional indicators are monitored, providing proxies for a privileged status of a given business entity (company), including whether:
• it enjoys privileged access to public procurement;
• there is legislation or laws enhancing its market position;
• it has gained a privileged legal status shielding it from prosecution; or
• it receives preferential treatment in getting subsidies (most often, EU funds).

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news-856Fri, 28 Jun 2019 11:42:00 +0300Diversity Management in Bulgaria: Perceptions, Practices and Expectationshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/diversity-management-in-bulgaria-perceptions-practices-and-expectations/The report is part of a series of studies which assess the state of play and future perspectives of diversity management in Bulgaria. This report provides a needs assessment of the local business community in relation to diversity management and diversity strategy at company and at national (collective) level in Bulgaria. The report covers the following issues: overall level of awareness on diversity management among local businesses, their perceptions of diversity as a concept, their internal diversity policies and practices, and their expectations as to the launch and implementation of a national Diversity Charter. The report is part of the initiative DIVERSE.BG: Launch and Implementation of a Diversity Charter in Bulgaria.The report is part of a series of studies which assess the state of play and future perspectives of diversity management in Bulgaria. This report provides a needs assessment of the local business community in relation to diversity management and diversity strategy at company and at national (collective) level in Bulgaria. The report covers the following issues: overall level of awareness on diversity management among local businesses, their perceptions of diversity as a concept, their internal diversity policies and practices, and their expectations as to the launch and implementation of a national Diversity Charter. The report is part of the initiative DIVERSE.BG: Launch and Implementation of a Diversity Charter in Bulgaria.

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news-854Thu, 27 Jun 2019 16:40:00 +0300Diversity Management in Bulgaria: Politico-Legal Prerequisites and Self-Regulationhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/diversity-management-in-bulgaria-politico-legal-prerequisites-and-self-regulation/The report provides an overview of the main regulatory, policy, and institutional parameters that impact on diversity management on the labour market in Bulgaria. Four principal thematic domains are examined: equality, non-discrimination and social inclusion; equality and equal opportunities for men and women and persons with different gender identity and/or sexual orientation; equality and equal opportunities for those belonging to an ethnic minority; and equality and equal opportunities for persons with disabilities. The report reviews the national legislation in each respective domain, as well as relevant international agreements and standards, and directives and strategic documents of the European Union. The report has been developed within the framework of the initiative DIVERSE.BG: Launch and implementation of a Diversity Charter in Bulgaria.

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news-848Wed, 26 Jun 2019 10:25:00 +0300State Capture Assessment Diagnosticshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/state-capture-assessment-diagnostics/State capture, as illegitimate monopoly in the government and the economy of established or aspiring democracies and market economies, has been a matter of debate and inquiry for a number of years. The rise of the prominence and assertiveness of authoritarian models of development globally, and the resurgence of such trends in Europe and in its enlargement domain have re-kindled the search for policy tools to monitor and tackle state capture.

The current report presents a State Capture Assessment Diagnostics (SCAD) methodology and shows the results from its piloting in selected countries in Europe. SCAD is exactly the kind of evidence-gathering mechanism policy makers need to utilize for two purposes:

  • Verify the existence of state capture practices in given economic sectors and regulatory/enforcement institutions;
  • Consider policy adjustments which close the opportunities for special interests to use the institutions of public governance for private ends.

SCAD is designed to measure state capture results/effects and the capture process itself, as the latter is most often hidden, secret, and inaccessible. It is a pioneering effort for the exposure of state capture through measurement. It is meant to aid European policy makers in tackling state capture issues in their drive to provide an instrument to safeguard rule of law principles and protect the Union’s financial interest, and to better inform enlargement progress-monitoring and decision-making.

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news-844Thu, 20 Jun 2019 10:00:00 +0300Bulgarian National Energy and Climate Planhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/bulgarian-national-energy-and-climate-plan/Forthcoming in English

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news-836Mon, 03 Jun 2019 17:09:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 86: The Competitiveness of the Bulgarian Economy 2019https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-86-the-competitiveness-of-the-bulgarian-economy-2019/In 2019, Bulgaria has regained one position compared to the previous year in the economic competitiveness ranking of the World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY), published by the Institute for Management Development (IMD). Bulgaria’s Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) is IMD’s partner for the country. Bulgaria ranks 48th out of 63 economies. This is only a marginal improvement and remains significantly lower compared to its pre-crisis achievement of 2009 (38th place)

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news-842Mon, 03 Jun 2019 14:30:00 +0300Exploring new technologies for better integrationhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/exploring-new-technologies-for-better-integration/The H2020-project MIICT explores new approaches for ICT services that facilitate the integration of migrants. For that purpose, a first round of focus groups and co-creation workshops has taken place with local stakeholders in Spain, Italy and Cyprus PROJECT BACKGROUND

MllCT (ICT Enabled Public Services for Migration) was conceived with the goal of designing, developing and deploying tools that address the challenge of migrant integration. In service of this goal, the project undertakes to co-create improved !CT-enabled services with migrants, refugees, public sector services, NGOs (Non-Governmental-Organisations) and other interest groups. By involving end-users at the centre of our approach we address the need to improve and customise the interfaces used to access key public services so that they  better  address  the  requirements  of  migrants and refugees.

PROJECT OBJECTIVES

DEEPEN societal understanding of the factors that impact upon refugee and migrant populations' ability to access key public services

INTRODUCE a repeatable and proven open consolidated methodology for co-designing ICTs for public sector service transformation

CO-DESIGN ICTs to assist in the integration of refugee and migrant populations through the provision of access to key public services

DEVELOP an adaptive 'plug-and-play' integration framework for the incorporation of new ICTs into existing public services

SUPPORT migrant integration management by providing a job and skills matching decision support tool

INTEGRATE, demonstrate and rigorously test a number of co-designed ICTs that streamline access to public services and ease the integration of refugee communities

 

Contact
Miriana Ilcheva
Senior Analyst
Law Program
E-Mail: miriana.ilcheva(at)online(dot)bg  

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news-835Wed, 22 May 2019 18:04:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 85: The Kremlin Playbook: the Moviehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-85-the-kremlin-playbook-the-movie/The Kremlin Playbook 2: The Enablers revealed how Russia has developed and sustained state capture networks in Europe to enable the expansion of its economic and political influence.Austria has been one of the most vulnerable countries in Europe. Russia has increased its economic footprint in the country significantly over the last decade. Russian entities have rechanneled billions of euro in Russia-owned banks in Austria. The latter received an exemption from the European sanctions to continue operating within the Eurozone system and facilitate loans and deposit operations involving Russian entities.The Kremlin Playbook 2: The Enablers revealed how Russia has developed and sustained state capture networks in Europe to enable the expansion of its economic and political influence.

Austria has been one of the most vulnerable countries in Europe. Russia has increased its economic footprint in the country significantly over the last decade. Russian entities have rechanneled billions of euro in Russia-owned banks in Austria. The latter received an exemption from the European sanctions to continue operating within the Eurozone system and facilitate loans and deposit operations involving Russian entities.

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news-846Wed, 15 May 2019 17:14:00 +0300Free Movement of European Citizenshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/free-movement-of-european-citizens/Homophobia and unequal treatment of LGBTI people are still widespread in the European Union. Indicators of their level in individual Member States vary and the situation is seemingly better in some countries, but the data show that full equality for this group has not been achieved in any of them. Bulgaria is one of the countries where the situation is most unfavorable.Homophobia and unequal treatment of LGBTI people are still widespread in the European Union. Indicators of their level in individual Member States vary and the situation is seemingly better in some countries, but the data show that full equality for this group has not been achieved in any of them. Bulgaria is one of the countries where the situation is most unfavorable.

In order to shed light on one of the contributing factors, this analysis presents the results of a study on the application of the Free Movement Directive to LGBTI couples on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria. The analysis includes a review of the rights guaranteed to EU citizens and an analysis of the measures and deficiencies in the implementation of the Directive in Bulgaria, a review of administrative and judicial practice in the country and data from a national survey of same-sex couples with recognized status in other EU Member States who reside temporarily or live in Bulgaria.

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news-832Wed, 24 Apr 2019 12:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 84: Integrated Index for Illegal Cigarettes Market Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-84-integrated-index-for-illegal-cigarettes-market-assessment/The proposed model for illicit cigarette market assessment at district level is the first tool to analyse the combined effect of two types of factors: the ones linked to law-enforcement bodies' performance and the district-specific drivers and barriers to the illicit trade in tobacco products.

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news-830Tue, 23 Apr 2019 12:00:00 +0300Stifled Decarbonisation: Assessing the Bulgarian National Energy and Climate Planhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/stifled-decarbonisation-assessing-the-bulgarian-national-energy-and-climate-plan/The current report analyses the draft Bulgarian National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP) and pinpoints the main obstacles for the implementation of decarbonisation policies in the electricity sector. The main goal of the analysis is to present possible ideas and solutions for improving the NECP and for the more effective adaptation of the EU energy policies in Bulgaria. The assessment evaluates whether the NECP is consistent with the ambitious European goals in energy transition, and whether it has overcome some of the most common decarbonisation myths in Southeastern Europe.The current report analyses the draft Bulgarian National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP) and pinpoints the main obstacles for the implementation of decarbonisation policies in the electricity sector. The main goal of the analysis is to present possible ideas and solutions for improving the NECP and for the more effective adaptation of the EU energy policies in Bulgaria. The assessment evaluates whether the NECP is consistent with the ambitious European goals in energy transition, and whether it has overcome some of the most common decarbonisation myths in Southeastern Europe. The focus is on the governance framework and the action plan for achieving the decarbonisation targets. The assessment reveals how the NECP development process reflects the common energy sector governance deficits in Bulgaria, including the lack of political consistency, the limited transparency of decision-making and the lack of adequate cost/benefit analyses of long-term strategic decisions. The report recommends the implementation of a series of measures for the transformation of the electricity sector towards lower dependence on fossil fuels, the more ambitious integration of renewables-based power plants, as well as the effective inclusion of consumers in the functioning of the Bulgarian energy system.

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news-829Wed, 17 Apr 2019 20:11:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 83: Standards for Forced-Return Monitoring in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-83-standards-for-forced-return-monitoring-in-bulgaria/The issue of forced-return monitoring is a constituent part of the common European return policy, which is regarded as one of the highest priorities of the common EU migration policy. A primary objective of the EU return policy is to scale up return rates in proportion to the total number of return decisions issued through strengthening the Member States’ return capacity, as well as in cooperation with and by providing support to the countries of origin and transit.

 

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news-827Wed, 17 Apr 2019 16:07:00 +0300Cultural and Civic Orientation of Asylum Seekers and Beneficiaries of International Protectionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/cultural-and-civic-orientation-of-asylum-seekers-and-beneficiaries-of-international-protection/This publication aims to aid the work of trainers in providing cultural and civic orientation to asylum seekers and beneficiaries of international protection in Bulgaria. It provides systematic information on main topics relating to the cultural and civic orientation in the country, together with training methods and techniques. The publication proposes a full-fledged training program to be used by trainers in acquainting refugees with the host society based on interaction with the country’s living, civic, social and cultural environment. This publication aims to aid the work of trainers in providing cultural and civic orientation to asylum seekers and beneficiaries of international protection in Bulgaria. It provides systematic information on main topics relating to the cultural and civic orientation in the country, together with training methods and techniques. The publication proposes a full-fledged training program to be used by trainers in acquainting refugees with the host society based on interaction with the country’s living, civic, social and cultural environment.     

 

 

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news-817Fri, 29 Mar 2019 16:17:00 +0200Guidelines on Incorporating Tolerance and Mutual Respect in Language Tuition and Social Orientation of Refugees and Migrantshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/guidelines-on-incorporating-tolerance-and-mutual-respect-in-language-tuition-and-social-orientation/To this end the initiative ‘Preventing and Combatting Racism and Xenophobia through Social Orientation of Non-Nationals – RACCOMBAT’ explored throughout Member States good practices in combatting racism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance by promoting the laws, customs and values of society throughout the entire process of integration of migrants. Those practices formed the overall conceptual framework for the present guidelines to institutions and service providers on how to empower and educate newly arriving or relatively settled non-nationals not to allow allow acts of hate and intolerance on either side, recognise, prevent and counter them and have recourse to main legal remedies offered by the State.Increased migration flows have been profoundly impacting European States and their policies in the last few years. Fears and hostility towards ‘the other’ have been triggered by populist narratives, while notions of ‘migrants’ floods’ have been widely used in political rhetoric. At this background, not much is done to prepare refugees and migrants for understanding and communicating with authorities and grasping countries’ laws to prevent and counter acts of intolerance. In this respect, it is crucial that migrants have knowledge about their fundamental rights and freedoms. To this end the initiative ‘Preventing and Combatting Racism and Xenophobia through Social Orientation of Non-Nationals – RACCOMBAT’ explored throughout Member States good practices in combatting racism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance by promoting the laws, customs and values of society throughout the entire process of integration of migrants. Those practices formed the overall conceptual framework for the present guidelines to institutions and service providers on how to empower and educate newly arriving or relatively settled non-nationals not to allow allow acts of hate and intolerance on either side, recognise, prevent and counter them and have recourse to main legal remedies offered by the State.

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news-813Fri, 29 Mar 2019 02:00:00 +0200Best Practices in Anti-Corruption and Fraud Investigation in EU Funding https://csd.bg/publications/publication/best-practices-in-anti-corruption-and-fraud-investigation-in-eu-funding/The present compendium of selected best practices and investigative tools addresses the threat of fraud and corruption from multiple perspectives, with the underlying purpose of providing practitioners from Romania and Bulgaria with a set of best practices and innovative approaches
and methods in preventing and investigating fraud and corruption in the complex multi-layered national mechanism for EU funding.
This publication is based on ideas presented at the international conference ‘Standing Up To State Capture: Innovative Methods to Investigate Fraud and Corruption in EU Funding for Agriculture’ organised on 13-14 September in Sofia, with the support of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).

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news-812Thu, 28 Mar 2019 16:43:00 +0200The Kremlin Playbook 2: The Enablershttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-kremlin-playbook-2-the-enablers/Enablers of Russian malign influence allow the Kremlin to achieve its end and avoid some of the consequences of its behavior. By aiding and abetting Russia’s malign influence, enablers assist the Kremlin in self-destructive behavior that siphons funds offshore (often in or through Europe) and depletes the Russian tax base at a time of dire economic conditions. Crucially, by allowing Russian economic influence to cycle through their systems, enablers actively participate in the weakening and discrediting of their own democratic structures.Understanding Russian malign economic influence requires understanding the risks inherent in large Russian investment flows. Because enablers can facilitate or aid illicit financial flows,4 they jeopardize the integrity of open market economies and, ultimately, create a threat to national security. State-owned enterprises and large companies play an important role in the furtherance of Russian malign economic influence because of their dominant position and ability to distort market competition. The significant amounts of financial flows they oversee make them susceptible to illicit practices or abuse.In 2016, the major study The Kremlin Playbook: Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe concluded that the Kremlin has developed a pattern of malign economic influence in Europe through the cultivation of “an opaque network of patronage across the region that it uses to influence and direct decision-making.” This network of political and economic connections—an “unvirtuous” cycle of influence— thrives on corruption and the exploitation of governance gaps in key markets and institutions. Ultimately, the aim is to weaken and destroy democratic systems from within. Despite the varied nature of the countries presented in the first volume, the names of specific jurisdictions, companies, and members of Vladimir Putin’s inner circle kept appearing in nearly every network of influence. Was this a coincidence? Or could there be enabling forces that unwittingly or purposely amplify Russian malign economic influence? Exploring the answers to these questions formed the basis of our second report, The Kremlin Playbook 2: The Enablers.

Enablers of Russian malign influence allow the Kremlin to achieve its end and avoid some of the consequences of its behavior. By aiding and abetting Russia’s malign influence, enablers assist the Kremlin in self-destructive behavior that siphons funds offshore (often in or through Europe) and depletes the Russian tax base at a time of dire economic conditions. Crucially, by allowing Russian economic influence to cycle through their systems, enablers actively participate in the weakening and discrediting of their own democratic structures.

Understanding Russian malign economic influence requires understanding the risks inherent in large Russian investment flows. Because enablers can facilitate or aid illicit financial flows, they jeopardize the integrity of open market economies and, ultimately, create a threat to national security. State-owned enterprises and large companies play an important role in the furtherance of Russian malign economic influence because of their dominant position and ability to distort market competition. The significant amounts of financial flows they oversee make them susceptible to illicit practices or abuse.

Enablers can facilitate the integration of illicit funds within legitimate global financial flows, assisted by shell companies and corporate facilitators like banks, attorneys, or accountants. Russian private holdings abroad total an estimated $1 trillion. These significant capital flows create a potential dependence on illicit funds in which the enabler and the Kremlin both benefit from and are dependent on a system that helps these flows transit in and out of Russia and Europe. Illicit finance, particularly money laundering, can damage national security by corrupting government officials who can alter policies, impeding the free flow of capital, reducing the efficacy of sanctions regimes, and distorting entire markets and industries.

This link between illicit finance and national security can materialize in two separate channels—public corruption and organized crime—that follow the same track and at times overlap. In the case of Russia, these two flows converge at the behest of the Kremlin. Malign actors hiding funds and profits can do so through money laundering and tax avoidance or evasion. Enabling countries’ developed financial systems move these billions in investment and profits in and out of European countries every year. These financial systems offer specific tools that are designed to obscure the origins of certain investments and conceal illicit financing. Tactics that remove profits from the reach of tax authorities (and thus state revenue) may not be illegal, but some are meant to operate just below the threshold of illegality, where enablers excel—within a financial gray zone. They might be following the letter of the law, but certainly not its spirit, and industries like corporate service providers (CSPs) assist in this task by feeding the enabling ecosystem through complex, cross-border transactions and company constructions. This complex ecosystem has grown exponentially in the past three decades with rapid globalization and Russia’s deep integration within our financial system. It has become almost impossible to disentangle the reported $1 trillion of Russian capital outflows from other financial flows, including for the most capable oversight bodies in the world.

 

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news-810Wed, 20 Mar 2019 02:00:00 +0200Assessing the Impact of Criminal Proceedings on the Social Situation of Suspects and Accusedhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assessing-the-impact-of-criminal-proceedings-on-the-social-situation-of-suspects-and-accused/This handbook offers practical guidelines to the law enforcement and criminal justice authorities on how to assess the impact of criminal proceedings on suspects and accused. It explains how the proceedings can affect the personal and social life of suspects and accused, provides summaries of court cases showing how criminal justice authorities are addressing this issue in practice, and offers references to research works for further reading. Enclosed in the handbook is an impact assessment questionnaire, which allows the law enforcement and criminal justice authorities to assess the degree to which the proceedings can affect the social status of suspects or accused.

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news-819Tue, 19 Mar 2019 17:44:00 +0200Human trafficking and the economic/business sectors susceptible to be involved in the demand and supply chain of products and services resulting from victimshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/human-trafficking-and-the-economicbusiness-sectors-susceptible-to-be-involved-in-the-demand-and-sup/The report 'Human trafficking and the economic/business sectors susceptible to be involved in the demand and supply chain of products and services resulting from victims’ exploitation'was developed within the framework of the initiative 'Anti-trafficking stakeholders and economic sectors networking, cooperation to combat the business of human trafficking chain (NET-COMBAT-THB CHAIN). The study is based on the current European and international context: the increasing demand for sexual services, the demand for cheap labour, the desire to make a profit with minimal investment are factors that intensify the activity of the networks of human trafficking. EU Member States must make the necessary efforts to identify and put a stop to the involvement of the public and private sector in the human trafficking or its even indirect complicity. States must encourage dialogue and partnerships with stakeholders in order to bring together economic sectors, NGOs, anti-trafficking experts, in joint actions against human trafficking.

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news-821Fri, 15 Mar 2019 18:50:00 +0200Violence against Women Key Findings and Strategies to Tackle Unreported Cases and to Enforce the Protection Orderhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/violence-against-women-key-findings-and-strategies-to-tackle-unreported-cases-and-to-enforce-the-pro/The purpose of the report is to highlight the situation of violence against women in several EU Member States and to highlight common difficulties in ensuring better rights' protection. A series of recommendations and strategies will be presented on how to improve the current legislative framework, as well as social and educational issues that play an important role in the fight against violence. The publication is part of the initiative 'JUSTICE FOR WOMEN – Towards a more effective rights protection and access to judicial procedures for victims of crimes'.

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news-784Thu, 31 Jan 2019 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 82: Fraudulent Use of EU Funds in the Field of Agriculture: Current State, Investigation and Challengeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-82-fraudulent-use-of-eu-funds-in-the-field-of-agriculture-current-state-investig/
The Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) budget for 2014 – 2020 amounts to a total of 408 billion EUR , while 40 % of the EU annual budget is earmarked for agriculture. In 2013 – 2017 the EC received reports of a total of 18 281 cases on counts of fraud and other irregularities in agiculture, amounting to a total of 1.360 billion EUR. EU funds fraud can be committed through acts constituting an infringement, such as corruption, falsification of documents, influence peddling, circumvention of the law, conflict of interests, bribery, making false statements and others. It is crucial to employ innovative methods in the fight against fraud, such as satellite and thermal imaging, automated prevention systems and multi-channel civil society monitoring.
 
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news-782Thu, 03 Jan 2019 02:00:00 +0200The Russian Economic Grip on Central and Eastern Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-russian-economic-grip-on-central-and-eastern-europe/This book is about the use of economic and state capture levers for achieving political clout. It details how Moscow has been able to exploit governance deficits and influence decision-making in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe through a range of economic means.

The comparative country by country perspective on Russia’s corporate presence, trade, and investment in particular sectors of the region, especially energy, shows the patterns of the Kremlin’s use of economic presence and state capture tactics to amplify political and social leverage.

By collating economic data with an analysis of governance loopholes and the political process, the authors reveal the Kremlin’s methods for swaying national policies. The book thereby highlights how Russia’s economic power is related to its wider strategic goals.

It concludes that Russia’s economic grip, both direct and indirect, is tighter than official statistics imply.

For more details go here.

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news-786Wed, 19 Dec 2018 02:00:00 +0200Standards for Forced-Return Monitoring in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/standards-for-forced-return-monitoring-in-bulgaria/In recent years, the policy on forced return of third-country nationals has become an important element of the management of migration processes within the EU, and the Member States are encouraged to establish an effective monitoring system at national level. The aim of this publication is to support the establishment of such a system in Bulgaria by proposing Standards for Monitoring the implementation of forced-return operations.  The Standards are intended to inform and guide independent monitors of operations involving the forced return of third-country nationals carried out by the Migration Directorate (MD) of the Ministry of Interior (MoI) of the Republic of Bulgaria.

 

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news-788Wed, 19 Dec 2018 02:00:00 +0200Monitoring Forced Return in Bulgaria: Analytical Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/monitoring-forced-return-in-bulgaria-analytical-report/The current report provides recommendations based on analysis of data from independent monitoring of 15 forced-return operations of illegally staying third-country nationals carried out between August 2016 and December 2018. The report is a first-ever analysis of findings from forced-return operations in Bulgaria and makes recommendations for the establishment of a national mechanism for monitoring forced return, optimization of the monitoring process and full implementation of its objectives. The monitoring of 15 operations was carried out as part of the fulfillment of Bulgaria's commitment to provide for an effective forced-return monitoring system introduced in the Bulgarian legislation in 2013 in accordance with Directive 2008/115/EC.

 

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news-775Thu, 13 Dec 2018 02:00:00 +0200Financing of Organised Crime: Human Trafficking in Focushttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/financing-of-organised-crime-human-trafficking-in-focus/The report Financing of Organised Crime: Human Trafficking in Focus contributes to a better understanding of the financial aspects of this infamous phenomenon. The analysis explores the sources and mechanisms of the financing of trafficking in human beings, settlement of payments, access to financing in critical moments, costs of business, and the management of profits. The report draws on the findings of nine in-depth country case studies in Belgium, Bulgaria, Italy, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Romania, Spain, and the United Kingdom. Based on the results of the analysis and the examination of the current practices with regards to financial investigations, the report also suggests recommendations for tackling this crime.

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news-764Fri, 23 Nov 2018 18:20:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 81 Energy Security in Southeast Europe: the Greece-Bulgaria Interconnectorhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-81-energy-security-in-southeast-europe-the-greece-bulgaria-interconnector/Southeast Europe remains reliant on expensive energy imports from Russia and is ill-prepared to withstand another major supply crisis. In this respect, the completion of the Interconnector Greece-Bulgaria (IGB) would unlock the diversification process, which will increase the energy security of the whole region. To reap the full benefits and increase competition, there is a need to complete the liberalisation, diversification and integration of the regional gas market.

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news-778Wed, 31 Oct 2018 02:00:00 +0200The European Youth Guarantee and Its Uptake among Roma Youth in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-european-youth-guarantee-and-its-uptake-among-roma-youth-in-bulgaria/The 2008 financial crisis severely affected European youth. In the context of economic instability and a process of EU economy recovery, issues of transitioning from school to work among young Europeans exacerbated. To respond to such negative trends, the EU adopted the Youth Guarantee (YG) so that young EU citizens (usually between the ages of 15-24) can receive good-quality employment offers and offers for employment-enhancement activities. Implemented EU-wide in 2013 and 2014, the Youth Guarantee has mainly targeted the group of young EU citizens who are out of education, employment or training. In some member states (such as Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Spain) youth in underprivileged positions and ethnic minorities, such as Roma, are in the position of being eligible for support through the YG.

In September 2017, the Center for the Study of Democracy, in collaboration with partners from Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary, started an initiative to support the outreach and uptake of the measures of the YG by Roma youth in Bulgaria, Hungary, and Romania. In the framework of the initiative, the partners are conducting fieldwork research, report on the level of outreach of the YG among Roma youth, and are organizing advocacy efforts at local, regional and national levels.

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news-767Thu, 25 Oct 2018 03:00:00 +0300Bulgarian Organised Crime Threat Assessment 2018https://csd.bg/publications/publication/bulgarian-organised-crime-threat-assessment-2018/The 2017 Bulgarian Organised Crime Threat Assessment uncovers the major trends and dynamics in the country’s main criminal markets during the last several years. The current analysis indicates shrinking of traditionally robust criminal areas, such as the illegal trade in cigarettes and organised VAT fraud, while the illegal trade in fuels and the use and distribution of marijuana are experiencing growth. The domestic market for sexual services has also seen a significant increase in turnover since the previous such assessment in 2012.

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news-762Mon, 15 Oct 2018 20:24:00 +0300Factors affecting the Social Status of Suspects and Accusedhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/factors-affecting-the-social-status-of-suspects-and-accused/Around nine million people are the subject of criminal justice proceedings every year in the EU. At the same time, a significant share of those suspected or accused of criminal offences are not found guilty and are never convicted. All suspects, whether finally convicted or not, are presumed innocent until proven guilty according to the law. The presumption of innocence is a fundamental right, a key principle of criminal justice and a universally recognised human rights standard.

Despite the obligation of criminal justice authorities to strictly observe the presumption of innocence, suspects and accused are always subject to certain restrictions and consequences during the criminal proceedings. All of these restrictions have their legitimate purposes but at the same time affect the personal and social sphere of suspects and accused.

During criminal proceedings, suspects and accused, although presumed innocent, are practically placed in an unequal position compared to other members of the society. As a result of the measures and restrictions applied to them, their social status can be affected in a number of ways: temporary or permanent unemployment, loss of income, increased expenses, loss of social benefits, deteriorating relations with family members, etc.

At the same time, the impact of criminal proceedings on suspects and accused is often neglected by the criminal justice authorities, which tend to focus on ensuring the effective progress and outcome of the case, rather than on mitigating the resulting negative implications for suspects and accused. In practice, a criminal case can lead to a certain degree of de-socialisation of the accused person and this risk needs to be taken into account and properly assessed by the criminal justice authorities. Such an assessment should be added to the evaluation of other factors, such as the risk of absconding or reoffending, in order to allow the competent criminal justice body to select and apply the most appropriate combination of measures in each particular case.

This report aims to examine the factors that affect the social status of suspects and accused drawing upon the prevalent legal practices in four European Union Member States: Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, and Italy. 

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news-773Mon, 15 Oct 2018 19:44:00 +0300Understanding Russian Communication Strategy: Case Studies of Serbia and Estoniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/understanding-russian-communication-strategy-case-studies-of-serbia-and-estonia/Disinformation and propaganda have become key soft power elements in the updated Russian security policy since 2012/13. For Russian leadership disinformation and propaganda have become key instruments to impact domestic debates in EU member states and in the neighbourhood of the EU. This policy aims to weaken cohesion in the EU and its image in the neighbourhood and has become so successful because of the shrinking self-confidence of Western democracies. The study by the German Foreign Relations Institute (IFA) in cooperation with the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) and the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP) analyses Russia‘s communication strategy vis-à-vis Serbia and Estonia focusing on the role of Russian media ownership, propaganda and disinformation. The study provides a detailed overview of the tools used by Russian actors and the aims behind disinformation campaigns across Central and Eastern Europe. It shows how Russia has executed a successful communication strategy that takes advantage of institutional gaps to sow discord in societies and expand Russian economic and political influence.

Full text on ifa.Publikationen website

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news-780Mon, 01 Oct 2018 03:00:00 +0300Practices in educating non-nationals about racism, xenophobia and related intolerancehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/practices-in-educating-non-nationals-about-racism-xenophobia-and-related-intolerance/Within the framework of the international initiative Preventing and Combatting Racism and Xenophobia through Social Orientation of Non-Nationals – RACCOMBAT, led by the Center for the Study of Democracy, the present collection gathers 15 promising practices from 12 EU Member States in the area of including fundamental rights knowledge and empowerment against racism, xenophobia and related intolerance into the overall integration process of non-nationals throughout the Union. Practices come from integration systems of very different level of development and are varied in their nature – from private company driven efforts to meet government requirements, concerning integration curricula, to citizen initiatives having found some form of institutionalisation. What unites them all is the concern of institutions, NGOs and individuals that migrants should be given more than basic education, jobs and healthcare – a true sense of citizenship and readiness to counter negative social phenomena, related to hatred.

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news-759Tue, 11 Sep 2018 11:24:00 +0300Who are the European Jihadists?https://csd.bg/publications/publication/who-are-the-european-jihadists/Radicalisaiton and terrorism are key challenges which are the forefront of the security agenda across the globe. A similarly important, related problem is the intersection between these phenomena and other crimes. The nature and type of such links need to be well mapped out and understood to facilitate the development of working counteraction strategies. The current report presents emergent findings of an in-depth study which aims to shed more light on the crime-terror nexus across eleven European Union countries. Radicalisaiton and terrorism are key challenges which are the forefront of the security agenda across the globe. A similarly important, related problem is the intersection between these phenomena and other crimes. The nature and type of such links need to be well mapped out and understood to facilitate the development of working counteraction strategies. The current report presents emergent findings of an in-depth study which aims to shed more light on the crime-terror nexus across eleven European Union countries. European jihadists tend to be poorly educated, young men without stable career prospects. Jihadists are rarely lone-wolf actors, being connected to friendship or family circles sympathetic to the ideology or an online community. The existence of crime-terror nexus is supported by the data, which further indicates that the criminal background of jihadists is more often than previously thought connected to serious rather than petty offences.

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news-750Tue, 04 Sep 2018 13:25:00 +0300Russian Influence in the Media Sectors of the Black Sea Countries: Tools, Narratives and Policy Options for Building Resiliencehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/russian-influence-in-the-media-sectors-of-the-black-sea-countries-tools-narratives-and-policy-opti/The Black Sea region has been subject to increasing pressure and uncertainty, following Russia’s occupation of parts of Georgia in 2008, the annexation of Crimea and destabilization of eastern Ukraine in 2014, and the continuing military stand-off to NATO in the Black Sea and beyond after the intervention in Syria in 2015. These developments have demonstrated Moscow’s determination to revise the post-Cold War order by applying pressure through hard- and softpower instruments on both members and associate partners of the EU and NATO in order to undermine Euro-Atlantic cohesion and unity. A particularly prominently deployed weapon of choice of the Kremlin has been media propaganda and disinformation.The Black Sea region has been subject to increasing pressure and uncertainty, following Russia’s occupation of parts of Georgia in 2008, the annexation of Crimea and destabilization of eastern Ukraine in 2014, and the continuing military stand-off to NATO in the Black Sea and beyond after the intervention in Syria in 2015. These developments have demonstrated Moscow’s determination to revise the post-Cold War order by applying pressure through hard- and softpower instruments on both members and associate partners of the EU and NATO in order to undermine Euro-Atlantic cohesion and unity. A particularly prominently deployed weapon of choice of the Kremlin has been media propaganda and disinformation.

The report examines Russia’s presence and tactics in the media sectors of five Black Sea countries, by assessing the relationship between the Kremlin’s corporate and financial footprint in the media outlets of these states and the dissemination of pro-Russian and anti-Western propaganda content. It confirms that the patterns of ownership, economic dependency and (in)formal political links of media outlets in the countries under investigation to pro-Russian groups and interests are correlated with and reflected into corresponding trends of employing Russia-originating propaganda narratives.

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news-748Tue, 21 Aug 2018 13:22:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 80: The Illicit Trade of Tobacco Products along the Balkan Route – Bulgaria, Greece, Italy and Romaniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-80-the-illicit-trade-of-tobacco-products-along-the-balkan-route-bulgaria-greece/Bulgaria and Romania have long traditions in illicit tobacco trade rooted in the hardships of their transitions to market economy. Unlike them, Greece and Italy enjoyed lower levels of illicit tobacco consumption, which changed with the arrival of the global economic crisis in 2009. Thus by 2012 illicit market soared from 2.2 % up to 8.5 % in Italy and from 2 % up to 10 % in Greece. The economic crisis have also led to sharp increase in illicit tobacco consumption in Bulgaria and Romania as well. However, while Bulgaria and Italy managed to stifle the illicit market, Greece and Romania continue to face high levels of counterfeit and contraband cigarettes.

Bulgaria and Romania have long traditions in illicit tobacco trade rooted in the hardships of their transitions to market economy. Unlike them, Greece and Italy enjoyed lower levels of illicit tobacco consumption, which changed with the arrival of the global economic crisis in 2009. Thus by 2012 illicit market soared from 2.2 % up to 8.5 % in Italy and from 2 % up to 10 % in Greece. The economic crisis have also led to sharp increase in illicit tobacco consumption in Bulgaria and Romania as well. However, while Bulgaria and Italy managed to stifle the illicit market, Greece and Romania continue to face high levels of counterfeit and contraband cigarettes.

The current report examines the development of the illicit tobacco market in Bulgaria, Greece, Italy and Romania through the prism of economic risks, the political environment in the country and the region, and recent changes in the involved criminal networks and the institutional capabilities for counteraction. The publication was prepared in the framework of the study "Illegal Trade in Tobacco Products and the Balkan Route: Overcoming Institutional Gaps and Corruption" and is funded by PMI-IMPACT, a global initiative to combat illegal trade and related crimes.
 
 
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news-790Tue, 31 Jul 2018 03:00:00 +0300ALICE: Adapting Learning in Inclusive Communities and Environmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/alice-adapting-learning-in-inclusive-communities-and-environment/There are quite a lot of studies, which show that having the chance to reveal your true self without the need to play a role is a determining factor in forming a sense of belonging to a community, empathy and mutual support. Fairly often cases of bullying, exclusion and discrimination tend to make kids’ life at school pretty difficult. The international initiative ALICE, which is being implemented in 5 countries across Europe (Bulgaria, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands and Greece), focuses on the need to create safe spaces, where each student will be able to freely express themselves and his/her needs.

ALICE aims to utilize educational and social pedagogical tools and practices related to the application of pro-social measures intended to involve local communities in promoting the development of tolerance skills and the acceptance of differences among the young people. In particular, the initiative seeks to improve pro-social behavior in school environments, especially in secondary schools.

Four newsletters will be published in the framework of this initiative, presenting the development of activities and results achieved at different project stages in each of the five participant countries.

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news-744Fri, 27 Jul 2018 13:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 79: Decentralisation and Democratisation of the Bulgarian Electricity Sector: Bringing the Country Closer to the EU Climate and Energy Corehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-79-decentralisation-and-democratisation-of-the-bulgarian-electricity-sector-bring/A low-hanging fruit to decarbonise the electricity sector would be the exploitation of Bulgaria’s enormous potential for decentralised power generation through renewable energy sources. Decentralisation of power supply would empower households and contribute to the decline of energy poverty. The first-generation renewable energy policy in Bulgaria was mismanaged to the benefit of a few politically well-connected companies and individuals unleashing a popular backlash against green energy.

A low-hanging fruit to decarbonise the electricity sector would be the exploitation of Bulgaria’s enormous potential for decentralised power generation through renewable energy sources. Decentralisation of power supply would empower households and contribute to the decline of energy poverty. Bulgaria has a long-term potential capacity for decentralized PV-based power generation of more than 5.4 TWh per year, one-seventh of the current power consumption in the country.

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news-742Thu, 26 Jul 2018 12:51:01 +0300Money Laundering Investigation Manual (MLIM)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/money-laundering-investigation-manual-mlim/The Money Laundering Investigation Manual (MLIM) is a specialized product, developed to support the operational work of civil servants, investigation authorities and members of the judiciary in Bulgaria. The MLIM examines and summarizes the main trends, legal framework and the operational activities for the investigation and prosecution of money laundering offences. The publication offers a detailed overview of (a) the national and international legal frameworks for countering money laundering; (b) the specifics of the money laundering offence within the operational work of law enforcement authorities; (c) the investigation process of money laundering; (d) the mutual legal assistance in cases of money laundering; and (e) the process for identification and confiscation of property acquired from criminal and illegal activity.The Money Laundering Investigation Manual (MLIM) is a specialized product, developed to support the operational work of civil servants, investigation authorities and members of the judiciary in Bulgaria. The MLIM examines and summarizes the main trends, legal framework and the operational activities for the investigation and prosecution of money laundering offences. The publication offers a detailed overview of (a) the national and international legal frameworks for countering money laundering; (b) the specifics of the money laundering offence within the operational work of law enforcement authorities; (c) the investigation process of money laundering; (d) the mutual legal assistance in cases of money laundering; and (e) the process for identification and confiscation of property acquired from criminal and illegal activity.

The MLIM was prepared at the initiative of the Center for the Study of Democracy and is intended for use by officials of the Ministry of Interior, the State Agency for National Security, the National Investigation Service, the Prosecutor's Office of the Republic of Bulgaria and the Commission for countering corruption and for confiscation of illegally acquired assets.

The development of the Handbook involved cooperation and contribution from representatives of the state administration and the judiciary, including the Supreme Cassation Prosecutor's Office, the Specialized Administrative Directorate "Financial Intelligence" and the Specialized Financial Security Directorate at the State Agency for National Security, the General Directorate "National Police" and the Directorate for Combating Organized Crime at the Ministry of the Interior, and the Commission for countering corruption and for confiscation of illegally acquired assets.

Due to the sensitivity of the information the MLIM is not intended for public use and/or distribution, and was developed for the exclusive ownership of the relevant government authorities. The publication was produced with the financial support of the Bulgarian-Swiss cooperation programme.

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news-740Thu, 26 Jul 2018 12:46:00 +0300Victims’ Booklethttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/victims-booklet/The Victims’ Booklet has been published under the initiative ‘Pro Victims Justice through an Enhanced Rights’ Protection and Stakeholders Cooperation’ and looks at the stages of criminal proceedings and the rights of victims of crime under the national legislation of Bulgaria, Romania, Germany and Sweden. The Victims’ Booklet has been published under the initiative ‘Pro Victims Justice through an Enhanced Rights’ Protection and Stakeholders Cooperation’ and looks at the stages of criminal proceedings and the rights of victims of crime under the national legislation of Bulgaria, Romania, Germany and Sweden. At the end of each country presentation there is a link to a database, containing useful information on the institutions and organisations guaranteeing protection of victims’ rights. The Booklet is directed towards representatives of law enforcement and the judiciary, victim support organisations’ experts as well as citizens who have been victimised by a crime.

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news-738Thu, 26 Jul 2018 12:37:29 +0300Referral Mechanism to Assist Victims of Crime in Domestic and Cross-Border Caseshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/referral-mechanism-to-assist-victims-of-crime-in-domestic-and-cross-border-cases/The Referral Mechanism to Assist Victims of Crime in Domestic and Cross-Border Cases has been published under the initiative ‘Pro Victims Justice through an Enhanced Rights’ Protection and Stakeholders Cooperation’ and looks at legal framework of victim protection on European and national level, the procedures for identifying victims in Bulgaria, Romania, Germany and Sweden and the respective indicators.The Referral Mechanism to Assist Victims of Crime in Domestic and Cross-Border Cases has been published under the initiative ‘Pro Victims Justice through an Enhanced Rights’ Protection and Stakeholders Cooperation’ and looks at legal framework of victim protection on European and national level, the procedures for identifying victims in Bulgaria, Romania, Germany and Sweden and the respective indicators. The Mechanism tackles also the referral to free legal aid and the main stages of criminal proceedings and the rights victims have in domestic and cross-border cases. The publication offers a short overview of institutions and organisations guaranteeing the rights of those persons in the participating countries. The Mechanism is directed towards representatives of competent law enforcement and judicial authorities, practicing lawyers, as well as citizens victimised by crime.

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news-736Thu, 26 Jul 2018 12:21:33 +0300Analysis of social orientation in six EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/analysis-of-social-orientation-in-six-eu-member-states/Experts from six EU Member States – Bulgaria, Belgium, Greece, Austria, Romania and Latvia – led by the Center for the Study of Democracy completed the analysis of the systems of social orientation for non-nationals in the participating countries under the initiative ‘Preventing and Combatting Racism and Xenophobia through Social Orientation of Non-Nationals – RACCOMBAT’. Experts from six EU Member States – Bulgaria, Belgium, Greece, Austria, Romania and Latvia – led by the Center for the Study of Democracy completed the analysis of the systems of social orientation for non-nationals in the participating countries under the initiative ‘Preventing and Combatting Racism and Xenophobia through Social Orientation of Non-Nationals – RACCOMBAT’. The publications look at how social orientation and language courses and modules tackle subjects like protection against discrimination, powers and functions of law enforcement and the judiciary, what procedures are in place in cases of violations of foreigners’ rights and how they can get legal aid. Based on this detailed review, experts make an assessment as to how social orientation of non-nationals can empower them against racism and xenophobia and prepare them for full fledged participation and integration in the life of the host community.

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news-734Thu, 26 Jul 2018 11:52:54 +0300Country reports on the factors affecting the social status of suspects and accusedhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/country-reports-on-the-factors-affecting-the-social-status-of-suspects-and-accused/The country reports summarise the findings of the analysis of the factors affecting the social status of suspects and accused in four EU Member States: Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece and Italy. The country reports summarise the findings of the analysis of the factors affecting the social status of suspects and accused in four EU Member States: Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece and Italy. Each report offers information about the legal restrictions and remand measures applied on suspects and accused during the criminal proceedings, their impact on the accused person’s economic status, personal life, and family and community links, and the rules and practices for disclosing information about the proceedings to third persons, to the public and to the media.

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news-731Thu, 26 Jul 2018 11:25:16 +0300Mapping reports on social orientation in twelve EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/mapping-reports-on-social-orientation-in-twelve-eu-member-states/Experts from six EU Member States – Bulgaria, Belgium, Greece, Austria, Romania and Latvia – led by the Center for the Study of Democracy completed the mapping of the systems of social orientation for non-nationals in twelve EU Member States. Experts from six EU Member States – Bulgaria, Belgium, Greece, Austria, Romania and Latvia – led by the Center for the Study of Democracy completed the mapping of the systems of social orientation for non-nationals in twelve EU Member States. The overviews concerned the legal framework under which social orientation is delivered, the course/module providers, the audience targeted by the social orientation efforts. Description is given of the courses’ most important parameters, such as length, format and language of delivery. The social orientation content is elaborated upon in detail, including the modules’ aims, themes covered, teaching methods and participation of the host society. The mapping covers both ‘typical’ social orientation courses and language tuition modules and will serve as basis for an in-depth analysis of fundamental rights components taught to non-nationals to steer them towards full fledged citizenship and empower them against racism and xenophobia.

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news-729Thu, 26 Jul 2018 11:12:10 +0300Mapping of stakeholders in the area of victim supporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/mapping-of-stakeholders-in-the-area-of-victim-support/The present report outlines the structure and components of systems of victims support in Bulgaria, Romania, Sweden and Germany. The rights of victims in the four Member States’ legislations are outlined, as well as the general and specific victim support entities in them and the models of their coordination and co-operation. The present report outlines the structure and components of systems of victims support in Bulgaria, Romania, Sweden and Germany. The rights of victims in the four Member States’ legislations are outlined, as well as the general and specific victim support entities in them and the models of their coordination and co-operation. The cross-border support of victims is specifically described and a directory of all institutions and NGOs involved in the victims’ area is provided. Special attention is given to the various victims’ helplines in the Member States under study and their modes of work and financing. The report can serve as reference to both institutions and NGOs concerned and victims of crime in domestic and cross border cases.

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news-717Wed, 25 Jul 2018 13:10:04 +0300Russian Economic Footprint in the Western Balkans. Corruption and State Capture Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/russian-economic-footprint-in-the-western-balkans-corruption-and-state-capture-risks/The Western Balkans have become one of the regions, in which Russia has increasingly sought to (re)assert its presence in the past decade. In attempt to improve the understanding of the impact of the interplay between existing governance gaps and the inflow of authoritarian capital in the region, the Center for the Study of Democracy developed an assessment of the Russian economic footprint in Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Western Balkans have become one of the regions, in which Russia has increasingly sought to (re)assert its presence in the past decade. In attempt to improve the understanding of the impact of the interplay between existing governance gaps and the inflow of authoritarian capital in the region, the Center for the Study of Democracy developed an assessment of the Russian economic footprint in Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although in absolute numbers Russian investment in the region has increased by more than EUR 3 billion, Russia’s economic footprint as share of the total economy in the Western Balkans has shrunk or stagnated in the wake international sanctions over the annexation of Crimea. Because Russian businesses are concentrated in a small number of strategic sectors however – such as banking, energy, metallurgy and real estate – the four small, energy-dependent countries assessed in this report remain vulnerable to Russian pressure. An overreliance on Russian imports, coupled with an expansion of Russian capital, has made the governments of the Western Balkans particularly susceptible to pressures on strategic decisions related not only to energy market diversification and liberalization, but also to Russian sanctions, and NATO and EU expansion

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news-713Wed, 25 Jul 2018 12:05:29 +0300Private Sector Corruption in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/private-sector-corruption-in-bulgaria/The analysis is one of the first attempts to explore the phenomenon of private corruption in Bulgaria. A methodology (Private corruption barometer) has been developed and applied to assess levels of prevalence and specific characteristics of corruption in the private sector. The analysis is one of the first attempts to explore the phenomenon of private corruption in Bulgaria. A methodology (Private corruption barometer) has been developed and applied to assess levels of prevalence and specific characteristics of corruption in the private sector. The problem of private corruption is relatively new in terms of research practice as the prevailing view of corruption is that it is a governance problem and does not strictly apply to private sector management. Private corruption barometer data show that the practices and mechanisms observed in the private sector are very similar to the overall corruption situation in the country and should therefore not be neglected.

 

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news-709Wed, 25 Jul 2018 09:49:36 +0300Mapping the Links between Russian Influence and Media Capture in Black Sea Countrieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/mapping-the-links-between-russian-influence-and-media-capture-in-black-sea-countries/Russia’s influence over the media sector in Central and East Europe and its effect on democratic governance in these countries has become a growing concern. To address these issues, the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) has engaged in analyzing the Russian economic footprint and ownership links in the media sector in the Black Sea region. Russia’s influence over the media sector in Central and East Europe and its effect on democratic governance in these countries has become a growing concern. To address these issues, the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) has engaged in analyzing the Russian economic footprint and ownership links in the media sector in the Black Sea region. The preliminary results provide an overview of the tools used by Russian-controlled media for disseminating content and political messages. The current brief summarizes the main conclusions from the discussion on the topic, held on 22 February 2018.

Discussion on the topic

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news-707Wed, 25 Jul 2018 09:26:22 +0300Statement by the Center for the Study of Democracy regarding Russia’s Economic Footprint in the Western Balkanshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/statement-by-the-center-for-the-study-of-democracy-regarding-russias-economic-footprint-in-the-west/The current Statement by Mr. Ruslan Stefanov, Director, Economic Program, Center for the Study of Democracy was presented during a briefing at the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the Helsinki Commission, on 30 January 2018 in Washington. The current Statement by Mr. Ruslan Stefanov, Director, Economic Program, Center for the Study of Democracy was presented during a briefing at the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the Helsinki Commission, on 30 January 2018 in Washington. The briefing was dedicated to the topic of Foreign Meddling in the Western Balkans: Guarding against Economic Vulnerabilities. In his Statement, Mr. Stefanov underlines that the Western Balkans have become one of the regions, in which Russia, among others, has increasingly sought to (re)assert its presence in the past decade. Thus far, the region has remained on its chosen course of Euroatlantic integration towards market economy and democratic transition. But the countries from the region need to not just recognise their vulnerability but also know their level of that vulnerability, and work to close existing governance gaps, which allow the penetration of corrosive capital and democratic backsliding. 

Helsinki Commission Briefing to Assesses Foreign Economic Influence in the Western Balkans 

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news-705Tue, 24 Jul 2018 14:54:32 +0300Manual on model practices for the identification, needs assessment and referral of victims https://csd.bg/publications/publication/manual-on-model-practices-for-the-identification-needs-assessment-and-referral-of-victims/The manual on model practices for the identification, needs assessment and referral of victims is a result of a research effort by a transnational team of academics, policy makers and practitioners, including representatives of the Center for the Study of Democracy. The manual on model practices for the identification, needs assessment and referral of victims is a result of a research effort by a transnational team of academics, policy makers and practitioners, including representatives of the Center for the Study of Democracy. It distills EU law standards, regarding the identification, needs assessment and referral mechanisms for victims, compares them with findings about the situation in a number of Member States and points to model practices from police, medical and social authorities, as well as NGOs, which best reflect the spirit of European standards and serve the needs of victims in an adequate and comprehensive manner.

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news-703Tue, 24 Jul 2018 14:32:22 +0300Handbook for professionals assisting victims of traffickinghttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/handbook-for-professionals-assisting-victims-of-trafficking/The handbook for legal, social and health professionals involved in the protection of the rights and in the assistance of victims of human trafficking was prepared by a transnational team of experts, including representatives of the Center for the Study of Democracy.The handbook for legal, social and health professionals involved in the protection of the rights and in the assistance of victims of human trafficking was prepared by a transnational team of experts, including representatives of the Center for the Study of Democracy. It tackles the legal framework of protecting and supporting victims of trafficking, the process of secondary victimisation by the criminal justice system, the role of psychologists and social workers in the criminal process and the multidisciplinary work in processing trafficking cases.

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news-746Thu, 19 Jul 2018 13:16:00 +0300Development of Small-Scale Renewable Energy Sources in Bulgaria: Legislative and Administrative Challengeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/development-of-small-scale-renewable-energy-sources-in-bulgaria-legislative-and-administrative-chal/This report explores the potential and the obstacles before the decentralization of electricity supply in Bulgaria. With the ongoing phase-out of the first generation of state-support measures to developing renewables, Bulgarian policy-makers have been late to define new ways to foster the decarbonisation of the electricity system while maintaining security of supply. A low-hanging fruit would be the exploitation of Bulgaria’s enormous potential for decentralised generation of electricity through renewable energy sources. Unlocking it would contribute to a national energy revolution, which would also be the cheapest and most fiscally neutral way to increase the share of renewables in the electricity system.

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news-719Thu, 28 Jun 2018 14:38:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 78: Trafficking for Sexual Exploitation in Bulgaria: Criminal Finances and Capacity for Financial Investigationshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-78-trafficking-for-sexual-exploitation-in-bulgaria-criminal-finances-and-capacity/Trafficking in human beings (THB) for the purpose of sexual exploitation has become one of the largest Bulgarian criminal markets since the beginning of the new millennium. After the lifting of Schengen visas for Bulgarian nationals in 2001, Bulgaria became a major country of origin for the trafficking in human beings exploited in the EU.Trafficking in human beings (THB) for the purpose of sexual exploitation has become one of the largest Bulgarian criminal markets since the beginning of the new millennium. After the lifting of Schengen visas for Bulgarian nationals in 2001, Bulgaria became a major country of origin for the trafficking in human beings exploited in the EU. THB and prostitution not only generate huge incomes for Bulgarian organised crime but also have detrimental social and economic impact on local communities.

There is an urgent need to develop effective mechanisms for coordination between criminal and financial investigations within the prosecution, as well as with the other relevant institutions.

Financing of Human Trafficking for Sexual Exploitation

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news-758Wed, 06 Jun 2018 11:14:00 +0300From criminals to terrorists and back: Bulgaria quarterly reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/from-criminals-to-terrorists-and-back-bulgaria-quarterly-report/Radicalisation and terrorism as well as their possible intersection with other crimes are key security challenges in Europe. The current report presents emergent findings on the link between extremism and crime in Bulgaria. Radicalisation and terrorism as well as their possible intersection with other crimes are key security challenges in Europe. The current report presents emergent findings on the link between extremism and crime in Bulgaria. Examining the crime-terror nexus in Bulgaria is fraught by a number of problems, most importantly the low number of arrestees for whom sufficient data can be gathered and analysed. Nevertheless, the limited data suggests no connection between radical Islamism and crime in the country. In contrast to many other European countries, the terrorism and radicalisation threats faced by Bulgaria include an external dimension. This is the case even with regard to homegrown radicalisation which has been observed as a result of the importation and spread among vulnerable populations of radical Islamist ideologies, untypical to Islam as practiced in Bulgaria.

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news-715Wed, 30 May 2018 13:05:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 77: Making Democracy Deliver in the Western Balkans: Strengthening Governance and Anticorruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-77-making-democracy-deliver-in-the-western-balkans-strengthening-governance-and-a/In 2018 the EU and NATO and the countries from the Western Balkans have a unique chance to reinvigorate the Euro Atlantic perspective of the region. There are many areas of concern that require attention but anticorruption and good governance remain the most critical to tackling the two key risks for the Western Balkans. In 2018 the EU and NATO and the countries from the Western Balkans have a unique chance to reinvigorate the Euro Atlantic perspective of the region. There are many areas of concern that require attention but anticorruption and good governance remain the most critical to tackling the two key risks for the Western Balkans. On the one hand, countering corruption and state capture will free the economy from the monopoly of entrenched political-economic groups and will open up space for spurring entrepreneurship and lowering unemployment. On the other hand, strengthening the rule of law and governance will improve the resilience of the region to malicious meddling from external powers intent to derailing its Euro Atlantic integration.

The current policy brief provides key policy recommendations on delivering reforms in this domain through the successful triangulation of the efforts of reformist-minded local politicians, active civil society, and supportive international partners and donors.

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news-733Thu, 29 Mar 2018 11:46:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 76: The Management of Frozen and Forfeited Assets in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-76-the-management-of-frozen-and-forfeited-assets-in-bulgaria/Civil forfeiture of illegally acquired assets is one of the most important tools in the fight against crime. Forfeiture is used by state authorities to strip criminals of their illicit proceeds, thereby preventing them from expanding illegal activities and reinvesting their proceeds into the legal economy.Civil forfeiture of illegally acquired assets is one of the most important tools in the fight against crime. Forfeiture is used by state authorities to strip criminals of their illicit proceeds, thereby preventing them from expanding illegal activities and reinvesting their proceeds into the legal economy. A secondary benefit of forfeiture is that forfeited property, or the proceeds of its sale, may be used to provide specialised services for the benefit of victims of crime. Moreover, the social re-use of forfeited criminal assets, which are transferred to local municipal authorities or non-governmental organizations, may serve as setting a public example for crime groups and is key in achieving transparency in the fight against crime.

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news-711Thu, 15 Mar 2018 09:12:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 75: The Tobacco Market in Bulgaria: Trends and Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-75-the-tobacco-market-in-bulgaria-trends-and-risks/The illicit tobacco market is one of the key sources of revenue for organized crime in Bulgaria. During the economic turmoil in 2009-2014 the annual proceeds from this criminal activity have reached between 0.5% and 1% of the country's GDP. At the same time the budget revenues from tobacco taxation (both excise and VAT) contribute for 9 and 10% per year of the overall tax revenues in Bulgaria.The illicit tobacco market is one of the key sources of revenue for organized crime in Bulgaria. During the economic turmoil in 2009-2014 the annual proceeds from this criminal activity have reached between 0.5% and 1% of the country's GDP. At the same time the budget revenues from tobacco taxation (both excise and VAT) contribute for 9 and 10% per year of the overall tax revenues in Bulgaria.

The current report examines the development of the illicit tobacco market in Bulgaria through the prism of economic risks, the political environment in the country and the region, and recent changes in the involved criminal networks and the institutional capabilities for counteraction. The publication was prepared in the framework of the study "Illegal Trade in Tobacco Products and the Balkan Route: Overcoming Institutional Gaps and Corruption" and is funded by PMI-IMPACT, a global initiative to combat illegal trade and related crimes.

The illicit tobacco market: limits to institutional enforcement

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news-727Wed, 31 Jan 2018 10:09:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 74: Assessing Russia's Economic Footprint in Bosnia and Herzegovinahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-74-assessing-russias-economic-footprint-in-bosnia-and-herzegovina/Russia has been one of the key political players in Bosnia and Herzegovina since the Dayton Accords brought the 1992 – 1995 war to its end. According to the peace agreement, Bosnia and Herzegovina consists of two entities – the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (FBiH) and Republika Srpska (RS) with roughly equal territories – and the Brcko District. It is in RS, the entity with a Serb majority, that Russia has gained the most traction. Russia has particularly backed RS’s opposition to the Transatlantic integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as RS secession initiatives. Many regional observers feel that the secessionist aspirations of RS could potentially lead to a new regional conflict. Russia has been one of the key political players in Bosnia and Herzegovina since the Dayton Accords brought the 1992 – 1995 war to its end. According to the peace agreement, Bosnia and Herzegovina consists of two entities – the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (FBiH) and Republika Srpska (RS) with roughly equal territories – and the Brcko District. It is in RS, the entity with a Serb majority, that Russia has gained the most traction. Russia has particularly backed RS’s opposition to the Transatlantic integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as RS secession initiatives. Many regional observers feel that the secessionist aspirations of RS could potentially lead to a new regional conflict. 

The current policy brief highlights that Bosnia and Herzegovina is completely dependent on Russian gas supplies. Russian companies also control the country’s two refineries, both located in Republika Srpska. Russia has consistently been the largest foreign investor in RS and the fourth largest in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with around EUR 547 million of foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country over the 2005 – 2016 period.

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news-725Tue, 30 Jan 2018 10:05:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 73: Assessing Russia's Economic Footprint in Montenegrohttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-73-assessing-russias-economic-footprint-in-montenegro/The last decade has seen a significant level of economic engagement by Russian companies and individuals in Montenegro. Vital economic ties have been sustained despite the fact that bilateral political relations worsened as this small Adriatic country stepped up its efforts to complete the NATO accession process. The deterioration of political relations between the two countries culminated in an alleged failed coup attempt in 2016 and the Russian backing of the opposition Democratic Front (DF) party. Even so, Russian investment flows never dropped below 10 % of total foreign direct investment (FDI). The last decade has seen a significant level of economic engagement by Russian companies and individuals in Montenegro. Vital economic ties have been sustained despite the fact that bilateral political relations worsened as this small Adriatic country stepped up its efforts to complete the NATO accession process. The deterioration of political relations between the two countries culminated in an alleged failed coup attempt in 2016 and the Russian backing of the opposition Democratic Front (DF) party. Even so, Russian investment flows never dropped below 10 % of total foreign direct investment (FDI). 

The current policy brief underlines that Russia has exploited governance gaps to take advantage of lucrative privatization opportunities and to extract state subsidies in Montenegro. The authors also highlight that Russia has assertively tried to meddle in Montenegro’s domestic politics.

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news-723Mon, 29 Jan 2018 10:02:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 72: Assessing Russia's Economic Footprint in Serbiahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-72-assessing-russias-economic-footprint-in-serbia/The Russian economic footprint has been deepening in some countries in the Western Balkans for at least a decade. In what is the most visible manifestation of this trend, Russian entities have gradually taken over the Serbian energy sector. Russian entities, directly or indirectly affect as much as 10 % of the economy. Notably, corporate presence measured by volume of revenues and assets controlled by Russian companies in Serbia is even larger than in Montenegro, where Russian foreign direct investments are a third of the country’s GDP. The Russian economic footprint has been deepening in some countries in the Western Balkans for at least a decade. In what is the most visible manifestation of this trend, Russian entities have gradually taken over the Serbian energy sector. Russian entities, directly or indirectly affect as much as 10 % of the economy. Notably, corporate presence measured by volume of revenues and assets controlled by Russian companies in Serbia is even larger than in Montenegro, where Russian foreign direct investments are a third of the country’s GDP. 

There are two main interconnected factors in Russo-Serbian relations that have laid the foundations for Russia’s expanded power in the country. One is Russian support for Serbia’s non-recognition of Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence, and the second is a 2008 energy agreement that included Gazprom’s takeover of Serbia’s largest state-owned company, oil and gas firm Naftna Industrija Srbije (NIS). 

The current policy brief notes that in addition to the corporate investments, Russia has used direct government-to-government loan schemes to enhance its presence in the Serbian economy. The authors also highlight that Russia has compounded its political ties with Serbia and its economic presence in the country by leveraging traditional pro-Russian, pan-Slavic, and pan-Orthodox attitudes via a series of soft power initiatives.

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news-721Sun, 28 Jan 2018 09:51:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 71: Assessing Russian Economic Footprint in Macedoniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-71-assessing-russian-economic-footprint-in-macedonia/Russia’s economic footprint in Macedonia has often been perceived as non-existent at best or very limited at worst. However, a detailed assessment of the Russian presence in the country reveals a more nuanced picture, in which many of the engagement channels are indirect, including through third parties and offshore companies. The revenues of Russian companies operating in Macedonia grew fourfold from EUR 63 million in 2006 to over EUR 212 million in 2015.Russia’s economic footprint in Macedonia has often been perceived as non-existent at best or very limited at worst. However, a detailed assessment of the Russian presence in the country reveals a more nuanced picture, in which many of the engagement channels are indirect, including through third parties and offshore companies. The revenues of Russian companies operating in Macedonia grew fourfold from EUR 63 million in 2006 to over EUR 212 million in 2015.

Much of the Russian investment in Macedonia is channeled via third countries including through offshore havens like Cyprus and Belize, obscuring the true extent of the economic footprint. Russia has also engendered the Macedonian energy dependence by controlling the single gas route to the country – via the TransBalkan Pipeline. Gazprom charges Macedonia one of the highest gas prices in Europe and has locked in the country in a costly expansion of the natural gas network. The current policy brief underlines that though the Russian economic footprint in Macedonia has been much less pronounced than in other Western Balkan countries, there is significant potential for future growth considering Russia’s project plans in the energy sector over the next decade. The authors also note that over the last two years, Russia has skillfully exploited Macedonia’s political instability, striving to undermine the country’s Trans-Atlantic ties.

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news-674Thu, 30 Nov 2017 02:00:00 +0200Sustainable Policy Impact through State-of-the-Art Research and Advocacyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/sustainable-policy-impact-through-state-of-the-art-research-and-advocacy/The Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI)network is the largest indigenous anti-corruption and good governancecoalition in the region of Southeast Europe (SEE), created by CSOs from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo*, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey (also including partners from Moldova and Romania).

The Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) network is the largest indigenous anti-corruption and good governance coalition in the region of Southeast Europe (SEE), created by CSOs from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo*, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey (also including partners from Moldova and Romania). SELDI pools resources and expertise from a total of 42 CSO organisations (both members and associates) to become a representative group of the regional CSO community on anti-corruption and good governance. SELDI contributes to a dynamic civil society in the region, capable of participating in public debate and influencing policy and decision-making process in the area of anti-corruption and good governance.

The publication provides a review of the architecture and key results from the main methodological instruments, applied by the Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity network in Southeast Europe. SELDI’s advocacy impact, channelled through local ownership and strong public-private partnership foundation, is built upon stateof-the-art corruption and hidden economy monitoring tools. SELDI’s constant drive for social innovation has pushed its members to also devise new instruments, particularly in response to recently emerged, complex and systemic corruption practices in the region. More specifically, the network has developed, and plans to apply comprehensively across the SEE, instruments to assess the state capture phenomenon and identify concrete anti-corruption implementation gaps on institutional level.

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news-757Sun, 12 Nov 2017 21:23:00 +0200From Criminals to Terrorists and Back Kick-off Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/from-criminals-to-terrorists-and-back-kick-off-report/Radicalisaiton and terrorism are among the most pressing security concerns facing Europe. At the same time, intersections and convergence between crime on the one hand and terrorism on the other has the potential to amplify security risks. Radicalisaiton and terrorism are among the most pressing security concerns facing Europe. At the same time, intersections and convergence between crime on the one hand and terrorism on the other has the potential to amplify security risks. The current report lays the foundation for an in-depth study aiming to shed more light on the crime-terror nexus across eleven European Union countries. Preliminary results indicate that there is significant variety among the examined countries. Significantly, Western European such as Germany and the Netherlands seem to face the emergence of “gangster jihad”, with radicalised individuals often exhibiting experience with other criminal activities. On the other side of the spectrum, to date findings from Bulgaria indicate no signs of the existence of a crime-terror nexus.

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news-673Tue, 31 Oct 2017 02:00:00 +0200SEERMAP Bulgaria Country Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/seermap-bulgaria-country-report/The South East Europe Electricity Roadmap (SEERMAP) develops three electricity sector scenarios until 2050 for the South East Europe region. The project focuses on 9 countries in South East Europe: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Greece, Kosovo, FYR of Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania and Serbia.The South East Europe Electricity Roadmap (SEERMAP) develops three electricity sector scenarios until 2050 for the South East Europe region. The project focuses on 9 countries in South East Europe: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Greece, Kosovo, FYR of Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania and Serbia. The implications of different investment strategies in the electricity sector are assessed for affordability, energy security, sustainability and security of supply.

The Bulgarian report summarizes the main findings for the development of the electricity sector in the country until 2050. Some of the main findings focus on the strategies for decarbonizing electricity supply until 2050. Regardless of whether or not Bulgaria pursues an active policy to decarbonise its electricity sector a significant shift away from fossil fuels to renewables will take place. Due to aging power plants Bulgaria will need to replace approximately 97% of its existing conventional generation fleet by 2050. Natural gas plays a transitional role on the path towards low carbon generation in the ‘delayed’ and ‘decarbonisation’ scenarios. However in the ‘no target’ scenario its capacity triples compared to the present level, and generates more than 10 times more electricity than today in 2040. By 2050, the ‘decarbonisation’ scenario demonstrates that it is technically feasible and financially viable for Bulgaria to reach 96.7% emission reduction with its abundant RES resources and nuclear generation. Decarbonisation does not drive up wholesale prices relative to other scenarios with less ambitious RES policies and actually reduces them after 2045. The high penetration of RES in all scenarios suggests that a robust no-regret action for Bulgaria energy policy is to focus on enabling RES integration. This involves the improvement of the regulatory framework to ease investments in new RES capacity and robust state support for new renewable energy facilities financed by the sale of CO2 emission quotas.
 

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news-671Mon, 30 Oct 2017 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 70: A Roadmap for the Development of the Bulgarian Electricity Sector within the EU Until 2050https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-70-a-roadmap-for-the-development-of-the-bulgarian-electricity-sector-within-the-eu/Based on data and modelling used by the European Commission, three scenarios for the decarbonisation of the Bulgarian electricity sector until 2050 have been developed. These scenarios provide the model framework for policy decision-making for Bulgaria in all energy domains. The results suggest the necessity for active policy-making on a number of sensitive energy issues, often linked to entrenched special interests.Based on data and modelling used by the European Commission, three scenarios for the decarbonisation of the Bulgarian electricity sector until 2050 have been developed. These scenarios provide the model framework for policy decision-making for Bulgaria in all energy domains. The results suggest the necessity for active policy-making on a number of sensitive energy issues, often linked to entrenched special interests.

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news-672Mon, 30 Oct 2017 02:00:00 +0200Cross-border organised crime: Bulgaria and Norway in the Context of the Migrant Crisishttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/cross-border-organised-crime-bulgaria-and-norway-in-the-context-of-the-migrant-crisis/The irregular migrant and refugee crisis poses serious challenges for Europe. The unprecedented migration pressure presents an opportunityfor the generation of substantial profits by organised criminal networks. The large influx of irregular migrants looking for facilitation has led to the development of human smuggling as a substantial criminal market in Europe. On the other hand, some countries have experienced a concurrent rise in human trafficking cases.
The irregular migrant and refugee crisis poses serious challenges for Europe. The unprecedented migration pressure presents an opportunity for the generation of substantial profits by organised criminal networks. The large influx of irregular migrants looking for facilitation has led to the development of human smuggling as a substantial criminal market in Europe. On the other hand, some countries have experienced a concurrent rise in human trafficking cases.

The current publication presents an analysis of recent developments in transnational organised crime in Norway and Bulgaria in the context of the migrant crisis. The study presents the first in-depth examination of human smuggling networks and operations in Bulgaria, as well as the synergies and differences between this illicit activity and other organised criminal enterprises, particularly human trafficking. The publication also reviews trends in Norway related to both human trafficking and smuggling, two crimes which have rarely been examined together, with the latter being the focus of little overall research.

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news-793Sat, 30 Sep 2017 03:00:00 +0300Reports on the provision of orientation training to asylum seekers and beneficiaries of international protectionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/reports-on-the-provision-of-orientation-training-to-asylum-seekers-and-beneficiaries-of-internationa/In the context of an initiative to enhance the integration of women beneficiaries of international protection by development and implementation of adequate integration trainings the Catalan Commission for Refugees in Spain (CCAR) and the Foundation for Social Studies in Italy (CENSIS) developed reports summarizing the training materials for migrants and beneficiaries of international protection used in each country by various public institutions and NGOs. The collected set of materials covers important areas of integration such as labor market insertion, cultural and civic orientation, the asylum procedure and related rights, language training. They are to serve as reference and an example to draw on in the development of targeted training modules for (women) beneficiaries of international protection in Bulgaria, Greece and Malta.

 

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news-670Wed, 20 Sep 2017 03:00:00 +0300Whose responsibility? Reflections on accountability of private security in Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/whose-responsibility-reflections-on-accountability-of-private-security-in-southeast-europe/Private security companies (PSCs) play an increasingly important role in the security sector of most countries in Europe and elsewhere. As providers of security services, PSCs and their activities have a direct impact on security, human rights and a country’s democratic order. It is therefore in the interest of the public that PSCs are effectively regulated and accountable for alleged wrongdoings.
Private security companies (PSCs) play an increasingly important role in the security sector of most countries in Europe and elsewhere. As providers of security services, PSCs and their activities have a direct impact on security, human rights and a country’s democratic order. It is therefore in the interest of the public that PSCs are effectively regulated and accountable for alleged wrongdoings.

An overview of the situation in Southeast Europe and beyond indicates that security sector oversight bodies, such as parliaments, so far have shown very little interest in overseeing the private security sector. There seems to be a lack of understanding of the role that private security plays in the security sector and how key principles of good security sector governance, such as transparency, participation, efficiency and accountability, apply to them.

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news-669Sun, 10 Sep 2017 03:00:00 +0300South East Electricity Roadmap (SEERMAP) Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/south-east-electricity-roadmap-seermap-report/Through a five modelling exercises incorporating the gas and power markets, the transmission network and the macroeconomic system, The South East Electricity Roadmap (SEERMAP) Report elaborates comprehensive scenarios for the transformation of the electricity sector towards a full decarbonisation of electricity generation and a reduction of emissions by 91% by 2050 compared to 1990. The research was carried out by a consortium of 5 partners led by the Hungarian-based Regional Centre for Energy Policy Research (REKK) and the Technical University (TU) in Vienna, and involved 9 local partners.

The South East Europe region will need to replace more than 30% of its current fossil fuel generation capacity by the end of 2030, and more than 95% by 2050, according to the long-term energy policy of the European Union. How to obtain these objectives is a policy challenge that requires consistent implementation of a renewable energy policy that provides incentives for new investment. Through a five modelling exercises incorporating the gas and power markets, the transmission network and the macroeconomic system, The South East Electricity Roadmap (SEERMAP) Report elaborates comprehensive scenarios for the transformation of the electricity sector towards a full decarbonisation of electricity generation and a reduction of emissions by 91% by 2050 compared to 1990. The research was carried out by a consortium of 5 partners led by the Hungarian-based Regional Centre for Energy Policy Research (REKK) and the Technical University (TU) in Vienna, and involved 9 local partners.

The Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) has been the local partner, who was responsible for the Bulgarian energy data verification, the analysis of the country’s renewable energy policy and the development of country-relevant policy recommendations. CSD also served as an intermediary between the research group and the Bulgarian energy ministry officials responsible for future energy strategy.

The SEERMAP Report has developed three core scenarios for energy transition in South East Europe including:
 

  • A ‘no-target’ scenario reflects the implementation of existing energy policy (including implementation of renewable energy targets for 2020 and construction of all power plants included in official planning documents) combined with a CO₂ price (which is only envisaged from 2030 onwards for non EU member states). The scenario does not include an explicit 2050 CO₂ target or a renewables target for the electricity sectors of the EU member states or countries in the Western Balkans;
  • A ‘decarbonisation’ scenario reflects a long-term strategy to significantly reduce CO2 emissions in line with the indicative targets of the EU for emission reduction goals by 2050 through an increasing carbon price and dedicated RES support.
  • A ‘delayed’ scenario includes the initial implementation of business-as-usual energy policies and investment plans followed by a drastic shift in the policy direction starting from 2035 that includes RES support scheme and an accelerated phasing-out of coal generation capacity driven out by the high carbon price and replaced by renewable energy investment.


Some of the key findings from the study include:
 

  • The SEERMAP region would have an electricity mix with 83-86% renewable generation, mostly hydro and wind, and a significant share of solar by 2050. If renewable support is phased out and no CO₂ emission target is set, but a carbon price is applied, the share of RES in electricity consumption will rise to around 58% in 2050 from current levels.
  • Even with RES support phased out after 2025, the region’s electricity sector will experience a very significant decarbonisation by 2050, with a reduction in emissions of almost 91% by 2050 compared with 1990.
  • Driven by high carbon price, a significant amount of fossil fuel based generation capacity will be replaced by 2050. Coal, lignite and oil capacities are phased out almost completely under all scenarios resulting in lower and unprofitable utilisation rates.
  • Natural gas remains relevant as a transition fuel to temporary replace the phased-out coal generation capacity.
  • Decarbonisation will require continued RES support during the entire period. However, the need for support decreases as the electricity wholesale price increases and thereby incentivises significant RES investment even without support.
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news-792Mon, 31 Jul 2017 03:00:00 +0300Reports on the training needs of beneficiaries of international protectionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/reports-on-the-training-needs-of-beneficiaries-of-international-protection/In the context of increased refugee inflows in the European continent it becomes highly relevant to identify and implement practical actions responding to existing gaps in the systems of migrant/refugee integration across the EU member states. Of particular importance is the provision of adequate training responding to the information and integration needs of refugees and particularly to those of refugee women. In the framework of an initiative aiming to address this challenge in five member states (Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Malta and Spain) Center for the Study of Democracy coordinated the drafting of five national reports that trace the information and orientation needs of asylum seekers and beneficiaries of international protection and the gaps in the provision of information and training. The reports provide review of the unmet needs of the target groups in the area of information and orientation provision. Following the identification of factors hampering the proper implementation of information and orientation programmes, the reports provide recommendations for addressing the existing gaps. The reports are to serve as basis for development of targeted training modules for (women) beneficiaries of international protection in Bulgaria, Greece and Malta.
 

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news-903Wed, 26 Jul 2017 16:32:00 +0300GREY Policy Brief No. 4, 2017: Tackling Undeclared Work in Southeast Europe: Knowledge-Informed Policy Responseshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-policy-brief-no-4-2017-tackling-undeclared-work-in-southeast-europe-knowledge-informed-poli/The policy brief provides an overview of the findings, lessons learnt, and recommendations for tackling undeclared work from four years of data gathering and research in three SEE countries, namely Bulgaria, Croatia and Macedonia. It underlines the fact that participation in undeclared work is a widespread and accepted practice in the economic and social life of Southeast Europe, yet this phenomenon differs substantially across and within the three countries.The policy brief provides an overview of the findings, lessons learnt, and recommendations for tackling undeclared work from four years of data gathering and research in three SEE countries, namely Bulgaria, Croatia and Macedonia. It underlines the fact that participation in undeclared work is a widespread and accepted practice in the economic and social life of Southeast Europe, yet this phenomenon differs substantially across and within the three countries. As some of the countries from SEE have already joined the EU while others have embarked on a path to accession, designing policies to tackle the problems of undeclared work has become priority for most governments in the region. Therefore, the governments in Bulgaria, Croatia, and Macedonia need to embark on a comprehensive agenda of understanding and tackling the undeclared economy. The current policy brief contributes to the better understanding of the complexity of the issues governments in the region face and provides policy recommendations, which emphasize curative, preventative and commitment measures in addition to the widely preferred repressive measures.

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news-900Thu, 06 Jul 2017 16:14:00 +0300GREY Policy Brief No. 3, 2017: Tackling Undeclared Work in Croatia: Knowledge-Informed Policy Responseshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-policy-brief-no-3-2017-tackling-undeclared-work-in-croatia-knowledge-informed-policy-respon/The current policy brief indicates that non-compliant practices are deeply ingrained in Croatia. One in eleven admits to have done some fully undeclared work. Six out of ten Croatians believe that at least 20% of their compatriots violate tax and labor laws. The perception of the widespread nature of undeclared work and the lack of trust in formal institutions seem to be the main incentives for people to engage in undeclared work. These have been further exacerbated by high unemployment and low retirement income.The current policy brief indicates that non-compliant practices are deeply ingrained in Croatia. One in eleven admits to have done some fully undeclared work. Six out of ten Croatians believe that at least 20% of their compatriots violate tax and labor laws. The perception of the widespread nature of undeclared work and the lack of trust in formal institutions seem to be the main incentives for people to engage in undeclared work. These have been further exacerbated by high unemployment and low retirement income. Not surprisingly, the conventional rational actor approach to tackle undeclared work, which centers on penalties and surveillance, has proved less effective in Croatia. Therefore, an alternative perspective, called social actor approach, has been advanced, which focuses upon marketing, education, and higher social spending to tackle undeclared work.

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news-898Tue, 20 Jun 2017 16:04:00 +0300GREY Policy Brief No. 2, 2017: Tackling Undeclared Work in the FYR of Macedonia: Knowledge-Informed Policy Responseshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-policy-brief-no-2-2017-tackling-undeclared-work-in-the-fyr-of-macedonia-knowledge-informed/Undeclared work has deep roots in Macedonia as 1 in 16 adults and 1 in 8 of the employed population engage in undeclared work. Unemployment remains unusually high compared with the EU average. The continuing state and political crisis in the country from 2005 further sets the stage for non-compliant practices, including undeclared work. The policy brief notes that an effective long-term policy towards undeclared work and envelope wages should be designed aimed at changes in the institutional framework, as well as a reversal of the positive attitudes towards noncompliant activities.Undeclared work has deep roots in Macedonia as 1 in 16 adults and 1 in 8 of the employed population engage in undeclared work. Unemployment remains unusually high compared with the EU average. The continuing state and political crisis in the country from 2005 further sets the stage for non-compliant practices, including undeclared work. The policy brief notes that an effective long-term policy towards undeclared work and envelope wages should be designed aimed at changes in the institutional framework, as well as a reversal of the positive attitudes towards noncompliant activities. One way forward would be to supplement the traditional repressive view based on the rational actor with the social actor perspective. More support should be provided for people who would like to exit the undeclared economy and (re)enter the formal one. Citizens that are more likely to engage in undeclared work should be targeted with educational campaigns.

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news-895Mon, 05 Jun 2017 15:03:00 +0300GREY Policy Brief No. 1, 2017: Tackling Undeclared Work in Bulgaria: Knowledge-Informed Policy Responseshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-policy-brief-no-1-2017-tackling-undeclared-work-in-bulgaria-knowledge-informed-policy-respo/The policy brief shows that participation in undeclared work is widespread in Bulgaria. The undeclared economy is estimated at roughly a third of GDP, thus presenting a serious challenge to the country’s fiscal performance. Nearly one in ten people do some undeclared work. Bulgarians see undeclared work as deeply ingrained in their society. Undeclared work is motivated primarily by lack of trust between the people and the authorities.The policy brief shows that participation in undeclared work is widespread in Bulgaria. The undeclared economy is estimated at roughly a third of GDP, thus presenting a serious challenge to the country’s fiscal performance. Nearly one in ten people do some undeclared work. Bulgarians see undeclared work as deeply ingrained in their society. Undeclared work is motivated primarily by lack of trust between the people and the authorities. It involves mostly people, who voluntarily exit the declared economy, but also those that are excluded. For every exclusion-driven worker in Bulgaria, there are 5 exit-driven. In conclusion, the policy brief notes that the lion’s share of policies utilized in Bulgaria are aimed at repressing undeclared work. However, these should be complemented with more curative, preventative and commitment policies, such as the social-actor approach.

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news-905Thu, 01 Jun 2017 10:33:00 +0300Anti-corruption: implementation and evaluation of anti-corruption measures and policies (MACPI)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-corruption-implementation-and-evaluation-of-anti-corruption-measures-and-policies-macpi/MACPI is a system for monitoring and evaluation of anti-corruption policies and measures, developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy and implemented in several public organizations in Bulgaria and Italy. As a practical tool for evaluating anti-corruption measures, MACPI draws attention to the level at which corruption relations are realized - the individual public organization.MACPI is a system for monitoring and evaluation of anti-corruption policies and measures, developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy and implemented in several public organizations in Bulgaria and Italy. As a practical tool for evaluating anti-corruption measures, MACPI draws attention to the level at which corruption relations are realized - the individual public organization.

The guide is intended for experts, researchers of anti-corruption policies and heads of public organizations who are in the process of evaluating the effectiveness of anti-corruption measures implemented in the organization concerned.

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news-907Sat, 27 May 2017 11:15:00 +0300Tracing Illegal Assets - A Practitioners' Guidehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/tracing-illegal-assets-a-practitioners-guide/Financial crime and the entry of criminal assets into the legal economy have become one of the most serious challenges facing international and national law enforcement agencies in the last two decades. Preventing and detecting them requires extremely precise collaboration between different institutions and continuous improvement of their knowledge in the field. This publication presents the most up-to-date methods for the search for illegally acquired property.Financial crime and the entry of criminal assets into the legal economy have become one of the most serious challenges facing international and national law enforcement agencies in the last two decades. Preventing and detecting them requires extremely precise collaboration between different institutions and continuous improvement of their knowledge in the field. This publication presents the most up-to-date methods for the search for illegally acquired property.Financial crime and the entry of criminal assets into the legal economy have become one of the most serious challenges facing international and national law enforcement agencies in the last two decades. Preventing and detecting them requires extremely precise collaboration between different institutions and continuous improvement of their knowledge in the field. This publication presents the most up-to-date methods for the search for illegally acquired property. It aims to assist national authorities in combating money laundering and the seizure of illegally acquired property in their further training and work. In this respect, the proposed practical guide combines an overview of traditional methods of seeking illicit property, including mutual legal assistance, with the latest trends in the field, such as digital currency tracking.

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news-668Wed, 17 May 2017 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 69: Money Laundering in Bulgaria: State of Affairs and Policy Implicationshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-69-money-laundering-in-bulgaria-state-of-affairs-and-policy-implications/Bulgaria remains high risk country for the initiation of money laundering schemes. The high share of informality in its economy, coupled with the low level of enforcement against corruption and organized crimes, renders the country’s financial system highly susceptible to money laundering.Bulgaria remains high risk country for the initiation of money laundering schemes. The high share of informality in its economy, coupled with the low level of enforcement against corruption and organized crimes, renders the country’s financial system highly susceptible to money laundering.

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news-806Wed, 12 Apr 2017 03:00:00 +0300Policy Report: Towards a Stronger EU-Turkey Energy Dialogue: Energy Security Perspectives and Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-report-towards-a-stronger-eu-turkey-energy-dialogue-energy-security-perspectives-and-risks/The publication aims to draw an overall picture of the state of the EU-Turkey energy dialogue through the prism of civil society understanding of EU and Turkey’s energy security risks and perspectives, and the role of the Energy Union in helping to overcome them. The report builds upon a background policy brief to develop an in-depth overview of the Turkish energy sector that also incorporates the statements, opinions and recommendations provided by EU and Turkish policy-makers, energy experts and business representatives during a series of capacity-building workshops and study visits in Brussels and Ankara. Additional meetings with European and Turkish energy business associations, as well as influential energy watchers have enriched the final analysis.

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news-666Wed, 22 Mar 2017 02:00:00 +0200Improving and sharing knowledge on the Internet role in the processes of human trafficking and smuggling: National report for Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/improving-and-sharing-knowledge-on-the-internet-role-in-the-processes-of-human-trafficking-and-smugg/This concise report is based on a deep exploration of the Bulgarian web and in-depth interviews with key informants. It provides a specific focus on the use of Internet in the recruitment, transportation and advertisement of services in the processes of trafficking in human beings and smuggling of human beings (THB and SHB).
This concise report is based on a deep exploration of the Bulgarian web and in-depth interviews with key informants. It provides a specific focus on the use of Internet in the recruitment, transportation and advertisement of services in the processes of trafficking in human beings and smuggling of human beings (THB and SHB). Analysed are the life and the professional experiences of the key informants interviewed, as well as online contents predominantly with job advertisements for sex workers and cheap labour abroad. After outlining a more general country profile for Bulgaria’s experience with and legislation combatting the process of trafficking in human beings, the report has identified common trends in the tactical approach to online recruitment and the potential risks of trafficking related to it.

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news-920Thu, 09 Mar 2017 16:22:00 +0200The Role of the Internet in People Smuggling and Human Traffickinghttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-role-of-the-internet-in-people-smuggling-and-human-trafficking/This report presents the results of project 'www.surfandsound.eu - Improving and sharing knowledge on the Internet role in the human trafficking process' (hereafter referred to as 'Surf and Sound', coordinated by eCrime, the research group on ICT, law and criminology of the Department 'Faculty of Law' of the University of Trento, in partnership with the Center for the Study of Democracy (Bulgaria) and Teesside University (United Kingdom). This report presents the results of project 'www.surfandsound.eu - Improving and sharing knowledge on the Internet role in the human trafficking process' (hereafter referred to as 'Surf and Sound', coordinated by eCrime, the research group on ICT, law and criminology of the Department 'Faculty of Law' of the University of Trento, in partnership with the Center for the Study of Democracy (Bulgaria) and Teesside University (United Kingdom).

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news-665Tue, 28 Feb 2017 02:00:00 +0200Risks of Islamist Radicalisation in Bulgaria: A Case Study in the Iztok Neighbourhood of the City of Pazardzhikhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/risks-of-islamist-radicalisation-in-bulgaria-a-case-study-in-the-iztok-neighbourhood-of-the-city-of/In the context of the escalation of extremist Islamist violence in many EC countries today, the issue of the risks of home grown Islamist radicalization in Bulgaria is the subject of heated public debates. Preventing and studying (Islamist) radicalization has become a priority in Europe, giving rise to wealth of publications that explore its motives and causes as well as the processes whereby individuals and groups come to espouse extremist ideas and engage in violent actions. Such studies are lacking in Bulgaria while worries about the potential influence that international terrorist organisations and the related Islamist extremist ideologies could exert in the country are rising.In the context of the escalation of extremist Islamist violence in many EC countries today, the issue of the risks of home grown Islamist radicalization in Bulgaria is the subject of heated public debates. Preventing and studying (Islamist) radicalization has become a priority in Europe, giving rise to wealth of publications that explore its motives and causes as well as the processes whereby individuals and groups come to espouse extremist ideas and engage in violent actions. Such studies are lacking in Bulgaria while worries about the potential influence that international terrorist organisations and the related Islamist extremist ideologies could exert in the country are rising.

This working paper presents the results from a qualitative study aiming to attain understanding about the vulnerabilities to Islamist radicalisation among a group of inhabitants of the “Iztok” neighborhood of the city of Pazardjik who are considered at risk. The study explores the root causes and the social meaning of the adoption of Salafi interpretations of Islam on the part of sub group local Roma and the root causes and the social meaning of certain manifestations of sympathy with radical Islamist ideas and organisations among some members of the group. Careful attention is paid to the factors and channels through which the two processes are fostered. A discussion is provided to the issue of the vulnerabilities to potential radicalisation among members of the group of Roma professing Salafi interpretation of Islam.

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news-667Sat, 25 Feb 2017 02:00:00 +0200Evaluating Governance and Corruption Risk in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/evaluating-governance-and-corruption-risk-in-bulgaria/Corruption continues to be one of the main social problems for Bulgaria a decade after the country’s EU accession. The Bulgarian public is one of the few in Europe, which trusts EU institutions more than its own government to find a sustainable solution to this problem. Making sure thе mechanisms of EU conditionality and public procurement support deliver on these high expectations is of paramount importance for delivering a lasting solution to Bulgaria’s rule of law problems. As part of the largest ever team of social sciences and humanities in Europe – ANTICORRP.eu, CSD has developed two case studies, which help explain the key risks of corruption in the public procurement market in construction and the way the EU has impacted Bulgarian progress on anti-corruption.

Corruption continues to be one of the main social problems for Bulgaria a decade after the country’s EU accession. The Bulgarian public is one of the few in Europe, which trusts EU institutions more than its own government to find a sustainable solution to this problem. Making sure thе mechanisms of EU conditionality and public procurement support deliver on these high expectations is of paramount importance for delivering a lasting solution to Bulgaria’s rule of law problems. As part of the largest ever team of social sciences and humanities in Europe – ANTICORRP.eu, CSD has developed two case studies, which help explain the key risks of corruption in the public procurement market in construction and the way the EU has impacted Bulgarian progress on anti-corruption.

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news-659Fri, 10 Feb 2017 02:00:00 +0200Situational Assessment of Extremist Trendshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/situational-assessment-of-extremist-trends/Violent extremism is one of the major challenges Europe is currently facing. The threat is both external aswell as internal as indicated by the rise in home-grown Islamist terrorists, as well as of nationalistic andanti-immigrant movements and far-right aggression. An accurate picture of the spread, nature and trendsin the extremist and terrorist activity and actors is paramount to formulating strategic policy approaches and effectively allocating available resources. This publication provides a methodological framework for the establishment of a viable mechanism for monitoring and assessment of the state and developments over time in extremist acts and actors on the national level.

Violent extremism is one of the major challenges Europe is currently facing. The threat is both external as well as internal as indicated by the rise in home-grown Islamist terrorists, as well as of nationalistic and anti-immigrant movements and far-right aggression. An accurate picture of the spread, nature and trends in the extremist and terrorist activity and actors is paramount to formulating strategic policy approaches and effectively allocating available resources. This publication provides a methodological framework for the establishment of a viable mechanism for monitoring and assessment of the state and developments over time in extremist acts and actors on the national level.

The situational assessment is an instrument for systematic collection and analysis of statistical data, open source data and intelligence information pertaining to extremist actors and activities, for the purposes of developing regular situational reports of the spread, nature and trends in extremism and violent radicalisms. Following the application of the situational assessment tool, the publication presents main findings on extremist trends and monitoring capacities in three countries from Central and Southeast Europe: Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and Greece.
 

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news-658Wed, 01 Feb 2017 02:00:00 +0200Monitoring Radicalisation: A Framework for Risk Indicatorshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/monitoring-radicalisation-a-framework-for-risk-indicators/Radicalisation processes impacting on disaffected and indoctrinated persons and the later involvement ofsome of them in acts of terrorism are of growing concern for European citizens, their governments and thewider international community. Addressing this threat requires effective prevention policies which some EUmember states have been proactive in developing. Effective policies need reliable diagnostic tools designedto identify individuals and groups who might pose a threat.

Radicalisation processes impacting on disaffected and indoctrinated persons and the later involvement of some of them in acts of terrorism are of growing concern for European citizens, their governments and the wider international community. Addressing this threat requires effective prevention policies which some EU member states have been proactive in developing. Effective policies need reliable diagnostic tools designed to identify individuals and groups who might pose a threat.

The publication provides a review of existing approaches and tools to identifying, monitoring and assessing radicalisation in Europe and beyond. It further offers a conceptual framework of radicalisation risk and vulnerability indicators and their interpretation as a basis for developing early-warning mechanisms for frontline practitioners in countries which are yet to develop specific prevention and counter-radicalisation policies. The target group of the guide are policymakers at national and EU levels, as well as practitioners directly involved in the prevention of radicalisation in Central and Eastern Europe and beyond.

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news-660Sun, 01 Jan 2017 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 68: Monitoring Radicalisation and Extremismhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-68-monitoring-radicalisation-and-extremism/Over the last decade, radicalisation and extremism have become issues of particular concern for Europe. New risks of Islamist and far-right radicalisation have impelled the introduction of policies, the effects of which are only now being evaluated. As radicalisation that risks escalating into violence is more amenable to prevention than repression, having the capacity to detect early warning signs and trace the spread of extremist activity over time is critical.Over the last decade, radicalisation and extremism have become issues of particular concern for Europe. New risks of Islamist and far-right radicalisation have impelled the introduction of policies, the effects of which are only now being evaluated. As radicalisation that risks escalating into violence is more amenable to prevention than repression, having the capacity to detect early warning signs and trace the spread of extremist activity over time is critical. This brief outlines a set of methodologies for monitoring the risk of radicalisation and the trends in extremism based on an integrated approach to the indicators being monitored and the institutional mechanism doing the monitoring. These methodologies are designed to equip stakeholders – both governmental and non-governmental – with a tool which fuses a broad range of informational inputs; it will enable informed formulation of prevention and counter-radicalisation policies.

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news-661Sun, 01 Jan 2017 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 67: Turkey in The Framework of the EU Energy Union: Energy Security and Governance Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-67-turkey-in-the-framework-of-the-eu-energy-union-energy-security-and-governance/The successful creation of a European energy union will not be possible without the active involvement of Turkey. The latter is going to play a vital role as the major transit country of future alternative natural gas supply from the Caspian region and the Middle East. Similarly, Turkey will benefit from the development of the Energy Union because it can transform itself in a major energy-trading hub, Turkey’s long-term energy policy objective.The successful creation of a European energy union will not be possible without the active involvement of Turkey. The latter is going to play a vital role as the major transit country of future alternative natural gas supply from the Caspian region and the Middle East. Similarly, Turkey will benefit from the development of the Energy Union because it can transform itself in a major energy-trading hub, Turkey’s long-term energy policy objective. The EU and Turkey also share a common objective to diminish their dependence on Russian energy imports, which could provide a necessary boost to the formal energy dialogue between the two partners in January 2016.

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news-634Fri, 23 Dec 2016 02:00:00 +0200Hidden Economy in Southeast Europe: Building Regional Momentum to Mitigate its Negative Effectshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/hidden-economy-in-southeast-europe-building-regional-momentum-to-mitigate-its-negative-effects/According to the authors of the policy brief, not declaring in full or partially economic activities in SEE remains widespread in virtually all areas of government – permissions and licenses, labour contracts, social security, taxes and custom duties. It signals a persistent gap between formal and informal institutions and lack of coherent enforcement of rules. Corruption pressure is higher towards those engaged in the hidden economy. At the same time their susceptibility to corruption is also higher, confirming the institutional incongruence. The immense diversity of the scale (from 19 % in Croatia to 81 % in Kosovo), prevailing patterns (no written contracts in Turkey, non-payment of health care contributions in Kosovo*, envelope wages in FYR of Macedonia and Bulgaria, non-formalised business in Albania), formal vs informal wage average (higher formal wages in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania and Turkey and lower in Kosovo and Bulgaria) requires country specific tailor-made policies and sequencing of reforms.According to the authors of the policy brief, not declaring in full or partially economic activities in SEE remains widespread in virtually all areas of government – permissions and licenses, labour contracts, social security, taxes and custom duties. It signals a persistent gap between formal and informal institutions and lack of coherent enforcement of rules. Corruption pressure is higher towards those engaged in the hidden economy. At the same time their susceptibility to corruption is also higher, confirming the institutional incongruence. The immense diversity of the scale (from 19 % in Croatia to 81 % in Kosovo), prevailing patterns (no written contracts in Turkey, non-payment of health care contributions in Kosovo*, envelope wages in FYR of Macedonia and Bulgaria, non-formalised business in Albania), formal vs informal wage average (higher formal wages in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania and Turkey and lower in Kosovo and Bulgaria) requires country specific tailor-made policies and sequencing of reforms.

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news-824Wed, 21 Dec 2016 16:47:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 66: Dynamics of Conventional Crime in Bulgaria 2015 – 2016https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-66-dynamics-of-conventional-crime-in-bulgaria-2015-2016/Crime rates in 2015 continue their downward trend with a decrease of 0.4% compared to 2014 levels. It must be noted, however, that the level of reporting crime to the authorities falls compared to officially registered numbers by the MoI in 2015. This means that latent crime is on the rise, which signifies a drop in public confidence in the MoI. One of the main reason for this discrepancy are the so-called police filters, which lead to diverging levels of officially recorded conventional crimes and crimes reported by the citizenry. These are some of the results of the National Crime Survey for 2015, presented in the current publication.

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news-657Wed, 14 Dec 2016 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 65: The Wind that Blows from the East: Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-65-the-wind-that-blows-from-the-east-russian-influence-in-central-and-eastern-eur/The topic of Russia’s influence in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) has grown in significance after the eruption of the Ukrainian crisis in 2013. The US and EU policy and research communities have scrambled to explain the potential scenarios, tools, and impacts of the Russian influence, as well as propose possible solutions to minimizing its negative effects on European unity. The topic of Russia’s influence in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) has grown in significance after the eruption of the Ukrainian crisis in 2013. The US and EU policy and research communities have scrambled to explain the potential scenarios, tools, and impacts of the Russian influence, as well as propose possible solutions to minimizing its negative effects on European unity. This policy brief, which summarizes the key findings from the joint study of the Center for the Study of Democracy and the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Kremlin Playbook: Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europe, presents a model for understanding the impact of Russia’s economic influence in Central and Eastern Europe in five case study countries (Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Serbia, and Slovakia), and its relationship to the region’s general decline in governance standards. The study estimates that on average, Russia’s economic footprint in five of the most targeted by the Kremlin CEE countries has ranged from about 11 percent of the economy (in the cases of Hungary and Slovakia) to an astonishing 22 percent in Bulgaria. After 2008 the Russian leadership has aggressively deployed its resource-based resurgent economic power in combination with old time security networks and skillful use of traditional soft power appeal to exploit and further strategic vulnerabilities across the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. Russia has also cultivated an opaque network of patronage across the region that it uses to influence and direct decision-making. This web resembles a network-flow model, which we describe as an “unvirtuous circle” of Russian influence leading to “state capture.”

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news-913Sat, 10 Dec 2016 14:23:00 +0200A Revanchist Russia versus an Uncertain West: An Appreciation of the Situation since the 2014 Ukrainian Crisishttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/a-revanchist-russia-versus-an-uncertain-west-an-appreciation-of-the-situation-since-the-2014-ukrain/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. Ultimately, it is conceivable that the Western allies and Russia could achieve through dialogue some kind of constructive modus vivendi whereby Russia becomes a less paranoid power that respects the independence of its former empire. A long shot to begin with, such a rapprochement is less achievable if Europe and the United States appear disorganized and vulnerable. 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. Ultimately, it is conceivable that the Western allies and Russia could achieve through dialogue some kind of constructive modus vivendi whereby Russia becomes a less paranoid power that respects the independence of its former empire. A long shot to begin with, such a rapprochement is less achievable if Europe and the United States appear disorganized and vulnerable.

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news-662Thu, 01 Dec 2016 02:00:00 +0200Private Security in Practice: Case studies from Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/private-security-in-practice-case-studies-from-southeast-europe/For the current volume Private Security in Practice: Case studies from Southeast Europe the authors present eight case studies that explore the impact that private security has on security, human rightsand the democratic order in four Southeast European countries: Albania, Bulgaria, Kosovo and Serbia. Since regulation should not only limit the negative impact but also foster the positive contribution that private security can make, the authors specifically looked at how challenges posed by PSCs could be avoided and how opportunities can be seized.

For the current volume Private Security in Practice: Case studies from Southeast Europe the authors present eight case studies that explore the impact that private security has on security, human rights and the democratic order in four Southeast European countries: Albania, Bulgaria, Kosovo and Serbia. Since regulation should not only limit the negative impact but also foster the positive contribution that private security can make, the authors specifically looked at how challenges posed by PSCs could be avoided and how opportunities can be seized.

Broadly, the case studies cover four governance challenges: the development of the private security market, particularly in relation to the state’s retreat from its monopoly on security provision (Part 1); the role of private security in the protection of critical infrastructure (Part 2); the state as a client of private security companies and the impact of public procurement processes on the private security market (Part 3); and the success and failure of different policies aimed at improving the professionalism of private security personnel (Part 4). Previous research by the authors demonstrated that these policy issues are important for each of the four target countries. However, it is worth noting that other pressing policy questions regarding private security exist in these countries, and the authors’ choice does not indicate that the topics discussed are necessarily more pertinent or urgent than others.

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news-914Sun, 27 Nov 2016 15:59:00 +0200Hidden Economy and Good Governance in Southeast Europe Regional Assessment Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/hidden-economy-and-good-governance-in-southeast-europe-regional-assessment-report/The current report examines the key drivers of the hidden economy and its impact on the overall economy in SEE, and in particular the employment, social and fiscal sectors. The authors focus on the links between hidden economy and corruption, especially the administrative corruption, related to VAT drain, tax payment evasion, social security payment evasion, and “speeding up” business related services. They propose new approaches for measuring and analysing the phenomena, as well as preventive and counter-measures.The current report examines the key drivers of the hidden economy and its impact on the overall economy in SEE, and in particular the employment, social and fiscal sectors. The authors focus on the links between hidden economy and corruption, especially the administrative corruption, related to VAT drain, tax payment evasion, social security payment evasion, and “speeding up” business related services. They propose new approaches for measuring and analysing the phenomena, as well as preventive and counter-measures.


The hidden economy in SEE remains wide-spread, perpetuates informality, which is linked to corruption, and denotes a substantial gap between formal and informal institutions. This gap is due both to underdeveloped formal market institutions, and also to the lack of coherent enforcement of rules, often related to corruption. Those engaged in the hidden economy are more likely to face corruption pressure than the rest of the population throughout the region.
The immense diversity of the scale of the phenomenon (19 % in Croatia and 81 % in Kosovo), its prevailing patterns (no written contracts in Turkey, non-payment of health care contributions in Kosovo, envelope wages in Macedonia and Bulgaria, non-formalised business in Albania) and statistical estimation of the hidden economy in GDP across Southeast European countries leads to the conclusion that any successful counter-measures would require tailor-made policies and sequencing of reforms.

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news-653Mon, 31 Oct 2016 02:00:00 +0200Governance of the Bulgarian Public Procurement Sector: Corruption Risks and Criminal Prosecutionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/governance-of-the-bulgarian-public-procurement-sector-corruption-risks-and-criminal-prosecution/Despite the legislative and institutional progress, especially in terms of increased transparency and access to data, the public procurement (PP) sector in Bulgaria continues to be associated with high levels of corruption risk. The number of irregularities uncovered by the control bodies remains considerable. At the same time there is a lack of effective investigation, while criminal cases, involving PP, are still very limited and predominantly focused on the lower levels of governance.

Despite the legislative and institutional progress, especially in terms of increased transparency and access to data, the public procurement (PP) sector in Bulgaria continues to be associated with high levels of corruption risk. The number of irregularities uncovered by the control bodies remains considerable. At the same time there is a lack of effective investigation, while criminal cases, involving PP, are still very limited and predominantly focused on the lower levels of governance.

Round Table: Defrauding the Bulgarian Public Procurement System: Prevention, Countering and Analysis of Corruption Risks, 31 October 2016

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news-654Mon, 31 Oct 2016 02:00:00 +0200Public Procurement Criminality: Practical Guide for Preventing, Countering and Analyzing Corruption Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/public-procurement-criminality-practical-guide-for-preventing-countering-and-analyzing-corruption/The publication discusses selected internationally recognized standards on approaches, methods and guidelines for countering criminality and corruption practices in the public procurement process. The practical Guide is tailored to aid the work of civil servants, magistrates and practitioners in the area. The publication is based on conclusions from series of seminars, workshops and conferences, involving Bulgarian and Romanian experts, which took place between December 2014 and July 2016 in Romania. The document is part of the initiative “Law, Economy, Competition, and Administration - Developing a Multidisciplinary Approach in the Fight against Public Procurement Criminality (LEAD)”.

The publication discusses selected internationally recognized standards on approaches, methods and guidelines for countering criminality and corruption practices in the public procurement process. The practical Guide is tailored to aid the work of civil servants, magistrates and practitioners in the area. The publication is based on conclusions from series of seminars, workshops and conferences, involving Bulgarian and Romanian experts, which took place between December 2014 and July 2016 in Romania. The document is part of the initiative “Law, Economy, Competition, and Administration - Developing a Multidisciplinary Approach in the Fight against Public Procurement Criminality (LEAD)”.

CSD Policy Brief: Governance of the Bulgarian Public Procurement Sector: Corruption Risks and Criminal Prosecution
Round Table: Defrauding the Bulgarian Public Procurement System: Prevention, Countering and Analysis of Corruption Risks, 31 October 2016

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news-630Thu, 13 Oct 2016 03:00:00 +0300The Kremlin Playbook: Understanding Russian Influence in Central and Eastern Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-kremlin-playbook-understanding-russian-influence-in-central-and-eastern-europe/There was a deeply held assumption that, when the countries of Central and Eastern Europe joined NATO and the European Union in 2004, these countries would continue their positive democratic and economic transformation. Yet more than a decade later, the region has experienced a steady decline in democratic standards and governance practices at the same time that Russia’s economic engagement with the region expanded significantly. Regional political movements and figures have increasingly sought to align themselves with the Kremlin and with illiberalism. Central European governments have adopted ambiguous—if not outright pro-Russian—policy stances that have raised questions about their transatlantic orientation and produced tensions within Western institutions. There was a deeply held assumption that, when the countries of Central and Eastern Europe joined NATO and the European Union in 2004, these countries would continue their positive democratic and economic transformation. Yet more than a decade later, the region has experienced a steady decline in democratic standards and governance practices at the same time that Russia’s economic engagement with the region expanded significantly. Regional political movements and figures have increasingly sought to align themselves with the Kremlin and with illiberalism. Central European governments have adopted ambiguous—if not outright pro-Russian—policy stances that have raised questions about their transatlantic orientation and produced tensions within Western institutions. The Center for the Study of Democracy, in partnership with the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), recently concluded a 16-month study to understand the nature of Russian influence in five case countries: Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Latvia, and Serbia. This research determined the extent of the Russian economic footprint in the domestic economy, which has ranged between 11% and 22% on average from 2004 to 2014. The report also presented evidence of 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 and direct decisionmaking. This web resembles a network-flow model—or “unvirtuous circle”—which the Kremlin can use to influence (if not control) critical state institutions, bodies, and economies, as well as shape national policies and decisions that serve its interests while actively discrediting the Western liberal democratic system.

To exploit the governance loopholes, Russia’s strategy has been to capture powerful local brokers through providing them with government sponsored business opportunities at premium returns infiltrating them in state-owned companies, national agencies including in the security sector. Another common way is to use former security officials with significant influence over parties, businesses and institutions to act as intermediaries boosting Moscow’s interests where necessary. The reverse has also been happening in the region when local powerful economic groups use their Russian links to secure capital and political backing to acquire assets and invest in large projects. Sometimes domestic interests have vied for and received the economic and political support from Russian companies or politicians to engage in rent seeking with the local government, exploiting lack of oversight and lack rule of law. In exchange for providing their brand name or capital, Russian companies have taken nominal share in lucrative domestic businesses, gained access to a strategic asset in telecommunications, finance and most often in energy.
 

Additional resources:

Presentation of the report “The Kremlin Playbook” at the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Auswärtige Politik, 26 January 2017, Berlin

Media Coverage

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news-636Fri, 30 Sep 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 64: Hidden Economy in Bulgaria: 2015 – 2016https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-64-hidden-economy-in-bulgaria-2015-2016/In Bulgaria the high level of hidden economy undermines the economic development of the country and requires serious and persistent political attention. The unprecedented growth in the field of digitization of economic activities, the convergence between some of them, and the emergence of brand new services creates an opportunity for achieving a desirable environment, which may reduce the hidden cash flows and boost the economic development of the country.Comprehensive reforms focused on the functioning of the market mechanisms and administrative effectiveness are needed in order to promote the process of economic convergence within the European Union and limit the harmful effects of the hidden economy in Bulgaria.In Bulgaria the high level of hidden economy undermines the economic development of the country and requires serious and persistent political attention. The unprecedented growth in the field of digitization of economic activities, the convergence between some of them, and the emergence of brand new services creates an opportunity for achieving a desirable environment, which may reduce the hidden cash flows and boost the economic development of the country. Comprehensive reforms focused on the functioning of the market mechanisms and administrative effectiveness are needed in order to promote the process of economic convergence within the European Union and limit the harmful effects of the hidden economy in Bulgaria.

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news-638Fri, 30 Sep 2016 03:00:00 +0300National Study on Domestic and Gender Based Violencehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/national-study-on-domestic-and-gender-based-violence/Bulgaria is among those half of EU-member states where statistical information about victim-offender relationship is not gathered, hereby making impossible the assessment of the share of domestic violence among crimes against the person. Domestic violence is not qualified as a criminal offence and is still not included in the Criminal Code – and respectively, in statistical data provided by the Police and by the National Statistical Institute. Information about numbers of complaints for domestic violence registered in the police and numbers of cases of domestic violence submitted to the courts are not present in the publicly available statistics either.
Bulgaria is among those half of EU-member states where statistical information about victim-offender relationship is not gathered, hereby making impossible the assessment of the share of domestic violence among crimes against the person. Domestic violence is not qualified as a criminal offence and is still not included in the Criminal Code – and respectively, in statistical data provided by the Police and by the National Statistical Institute. Information about numbers of complaints for domestic violence registered in the police and numbers of cases of domestic violence submitted to the courts are not present in the publicly available statistics either.

The current report is part of the National Study on Domestic and Gender Based Violence (DGBV) and Elaboration of Victims Support Model (VSM), developed under Programme Area 29, BG12: Domestic and Gender Based Violence, Measure 3: Research and data collection of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism, in response to their aims: research and collection of data regarding the prevalence and measures to prevent and combat DGBV.

The general objective of the study is to contribute to the prevention of DGBV and to improve the situation of DGBV victims in Bulgaria, with specific focus on Roma women and girls. The specific objective is to develop knowledge and expertise regarding the situation of domestic and gender-based violence to ensure that all stakeholders including the Bulgarian government can access strong independent analysis in order to facilitate better informed and evidence-based policy decisions. This objective is achieved by conducting quantitative and qualitative study in Bulgaria which provides data regarding the prevalence and measures to prevent and combat DGBV among the general and Roma population. Additional objective is to develop and pilot a Victims Support Model (VSM), which aimed to involve local community in the assistance and protection of DGBV victims and engage the key local stakeholders (police departments, service providers, local authorities, Roma organizations).

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news-640Fri, 30 Sep 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief: National Study on Domestic and Gender Based Violence (DGBV) and Elaboration of Victims Support Model (VSM)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-national-study-on-domestic-and-gender-based-violence-dgbv-and-elaboration-of-victims/The current brief is based on the results of the National Study on Domestic and Gender Based Violence (DGBV) and Elaboration of Victims Support Model (VSM), developed under Programme Area 29, BG12: Domestic and Gender Based Violence, Measure 3: Research and data collection of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism. The current brief is based on the results of the National Study on Domestic and Gender Based Violence (DGBV) and Elaboration of Victims Support Model (VSM), developed under Programme Area 29, BG12: Domestic and Gender Based Violence, Measure 3: Research and data collection of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism. The study focused on four main thematic areas connected with DGBV phenomena: factors and causes, scales and prevalence, consequences, and public response.

The study revealed that DGBV victimisation is caused by the simultaneous action of three types of factors: factors representing a conflict, violent conflict-resolution models that the perpetrators follow, and lack or blocking of deterrent mechanisms. DGBV re-victimisation occurs when the victims lack both internal and external resources to counteract.

The reporting of DGBV prevalence depends on three factors: real occurrence of DGBV, awareness that the experienced acts represent DGBV, and readiness to share this experience with authorities, help providers or researchers.

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news-642Fri, 30 Sep 2016 03:00:00 +0300Domestic and Gender-based Violence: Victims Support Modelhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/domestic-and-gender-based-violence-victims-support-model/Freedom from violence, regardless of its form, is every human being’s fundamental right. The rights to life, liberty and security of person have been regulated in the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as in the European Convention on Human Rights.Freedom from violence, regardless of its form, is every human being’s fundamental right. The rights to life, liberty and security of person have been regulated in the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as in the European Convention on Human Rights.

The purpose of the Victims Support Model is to provide information and to present the currently existing activities, services and departments, which operate in the area of domestic and gender-based violence. The proposed Model accepts that the strong prevalence of the phenomena and the consequences thereof necessitate that it is treated as a public health issue. For this reason, an approach is being proposed, which defines and outlines the roots and the consequences of this problem in Bulgaria, identifies the risk and protective factors, and proposes strategies for effective resolution, including activities on prevention, timely reaction, and follow-up.

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news-652Tue, 27 Sep 2016 03:00:00 +0300Shadow Power: Assessment of Corruption and Hidden Economy in Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/shadow-power-assessment-of-corruption-and-hidden-economy-in-southeast-europe/The current report, prepared by the Southeast European Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) — the largest indigenous good governance initiative in SEE — makes an important contribution to the regional approach to anticorruption. It provides a civil society view of the state of corruption and comes in the wake of the 2014 SELDI comprehensive assessment of the various aspects of the legal and institutional anticorruption environments of nine SEE countries. In 2016, SELDI followed up on these assessments with an update of corruption monitoring and a special focus on state capture in the energy sector and the corruption–hidden economy nexus.
The current report, prepared by the Southeast European Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) — the largest indigenous good governance initiative in SEE — makes an important contribution to the regional approach to anticorruption. It provides a civil society view of the state of corruption and comes in the wake of the 2014 SELDI comprehensive assessment of the various aspects of the legal and institutional anticorruption environments of nine SEE countries. In 2016, SELDI followed up on these assessments with an update of corruption monitoring and a special focus on state capture in the energy sector and the corruption–hidden economy nexus.

The report underscores the need for broader political action for reform, which seems blocked or narrowing across the region. Inside pressure for such action has been suffocated by economic necessity and/or ethnic divisions, and the ossification of political and economic establishments. Outside pressure, delivered mostly by the European Union has been seen as wanting in relation to the size of the problems in the past couple of years due to a succession of internal and external crises.

The authors underline that in none of the countries in the region has there been a clear sustained policy breakthrough in anticorruption though efforts to deliver technical solutions and to improve the functioning of the law enforcement institutions, mostly with support from the EU, have continued and even intensified in some cases. This has led to further slow decline in administrative corruption levels but at the expense of waning public support for reforms and of declining trust in national and European institutions.

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news-626Wed, 21 Sep 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 63: Extortion racketeering: the vulnerability assessment approachhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-63-extortion-racketeering-the-vulnerability-assessment-approach/Extortion racketeering has long been pointed out as the defining activity of organised crime. It has also been identified as one of the most effective tools used by organised crime in the accumulation of financial resources and the penetration of the legal economy. Although in recent years this crime has not been among the top listed organised crime threats in the strategic EU policy documents, it still remains ever present in European countries. The seriousness of the phenomenon has been recognised at the EU level and the crime has been listed in a number of EU legal acts in the field of police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters. Extortion racketeering has long been pointed out as the defining activity of organised crime. It has also been identified as one of the most effective tools used by organised crime in the accumulation of financial resources and the penetration of the legal economy. Although in recent years this crime has not been among the top listed organised crime threats in the strategic EU policy documents, it still remains ever present in European countries. The seriousness of the phenomenon has been recognised at the EU level and the crime has been listed in a number of EU legal acts in the field of police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters.

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news-796Fri, 12 Aug 2016 03:00:00 +0300Working Paper: State Capture Diagnostics Roadmaphttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/working-paper-state-capture-diagnostics-roadmap/This paper contributes to a higher analytical precision in the definition of state capture, which enables the construction of measures that would help evaluate, assess and eventually quantify the phenomenon. This requires a more in-depth analysis of the state capture concept and an analytical description of its outcomes involving different social actors (government, the private sector and the society at large), as well as a description of its principal mechanisms. As state capture is often associated with corruption, it would be necessary to differentiate between these concepts and find a possible intersection in the methodological approaches used for measuring them.
 

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news-624Mon, 08 Aug 2016 03:00:00 +0300Roma integration across the Danube – best practices in administrative and social entrepreneurshiphttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/roma-integration-across-the-danube-best-practices-in-administrative-and-social-entrepreneurship/The vast majority of Roma population in Europe (80%) lives in the 14 countries of the Danube Region, the population percentage of Roma varying greatly from country to county, with the strongest concentrations in poor and peripheral regions. Although only estimates of the exact population exist, Romania and Bulgaria, alongside Hungary and Slovakia have the highest shares of Roma within the overall population in the entire European Union. While National Roma Integration Strategies have been in place in these countries in the last few years, their effective implementation and success has been limited to this day.The vast majority of Roma population in Europe (80%) lives in the 14 countries of the Danube Region, the population percentage of Roma varying greatly from country to county, with the strongest concentrations in poor and peripheral regions. Although only estimates of the exact population exist, Romania and Bulgaria, alongside Hungary and Slovakia have the highest shares of Roma within the overall population in the entire European Union. While National Roma Integration Strategies have been in place in these countries in the last few years, their effective implementation and success has been limited to this day.

Aiming to facilitate the reciprocally useful exchange of experience between municipalities, civil society and Roma entrepreneurs from Bulgaria and Romania, the Romanian Center for European Policies, RomanoButiq and the Center for the Study of Democracy launched on 1 February 2016 an initiative Roma integration across the Danube: Best practices and social entrepreneurship models exchange between Romania and Bulgaria. Among the outcomes of the joint initiative is the current report, aiming to emphasize the fact that there have been certain projects and initiatives from both the public and private spheres that have been implemented in Romania and Bulgaria with a noteworthy degree of success, to put them forth and create the context for relevant Roma stakeholders (NGOs, local administration representatives, Roma entrepreneurs) from both countries to mutually gain a complex understanding of the contexts and workings of the best practice examples, to experience them first hand, understand the factors that led to their success and replicate them in their own country. The report presents the experience of the visit in the town of Kavarna and sets the basis for further cooperation mechanisms on the regional level on the topic of social entrepreneurship and Roma administrative integration models.

The project is part of START – Danube Region Project Fund, part-financed by the European Union and the City of Vienna.

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news-620Thu, 28 Jul 2016 03:00:00 +0300 Countering extortion racketeering: The Italian Experiencehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/countering-extortion-racketeering-the-italian-experience/Extortion racketeering is a crime which spans allsections of society, poses threats to the well-beingof local communities and impairs the growth anddevelopment of business. No country is immuneto it, although it varies across time, space andeconomic context. Extortion can be perpetrated bysingle offenders, or it can be part of more complexcriminal schemes. In this sense, the case of Italy istypical because Italian mafias systematically resort toextortion racketeering.


Extortion racketeering is a crime which spans all sections of society, poses threats to the well-being of local communities and impairs the growth and development of business. No country is immune to it, although it varies across time, space and economic context. Extortion can be perpetrated by single offenders, or it can be part of more complex criminal schemes. In this sense, the case of Italy is typical because Italian mafias systematically resort to extortion racketeering.

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news-618Tue, 26 Jul 2016 03:00:00 +0300Hidden Economy Indexes in Bulgaria 2002-2015: Results and Methodological Noteshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/hidden-economy-indexes-in-bulgaria-2002-2015-results-and-methodological-notes/The current document presents the methodology for calculation of the Hidden Economy Indexes in Bulgaria among the population and the business, as well as the results of the surveys for the period 2002-2015.

The current document presents the methodology for calculation of the Hidden Economy Indexes in Bulgaria among the population and the business, as well as the results of the surveys for the period 2002-2015.

Hidden economy surveys in Bulgaria have been carried out by the Center for the Study of Democracy and the market and social research agency Vitosha Research since 2002. Based on data from these surveys, a system of synthetic measurements in the form of composite indices for assessment of the hidden economy was developed. The reason for choosing these particular indicators was to reduce the multiple aspects of the hidden economy phenomenon to a manageable number of illustrative and easy to interpret the indices. The survey questions and sub-indexes, which form the Business Hidden Economy Index and the Index of the Hidden Economic Activity of the Population, are presented in the document.

The authors underline the difference between the terms official economy (legal and reported), informal economy (legal, yet unreported), illegal (black) economy (illegal and unreported) and undeclared (gray) economy (legal, formally registered, yet unreported). The last three form the composite term hidden economy.

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news-622Fri, 22 Jul 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 62: Energy Security Risks and the Case for Natural Gas Diversificationhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-62-energy-security-risks-and-the-case-for-natural-gas-diversification/The Bulgarian energy sector remains of key importance for the development of the country’s economy. On the domestic side, Bulgaria’s energy sector faces severe governance deficiencies at multiple levels that lead to inefficiency and inconsistency of decision-making. Political meddling and conflicts of interest at the highest level of government compromise the strategic approach towards the sector, and often lead to poor management of the state-owned companies. The policy brief analyses the energy security and governance risks. The authors underline that:

  • Bulgarian ranking has improved significantly, jumping from 73rd to 58th place, narrowing the gap with the average OECD results.
  • Since Bulgaria receives all of its natural gas from one source and via one pipeline, it is imperative that the government’s decisions for the initiation of future energy projects are based on the projects’ potential to diversify supply sources and ensure an uninterrupted energy supply.
  • The efforts to diversify the gas supply by building the Interconnector Greece - Bulgaria (IGB) have stalled in spite of external financing, existing contractual obligations with the Shah Deniz consortium and due to lack of administrative capacity and state capture from domestic and foreign interests.
  • The European Commission’s efforts to integrate the SEE region into the EU internal market and diversify its gas supply away from a single supplier have started to pay off. The liberalization of the cross-border capacities along the Transbalkan pipeline, previously fully reserved by Gazprom, is now open for competitive bidding.
  • The liberalization of regional natural gas trading and the completion of the interconnector pipelines with Greece and Romania would advance Bulgaria’s bargaining position vis-à-vis Gazprom by reducing the country’s gas import costs, and improve the country’s security of supply and the affordability of residential gasification initiatives.
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news-616Tue, 19 Jul 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 61: Drug users in prison: Norway’s experience and Bulgaria’s challengeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-61-drug-users-in-prison-norways-experience-and-bulgarias-challenges/For all criminal offences related to drugs, even for possession of small quantities intended for personal use, the main sanction according to Bulgarian criminal law is imprisonment. Unlike in Norway, non-custodial penalties in Bulgaria such as probation have extremely limited scope of application for drug-related offences. At the same time, other alternatives to imprisonment are virtually non-existent. For all criminal offences related to drugs, even for possession of small quantities intended for personal use, the main sanction according to Bulgarian criminal law is imprisonment. Unlike in Norway, non-custodial penalties in Bulgaria such as probation have extremely limited scope of application for drug-related offences. At the same time, other alternatives to imprisonment are virtually non-existent.

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news-614Mon, 04 Jul 2016 03:00:00 +0300State Capture Unplugged: Countering Administrative and Political Corruption in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/state-capture-unplugged-countering-administrative-and-political-corruption-in-bulgaria/The eleventh Corruption Assessment Report of the Center for the Study of Democracy is focused on the most potent form of corruption affecting Bulgaria: state capture. The report builds on years of CSD experience in the regular monitoring and assessing of the spread of administrative and political corruption. This is now complemented by an assessment of the mechanisms by which powerful lobbies capture government decision making to the benefit of shady business interests and the detriment of public good. The eleventh Corruption Assessment Report of the Center for the Study of Democracy is focused on the most potent form of corruption affecting Bulgaria: state capture. The report builds on years of CSD experience in the regular monitoring and assessing of the spread of administrative and political corruption. This is now complemented by an assessment of the mechanisms by which powerful lobbies capture government decision making to the benefit of shady business interests and the detriment of public good. The report finds that these two manifestations – administrative corruption and state capture – are closely linked because they represent different facets of the same phenomenon.

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news-808Fri, 01 Jul 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief July, 2016: Ensuring Effective Cooperation Between EU and Turkey to Foster Energy Securityhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-july-2016-ensuring-effective-cooperation-between-eu-and-turkey-to-foster-energy-secur/As Turkey is a strategic bridge for new energy sources, it will play an increasingly critical role in helping the EU in completing the energy security pillar in the Energy Union initiative. However, Turkey’s energy sector transformation towards becoming part of the planned European internal energy market is happening only very slowly. Given that the inevitable changes will have an effect on both industries and individual consumers, politicians have been reluctant to sign on the dotted line and initiate the final stages of liberalization. Despite EU’s activism for developing universal rules for Europe for liberalisation and security in gas and electricity, Turkey and the countries in the Black Sea region still pursue mostly a bilateral approach to energy security, which is insufficient for the development of a strategic regional energy security partnership between EU and Turkey.
 

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news-612Mon, 13 Jun 2016 03:00:00 +0300Extortion Racketeering in the EU: A six country study of vulnerability factorshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/extortion-racketeering-in-the-eu-a-six-country-study-of-vulnerability-factors/Extortion racketeering has been long pointed out as the “defining activity of organised crime” (Konrad & Skaperdas, 1998). Although in recent years this crime has not been among the top listed organised crime threats in the strategic EU policy documents, it still remains ever present in European countries.Extortion racketeering has been long pointed out as the defining activity of organised crime. Although in recent years this crime has not been among the top listed organised crime threats in the strategic EU policy documents, it still remains ever present in European countries. The seriousness of the phenomenon has been recognised at the EU level and the crime has been listed in a number of EU legal acts in the field of police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters.
The report Extortion Racketeering in the EU: A six country study of vulnerability factors analyses extortion racketeering forms and practices in six EU member states. The analysis disentangles the risk and the vulnerability factors for enterprises in two business sectors – agriculture and hospitality – as well as in the Chinese communities. Drawing on the results of the analysis, the report suggests new policies for tackling extortion racketeering in the EU. This report has been produced with the joint efforts of the Center for the Study of Democracy, Instituto de Ciencias Forenses y de la Seguridad – Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Transcrime – Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore di Milano and http://www.vitosha-research.comhttp://www.vitosha-research.comVitosha Research and with the support of Guardia Civil in Spain.

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news-911Mon, 16 May 2016 13:05:00 +0300Media and Political Influenceshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-and-political-influences/Only in Bulgarian

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news-610Fri, 13 May 2016 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 60: Media (In)dependence in Bulgaria: Risks and Trendshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-60-media-independence-in-bulgaria-risks-and-trends/The role of Bulgarian media in public life came under scrutiny after several media outlets were used as an instrument for triggering political crises and for political engineering (2013 – 2014).
The role of Bulgarian media in public life came under scrutiny after several media outlets were used as an instrument for triggering political crises and for political engineering (2013 – 2014). At that time, the Bulgarian media market was experiencing the impact of two negative trends. On the one hand, the economic crisis of 2009 – 2013 had cut advertising revenues by half. On the other, the old models of media financing were diminished by the use of digital technologies and the explosive growth of social networks and mobile communications. The loss of financial sustainability by the media presented unique opportunities for Bulgarian oligarchic groups. By accumulating a significant share of the media market, they reached an unprecedented level of political influence (including direct influence on the legislative, executive and judicial powers). The media was used as an instrument for state capture that could present severe security and economic risks.

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news-664Sat, 30 Apr 2016 03:00:00 +0300Integrated report on corruption and trafficking in womenhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/integrated-report-on-corruption-and-trafficking-in-women/Trafficking in human beings for sexual exploitation is a criminal business of transnational nature, ranking third after narcotics and arms trafficking in generating huge amounts of illegal profit. THB in all its manifestations is a dangerous crime that results in significant psychological, emotional, financial and often physical harm to victims, representing a serious violation of human rights. Despite the seriousness of the crime, law enforcement and criminal justice authorities across the world encounter various problems in investigating and punishing perpetrators. One important barrier is corruption, which – as with other criminal enterprises – is a significant facilitating mechanism.
Trafficking in human beings for sexual exploitation is a criminal business of transnational nature, ranking third after narcotics and arms trafficking in generating huge amounts of illegal profit. THB in all its manifestations is a dangerous crime that results in significant psychological, emotional, financial and often physical harm to victims, representing a serious violation of human rights. Despite the seriousness of the crime, law enforcement and criminal justice authorities across the world encounter various problems in investigating and punishing perpetrators. One important barrier is corruption, which – as with other criminal enterprises – is a significant facilitating mechanism.

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news-663Fri, 29 Apr 2016 03:00:00 +0300Corruption and trafficking in women: The case of Bulgaria.https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-and-trafficking-in-women-the-case-of-bulgaria/Corruption is an important facilitating mechanism for human trafficking. The link between the two crimes is especially relevant in countries like Bulgaria, which traditionally have had very levels of trafficking. Corruption is believed to be one of the key instruments adopted by organised criminal groups to avoid detection and obstruct counter-trafficking efforts. Although the use of corruption is often mentioned along with human trafficking, few studies have empirically explored the factors and mechanisms behind this nexus.
Corruption is an important facilitating mechanism for human trafficking. The link between the two crimes is especially relevant in countries like Bulgaria, which traditionally have had very levels of trafficking. Corruption is believed to be one of the key instruments adopted by organised criminal groups to avoid detection and obstruct counter-trafficking efforts. Although the use of corruption is often mentioned along with human trafficking, few studies have empirically explored the factors and mechanisms behind this nexus.

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news-606Tue, 19 Apr 2016 03:00:00 +0300Concept for more effective civic participation in support of vulnerable groupshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/concept-for-more-effective-civic-participation-in-support-of-vulnerable-groups/The concept for more effective civic participation in support of four vulnerable groups aims to identify legislative changes, improvement of practices and policy development by decision makers and the civil society to facilitate vulnerable communities in their interaction with state institutions and establish effective support mechanisms. The concept for more effective civic participation in support of four vulnerable groups aims to identify legislative changes, improvement of practices and policy development by decision makers and the civil society to facilitate vulnerable communities in their interaction with state institutions and establish effective support mechanisms. The publication proposes concrete solutions and a roadmap for their implementation for each of these groups - prisoners, victims of human trafficking, victims of domestic violence, asylum seekers and other vulnerable groups of foreigners.

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news-604Thu, 14 Apr 2016 03:00:00 +0300Memoranda with recommendations to institutions, working with vulnerable groupshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/memoranda-with-recommendations-to-institutions-working-with-vulnerable-groups/The initiative "Civic Organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State" encompasses four vulnerable groups: persons deprived of their liberty, victims of human trafficking and domestic violence, as well as persons in need of international protection and other vulnerable foreigners. Although very different, those communities encounter similar problems in their relations with institutions: insufficient human and financial resourcing, work practices not always meeting the needs of vulnerable groups. Thus, oftentimes those persons rely on civil society for improving their status, including through assistance before the respective competent authorities.


The initiative ‘Civic Organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State’ encompasses four vulnerable groups: persons deprived of their liberty, victims of human trafficking and domestic violence, as well as persons in need of international protection and other vulnerable foreigners. Although very different, those communities encounter similar problems in their relations with institutions: insufficient human and financial resourcing, work practices not always meeting the needs of vulnerable groups. Thus, oftentimes those persons rely on civil society for improving their status, including through assistance before the respective competent authorities.

Throughout its different stages, the initiative outlined the profile of the vulnerable groups, their relations with institutions and NGOs and promising foreign experience and practices applicable in the Bulgarian environment. A Concept for More Effective Civic Participation in the Assistance to Vulnerable Groups was developed, proposing further practical steps.

The four memoranda contain specific recommendations to institutions, working with the vulnerable groups, based on the Concept and the opinions of various state authorities and civil society representatives.

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news-600Thu, 31 Mar 2016 03:00:00 +0300Drug Users in Prison: Norway's Experience and Bulgaria's Challengeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/drug-users-in-prison-norways-experience-and-bulgarias-challenges/Publication looks over the situation of drug users in two European countries – Norway, known for its social and welfare-oriented state, and Bulgaria, which since the beginning of the transition from totalitarism to democracy lacks sustainable policies on prisons and drugs. The aim of this work is to comparatively present the penal policy towards drug users and the measures taken for convicted people addicted to narcotic substances, to identify those features which can be transferable and can assist Bulgarian authorities to improve the situation of drug users in and outside the prison. Finally, this research will try to propose concrete measures to be taken both within the penitentiary system and as crime prevention efforts among drug users.

Publication looks over the situation of drug users in two European countries – Norway, known for its social and welfare-oriented state, and Bulgaria, which since the beginning of the transition from totalitarism to democracy lacks sustainable policies on prisons and drugs. The aim of this work is to comparatively present the penal policy towards drug users and the measures taken for convicted people addicted to narcotic substances, to identify those features which can be transferable and can assist Bulgarian authorities to improve the situation of drug users in and outside the prison. Finally, this research will try to propose concrete measures to be taken both within the penitentiary system and as crime prevention efforts among drug users.

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news-608Thu, 24 Mar 2016 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 59: Registration of Non-profit Organisations: Legal Framework and Recommendations for Reformhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-59-registration-of-non-profit-organisations-legal-framework-and-recommendations-f/Improvement of registration of non-profit organisations (NPOs) – associations and foundations, is a necessary precondition for strengthening the civil society and increasing its transparency and accountability. An easy and simple registration procedure, with no duplication of information and functioning automatic exchange of data, is an important stage in the establishment of a modern registration system. It also guarantees the availability of reliable and up-to-date information on all registered entities.Improvement of registration of non-profit organisations (NPOs) – associations and foundations, is a necessary precondition for strengthening the civil society and increasing its transparency and accountability. An easy and simple registration procedure, with no duplication of information and functioning automatic exchange of data, is an important stage in the establishment of a modern registration system. It also guarantees the availability of reliable and up-to-date information on all registered entities.

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news-594Fri, 18 Mar 2016 02:00:00 +0200Understanding Radicalisation: Review of Literaturehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/understanding-radicalisation-review-of-literature/The phenomena of radicalisation today develop and change at high speed, with their extreme forms manifested globally. The destructive dimensions of (violent) Islamist or right-wing radicalisation have become dramatically visible in Europe posing serious challenges to European societies. 

The phenomena of radicalisation today develop and change at high speed, with their extreme forms manifested globally. The destructive dimensions of (violent) Islamist or right-wing radicalisation have become dramatically visible in Europe posing serious challenges to European societies. This literature review presents key academic conceptualisations and debates on the phenomena оf radicalisation that might lead to violence. It deals with three different forms of radicalisation, including Islamist radicalisation, right-wing as well as left-wing radicalisation. In addition, an overview is provided of current academic debates regarding the role of the internet in radicalisation processes. The review is intended to help social scientists who are entering the field of radicalisation studies navigate through the complexity of underlying processes and factors that lead different individuals or groups to adopt radical ideas and commit acts of violence. The review is particularly relevant for countries of Central and Eastern Europe where radicalisation remains understudied, although most countries in the region share histories of extremism and political radicalism.

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news-804Fri, 18 Mar 2016 02:00:00 +0200Illegal Entrepreneurship, Organized Crime and Social Controlhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/illegal-entrepreneurship-organized-crime-and-social-control/The book Illegal Entrepreneurship, Organized Crime and Social Control covers organized crime groups, empirical studies of organized crime, criminal finances and money laundering, and crime prevention, gathering some of the most authoritative and well-known scholars in the field. The contributions to this book are new chapters written in honor of Professor Dick Hobbs, on the occasion of his retirement. They reflect his powerful influence on the study of organized crime, offering a novel perspective that located organized crime in its socio-economic context, studied through prolonged ethnographic engagement. 

In Chapter 7 Anton Kojouharov, Analyst and Atanas Rusev, PhD, Senior Analyst at the Center for the Study of Democracy, offer a detailed account of the illegal and predatory moneylending landscape and business in Bulgaria, a context in which a number of factors have affected the development of the alternative (and informal) credit markets and their - often - extortionate ends. The authors present a concise review of definitions of the relevant terms and suggest a tentative classification of the existing types of moneylenders in Bulgaria, as well as typology of the usual clientele.

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news-632Tue, 15 Mar 2016 02:00:00 +0200Legal Framework of Registration of Non-Profit Organisations: Assessment and Recommendations for Reformhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/legal-framework-of-registration-of-non-profit-organisations-assessment-and-recommendations-for-refo/Improvement of registration of non-profit organisations (NPOs) is a necessary precondition for strengthening the civil society and increasing its transparency and accountability. An easy and simple registration procedure, with no duplication of information and functioning automatic exchange of data, would allow the civic sector to concentrate on its substantive priorities.
Improvement of registration of non-profit organisations (NPOs) is a necessary precondition for strengthening the civil society and increasing its transparency and accountability. An easy and simple registration procedure, with no duplication of information and functioning automatic exchange of data, would allow the civic sector to concentrate on its substantive priorities.

The registration of NPOs and its subsequent maintenance determines to a large extent the relations between those organisations and the state authorities and is an indicator of the will of decision makers to lighten excessive administrative burden and thus facilitate the civil sector's development. The concept offered and the recommendations for legislative changes provide support to institutions in achieving that aim.

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news-596Mon, 29 Feb 2016 02:00:00 +0200Handbook for Monitoring of Forced Return https://csd.bg/publications/publication/handbook-for-monitoring-of-forced-return/The governance of migration flows largely depends on the development of an effective system for returning illegally staying foreigners. Forced return is seen as a "last resort" in the prevention of irregular migration and should be subject to the principles of proportionality and not exceeding reasonable force.
The governance of migration flows largely depends on the development of an effective system for returning illegally staying foreigners. Forced return is seen as a "last resort" in the prevention of irregular migration and should be subject to the principles of proportionality and not exceeding reasonable force. In this regard, there is agreement that monitoring of return not only brings openness and clarity on the conditions and treatment, but represents an additional guarantee for the return of persons, including those with special protection needs. In this context, the introduction of an independent and effective monitoring mechanism is a key aspect for the development of the overall framework for forced return in accordance with Directive 2008/115/EC.

The aim of the Handbook for forced return monitoring is to provide practical guidance and recommendations to independent observers and standardised report for forced return monitoring.

This Handook is developed within the Annual Programme 2013 in scheme grants BG / RF (3) - 2013 "Forced return monitoring" by the Center for the Study of Democracy.

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news-598Mon, 29 Feb 2016 02:00:00 +0200Analytical Report: Monitoring of the Forced Return in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/analytical-report-monitoring-of-the-forced-return-in-bulgaria/The governance of migration flows largely depends on the development of an effective system for returning illegally staying foreigners. Forced return is seen as a "last resort" in the fight against illegal migration and should be subject to the principles of proportionality and not exceeding the reasonable force. The governance of migration flows largely depends on the development of an effective system for returning illegally staying foreigners. Forced return is seen as a "last resort" in the fight against illegal migration and should be subject to the principles of proportionality and not exceeding the reasonable force. In this regard, there is agreement that the monitoring not only brings openness and clarity on the conditions and treatment, but represents an additional guarantee for the return of persons, including those with special protection needs. In this context, the introduction of an independent and effective monitoring mechanism is a key aspect for the development of the overall framework for forced return in accordance with Directive 2008/115/EC.

The aim of the developed Analytical report: Monitoring of the forced return in Bulgaria is to present an analysis on the existing legal and institutional framework in the area of forced return in Bulgaria and to make general recommendations for the development of a national mechanism to forced return monitoring.

This Analytical report is developed within the Annual Programme 2013 in scheme grants BG / RF (3) - 2013 "Forced return monitoring" by the Center for the Study of Democracy.

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news-916Sat, 20 Feb 2016 16:58:00 +0200Background report: Drug Users in Prison – the Norwegian Experiencehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/background-report-drug-users-in-prison-the-norwegian-experience/This report is the preliminary research work under the Punishment vs. Treatment: the Situation of Drug Users in Prison initiative which main output is a forthcoming comparative analysis of the treatment of drug users in Bulgarian and Norwegian prisons. The study was prepared by the University of Oslo and it overviews the general context on Norway – general information on the country and its criminal justice system, policy and legislation on drugs explaining what are the perimeters of drug restriction and what are the national policies towards drug use. This information is illustrated with statistics on crime rates and drug crime in particular. It also presents the alternative sanctions available for drug users.This report is the preliminary research work under the Punishment vs. Treatment: the Situation of Drug Users in Prison initiative which main output is a forthcoming comparative analysis of the treatment of drug users in Bulgarian and Norwegian prisons. The study was prepared by the University of Oslo and it overviews the general context on Norway – general information on the country and its criminal justice system, policy and legislation on drugs explaining what are the perimeters of drug restriction and what are the national policies towards drug use. This information is illustrated with statistics on crime rates and drug crime in particular. It also presents the alternative sanctions available for drug users. Furthermore, the reports looks at prison population using drugs and sentenced to drug-related crimes – what are the principles by which prison authorities are guided in their attitude towards this group of inmates and what programs are available for them in Norwegian prisons.

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news-915Wed, 17 Feb 2016 16:47:00 +0200Improving Governance in Bulgaria: Evaluating the Impact of EU Conditionality through Policy and Financial Assistancehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/improving-governance-in-bulgaria-evaluating-the-impact-of-eu-conditionality-through-policy-and-fina/The paper examines the impact on Bulgaria’s anti-corruption performance of the interrelation between EU policy conditionality and EU financial assistance, with a focus on post-accession developments.The paper examines the impact on Bulgaria’s anti-corruption performance of the interrelation between EU policy conditionality and EU financial assistance, with a focus on post-accession developments. Although the EU never formally linked EU assistance to progress on anti-corruption, the disbursement of funds has tended to peak around critical deadlines for accession progress, e.g. the signing of the accession treaty in 2005, and the expiration of the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism’s (CVM) safeguard clauses in 2010. Both years also marked the lowest levels of corruption experienced by Bulgaria’s citizens. This suggests that the combined effect of EU anticorruption conditionality and development assistance on governance in Bulgaria was positive - but temporary.

Moreover, the 2015 CVM monitoring report suggests that, eight years after EU accession, Bulgaria still faces three key governance challenges – combatting high-level corruption, building an institutional approach to anti-corruption, and judicial independence. In 2014, public experience of corruption reached its highest level since the first comparable research in 1998. The lack of anti-corruption conditionality or credible enforcement mechanisms since 2010 has seen Bulgaria backslide in the fight against corruption. The current EU approach and development assistance for anticorruption reforms have been insufficient to put Bulgaria on a virtuous circle path to open access order (or a good governance model), and has not been able to compensate for the lack of domestic political commitment to anticorruption reform. The paper’s findings suggest that the EU and Bulgarian anti-corruption stakeholders need to find new strategies for bringing about lasting governance change.

This analysis is part of Work Package 8 of the EU FP7 ANTICORRP Project, comprising eight case study reports looking at the impact of EU conditionality and EU aid in countries in new EU member states, the European Neighbourhood and beyond. Other than Bulgaria, the case studies review Bosnia and Herzegovina, Egypt, Ghana, Kosovo, Tanzania, Tunisia and Ukraine. The integrated case study report is available at the official ANTICORRP webpage.

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news-917Sun, 07 Feb 2016 17:07:00 +0200Background report: Policies on drugs in Bulgarian prisonshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/background-report-policies-on-drugs-in-bulgarian-prisons/This report provides a snapshot of the situation of drug users in Bulgaria. As it is aimed to serve as a basis for comparative study on policies and practice towards drug users, particularly in prisons, in Bulgaria and Norway, it presents the country’s context – general information on the country and its criminal justice system, policy and legislation on drugs explaining what are the perimeters of drug restriction and what are the national policies towards drug use.This report provides a snapshot of the situation of drug users in Bulgaria. As it is aimed to serve as a basis for comparative study on policies and practice towards drug users, particularly in prisons, in Bulgaria and Norway, it presents the country’s context – general information on the country and its criminal justice system, policy and legislation on drugs explaining what are the perimeters of drug restriction and what are the national policies towards drug use. This information is illustrated with statistics on crime rates and drug crime in particular. The report also investigates how court looks upon the fact that the accused are using or addicted to narcotic substances within the criminal proceedings and specifically on the type and the term of the sentence. Finally, it looks upon the sanctions available for drug users and their situation once sentenced to imprisonment – what treatment, rehabilitation and harm reduction programmes are available in different prisons.

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news-918Sat, 06 Feb 2016 17:22:00 +0200National Study on Domestic and Gender-Based Violence (DGBV) and Elaboration of a Victims Support Model (VSM): Legal, Institutional and Policy Analysishttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/national-study-on-domestic-and-gender-based-violence-dgbv-and-elaboration-of-a-victims-support-mod/Although throughout the last decade the Bulgarian authorities have adopted a number of acts and subsidiary legislation, as well as improved the existing ones, related to domestic and gender-based violence (DGBV), the country still has a long way to go to bring its legislation and practices in full compliance with EU and Council of Europe standards. Although throughout the last decade the Bulgarian authorities have adopted a number of acts and subsidiary legislation, as well as improved the existing ones, related to domestic and gender-based violence (DGBV), the country still has a long way to go to bring its legislation and practices in full compliance with EU and Council of Europe standards.

The present analysis will attempt to show that Bulgaria has a fairly comprehensive legal framework for counteracting violence, affecting disproportionately women and girls. It includes, inter alia, the Law on Protection against Domestic Violence and the Regulation for its implementation, stipulating a civil law procedure for protecting those harmed; relevant provisions in the Criminal Code, criminalising bodily injury and other forms of violence against the person, plus a provision on punishing non-compliance with a domestic violence protection order; a body of legislation for protection and (financial) assistance of victims of crime, including a dedicated law, relevant provisions in the Criminal Procedure Code.

In addition, a number of policy documents guide the work of institutions in co-ordinating their efforts to combat violence and protect groups of persons harmed, especially those with multiple vulnerabilities, such as Roma women and girls.

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news-802Fri, 29 Jan 2016 02:00:00 +0200Assessment of the Operation of Existing Registers on Non-Governmental Organizations in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assessment-of-the-operation-of-existing-registers-on-non-governmental-organizations-in-bulgaria/According to the legislation in force, all not-for-profit legal entities are obliged to register at the district courts in the district where their seat is located. At the same time, many of them are also required to register in separate registers specifically dedicated to the type of activity these entities perform.

In addition to analysing the legal framework, the report provides an overview of the practical problems in the operation of registers, of the registration procedure and of the access to the information registers contain. It presents primary data revealing the attitude of various entities to the operation of existing registers in which non-profit legal entities have to register.

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news-931Sat, 12 Dec 2015 15:25:00 +0200Trends in Radicalisation that May Lead to Violence: National Background Study, Greecehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/trends-in-radicalisation-that-may-lead-to-violence-national-background-study-greece/This report focusses on the case of Greece, where the phenomenon of radicalisation has been present throughout the period from the mid-1970s. Greece displays one of the most persistent problems of terrorism in Europe, raising anew the question of why extremist and revolutionary organisations continue to emerge and be active in democracies.This report focusses on the case of Greece, where the phenomenon of radicalisation has been present throughout the period from the mid-1970s. Greece displays one of the most persistent problems of terrorism in Europe, raising anew the question of why extremist and revolutionary organisations continue to emerge and be active in democracies. Since the 2010, right wing and left wing extremism and radicalisation have intensified, especially in the context of a deepening social and economic crisis.

The report provides a background study on radicalisation in Greece and the various forms that it takes, as a basis to bridge existing knowledge gaps on the subject. It provides and overview of past and current radicalisation trends. The national background study aims to first, identify and assess the legal and institutional responses to the processes of radicalisation that may lead to acts of violence and second, to review and analyse trends (ideas, actors, actions, motivations and root causes) in three strands of radicalisation (right and left wing, Islamist radicalisation and football hooliganism).

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news-932Sun, 15 Nov 2015 15:41:00 +0200National Radicalisation Situation Report 2015, the Czech Republichttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/national-radicalisation-situation-report-2015-the-czech-republic/The study provides background empirical data about the development and the state of extremism in the Czech Republic to both professionals in the field and experts interested in advancing further research.Few would dispute the risks associated with the existence of extremism and radicalism. While not all extremists necessarily turn to political violence this dangerous pathway cannot be ruled out, as reminded by numerous acts of political violence worldwide. This national study on the Czech Republic aims to contribute to a better understanding of extremism and radicalism and the road that leads individuals and groups to radical views and social identities. The study provides background empirical data about the development and the state of extremism in the Czech Republic to both professionals in the field and experts interested in advancing further research.

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news-602Sun, 15 Nov 2015 02:00:00 +0200Radicalisation in Bulgaria: Threats and Trendshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/radicalisation-in-bulgaria-threats-and-trends/The phenomena of radicalisation today develop and change at high speed, with their extreme forms manifested globally. The destructive dimensions of (violent) Islamist or right-wing radicalisation have become dramatically visible in Europe posing serious challenges to European societies at large.
The phenomena of radicalisation today develop and change at high speed, with their extreme forms manifested globally. The destructive dimensions of (violent) Islamist or right-wing radicalisation have become dramatically visible in Europe posing serious challenges to European societies at large. This report aims to address a knowledge gap with regard to how and to what extent internationally observed radicalisation processes are manifested in Bulgaria. Four different forms of radicalisation are investigated, including Islamist radicalisation, right-wing and left-wing radicalisation, as well as football hooliganism. The report provides policy makers and the expert community with a systematic overview of the main risks to which the Bulgarian society is exposed, as well as of the main actors and ideas, the repertoire of actions and the groups at risk associated with radicalisation. The report outlines recommendations for improvement of the policy and institutional response with regard to radicalisation by way of monitoring and prevention measures as well as multi agency collaboration and community engagement.

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news-592Sun, 01 Nov 2015 02:00:00 +0200Socio-Economic Effects of Public Investments for Roma Inclusion in Kavarnahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/socio-economic-effects-of-public-investments-for-roma-inclusion-in-kavarna/The aim of the current report is to provide new data and insight on the social and economic effects of public investments in Roma communities from a human development perspective.The aim of the current report is to provide new data and insight on the social and economic effects of public investments in Roma communities from a human development perspective.

Its objective is to establish the effects of a wide range of public investments made by Kavarna municipality in the mostly-Roma neighbourhood of Hadji Dimitar, between 2004 and 2014. The investment covered areas such as housing and infrastructure, healthcare, employment, income, poverty and social exclusion, justice and crime, and political participation. It reviews a range of indicators with the aim of establishing the effects of these investments on the social and economic development of the neighbourhood and its residents, both Roma and non-Roma. It also looks beyond the neighbourhood to provide a comparative perspective on a national level.

The data presented here is derived from a variety of sources and covers a range of indicators. Every effort has been made to ensure the use of similar indicators and definitions as previous household surveys, notably the UNDP/FRA study, and the NSI, however, the results are not directly comparable due to the difference in survey methodologies, samples and scope. The data presented should be taken as an indication of trends and tendencies. The lack of concrete data on the initial investments, the inputs and relevant baseline indicators has also challenged the quantifying of the contribution of individual public investments.

Different investments have had different impact on the development of the neighbourhood and reducing the distances with the Bulgarian residents. This impact has been established by looking at the results obtained from a specialised household survey conducted among 300 Roma and non-Roma households in the Hadji Dimitar quarter of Kavarna in 2015. The relevance and impact of these changes is analysed through comparison with the national averages for the whole population and the averages for Roma nationally. It is also measured against the investments to establish a positive correlation between the effect and the investment where such data exists.

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news-584Tue, 13 Oct 2015 03:00:00 +0300Monitoring the Hidden Economy in Macedonia: Trends and Policy Optionshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/monitoring-the-hidden-economy-in-macedonia-trends-and-policy-options/The current report proposes a methodology that would allow the tracing of the dynamics of the hidden economy and its components (e.g. hidden turnover, hidden employment, etc.) over time. This would make possible for the Macedonian government and its European partners to follow the impact and assess the effectiveness of their policies for tackling the hidden economy.Macedonia features in many discussions as a country with high hidden economy. The European Commission has repeatedly voiced its concerns in its regular country reports about the size and proliferation of hidden economy practices. Hidden employment or undeclared work in Macedonia is of particular concern to the authorities, provided the very high and stubborn levels of official unemployment and low employment levels. However, most studies and research on the matter involve a high level of ambiguity, as they refer to specific narrow outcomes of the hidden economy, usually towards a specific point in time, with dynamics being difficult to trace.

The current report, prepared jointly by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) and the Center for Research and Policy Making (CRPM), Macedonia proposes a methodology that would allow the tracing of the dynamics of the hidden economy and its components (e.g. hidden turnover, hidden employment, etc.) over time. This would make possible for the Macedonian government and its European partners to follow the impact and assess the effectiveness of their policies for tackling the hidden economy. Estimates suggest that the hidden economy size in Macedonia ranges from 24% to 47% of its GDP according to different measurement methods. The current report indicates that the percentage of hidden salaries remains the most acute concern, with the employment income of some 40% of Macedonian employees being at least partially undeclared. Moreover, 7% of all Macedonian employees work without a contract, and are not being paid any social security contributions whatsoever. The interviewed business representatives confirmed wide scale violations of the Labour Code. Over half of those respondents claimed that signing contracts with ‘hidden clauses’ (not accounting for the full remuneration paid out) were commonplace in their sector. Moreover, large-scale tax evasion seems to continue to pose a serious problem for the Macedonian economy and social system as the government tries to adjust them in order to be compatible with the principles of the market economy without imposing too extensive erosion of the social fabric and the existing social benefits.

Tax avoidance is especially widespread among the poorest members of the society, which makes the underprivileged especially vulnerable as they may find themselves being criminally prosecuted for unpaid taxes or charged with paying large penalties. VAT returns are provided back to companies with significant time lags and represent additional burden for companies which are part of the formal economy. The issuance of cash register receipts also remains an issue, as only less than a half of the respondents claimed that they always received receipts when buying groceries. The situation is similar with the purchase of services.



Policy forum: Tackling the Hidden Economy: Employing Best EU Policy Practices for Growth and Jobs

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news-651Fri, 09 Oct 2015 03:00:00 +0300A Force for Good? Mapping the Private Security Landscape in Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/a-force-for-good-mapping-the-private-security-landscape-in-southeast-europe/The volume explores and assesses the origins and current state of the private security sector in four Southeast European countries (Bulgaria, Serbia, Albania and Kosovo), with specific reference to principles of good governance and the protection of human rights.
The volume explores and assesses the origins and current state of the private security sector in four Southeast European countries (Bulgaria, Serbia, Albania and Kosovo), with specific reference to principles of good governance and the protection of human rights. In particular, the authors examine when and how the first private security companies developed and whether and how PSCs, their clients, and other factors such as relevant legislation determined the services private security offer today, and which companies were established/have survived in the market. The studies look into the economic importance of private security especially as a source of employment. They also explore if PSCs are able to provide quality security services by looking at the background and qualifications of managers and employees. A number of important questions are addressed: who are the people who work for PSCs, what is their level of expertise and professionalism and what are their working conditions? How important are (political) relationships for the success of a PSC and do domestic political considerations have an impact on which PSC receives contracts and how well they work? How is quality defined and enforced by both PSCs and their clients, especially public sector clients? Finally, do PSCs and state security providers coordinate, cooperate or compete with each other?

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news-582Mon, 28 Sep 2015 03:00:00 +0300ANTICORRP Integrated Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anticorrp-integrated-report/This integrated report investigates the link between political corruption and organised crime, by examining the modalities, resources and strategies used by criminal groups to govern and/or capture the market of political corruption.
This integrated report investigates the link between political corruption and organised crime, by examining the modalities, resources and strategies used by criminal groups to govern and/or capture the market of political corruption. On the one hand, the report looks at the infiltration of organised crime in three main policy sectors where public spending and regulations play a pivotal role: public procurement, the privatization of public services, and management of EU funds.

Alongside this, the report also analyses the criminal penetration of electoral politics, by evaluating the influence that criminal organisations can achieve in electoral arenas. As a result, the report provides a general assessment of policy regulations, legal countermeasures and practices adopted to prevent and combat organised crime, especially in interaction with political corruption.

The report is drawn from data collected in five European countries (Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Italy, Kosovo) across the above themes, and includes two more countries for the assessment of anti-organised crime legislation and initiatives (Albania and Georgia). The methodology involves both extensive and intensive strategies of investigation. A quantitative assessment of the crime and politics nexus is based on the Organised Crime & Corruption (OCC) events database, in which events data about the link between criminal groups and political corruption have been gathered and assembled1. A qualitative assessment involves in-depth understanding of the mechanisms of corrupt exchanges, presented as single case studies conducted in the countries covered by this study, inclusive of primary and secondary sources (interviews, legal proceedings, academic and policy-oriented reports). Data collection and analyses were conducted by five institutions across Europe (EUI, CSD, BCE, IKS, PSD).

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news-588Tue, 22 Sep 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 58: Transparent Governance for Greater Energy Security in CEE https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-58-transparent-governance-for-greater-energy-security-in-cee/The interruption of gas supplies to Europe as a result of the Russian-Ukrainian pricing dispute in 2009, the continuing Russian-Ukrainian crisis after the annexation of Crimea, and the EU-Russia controversies regarding the South Stream pipeline project, as well as Gazprom’s non-compliance with the EU regulations in several anti-trust cases in the past few years are the major cornerstones that shape the CEE energy security framework and policy options as the region remains heavily dependent on Russian oil, gas, and nuclear technology. The national and regional energy security of Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries has become a hot topic of discussion in the EU recently, focusing the attention of experts, policy makers, and the general public on ongoing and future energy projects but also on the features of energy governance in these countries. The interruption of gas supplies to Europe as a result of the Russian-Ukrainian pricing dispute in 2009, the continuing Russian-Ukrainian crisis after the annexation of Crimea, and the EU-Russia controversies regarding the South Stream pipeline project, as well as Gazprom’s non-compliance with the EU regulations in several anti-trust cases in the past few years are the major cornerstones that shape the CEE energy security framework and policy options as the region remains heavily dependent on Russian oil, gas, and nuclear technology. At the same time, the fragile democratic traditions in the CEE countries, the existing networks of political protectionism and economic oligarchy, and the opaque business practices nurtured by corruption and links with organized crime, have been reinforced by the negative implications of Russian economic and geo-political influence. Russia has exploited its dominant position in the energy market and its long-term links with certain political and economic groups to shape political decisions across the region according to its own interests, but often to the detriment of the home country consumers. The current review of energy security risks in four selected CEE countries, two energy poor – Bulgaria and Serbia, and two energy-resourced– Romania and Ukraine, assesses the factual situation per se and the transparency and accountability of energy policy governance in the region.

 

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news-586Tue, 15 Sep 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 57: Regional Media in Bulgaria: the Limits of Survivalhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-57-regional-media-in-bulgaria-the-limits-of-survival/The lack of adequate local media is a trend with devastating implications for the regions of Bulgaria. It affects not only the local public institutions; regional economic activity is also hindered by the absence of independent media. The lack of adequate local media is a trend with devastating implications for the regions of Bulgaria. It affects not only the local public institutions; regional economic activity is also hindered by the absence of independent media. At the same time, when discussing the state of media in Bulgaria, the problems of local media are often overlooked. The current publication presents the results of a survey of 179 local media with internet presence. The analysis focused on the mechanisms and factors that prevent journalists and the media from informing the public in an objective, competent, and comprehensive way.

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news-923Sun, 09 Aug 2015 17:11:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 56: Dynamics of Conventional Crime in Bulgaria 2014 – 2015https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-56-dynamics-of-conventional-crime-in-bulgaria-2014-2015/Crime rates in 2014 decreased compared to the record high levels of 2012. Nevertheless, the conventional crime rate remained one of the highest since 2004.Crime rates in 2014 decreased compared to the record high levels of 2012. Nevertheless, the conventional crime rate remained one of the highest since 2004. Over the past year, more victims reported crimes - a sign of relative increase of confidence in the police. At the same time, there is a continuing discrepancy between data of the victimisation surveys and official police statistics. These are some of the results of the National Crime Survey for 2014, presented in the current publication.

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news-577Wed, 29 Jul 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 55: The Competitiveness of the Bulgarian Economy 2015https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-55-the-competitiveness-of-the-bulgarian-economy-2015/In 2015 Bulgaria has regained one position compared to the previous year in the economic http://csd.center/typo3/clear.gifcompetitiveness ranking of the World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY), published by the Institute for Management Development (IMD). The country is ranked 55th out of 61 economies. This is only a marginal improvement and remains significantly lower compared to its highest achievement in 2009 – 38th place. In 2015 Bulgaria has regained one position compared to the previous year in the economic competitiveness ranking of the World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY), published by the Institute for Management Development (IMD). The country is ranked 55th out of 61 economies. This is only a marginal improvement and remains significantly lower compared to its highest achievement in 2009 – 38th place.

The ranking highlights two particular commonalities among the best ranking countries. Firstly, nine countries from the top 10 are also listed in the top 10 of the business efficiency factor. And secondly, all top positions are occupied by economies which are driven by innovation-based growth.

In the policy brief the Center for the Study of Democracy provides the following recommendations for increasing the competitiveness of the Bulgarian economy:

  • Tackle high level corruption and state capture;
  • Modernize public administration and strengthen independent regulators;
  • Adopt education for innovation-based growth;
  • Tackle energy poverty, energy intensity and supply dependency;
  • Improve the country’s branding.
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news-650Wed, 15 Jul 2015 03:00:00 +0300Child Trafficking Among Vulnerable Roma Communities: Results of Country Studies in 7 EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/child-trafficking-among-vulnerable-roma-communities-results-of-country-studies-in-7-eu-member-state/The current publication presents a study on child trafficking conducted in seven EU member states: Austria, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Slovakia. The study looks at three specific forms of trafficking in persons: child trafficking for begging, for pickpocketing and for sexual exploitation of boys and the way they manifest themselves among Roma communities.

The current publication presents a study on child trafficking conducted in seven EU member states: Austria, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Romania and Slovakia. The study looks at three specific forms of trafficking in persons: child trafficking for begging, for pickpocketing and for sexual exploitation of boys and the way they manifest themselves among Roma communities.

The findings of the study are based on analysis of policy documents and existing statistical data, as well focus groups and in-depth interviews with key stakeholders. The fieldwork conducted in four of the countries, traditionally regarded as origin countries of trafficking victims, relied on participatory research methods. The active involvement of Roma organisations in the research aimed to gain a deeper understanding of the risk factors involved, bring knowledge back to the communities and support Roma experts’ involvement in counter-trafficking policy and mechanisms.

The report examines the profiles of victims and discusses the vulnerability factors that make the Roma minority a particular group at risk. The study provides empirical knowledge on the mechanisms of recruitment and exploitation of victims in order to inform identification efforts and counter-trafficking responses. Particular attention is devoted to the policy and measures for assistance of victims. In this field, the report identifies specific gaps in assistance and the way they affect Roma victims in particular, and suggests how child victim assistance could be improved.

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news-575Mon, 13 Jul 2015 03:00:00 +0300Supporting vulnerable groups before the State: The Role of Civil Society Organisationshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/supporting-vulnerable-groups-before-the-state-the-role-of-civil-society-organisations/The study analyses the mechanisms for interaction between public institutions and NGOs in supporting four vulnerable groups: persons deprived of their liberty, victims of trafficking in human beings, domestic violence survivors, and persons seeking international protection and other vulnerable foreigner nationals.

The study analyses the mechanisms for interaction between public institutions and NGOs in supporting four vulnerable groups: persons deprived of their liberty, victims of trafficking in human beings, domestic violence survivors, and persons seeking international protection and other vulnerable foreigner nationals. Furthermore, it identifies trends in the cooperation between institutions and NGOs in assisting these communities. The report sums up the profile of the bodies and organisations involved and identifies problems in their interaction. Instruments for cooperation between public institutions and NGOs in relation to each vulnerable group are reviewed in detail, both on legislative and practical level. Correlations between identified problems and aspects of the interaction between public institutions and NGOs that could help resolve these problems are highlighted. In conclusion, recommendations are made to involve civil society in providing comprehensive support, in particular legal, social and administrative assistance, to vulnerable persons. These recommendations rest on the shared experience and opinions by public authorities and civil society, as well as on applicable foreign models and good practices.

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news-573Fri, 10 Jul 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 54: Child Trafficking Among Vulnerable Roma Communitieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-54-child-trafficking-among-vulnerable-roma-communities/Trafficking in persons is a lucrative crime and a gross human rights violation, which affects all EU Member States. Trafficking in children merits special attention of anti-trafficking efforts as children are especially vulnerable to trafficking, re-trafficking and victimisation and the number of children trafficked throughout the EU is on the rise.Trafficking in persons is a lucrative crime and a gross human rights violation, which affects all EU Member States. Trafficking in children merits special attention of anti-trafficking efforts as children are especially vulnerable to trafficking, re-trafficking and victimisation and the number of children trafficked throughout the EU is on the rise. Investigation, protection and prevention measures for child trafficking are especially needed as the exploitation of children and violation of their rights have dramatic negative effects on children and society as a whole.

While there is some empirical evidence on trafficking in human beings for the purpose of sexual exploitation of women, other forms of trafficking have not drawn attention of researchers, academics and policy makers. This means that victims of exploitation fall outside the radar of identification and thus cannot access the available assistance. Having this in mind, a consortium of seven partner organisations sought to explore three specific under-researched forms of child trafficking in order to contribute to the knowledge on how and why children fall prey to exploitation. The three forms studied are child trafficking for the purpose of begging exploitation, child trafficking for the purpose of pick-pocketing and child trafficking for the purpose of sexual exploitation of boys.

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news-571Thu, 25 Jun 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 53: Assessing the Integration of Vulnerable Migrant Groups in Ten EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-53-assessing-the-integration-of-vulnerable-migrant-groups-in-ten-eu-member-states/The EU has played an influential role on Member States and their integration policies, albeit to varying degrees. EU standards have been vital in moving Member States towards the formulation of national integration strategies, which have taken into account the Common Basic Principles of Immigrant Integration and the Zaragoza indicators.The EU has played an influential role on Member States and their integration policies, albeit to varying degrees. EU standards have been vital in moving Member States towards the formulation of national integration strategies, which have taken into account the Common Basic Principles of Immigrant Integration and the Zaragoza indicators. The process of developing migration and integration management institutions and the correspondent data collection systems has become more apparent under the influence of EU standards and regulations in all ten Member States.

The Zaragoza set of indicators in migrant integration are only a minimum list of indicators and States are encouraged to collect and analyse further data according to their specific composition of the migrant population and the legal and policy framework. The use of indicators gives policy actors a lasting perspective and evidence base for policy planning. The availability of these indicators is therefore a starting-point for more shared learning across the EU and evidence based policy making, implementation and monitoring.

The setting up of national integration indicators can be seen as a positive development in Austria, Belgium and soon Italy as it helps provide an evidence base for policy monitoring as well as policy making in these countries.

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news-569Fri, 19 Jun 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 52: Refocusing Anticorruption: New Policy Evaluation Toolhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-52-refocusing-anticorruption-new-policy-evaluation-tool/Monitoring Anticorruption Policy Implementation (MACPI) – a tool recently developed by the CSD and University of Trento experts – will facilitate the refocusing of anticorruption by allowing evaluators and policy makers to review the anticorruption architecture of individual public sector organisations.

Anticorruption policies have been designed and implemented exclusively at the national level with little consideration of their actual enforcement and effect in individual public organisations. Such a general approach has prevented these policies from achieving the level of sophistication achieved by interventions in other fields of public governance.


A refocusing of the anticorruption effort at the level of public organisation would enhance the quality of design of policies and would allow more precise monitoring of their implementation and effect. Monitoring Anticorruption Policy Implementation (MACPI) – a tool recently developed by the CSD and University of Trento experts – will facilitate such refocusing by allowing evaluators and policy makers to review the anticorruption architecture of individual public sector organisations. It could also help the use of benchmarking and policy templates at the public institution level.

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news-933Mon, 15 Jun 2015 17:08:00 +0300Country fact-sheets on national energy security indicatorshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/country-fact-sheets-on-national-energy-security-indicators/The country factsheets present a critical review of the energy security governance in Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia and Ukraine, and map the main policy challenges faced by these countries in facilitating more transparent and data-driven decision making.The country factsheets present a critical review of the energy security governance in Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia and Ukraine, and map the main policy challenges faced by these countries in facilitating more transparent and data-driven decision making.

The national and regional energy security of Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries has become a hot topic of discussion in the EU recently, focusing the attention of experts, policy makers, and the general public on ongoing and future energy projects but also on the features of energy governance in these countries. The fragile democratic traditions in the CEE countries, the existing networks of political protectionism and economic oligarchy, and the opaque business practices nurtured by corruption and links with organized crime, have been reinforced by the negative implications of Russian economic and geo-political influence. Russia has exploited its dominant position in the energy market and its long-term links with certain political and economic groups to shape political decisions across the region according to its own interests, but often to the detriment of the home country consumers.

A major governance challenge for Bulgaria, Serbia and Ukraine is the lack of political agreement on a long-term national energy strategy with supporting financial instruments, which would lower the ad-hoc decision making, often related to suspicions of being influenced by private political and economic interests. Romania championed the group in terms of good energy governance due to the improved independence of the national energy regulator with the adoption of new legislation in 2012, as well as due to the continuing overall strong performance in the fight against corruption in the country.

The governance of the state-owned energy enterprises in CEE is heavily influenced by political interference, distorting their investment independence and regulatory oversight. This is particularly visible in Bulgaria and Ukraine. The politically mandated downward pressure on electricity and gas prices in Bulgaria, Romania, and Serbia increases further the vulnerability of their energy sectors.

The heavy dependence on a single source and route of gas supply is the major energy security risk for all countries. In Bulgaria and Ukraine, it is coupled with heavy dependence on oil import from the same country – Russia. While Romania, Bulgaria and Ukraine have undertaken diversification efforts, Serbia seems to favour the status quo, even at the expense of paying one of the highest wholesale prices of natural gas in Europe.

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news-579Fri, 05 Jun 2015 03:00:00 +0300Assessing the integration of vulnerable migrant groups: Country Report Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assessing-the-integration-of-vulnerable-migrant-groups-country-report-bulgaria/The current publication presents the results of an international study on the integration of third country nationals. The study was conducted in two phases that include an overview of the existing national mechanisms for monitoring and data collection in the field of integration of migrants and analysis of existing integration measures and programs for vulnerable third country nationals - women, children and victims of trafficking.


The current publication presents the results of an international study on the integration of third country nationals. The study was conducted in two phases that include an overview of the existing national mechanisms for monitoring and data collection in the field of integration of migrants and analysis of existing integration measures and programs for vulnerable third country nationals - women, children and victims of trafficking. The study was conducted under the leadership of the Center for the Study of Democracy held in ten EU member states: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Spain, Italy, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary.

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news-563Thu, 04 Jun 2015 03:00:00 +0300Monitoring Anti-Corruption in Europe. Bridging Policy Evaluation and Corruption Measurementhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/monitoring-anti-corruption-in-europe-bridging-policy-evaluation-and-corruption-measurement/Corruption and measures to counteract it have been subject to so much research and political attention that it would seem that their every aspect must have been explored. Yet corruption proves bafflingly resilient, always finding new conduits for spreading; squeezed temporarily out of one public sector, it reappears in another. It could only benefit the anticorruption effort, therefore, if novel methods for analysis and prevention were found.


Corruption and measures to counteract it have been subject to so much research and political attention that it would seem that their every aspect must have been explored. Yet corruption proves bafflingly resilient, always finding new conduits for spreading; squeezed temporarily out of one public sector, it reappears in another. It could only benefit the anticorruption effort, therefore, if novel methods for analysis and prevention were found.

It is in response to this need that the current report seeks to build bridges between the evaluation of anticorruption policies and the measurement of corruption. Monitoring Anticorruption Policy Implementation (MACPI) was born of the understanding that innovation in anticorruption is as important as it is in other social and economic fields. MACPI provides the anticorruption community with a precision-guided tool, which gives exhaustive feedback on the enforcement of policies.

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news-565Wed, 03 Jun 2015 03:00:00 +0300Mapping Anticorruption Enforcement Instrumentshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/mapping-anticorruption-enforcement-instruments/While the enforcement of anticorruption policies has been prioritised by international institutions and national governments, the tools for evaluating this enforcement have not been developed. The main reason for this underdevelopment is that corruption is measured and policies evaluated only at the societal level, while the level of actual corrupt transactions – the public institution – is rarely analysed.

While the enforcement of anticorruption policies has been prioritised by international institutions and national governments, the tools for evaluating this enforcement have not been developed. The main reason for this underdevelopment is that corruption is measured and policies evaluated only at the societal level, while the level of actual corrupt transactions – the public institution – is rarely analysed.

This paper outlines the conceptual justification for rethinking the focus of anticorruption monitoring, maps the corruption measurement and monitoring landscape and sketches a new instrument designed to serve a better targeted policy evaluation – Monitoring Anticorruption Policy Implementation (MACPI).

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news-561Thu, 28 May 2015 03:00:00 +0300Study on paving the way for future policy initiatives in the field of fight against organised crime: the effectiveness of specific criminal law measures targeting organised crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/study-on-paving-the-way-for-future-policy-initiatives-in-the-field-of-fight-against-organised-crime/Organised crime poses a threat to the security and freedom of European citizens and impacts the lives of people worldwide. Recognising the severity of the problem and the need for coordinated action, the EU has initiated a number of measures to encourage closer cooperation between Member States and the adoption of common legal, judicial and investigative frameworks to address organised crime.
Organised crime poses a threat to the security and freedom of European citizens and impacts the lives of people worldwide. Recognising the severity of the problem and the need for coordinated action, the EU has initiated a number of measures to encourage closer cooperation between Member States and the adoption of common legal, judicial and investigative frameworks to address organised crime.

The report Study on paving the way for future policy initiatives in the field of fight against organised crime: the effectiveness of specific criminal law measures targeting organised crime evaluates the practical application of legal and investigative tools stemming from Framework Decision 2008/841/JHA on the fight against organised crime, other EU and international regulations and national legislation. The study involved a review of the transposition of Framework Decision 2008/841/JHA in 28 Member States; examining how the identified legislation, relevant to the fight against organised crime, was used in practice in each Member State; a review of eight special legal and investigative tools and techniques used in the fight against organised crime and an overview of selected national specialist law enforcement and prosecution agencies involved in the fight against organised crime.

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news-559Wed, 27 May 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 51: Mapping anti-corruption enforcement instrumentshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-51-mapping-anti-corruption-enforcement-instruments/Over the past decade or so, the global political preoccupation with corruption has been matched by extensive research and the design of various ways of measuring its level in society. The resulting abundance of measurement and monitoring instruments have allowed a better understanding of its dynamics and have informed the design of some anticorruption policies.
Over the past decade or so, the global political preoccupation with corruption has been matched by extensive research and the design of various ways of measuring its level in society. The resulting abundance of measurement and monitoring instruments have allowed a better understanding of its dynamics and have informed the design of some anticorruption policies. The current stage of anticorruption thinking, therefore, opens the opportunity of at least two additional paths of exploration – a critical review of the measurement and monitoring tools in existence and an examination of possible gaps in these tools. The results of the review of measurement tools have informed the design of a Monitoring Anticorruption Policy Implementation (MACPI) tool which is intended to evaluate the anticorruption preparedness of public organisations by identifying areas of corruption vulnerability. The findings indicate that while the enforcement of anticorruption policies has been prioritised by international institutions and national governments, the tools for evaluating this enforcement have not been developed.

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news-557Thu, 14 May 2015 03:00:00 +0300Corruption and Organized Crime Threat Monitoring Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-and-organized-crime-threat-monitoring-report/The Corruption and Organized Crime Threat Monitoring Report is an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption and organized crime in the Republic of Macedonia. The basis of this report is the Corruption Monitoring System (CMS) developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD).
The Corruption and Organized Crime Threat Monitoring Report is an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption and organized crime in the Republic of Macedonia. The basis of this report is the Corruption Monitoring System (CMS) developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD). The CMS relies on diverse sources of information and combines quantitative and qualitative methods for monitoring and the assessment of corruption and organized crime. The CMS has gained acknowledgement from the United Nations (UN) as a best practice system for monitoring corruption at the national level.

The report is divided into seven chapters and it provides an overview of the legal and institutional framework for the fight against corruption and organized crime in the country, provides an overview of the macroeconomic situation and the emergence of the link between corruption and organized crime, risk assessment of threats and corruption of organized crime, as well as levels of connection between these two phenomena: infiltration (general) in the political arena, infiltration in the government (elected officials), infiltration in public administration and institutions, bribery, etc. Through these levels indirect critical review of corruption in politics is offered, but also to other areas and levels of government such as the judiciary; administration, police and customs. The last section deals with the private sector and corruption with a general review and review of public procurement, money laundering and VAT fraud.

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news-677Wed, 13 May 2015 21:03:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 50: Overcomming institutional gaps to tackle illicit financinghttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-50-overcomming-institutional-gaps-to-tackle-illicit-financing/The EU legal framework requires that all Members States criminalise the financing of organised crime. According to the provisions of Article 2 (a) of the Council Framework Decision 2008/841/JHA of 24 October 2008 on the fight against organised crime ‘’Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that one or both of the following types of conduct related to a criminal organisation are regarded as offences: (a) conduct by any person who, with intent and with knowledge of either the aim and general activity of the criminal organisation or its intention to commit the offences in question, actively takes part in the organisation’s criminal activities, including the provision of information or material means, the recruitment of new members and all forms of financing of its activities, knowing that such participation will contribute to the achievement of the organisation’s criminal activities.” Nevertheless, criminal justice authorities in Members States rarely make use of these provisions. 

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news-926Sun, 10 May 2015 13:39:00 +0300Assessing the integration of vulnerable migrant groups in ten EU member stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assessing-the-integration-of-vulnerable-migrant-groups-in-ten-eu-member-states/This publication presents the results of a comparative monitoring study of the integration policies and outcomes for third-country-national (TCN) women, TCN children and TCN victims of trafficking in ten EU member states: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Spain. This publication presents the results of a comparative monitoring study of the integration policies and outcomes for third-country-national (TCN) women, TCN children and TCN victims of trafficking in ten EU member states: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Spain.
The study produced findings at two levels of analysis: an in-depth assessment of how migrant integration policies and programmes meet the needs of vulnerable migrant groups, and an assessment of their integration outcomes. Drawing on the analysis of these findings, the publication provides recommendations for improving monitoring mechanisms for migrant integration at the national and EU levels and for elaborating policy approaches for better integration of vulnerable migrants.

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news-934Tue, 05 May 2015 15:43:00 +0300 Policy Brief: Cybercrimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-cybercrime/This Policy Brief summarises key findings from the FIDUCIA cybercrime survey, conducted in selected member states, but it also provides an overview of existing data and research on the prevalence of cybercrimes and the public attitudes towards them. The role of current national and European legislation, policies and practical measures are assessed in terms of their deterrent or preventative effects and the potential role for cross-national cooperation and self-regulation to control or prohibit cybercrime are reviewed.This Policy Brief summarises key findings from the FIDUCIA cybercrime survey, conducted in selected member states, but it also provides an overview of existing data and research on the prevalence of cybercrimes and the public attitudes towards them. The role of current national and European legislation, policies and practical measures are assessed in terms of their deterrent or preventative effects and the potential role for cross-national cooperation and self-regulation to control or prohibit cybercrime are reviewed.

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news-935Sat, 11 Apr 2015 15:56:00 +0300Model Approach for Investigating the Financing of Organised Crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/model-approach-for-investigating-the-financing-of-organised-crime/The financing of organised crime is a horizontal issue for all criminal markets, although it rarely falls in the focus of law enforcement agencies. The intelligence gathering of law enforcement agencies has traditionally been focused on uncovering the members of crime groups and tracing the illicit goods or services. The financing of organised crime is a horizontal issue for all criminal markets, although it rarely falls in the focus of law enforcement agencies. The intelligence gathering of law enforcement agencies has traditionally been focused on uncovering the members of crime groups and tracing the illicit goods or services. Financial transactions are traced mainly for the purposes of money laundering investigations, where the focus is on the proceeds and not on the investments related to the criminal activities. The reason for this is that currently criminal prosecution procedures in all Member States are entirely focused on collecting evidence in regards to possession, transporting, manufacturing or sale of illicit products or services. Financing of organised crime is also often passed over in threat assessments and strategic analyses of organised crime.

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news-567Thu, 09 Apr 2015 03:00:00 +0300Child Trafficking Among Vulnerable Groups: Country Report Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/child-trafficking-among-vulnerable-groups-country-report-bulgaria/The current report looks at three specific forms of trafficking in persons: child trafficking for begging, for pickpocketing and for sexual exploitation of boys and the way they manifest themselves among Roma communities. The report examines the profiles of victims and discusses the vulnerability factors that make the Roma minority a particular group at risk.
The current report looks at three specific forms of trafficking in persons: child trafficking for begging, for pickpocketing and for sexual exploitation of boys and the way they manifest themselves among Roma communities. The report examines the profiles of victims and discusses the vulnerability factors that make the Roma minority a particular group at risk. The study provides empirical knowledge on the mechanisms of recruitment and exploitation of victims in order to inform identification efforts and counter-trafficking responses. Particular attention is devoted to the policy and measures for assistance of victims. In this field, the report identifies specific gaps in assistance and the way they affect Roma victims in particular, and suggests how child victim assistance could be improved. The active involvement of Roma organisations in the research through participatory methods aimed to gain a deeper understanding of the risk factors involved, bring knowledge back to the communities and support Roma experts’ involvement in counter-trafficking policy and mechanisms.


This publication has been produced with the financial support of the Prevention of and Fight against Crime Programme, European Commission – Directorate General Home Affairs. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of the Center for the Study of Democracy and can in no way be taken to reflect the official opinion of the European Commission.

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news-518Thu, 02 Apr 2015 03:00:00 +0300Anti-Corruption Reloaded: Assessment of Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-corruption-reloaded-assessment-of-southeast-europe/The Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) has made the in-depth diagnosing and understanding of corruption and governance gaps in the region one of its main priorities, as a requisite condition for its advocacy of knowledge-driven anticorruption policies.

Corruption in Southeast Europe has been in the news, in the focus of public debate, and on the policy agenda of national and international institutions so often and for so long that its scrutiny hardly needs to be justified. It is precisely because it has proven to be such an intractable issue that innovative approaches to its understanding – and hence its reduction – are warranted. The EU accession prospects for the countries in the region – though distant – provide an enabling framework for action but it is local stakeholders, and in particular civil society who can bring about sustained progress in anti-corruption. The Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity (SELDI) has made the in-depth diagnosing and understanding of corruption and governance gaps in the region one of its main priorities, as a requisite condition for its advocacy of knowledge-driven anticorruption policies. This SELDI report fits in the development and implementation framework of the emerging regional anticorruption policy and infrastructure as exemplified by the SEE2020 Strategy’s Governance Pillar run by the Regional Anti-Corruption Initiative.

Despite some important achievements – mostly with respect to the stabilisation of democratic institutions, the adoption of laws in key anticorruption areas, a reduction in petty bribery and growing public intolerance of corruption – anticorruption and good governance reforms are not consolidated, corruption among elected politicians and judges seems to be increasing and the enforcement of anticorruption legislation is haphazard. Anticorruption policies and institutions in the region will benefit immensely from the adoption of regular and accurate victimisation-survey based tool for measuring corruption and the rate of progress in good governance, similar to the special Eurobarometer on anticorruption, UNODC’s SEE monitoring of corruption and organised crime, and the Corruption Monitoring System employed by this report.

Media Coverage

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news-590Thu, 02 Apr 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 49: Media Ownership in Bulgaria:State of Play and Challengeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-49-media-ownership-in-bulgariastate-of-play-and-challenges/Transparency of media ownership and media pluralism are directly related to fundamental constitutional principles, rights and freedoms such as independence and freedom of the media, freedom of expression,pluralism of opinions and citizens’ right to information.
Transparency of media ownership and media pluralism are directly related to fundamental constitutional principles, rights and freedoms such as independence and freedom of the media, freedom of expression, pluralism of opinions and citizens’ right to information. Consistent application of these democratic principles is required to prevent the vicious practice of using the media as an instrument for state capture. The current publication makes a review of the legal framework for disclosing ownership of the media.

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news-554Wed, 01 Apr 2015 03:00:00 +0300Financing of organised crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/financing-of-organised-crime/The report Financing of Organised Crime contributes to a better understanding of the financial aspects of organised crime. The analysis explores topics such as the sources and mechanisms for financing organised crime, settlement of payments, access to financing in critical moments, costs of business and themanagement of profits.


The report Financing of Organised Crime contributes to a better understanding of the financial aspects of organised crime. The analysis explores topics such as the sources and mechanisms for financing organised crime, settlement of payments, access to financing in critical moments, costs of business and the management of profits. Drawing on the results of the analysis, the report also suggests possible new approaches to tackling organised crime. The report has been produced with the joint efforts of the Center for the Study of Democracy, the University of Trento and Teesside University and in close collaboration with the State Agency National Security in Bulgaria, the State Police in Latvia and the French National Institute for Advanced Studies in Security and Justice.

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news-555Wed, 01 Apr 2015 03:00:00 +0300Background Analysis on the Spread and Trends of Hidden Economy in Macedoniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/background-analysis-on-the-spread-and-trends-of-hidden-economy-in-macedonia/The analysis involves a review of existing reports and data on the hidden economy in Macedonia as well as the available international sources. It reviews the current policy initiatives and whether these have been evaluated, as well as any planned future initiatives. Blamed for many of the country’s problems, but at the same time under-researched and ineptly understood, the hidden economy phenomenon has, for many years, been insufficiently tackled by Macedonian academic and political elites. During the past few years, a renewed interest in the topic has led towards its more systematic treatment by institutions, but still largely based on approximations, lack of coordination between institutions and under-evaluation of policy measures. This treatment of the problem opens the floor to many speculations regarding the effectiveness of policies and their actual impact on reducing the size of hidden economy.

The analysis, prepared by the Center for the Study of Democracy and the Center for Research and Policy Making (CRPM), involves a review of existing reports and data on the hidden economy in Macedonia as well as the available international sources. It reviews the current policy initiatives and whether these have been evaluated, as well as any planned future initiatives. The document aims to address some of the key issues through representing cross-section of existing data on the hidden economy in Macedonia and relevant policies, with the intention to review and summarize the knowledge-base on the issue and provide recommendations for better tackling the problem.



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news-552Tue, 31 Mar 2015 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 48: Anti-corruption measures in law-enforcement institutionshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-48-anti-corruption-measures-in-law-enforcement-institutions/In countries with endemic corruption, integrity reforms can only be successful if anti-corruption institutions succeed in tackling internal corruption challenges. A sharp decline of corruption in law enforcement would provide society with the necessary tools to pursue tangible change.

In countries with endemic corruption, integrity reforms can only be successful if anti-corruption institutions succeed in tackling internal corruption challenges. A sharp decline of corruption in law enforcement would provide society with the necessary tools to pursue tangible change. The experience of established democracies is that a successful transformation depends not simply on individual measures but rather on the introduction of sets of effective anti-corruption measures across the entire public administration. Corruption among lawenforcement officers has been viewed with an increasing concern by the authorities and the public in many European states. As a result, while no common approach has ever been tested with respect to the judiciary, elected politicians or the customs, countering police corruption has become an all-European effort. During the last decade, several European countries developed multi-institutional systems for police integrity. On EU level, platforms like the European Partners against Corruption (EPAC) were introduced, enabling specialised anti-corruption institutions to cooperate and share experience. In addition, Europol, Interpol and the UN developed and shared the blueprints of common standards and good practices in preventing police corruption

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news-542Tue, 17 Mar 2015 02:00:00 +0200Good practices from other states for the participation of NGOs in supporting selected vulnerable groups in their relations with institutionshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/good-practices-from-other-states-for-the-participation-of-ngos-in-supporting-selected-vulnerable-gro/In order to contribute to the improvement of the situation of Bulgarian NGOs, providing support to selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, victims of trafficking and domestic violence, persons seeking international protection and other vulnerable foreigners – this report presents a selection and summary of good practices from EU Member States, donor states Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway and countries outside of Europe.

In order to contribute to the improvement of the situation of Bulgarian NGOs, providing support to selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, victims of trafficking and domestic violence, persons seeking international protection and other vulnerable foreigners – this report presents a selection and summary of good practices from EU Member States, donor states Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway and countries outside of Europe.

The practices have been identified by studying printed and electronic publications of foreign entities and comparative reports of international organisations on the legislation, policies and practices in different countries. Part of the information has been collected via foreign partners of the Center for the Study of Democracy under projects, related to the selected vulnerable groups and the capacity building of civic organisations.

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news-921Thu, 12 Mar 2015 16:54:00 +0200Legal Framework of NGO Registers in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/legal-framework-of-ngo-registers-in-bulgaria/Only in Bulgarian

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news-929Tue, 10 Mar 2015 14:36:00 +0200Statement by the Center for the Study of Democracy on a draft law amending and addition the Penal Codehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/statement-by-the-center-for-the-study-of-democracy-on-a-draft-law-amending-and-addition-the-penal-co/Only in Bulgarian

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news-540Mon, 23 Feb 2015 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 47: EU and NATO's role in tackling energy security and state capture risks in Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-47-eu-and-natos-role-in-tackling-energy-security-and-state-capture-risks-in-europ/The Crimean crisis and the continuing instability in Eastern Ukraine have turned into a rude wake up call for Europe’s energy security vulnerabilities. Since the beginning of the crisis the EU and NATO have scrambled for finding the right measures to a balanced response to Russia’s growing assertiveness, while striving to alleviate the most acute energy security risks for their members.

The Crimean crisis and the continuing instability in Eastern Ukraine have turned into a rude wake up call for Europe’s energy security vulnerabilities. Russia has demonstrated its capacity to yield political and economic influence on the countries in the CEE and the Black Sea regions by leveraging its dominant position on their energy markets. Russia has pressured governments to support its flagship project, South Stream, at the expense of the countries’ long-term strategy to diversify their natural gas supply and in defiance of EU’s strategy for building a liberalised common market. Since the beginning of the crisis the EU and NATO have scrambled for finding the right measures to a balanced response to Russia’s growing assertiveness, while striving to alleviate the most acute energy security risks for their members.

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news-544Wed, 18 Feb 2015 02:00:00 +0200Policy Tracker: EU and Russia’s Energy Policy at the Backdrop of the South Stream Pipelinehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-tracker-eu-and-russias-energy-policy-at-the-backdrop-of-the-south-stream-pipeline/The present paper aims at tracking the development of the South Stream gas pipeline project from the perspectives of the EU and Russia, and in the context of the common EU external energy policy. The EU-Russia energy dialogue has become increasingly complicated since the two natural gas crises in 2006 and 2009, when the gas supply was cut for about two weeks due to a gas pricing dispute between Russia and Ukraine.

The present paper aims at tracking the development of the South Stream gas pipeline project from the perspectives of the EU and Russia, and in the context of the common EU external energy policy. The EU-Russia energy dialogue has become increasingly complicated since the two natural gas crises in 2006 and 2009, when the gas supply was cut for about two weeks due to a gas pricing dispute between Russia and Ukraine. Until then the energy relations between Europe and Russia have run smoothly as Gazprom had been perceived as a reliable supplier operating under long-term, oil-indexed contracts providing predictability of supplied volumes and prices. For producers such as Russia operating in a glut market, the most important goal was to preserve their market share in Europe. An eventual supply disruption would discredit suppliers and will push consumers look for more viable alternatives.

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news-938Tue, 17 Feb 2015 15:30:00 +0200Government Favouritism in Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/government-favouritism-in-europe/A new study of the Center for the Study of Democracy finds that public procurement in Bulgaria remains trapped in the wider governance problems of the country, which still display the main features of a particularistic regime. This research is part of the third volume of the “The Anticorruption Report” policy series: Government Favouritism in Europe, produced in the framework of the EU FP7 ANTICORRP project. The volume reunites the fieldwork of 2014-2015 in the ANTICORRP and is entirely based on objective indicators, offering both quantitative and qualitative assessments of the linkage between political corruption and organised crime using statistics on spending, procurement contract data and judicial data.A new study of the Center for the Study of Democracy finds that public procurement in Bulgaria remains trapped in the wider governance problems of the country, which still display the main features of a particularistic regime. This research is part of the third volume of the “The Anticorruption Report” policy series: Government Favouritism in Europe, produced in the framework of the EU FP7 ANTICORRP project. The volume reunites the fieldwork of 2014-2015 in the ANTICORRP and is entirely based on objective indicators, offering both quantitative and qualitative assessments of the linkage between political corruption and organised crime using statistics on spending, procurement contract data and judicial data.

CSD’s research shows that declining private sector opportunities in the wake of the Eurozone crisis in 2009 and the rising pressure on the Bulgarian authorities to deliver full EU funds absorption by the end of the EU funding cycle in 2013 have led to concentration of public procurement resources and market leverage in the public administration. Construction works have continuously increased their share in total public procurement of the country, and their importance for construction companies’ turnover further contributing to higher corruption risks. The firm-level analysis of the public procurement contracts awarded to the Top 40 construction companies by turnover included in the paper, confirms the trend of concentration. Using public procurement data on Bulgaria from the EU’s TED database we find that single bidding, the foremost corruption risk red flag in public procurement, is more prevalent in public procurement involving national than EU funds. In addition, linking the database of the Top 40 construction companies to the TED database, we discover that politically connected companies win a higher share of the single bidding public procurement contracts involving national funds than EU funds. And while the data does not conclusively uncover specific types of favouritism, it points to increased corruption risks, especially involving large-scale construction projects in infrastructure and energy.

Furthermore, the implementation of the Bulgarian legal public procurement framework remains haphazard and riddled with corruption risks, while changes in the legislation remain frequent. Limitations exist in terms of capacity and effectiveness of the controlling authorities of the procurement system. Detected violations are also high, hinting at the lack of proper preventive capacity.

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news-538Fri, 13 Feb 2015 02:00:00 +0200Bulgaria and the South Stream Pipeline Project: At the Crossroad of Energy Security and State Capture Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/bulgaria-and-the-south-stream-pipeline-project-at-the-crossroad-of-energy-security-and-state-captur/In 2014 the question of Europe’s energy security made it to the top of the European Union’s policy agenda amidst the continuing crisis in Ukraine. Russia has demonstrated its capacity to exert political influence on the countries in Southeast Europe and the Black Sea regions by leveraging its dominant position on their energy markets. It has successfully pressured the government of Bulgaria to support its flagship project, South Stream, at the expense of the country’s long-term strategy to diversify its natural gas supply.In 2014 the question of Europe’s energy security made it to the top of the European Union’s policy agenda amidst the continuing crisis in Ukraine. Russia has demonstrated its capacity to exert political influence on the countries in Southeast Europe and the Black Sea regions by leveraging its dominant position on their energy markets. It has successfully pressured the government of Bulgaria to support its flagship project, South Stream, at the expense of the country’s long-term strategy to diversify its natural gas supply.

The article highlights the development of the Gazprom-led project in Bulgaria by taking stock of the country’s energy security situation and shedding light on state capture risks related to the pipeline. Governance deficits in the Bulgarian energy sector have ultimately limited Bulgaria’s bargaining power on the project, worsening the country’s overall energy security position, and putting an additional strain on public finances. Bulgaria’s commitment to South Stream has been in conflict with Bulgarian and EU energy priorities, as well as with European Commission competition and liberalisation principles. Bulgaria has started the project’s implementation without independent planning and cost-benefit analysis. The focus on the project has diverted attention and resources from priority energy security investments, such as gas interconnectors and storage facilities, gas and power exchanges, energy poverty as well as energy efficiency.

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news-647Tue, 10 Feb 2015 02:00:00 +0200Prison Conditions Monitoring Index: Methodology and Pilot Resultshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/prison-conditions-monitoring-index-methodology-and-pilot-results/International organisations, national governments and human rights NGOs exercise various types of monitoring of the penitentiary systems. In order to quantify their results, there are some generally accepted indicators (such as the number of inmates per 100.000 citizens), but in many specific areas like healthcare, employment, security and safety, such indicators have never been applied. Therefore, those monitoring efforts will substantially benefit from an instrument capable of supplying comparable and easy-to-use data on the situation in prisons.International organisations, national governments and human rights NGOs exercise various types of monitoring of the penitentiary systems. In order to quantify their results, there are some generally accepted indicators (such as the number of inmates per 100.000 citizens), but in many specific areas like healthcare, employment, security and safety, such indicators have never been applied. Therefore, those monitoring efforts will substantially benefit from an instrument capable of supplying comparable and easy-to-use data on the situation in prisons.

To address this need, the Center for the Study of Democracy, in cooperation with the Dortmund University of Applied Sciences and Arts, the Observatory on the Penal System and Human Rights with the University of Barcelona, the Law Institute of Lithuania and Association Droit au Droit, developed a Prison Conditions Monitoring Index (PCMI) – a system of indicators translating into comparable figures the situation in different prisons. In the end of 2014, the PCMI was piloted in several prisons in Bulgaria, Germany and Lithuania to test its operability and analyse the potential use of the results it generates.

The present report elaborates on the methodology underlying the PCMI and offers a summary of the results of its pilot implementation. It is intended for a broad audience of readers including policy makers, prison staff, lawyers, social workers, academics and NGOs interested in the topic of prison monitoring.



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news-648Tue, 10 Feb 2015 02:00:00 +0200Vulnerable Groups of Prisoners: A Handbookhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/vulnerable-groups-of-prisoners-a-handbook/In prison, certain groups of inmates are subject to disadvantages due to specifics of their origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, etc. These groups usually need special treatment, which is not always provided, which leads to unequal treatment and violation of their rights.

In prison, certain groups of inmates are subject to disadvantages due to specifics of their origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, etc. These groups usually need special treatment, which is not always provided, which leads to unequal treatment and violation of their rights.

This handbook examines the situation of such vulnerable groups within the prison systems of Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. Starting from the classification of the UN Handbook on Prisoners with special needs and looking at the different national contexts, the authors identify different groups as vulnerable in different countries. In order to encompass as many groups as possible, their list was extended to include some particularly marginalised groups, such as sex offenders, prisoners with disabilities, etc.

Each group is viewed in context, explaining the situations of vulnerability both generally and in the selected countries. From one side, the handbook presents the efforts for compensation of vulnerabilities in every country available in the legislation or provided by prison authorities or other actors. From the other side, it identifies the gaps in the measures and practices, which vary both from country to country and from group to group.



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news-536Thu, 15 Jan 2015 02:00:00 +0200Directory of institutions and organizations, working with selected vulnerable groupshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/directory-of-institutions-and-organizations-working-with-selected-vulnerable-groups/This directory of institutions and organizations, working with selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, refugees and migrants, victims of domestic violence and human trafficking – was made within the framework of the initiative Civic Organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State.


This directory of institutions and organizations, working with selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, refugees and migrants, victims of domestic violence and human trafficking – was made within the framework of the initiative Civic Organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State. State authorities and NGOs are presented in separate templates, outlining their contact information, as well as their main activities, related to vulnerable groups. The legal grounds for institutions’ work with those communities are described, as well as the key projects NGOs have worked on in the areas under research in the last few years.

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news-502Sat, 10 Jan 2015 02:00:00 +0200RE-SOC Newsletterhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/re-soc-newsletter/To keep the stakeholders and the general public informed on the progress of the initiative Re-socialization of offenders in the EU: enhancing the role of the civil society (RE-SOC) a newsletter is compiled and distributed on a regular basis. To keep the stakeholders and the general public informed on the progress of the initiative Re-socialization of offenders in the EU: enhancing the role of the civil society (RE-SOC) a newsletter is compiled and distributed on a regular basis. The newsletter includes information about recent developments within the framework of the initiative and offers also actual news, related to the EU and national prisons policies, information about past and upcoming events, and notifications of new laws and publications.

Number 1/January 2014
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Number 2/March 2014
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Number 3/September 2014
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Number 4/November 2014
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Number 5/December 2014
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Number 6/January 2015 - 1
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Number 7/January 2015 - 2
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news-534Fri, 19 Dec 2014 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 46: Corruption and Anti-Corruption in Bulgaria (2013 – 2014)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-46-corruption-and-anti-corruption-in-bulgaria-2013-2014/The policy brief makes an overview of the levels of corruption and the impact of corruption on the societal sectors. In 2014, the Corruption Monitoring System has recorded the highest levels of involvement of the Bulgarian population in corruption transactions in the last 15 years. In the past year Bulgarians have conceded to being involved on average in roughly 158 thousand corruption transactions monthly.

The policy brief makes an overview of the levels of corruption and the impact of corruption on the societal sectors. In 2014, the Corruption Monitoring System has recorded the highest levels of involvement of the Bulgarian population in corruption transactions in the last 15 years. In the past year Bulgarians have conceded to being involved on average in roughly 158 thousand corruption transactions monthly.

Most corruption transactions have been initiated by the administration through exerting corruption pressure on those seeking public services. The public’s susceptibility to corruption in 2014 is similar to 1999 despite the increase of intolerance to corrupt behaviour. In the business sector corruption’s effectiveness for solving problems has grown in 2014. Most companies do not trust public organisations and do not consider they are treated equally in courts.

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news-646Thu, 11 Dec 2014 02:00:00 +0200Anti-Corruption Policies against State Capturehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-corruption-policies-against-state-capture/In the tenth Corruption Assessment Report, the Center for the Study of Democracy provides an overview of the state of corruption and anticorruption in Bulgaria in 2013 – 2014. The report is produced within the framework of the Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity initiative (SELDI), which provides a comparative perspective for nine countries in Southeast Europe.In the tenth Corruption Assessment Report, the Center for the Study of Democracy provides an overview of the state of corruption and anticorruption in Bulgaria in 2013 – 2014. The report is produced within the framework of the Southeast Europe Leadership for Development and Integrity initiative (SELDI), which provides a comparative perspective for nine countries in Southeast Europe (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey). The report’s findings are based on the state-of-the-art Corruption Monitoring System, and are complemented with recommendations on anti-corruption policies.

The report argues that Bulgaria needs bold institutional anti-corruption reforms and personal commitment at the highest level in the judiciary and the executive to tackle state capture and wide-spread administrative corruption.

 

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news-528Wed, 03 Dec 2014 02:00:00 +0200Ambulant sanctions as an alternative to imprisonment in the European Unionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/ambulant-sanctions-as-an-alternative-to-imprisonment-in-the-european-union/The issue of imprisonment vs. alternative penalties has been debated in various European countries during the last decades, and ambulant sanctions have been heavily on the rise. Community sentences and other alternatives to imprisonment are regarded as modern instruments for the rehabilitation of offenders. The objective of the present study is to examine the scope of application of penalties without deprivation of liberty as compared to imprisonment as well as to identify promising practices of alternative criminal sanctioning in Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Spain and Lithuania.
The issue of imprisonment vs. alternative penalties has been debated in various European countries during the last decades, and ambulant sanctions have been heavily on the rise. Community sentences and other alternatives to imprisonment are regarded as modern instruments for the rehabilitation of offenders. The objective of the present study is to examine the scope of application of penalties without deprivation of liberty as compared to imprisonment as well as to identify promising practices of alternative criminal sanctioning in Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Spain and Lithuania.
As this study covers several European countries, the comparative perspective suggests itself nearly as a matter of course. In this connection, it seems reasonable to describe the existing ambulant sanctions of the different member states involved, taking into account their legal arrangement and their relation within the system of penal sanctions including their relation to the deprivation of liberty. It in addition appears sensible to describe and compare these ambulant sanctions with reference to their contribution to the re-socialisation or rehabilitation of those subjected to them as well as with special attention to the involvement of civil society in their execution. In a further step, promising practices in connection with ambulant sanctions could be highlighted which may be recommended for imitation by other member states. Such an approach proves to be impossible for multiple reasons, though, and it would be inadequate just to make such an attempt.
There are exemplary references to ambulant sanctions in Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. This is due to the fact that scientists from these countries have taken part in the realisation of this project but not necessarily because of specific outstanding features of their sanction systems in comparison with other member states.



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news-530Wed, 03 Dec 2014 02:00:00 +0200Improving Protection of Victims’ Rights: Access to Legal Aid https://csd.bg/publications/publication/improving-protection-of-victims-rights-access-to-legal-aid/The book Improving Protection of Victims’ Rights: Access to Legal Aid was published by Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, Poland, as scientific output of the initiative by the same name, to which the Center for the Study of Democracy was a partner. The publication presents a report, edited by CSD experts and comparing partner countries’ domestic systems and international standards in the area. Moreover, the legal aid norms of Poland, Bulgaria, Latvia, England and Wales and Portugal are reviewed and the challenges to providing legal advice to victims of crime are discussed.

The book Improving Protection of Victims’ Rights: Access to Legal Aid was published by Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, Poland, as scientific output of the initiative by the same name, to which the Center for the Study of Democracy was a partner. The publication presents a report, edited by CSD experts and comparing partner countries’ domestic systems and international standards in the area. Moreover, the legal aid norms of Poland, Bulgaria, Latvia, England and Wales and Portugal are reviewed and the challenges to providing legal advice to victims of crime are discussed.

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news-532Mon, 01 Dec 2014 02:00:00 +0200Country reports on Vulnerable Groups of Inmateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/country-reports-on-vulnerable-groups-of-inmates/The country reports on vulnerable groups of inmates consider the situation of selected groups of prisoners qualified by UN as vulnerable due to their special position in the prisons of Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. Each paper researches the availability of legal provisions in the respective country which possibly neutralise these groups’ vulnerabilities as well as practices which authorities and NGOs implement towards these groups.The country reports on vulnerable groups of inmates consider the situation of selected groups of prisoners qualified by UN as vulnerable due to their special position in the prisons of Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. Each paper researches the availability of legal provisions in the respective country which possibly neutralise these groups’ vulnerabilities as well as practices which authorities and NGOs implement towards these groups.

The reports are a part of the Re-socialization of offenders in the EU: enhancing the role of the civil society (RE-SOC) initiative, coordinated by the Center for the Study of Democracy.

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news-550Mon, 01 Dec 2014 02:00:00 +0200Hidden Economy in Macedonia Policy Brief 3: Hunting the Shadows – Tax Evasion Dynamics in Macedoniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/hidden-economy-in-macedonia-policy-brief-3-hunting-the-shadows-tax-evasion-dynamics-in-macedonia/The current policy brief stresses that as a middle-income country, which is still reforming its tax authority, tax system and related measures against tax evasion and fraud, one can reasonably assume that Macedonia should expect rate of tax evasion and fraud of at least 7.9% of GDP or about 700 mln. EUR on an annual basis.The Center for the Study of Democracy, in collaboration with the Center for Research and Policy Making (CRPM) elaborated a series of policy briefs analyzing the hidden economy in Macedonia. The topics encompass the issues of countering undeclared labour, tax evasion and fraud, media reporting on hidden economy and corruption, etc.

According to estimates in 2013 the European Union lost around 1 trillion EUR in public revenues annually due to tax evasion and fraud. Given that EU's GDP summed up to 12.7 trillion EUR in 2013, tax evasion and fraud represented 7.9% of its annual GDP.

The current policy brief stresses that as a middle-income country, which is still reforming its tax authority, tax system and related measures against tax evasion and fraud, one can reasonably assume that Macedonia should expect at least a similar rate to GDP of tax evasion and fraud (7.9%) or at least 700 mln. EUR on an annual basis. On the one hand, it negatively affects the competitive position of the companies that pay their taxes vis-a-vis the ones that evade taxes. On the other hand, it affects all citizens, as it undermines the everyday functioning of public services, (like healthcare, education, security, infrastructure etc.), which otherwise would have had better quality and extent.

The authors underline several key points:

  • Tax revenues from pension and disability, and healthcare contributions in Macedonia have increased recently despite the lowering of tax rates.
  • According to the Public Revenue Office tax evasion and issuance of cash register receipts were the leading causes for reporting irregularities throughout the period 2006-2013.
  • The hidden economy survey among businesses has shown that half of interviewed companies agree that the tax system is good and stimulating for the development of businesses.
  • But less than half (46.7%) of citizens reported to always receive receipts when buying groceries.
  • And 1/3 of businesses reported that ‘manipulating VAT’ and ‘employing accounting tricks in order to pay lower taxes’ happens in their sectors.




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news-526Mon, 17 Nov 2014 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 45: The Management and Disposal of Confiscated Assets in the EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-45-the-management-and-disposal-of-confiscated-assets-in-the-eu-member-states/The disposal of confiscated assets has been so far a neglected topic at the European level, despite its extreme importance for the effectiveness of the overall confiscation system.


The disposal of confiscated assets has been so far a neglected topic at the European level, despite its extreme importance for the effectiveness of the overall confiscation system. However, problems occurring at this final stage of the procedure may nullify the efforts previously made by police forces and judicial authorities.

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news-520Tue, 11 Nov 2014 02:00:00 +0200Civil Society Involvement in Drafting, Implementing and Assessing Anticorruption Policieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/civil-society-involvement-in-drafting-implementing-and-assessing-anticorruption-policies/Cooperation between public institutions and civil society organizations (CSOs) is essential for any successful anticorruption strategy. Strengthening the role of CSOs with regard to anticorruption means thinking in terms of a system - how can a corruption system be broken and how is it possible to develop and improve national and local integrity systems (LIS).

Cooperation between public institutions and civil society organizations (CSOs) is essential for any successful anticorruption strategy. Strengthening the role of CSOs with regard to anticorruption means thinking in terms of a system - how can a corruption system be broken and how is it possible to develop and improve national and local integrity systems (LIS). Transparency and access to information is widely seen as the key to promote greater public sector efficiency and reducing corruption because the information can be monitored by citizens and watchdog organizations.

This Best Practices Manual is specifically aimed at strengthening the cooperation between civil society organizations and public institutions with regard to preventing and fighting corruption. It provides a comprehensive account of the selected best practices of cooperation, including their structure, impact, sustainability and lessons learned in countries such as Romania, Bulgaria, The Netherlands and other European Union (EU) and non-EU states. The applicability of these practices is context specific, nevertheless, it is possible to draw a number of valuable generic lessons.

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news-522Mon, 10 Nov 2014 02:00:00 +0200Socio-demographic analysis of selected vulnerable groupshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/socio-demographic-analysis-of-selected-vulnerable-groups/Within the framework of the initiative Civic organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State of the Center for the Study of Democracy the socio-demographic analysis of four selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, refugees and migrants, victims of trafficking and domestic violence – outlines the profile of each of those groups and its components, putting it in particular vulnerability in its relations with institutions. Within the framework of the initiative Civic organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State of the Center for the Study of Democracy the socio-demographic analysis of four selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, refugees and migrants, victims of trafficking and domestic violence – outlines the profile of each of those groups and its components, putting it in particular vulnerability in its relations with institutions. Special attention is given to children from each group as having their specifics, requiring special attention by state agencies. The analysis is based on information by institutions and NGOs and points to lack of unified criteria and low level of comparability of data.

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news-524Mon, 10 Nov 2014 02:00:00 +0200Analysis of the legal framework of assisting selected vulnerable groups in their relations with institutionshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/analysis-of-the-legal-framework-of-assisting-selected-vulnerable-groups-in-their-relations-with-inst/Within the framework of the initiative Civic organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State of the Center for the Study of Democracy the legal analysis of the relations with institutions of four selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, persons, seeking special protection, and refugees, victims of trafficking and domestic violence – outlines the most common judicial and administrative procedures, in which they are involved.
Within the framework of the initiative Civic organizations: a Guarantee for Equal Rights of Vulnerable Groups before the State of the Center for the Study of Democracy the legal analysis of the relations with institutions of four selected vulnerable groups – prisoners, persons, seeking special protection, and refugees, victims of trafficking and domestic violence – outlines the most common judicial and administrative procedures, in which they are involved. The elements of the proceedings are looked at, as well as the options to challenge the decisions of state authorities and the legal and practical mechanisms, by which NGOs can participate. Notably, in a number of areas the state relies substantially on civic organizations, while in others the relationship of institutions and NGOs is still being built.

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news-548Sat, 01 Nov 2014 02:00:00 +0200Hidden Economy in Macedonia Policy Brief 2: Hit and Miss - The Dynamics of Undeclared Labor in Macedoniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/hidden-economy-in-macedonia-policy-brief-2-hit-and-miss-the-dynamics-of-undeclared-labor-in-maced/The current policy brief underlines that undeclared work, being one of the main manifestations of hidden economy, becomes the bull’s-eye for many countries focusing on reshaping their social and economic policies in order to tackle this issue, especially since the onset of the economic crisis that hit Europe and the World in 2008. The Center for the Study of Democracy, in collaboration with the Center for Research and Policy Making (CRPM) elaborated a series of policy briefs analyzing the hidden economy in Macedonia. The topics encompass the issues of countering undeclared labour, tax evasion and fraud, media reporting on hidden economy and corruption, etc.

The current policy brief underlines that undeclared work, being one of the main manifestations of hidden economy, becomes the bull’s-eye for many countries focusing on reshaping their social and economic policies in order to tackle this issue, especially since the onset of the economic crisis that hit Europe and the World in 2008. The most recent economic indicators coming from Europe show that this crisis has not concluded and European economies are yet to deal with its mid and long-term consequences. Macedonia and other Western Balkan countries are not exempt from this process, with job creation and policies targeting unemployment (28.2% as of Q2 2014) being a major concern and a focal point of political activity. Low growth prospects in the EU and sluggish economic conditions forecasted in 2014 are also limiting Macedonia’s growth prospects, which at this point are still positive at around 4% GDP growth annually (4.3% as of Q2 2014).

The authors highlight several key points:

  • According to results from the population survey, the proportion of employees with a primary employment receiving ‘envelope’ payments or temporary service contracts in addition to their salary is about one-third of the employed population.
  • Almost 7% of employees work without a contract and are not being paid social security contributions. Combined with the abovementioned fact, this indicates the salary of about 40% of employees with a primary employment is partially or completely undeclared.
  • More than half of employers confirm that signing contracts with ‘hidden clauses’ happens in their sector.
  • Macedonia’s main focus in tackling undeclared work, just as most Eastern European Countries, is on Labor Law violations). Repressive measures and others aimed at improving detection are the dominant policy approach.



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news-516Thu, 23 Oct 2014 03:00:00 +0300Disposal of Confiscated Assets in the EU Member States: Laws and Practiceshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/disposal-of-confiscated-assets-in-the-eu-member-states-laws-and-practices/This report analyses laws and practices for the management and disposal of confiscated assets in the European Union. The analysis explores the challenges and best practices of the Member States in this hitherto neglected area and strives to contribute to improvement of the overall effectiveness of the existing confiscation systems.
The confiscation of assets acquired from criminal activities – organized crime and corruption in particular – has been a topical issue in recent years. Contemporary theory and practice establish that the confiscation of proceeds of crimes is indispensible if the fight against serious criminality is to be effective. They also establish that the objective behind asset confiscation extends beyond depriving criminal enterprises of their ill-gotten gains. Being increasingly aware of the full array of considerations behind asset confiscation, EU MSs have turned their attention to the compensation of victims –individual victims and deprived communities alike – and to the maintenance of public confidence in the justice system.

This report analyses laws and practices for the management and disposal of confiscated assets in the European Union. The analysis explores the challenges and best practices of the Member States in this hitherto neglected area and strives to contribute to improvement of the overall effectiveness of the existing confiscation systems. This mapping has been carried out by the Center for the Study of Democracy in collaboration with University of Palermo – Department of European Studies and International Integration (UNIPA).

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news-514Tue, 07 Oct 2014 03:00:00 +0300E-newsletters on the VICS initiativehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/e-newsletters-on-the-vics-initiative/E-newsletters on the progress of the initiative Improving protection of victims’ rights: access to legal aid (VICS) are regularly compiled and distributed among stakeholders to keep them informed about activities and recent developments.E-newsletters on the progress of the initiative Improving protection of victims’ rights: access to legal aid (VICS) are regularly compiled and distributed among stakeholders to keep them informed about activities and recent developments. The newsletters include information about publications and events within the framework of the initiative and other legislative and practical updates in the area of victims’ rights.








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news-941Thu, 02 Oct 2014 17:21:00 +0300Trends in the Corruption Environment in Bulgaria 2013 - 2014https://csd.bg/publications/publication/trends-in-the-corruption-environment-in-bulgaria-2013-2014/Only in Bulgarian

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news-546Mon, 01 Sep 2014 03:00:00 +0300Hidden Economy in Macedonia Policy Brief 1: The Economics of Blurs and Shadows – The Hidden Economy in Macedoniahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/hidden-economy-in-macedonia-policy-brief-1-the-economics-of-blurs-and-shadows-the-hidden-economy/The current policy brief provides an overview of the hidden economy in Macedonia, including some of its main causes and consequences. At the same time, it offers a macroeconomic overview of the characteristics considered to favor the prevalence of the hidden economy, while outlining the basic definitions and different hidden economy measurement methods. Furthermore, it reviews the latest policy developments in Macedonia in the area of hidden economy and delivers an outline of where this phenomenon is headed and what measures are, and should be taken, to tackle it. The Center for the Study of Democracy, in collaboration with the Center for Research and Policy Making (CRPM) elaborated a series of policy briefs analyzing the hidden economy in Macedonia. The topics encompass the issues of countering undeclared labour, tax evasion and fraud, media reporting on hidden economy and corruption, etc.

The current policy brief provides an overview of the hidden economy in Macedonia, including some of its main causes and consequences. At the same time, it offers a macroeconomic overview of the characteristics considered to favor the prevalence of the hidden economy, while outlining the basic definitions and different hidden economy measurement methods. Furthermore, it reviews the latest policy developments in Macedonia in the area of hidden economy and delivers an outline of where this phenomenon is headed and what measures are, and should be taken, to tackle it.

The authors underline several key points:

  • According to the research being done on the issue of hidden economy, its share in Macedonia, depending on the measurement method used, ranges from 24% to 47% of GDP with a tendency to decrease.
  • The decreasing, but still large unemployment rate (28.4% as of Q2 2014), as one of the most important factors that give rise to hidden economic activities and practices, indicates a crossover from the informal to the formal sector.
  • The indicators of non-observed economy (NOE) and observed informal employment by the SSO indicate a tendency of decreasing hidden economy and increasing formalization of labor.
  • Attracting FDIs through improving the business environment, increasing the capacity of the self- employment program of the Employment Agency, and reforming the inspectorates will remain some of the most crucial factors in encouraging the formalization process of labor and businesses and thus decreasing hidden economic activities.




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news-512Thu, 24 Jul 2014 03:00:00 +0300Energy Sector Governance and Energy (In)Security in Bulgaria https://csd.bg/publications/publication/energy-sector-governance-and-energy-insecurity-in-bulgaria/This report explores the major governance deficiencies in the Bulgarian energy policy regarding the strategic, institutional, and legal framework of the sector. The report focuses on state capture of energy policy by private political and economic interests that led to bad management practices in the sector, to lack of consistency in the legal and regulatory framework, to deteriorating investment environment, and to the involvement of the country in infrastructure projects that undermine the national long-term strategy and policy priorities.

This report explores the major governance deficiencies in the Bulgarian energy policy regarding the strategic, institutional, and legal framework of the sector. The report focuses on state capture of energy policy by private political and economic interests that led to bad management practices in the sector, to lack of consistency in the legal and regulatory framework, to deteriorating investment environment, and to the involvement of the country in infrastructure projects that undermine the national long-term strategy and policy priorities. This has affected negatively the Bulgarian taxpayers and consumers, has jeopardized the financial stability of the state-owned energy companies, and, ultimately, has reduced the energy security of the country. The report recommends that the implementation of the country’s energy policy should be reconsidered and should be based on EU priorities and on sound cost-benefit analyses with regard to Bulgaria’s energy security.

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news-943Sun, 15 Jun 2014 16:44:00 +0300Country fiches on availability and accessibility of data on prisonshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/country-fiches-on-availability-and-accessibility-of-data-on-prisons/The country fiches on availability and accessibility of data offer an overview of the prison-related data collection in Bulgaria, Belgium, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. Each report presents the institutions responsible for collecting statistics on prisons, what data is collected and by what categories the information is disaggregated, how regularly the collected information is updated, are there any restrictions concerning the access to data, etc.The country fiches on availability and accessibility of data offer an overview of the prison-related data collection in Bulgaria, Belgium, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. Each report presents the institutions responsible for collecting statistics on prisons, what data is collected and by what categories the information is disaggregated, how regularly the collected information is updated, are there any restrictions concerning the access to data, etc.

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news-944Thu, 12 Jun 2014 17:14:00 +0300GREY Working Paper No. 4: Policy Approaches Towards Undeclared Work, a Conceptual Frameworkhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-working-paper-no-4-policy-approaches-towards-undeclared-work-a-conceptual-framework/The aim of this working paper is to provide a conceptual framework for understanding the policy approaches for tackling undeclared work. In doing so, the intention is to provide the structure for a future comprehensive review of the policy measures available for tackling undeclared work.his working paper is an output of the European Commission’s FP7 "Marie Curie Industry-Academia Partnerships and Pathways" (IAPP) project entitled "GREY - Out of the shadows: developing capacities and capabilities for tackling undeclared work in Bulgaria, Croatia and FYR Macedonia".

The aim of the paper is to provide a conceptual framework for understanding the policy approaches for tackling undeclared work. In doing so, the intention is to provide the structure for a future comprehensive review of the policy measures available for tackling undeclared work.

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news-945Sat, 07 Jun 2014 17:30:00 +0300GREY Working Paper No. 3: Tackling the Undeclared Economy in FYR Macedonia, a Baseline Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-working-paper-no-3-tackling-the-undeclared-economy-in-fyr-macedonia-a-baseline-assessment/This report provides a detailed review of available evidence on the extent and nature of the undeclared economy in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), as well as on the institutional actors involved in tackling the phenomenon and their policy approach and measures used.This working paper is an output of the European Commission’s FP7 "Marie Curie Industry-Academia Partnerships and Pathways" (IAPP) project entitled "GREY - Out of the shadows: developing capacities and capabilities for tackling undeclared work in Bulgaria, Croatia and FYR Macedonia". Ms Rositsa Dzhekova and Mr. Lyubo Mishkov, Center for the Study of Democracy, and Prof. Colin C. Williams and Mr. Josip Franic, GREY-IAPP, Sheffield University Management School, University of Sheffield elaborated the report in July 2014.

This report provides a detailed review of available evidence on the extent and nature of the undeclared economy in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), as well as on the institutional actors involved in tackling the phenomenon and their policy approach and measures used.

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news-649Thu, 05 Jun 2014 03:00:00 +0300Reader of Articles: Best Practices in Monitoring Hidden Economyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/reader-of-articles-best-practices-in-monitoring-hidden-economy/The current reader aims to aid Macedonian policy-makers and other stakeholders to better understand, monitor, and tackle the hidden economy and its negative consequences on society and the economy, and in particular on the most vulnerable groups. It brings together the best recent academic knowledge on the hidden economy compiled and adapted to address the needs of the local constituency in Macedonia.

Recognizing the profound significance of the problem to countries in Southeast Europe, the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) in Bulgaria and the Center for Research and Policy Making (CRPM) in Macedonia have started an initiative to monitor and analyze the hidden economy and to outline actions for curbing its negative implications in Macedonia. CSD and CPRM seek to introduce evidence-based tools for monitoring and awareness raising for tackling the hidden economy in Macedonia, based on the experience CSD has acquired in monitoring and fighting the hidden economy in Bulgaria for more than 10 years. The purpose of the current review is to outline recent leading research and best international practices in monitoring the hidden economy. The compilation of articles summarizes the most recent activities in countering the hidden economy in the EU and beyond. Understanding current research and policy work on the hidden economy will help Macedonian government, practitioners, and civil society to better understand its nature and implications for development on national and local level in Macedonia. This introduction makes a brief review of the prevailing understating and definitions of the hidden economy, ways of measuring it, and concludes with a summary review of the articles included in the reader.

The current reader aims to aid Macedonian policy-makers and other stakeholders to better understand, monitor, and tackle the hidden economy and its negative consequences on society and the economy, and in particular on the most vulnerable groups. It brings together the best recent academic knowledge on the hidden economy compiled and adapted to address the needs of the local constituency in Macedonia. The reader tries to serve as a helpful reference tool as well as a source of ideas and recommendations for action.

Conference: Tackling the Hidden Economy in Macedonia: Strengthening the Public-Private Dialogue, 5 June 2014

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news-510Thu, 22 May 2014 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 44: The Competitiveness of the Bulgarian Economy 2014https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-44-the-competitiveness-of-the-bulgarian-economy-2014/In 2014 Bulgaria regained one position compared to the previous year in the economic competitiveness ranking of the World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY), published by the Institute for Management Development (IMD). The country is ranked 56th, while in 2013 it was 57th out of 60 economies. This is only a marginal improvement, and remains significantly lower compared its highest achievement in 2009 – 38th place.
In 2014 Bulgaria regained one position compared to the previous year in the economic competitiveness ranking of the World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY), published by the Institute for Management Development (IMD). The country is ranked 56th, while in 2013 it was 57th out of 60 economies. This is only a marginal improvement, and remains significantly lower compared its highest achievement in 2009 – 38th place. In 2014, Bulgaria is ranked higher than Croatia, Argentina and Venezuela as in 2013, and has surpassed its Southern neighbor Greece, which has fallen to 57th place, 3 places lower than 2013. There are no significant changes among the most competitive nations in 2014. The USA continues to hold the 1st position, as its economy is successfully recovering from the crisis thanks to a favorable business environment, characterized by a strong R&D culture and abundance of skilled labor as well as to a more accommodating policy stance in providing financial stimuli and lowering energy prices.

The Center for the Study of Democracy has identified five key challenges, which hinder the competitiveness of the Bulgarian economy:
 

  • Introduce public administration reforms, and more and better e-government services;
  • Initiate performance-based financing of education;
  • Reduce energy security risks through energy efficiency and diversification of supply sources and technologies;
  • Improve regulatory control and compliance quality;
  • Tackle high level corruption and market capture.
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news-508Wed, 14 May 2014 03:00:00 +0300ANTICORRP Background paper on Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anticorrp-background-paper-on-bulgaria/The Worldwide Governance Indicators show that Bulgaria has made significant progress in the area of “control of corruption” since 1996. This finding contrasts with the general opinion of the Bulgarian population who perceive Bulgarian institutions as corrupt, and contradicts the decision of the European Commission to continue monitoring Bulgaria’s progress in fighting corruption and organized crime. Hence, there is a need for careful consideration and analysis to understand how much progress Bulgaria has really made in the fight against corruption.

The Worldwide Governance Indicators show that Bulgaria has made significant progress in the area of “control of corruption” since 1996. This finding contrasts with the general opinion of the Bulgarian population who perceive Bulgarian institutions as corrupt, and contradicts the decision of the European Commission to continue monitoring Bulgaria’s progress in fighting corruption and organized crime. Hence, there is a need for careful consideration and analysis to understand how much progress Bulgaria has really made in the fight against corruption. Can Bulgaria be considered an anti-corruption success story?

This paper seeks to answer the above questions by providing a background analysis on Bulgaria’s governance regime. According to research, Bulgaria has made some progress in its transition from patrimonialism to open access order but the main features of its governance regime remain these of competitive particularism. In legal terms Bulgaria displays some open access order features but they do not translate into practical implementation.

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news-946Sat, 03 May 2014 17:42:00 +0300Policy Tracker: Economic Governance and Performance of the State-owned Energy Sectorhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-tracker-economic-governance-and-performance-of-the-state-owned-energy-sector/Bulgaria’s energy sector is characterized by severe financial weaknesses related to high levels of indebtedness, low profitability and bad governance. The financial outlook of state-owned enterprises has become increasingly problematic in the 2011-2013 period. An overview of the financial health of the largest energy companies reveals a desperate need for liquidity and a reform of the pricing method to abolish destabilizing subsidies, improve debt collection and the energy mix, and invest in the minimization of power distribution losses.Bulgaria’s energy sector is characterized by severe financial weaknesses related to high levels of indebtedness, low profitability and bad governance. The financial outlook of state-owned enterprises has become increasingly problematic in the 2011-2013 period. An overview of the financial health of the largest energy companies reveals a desperate need for liquidity and a reform of the pricing method to abolish destabilizing subsidies, improve debt collection and the energy mix, and invest in the minimization of power distribution losses.

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news-947Thu, 01 May 2014 20:32:00 +0300Policy Tracker: Key Challenges for Energy Efficiency Policies in the Domestic Sectorhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-tracker-key-challenges-for-energy-efficiency-policies-in-the-domestic-sector/The Bulgarian economy is by far the most energy intensive in Europe and it is highly dependent on other countries for its energy and therefore the economy - and in turn individual households are vulnerable to price changes. A quarter of energy consumed in Bulgaria is used in the residential sector. Actively reducing the energy consumed by end users will be the fastest and most cost-effective method of making further energy savings, and also has related benefits such as lowered reliance on energy imports and lower fuel bills for consumers and businessesThe Bulgarian economy is by far the most energy intensive in Europe and it is highly dependent on other countries for its energy and therefore the economy - and in turn individual households are vulnerable to price changes. A quarter of energy consumed in Bulgaria is used in the residential sector. Actively reducing the energy consumed by end users will be the fastest and most cost-effective method of making further energy savings, and also has related benefits such as lowered reliance on energy imports and lower fuel bills for consumers and businesses.

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news-506Fri, 04 Apr 2014 03:00:00 +0300Media note: Energy in(security): the parliament’s decision on the South Stream pipeline increases the risks for Bulgaria’s energy securityhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-energy-insecurity-the-parliaments-decision-on-the-south-stream-pipeline-increases-th/The decision of the Bulgarian Parliament from 4 April 2014 to adopt at first reading the amendments in the Energy Law, which grants South Stream special status highlights the lack of logic in the national energy policy and compounds the impression that public interest is not the driving force behind the proposed changes. The decision and the manner, in which it was taken, reveal some of the most serious problems in Bulgaria’s energy policy in terms of bad governance and corruption.
The decision of the Bulgarian Parliament from 4 April 2014 to adopt at first reading the amendments in the Energy Law, which grants South Stream special status highlights the lack of logic in the national energy policy and compounds the impression that public interest is not the driving force behind the proposed changes. The decision and the manner, in which it was taken, reveal some of the most serious problems in Bulgaria’s energy policy in terms of bad governance and corruption.
 

  • Avoiding established procedures for coordination and consensus-building in the executive. The amendments to the Energy Law, which concern enormous public resources and long-term interests, were introduced by two Members of Parliament (MPs). Thus, the usual consultation procedures between all relevant stakeholders and the institutions responsible for the protection of national security in the executive, which the law prescribes, has been circumvented. While this might be acceptable under certain circumstances, it is highly unusual in the current situation of heightened geopolitical risk. Moreover, this procedure has been associated in the past with higher risks of pressure by lobbyists and corruption.

  • Circumventing common EU rules. As parliament's decision has implications on the rest of Europe, and the European Commission has explicitly asked Bulgaria for more coordination and caution concerning South Stream, it would have made sense to at least consult the proposed amendments with EU partners in advance. Moreover so that the proposed amendments seem to create preconditions for circumventing common EU rules on the internal natural gas market by allowing the construction and exploitation of the South Stream pipeline on Bulgaria’s territory without effective separation of the ownership of the natural gas and the pipeline transmission system.

  • Introducing a questionable legal norm. The decision creates a new legal norm which allows for the construction of a marine gas pipeline, defined as a gas pipeline, running through both Bulgaria’s territorial waters, and onshore until it reaches “the connection point with another onshore gas infrastructure in the country”. The latter also extends the definition of a “gas interconnector” to include marine gas pipelines entering the onshore territory of an EU member state, but “only used to connect the gas transmission systems of these EU countries”. In this way, the Bulgarian Parliament has created the legal preconditions for South Stream to be treated not as an international gas pipeline between member-states of the EU and a third country, but as a marine pipeline, which connects to a series of gas interconnectors on EU territory. Among the justification for the proposed Energy Law amendments, the MPs, who introduced them, cite the European Commission’s decision from May 2013 to exempt the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) from the third liberalisation package, which demonstrates that the decision related to South Stream is subject to the approval of the European Commission, thus increasing the risk of sanctions and future losses for Bulgaria.

  • Increasing energy insecurity. Over the past several months, the risks related to the South Stream project have increased considerably, which also raises the potential bill Bulgaria will have to foot for the project’s implementation. Independent analyses have demonstrated, on a number of occasions, that the project does not address the top priorities and public needs of Bulgaria’s energy security, and is not of immediate urgency for the country. The determination, with which its implementation has been pursued by Bulgarian institutions, despite rising risks, increases fears that it is not (solely) national public interests that drive the energy decision-making in Bulgaria, in this case.


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The adopted amendments at first reading to the Energy Law demonstrate yet again the risks of state capture by third-party interests, which do not correspond or even contradict the public interest. The real problems, which Bulgarian society faces on a daily basis, such as energy poverty, high energy prices, and low diversification and energy efficiency receive only a fraction of the attention, in terms of institutional and policy-making focus, compared to projects such as South Stream. What is even more alarming is that the recent actions of the ruling majority take place in the context of increasing geostrategic insecurity and danger of confrontation, which further exacerbate the risks deriving from such decisions.

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news-948Thu, 03 Apr 2014 20:46:00 +0300GREY Working Paper No. 2: Undeclared Work in Croatia: a Baseline Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-working-paper-no-2-undeclared-work-in-croatia-a-baseline-assessment/The aim of this report is to evaluate the extent and nature of undeclared work in Croatia and the policy approaches and measures currently employed to tackle this sphere.This working paper is an output of the European Commission’s FP7 "Marie Curie Industry-Academia Partnerships and Pathways" (IAPP) project entitled "GREY - Out of the shadows: developing capacities and capabilities for tackling undeclared work in Bulgaria, Croatia and FYR Macedonia". Mr. Josip Franic and Pfof. Colin C. Williams, GREY-IAPP Sheffield University Management School, University of Sheffield elaborated the report in April 2014.

The aim of this report is to evaluate the extent and nature of undeclared work in Croatia and the policy approaches and measures currently employed to tackle this sphere. The authors note that firms in agriculture and related industries are the most likely to recognise competition from unregistered or informal firms as a serious obstacle to their business. In addition, small and medium-sized firms are far more likely to identify the existence of the unregistered units in their sector than are large firms. Finally, domestic owned and non-exporting businesses more often witness the presence of unregistered firms and the constraints caused by them in comparison with exporters and firms in foreign ownership.

A key problem is the weak coordination among ministries and various government departments when pursuing the fight against undeclared work. Each of them defines their own separate targets and this often results in an overlapping and/or awkward division of responsibilities. This raises a need for reorganisation of the existing institutional system in order to achieve better efficiency. One viable option is the establishment of a central coordination body, which would harmonise activities in this field. In that regard, one might argue whether a recent reform in the inspection system was indeed a move in a positive direction, or whether it will result in the deteriorated effectiveness of enforcement. A further problem is the weak social dialogue in Croatia in this context characterised by numerous disputes between the government and trade unions. As such, tripartite social dialogue currently has a limited role in tackling undeclared work, therefore representing a further area for the achievement of a significant improvement.

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news-949Wed, 02 Apr 2014 20:53:00 +0300GREY Working Paper No. 1: Tackling the Undeclared Economy in Bulgaria: a Baseline Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/grey-working-paper-no-1-tackling-the-undeclared-economy-in-bulgaria-a-baseline-report/The working paper provides a systematic review of available evidence on the extent and nature of the undeclared economy in Bulgaria, as well as on the institutional actors involved in tackling the phenomenon and their policy approach and measures used.This working paper is an output of the European Commission’s FP7 "Marie Curie Industry-Academia Partnerships and Pathways" (IAPP) project entitled "GREY - Out of the shadows: developing capacities and capabilities for tackling undeclared work in Bulgaria, Croatia and FYR Macedonia". Ms Rositsa Dzhekova, Center for the Study of Democracy and Prof. Colin C Williams, GREY-IAPP, Sheffield University Management School, University of Sheffield elaborated the report in April 2014. It provides a systematic review of available evidence on the extent and nature of the undeclared economy in Bulgaria, as well as on the institutional actors involved in tackling the phenomenon and their policy approach and measures used.

The aim of the GREY project is to provide concrete policy recommendations, based on rigorous empirical evidence, for those seeking to tackle the undeclared economy in Bulgaria, Croatia and FYR Macedonia. The key objectives of our project are:

  • to conduct evaluations of existing policy measures directed at enabling the formalization of undeclared work;
  • to identify good practices and assess the extent to which they might be transferable to other countries or contexts;
  • to develop innovative policy measures and test their effectiveness at tackling undeclared employment in the EU-27; and
  • to train a generation of experts who will be able to act as advisors and implementers of ambitious projects aimed at curbing undeclared work.
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news-504Fri, 28 Mar 2014 02:00:00 +0200Evaluation reports on the Cohesion Policy in Bulgaria 2013https://csd.bg/publications/publication/evaluation-reports-on-the-cohesion-policy-in-bulgaria-2013/In March 2014, DG Regional Policy at the European Commission published a report on Bulgaria's progress on the job creation as an indicator of outcomes in ERDF programmes and an evaluation report on the achievements of the Cohesion policy in Bulgaria. The two reports were prepared by CSD experts in the framework of the Expert Evaluation Network delivering policy analysis on the performance of the Cohesion Policy 2007 - 2013. In March 2014, DG Regional Policy at the European Commission published a report on Bulgaria's progress on the job creation as an indicator of outcomes in ERDF programmes and an evaluation report on the achievements of the Cohesion policy in Bulgaria. The two reports were prepared by CSD experts in the framework of the Expert Evaluation Network delivering policy analysis on the performance of the Cohesion Policy 2007 - 2013.


The first report provides an overview of the methodology, data reporting and wider use of the indicator ‘job creation’ for monitoring the impact of the Structural Funds.



The second report reviews all supported areas by the Cohesion Policy in Bulgaria and in particular the assistance provided by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The report is based on statistical and financial data and interviews with representatives of the Managing Authorities of Operational Programmes (OPs). The text describes the progress under the OPs and the impact of the financed projects. The report presents the main conclusions drawn from the OPs evaluations and foregrounds the remaining challenges to Bulgaria.

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news-499Thu, 20 Feb 2014 02:00:00 +0200Dirty Assets. Emerging Issues in the Regulation of Criminal and Terrorist Assetshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/dirty-assets-emerging-issues-in-the-regulation-of-criminal-and-terrorist-assets/Adopting a multi-disciplinary and comparative approach, the book “Dirty Assets. Emerging Issues in the Regulation of Criminal and Terrorist Assets” (eds. King, C. and Walker, C., Aldershot: Ashgate, 2014) focuses on the emerging and innovative aspects of attempts to target the accumulated assets of those engaged in criminal and terrorist activity, organized crime and corruption.Adopting a multi-disciplinary and comparative approach, the book “Dirty Assets. Emerging Issues in the Regulation of Criminal and Terrorist Assets” (eds. King, C. and Walker, C., Aldershot: Ashgate, 2014) focuses on the emerging and innovative aspects of attempts to target the accumulated assets of those engaged in criminal and terrorist activity, organized crime and corruption. It examines the ‘follow-the-money’ approach and explores the nature of criminal, civil and regulatory responses used to attack the financial assets of those engaged in financial crime in order to deter and disrupt future criminal activity as well as terrorism networks. With contributions from leading international academics and practitioners in the fields of law, economics, financial management, criminology, sociology and political science, the book explores law and practice in countries with significant problems and experiences, revealing new insights into these dilemmas. It also discusses the impact of the ‘follow-the-money’ approach on human rights while also assessing effectiveness.

In her chapter “Civil Forfeiture of Criminal Assets in Bulgaria”, Rositsa Dzhekova, Analyst at the Center for the Study of Democracy, examines the practical obstacles to the implementation of civil forfeiture in Bulgaria, taking into consideration key institutional, legislative and policy factors that shape the application of the Law on Forfeiture of Proceeds of Criminal Activity. She argues that the socio-cultural specifics of organized crime in Bulgaria, as well as the broader context of the existing policies for countering organized crime, have a strong determinant effect on the resistance to an effective and efficient forfeiture regime.

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news-939Fri, 14 Feb 2014 17:05:00 +0200Statement of the Center for the Study of Democracy on Constitutional Affairs 2/2014https://csd.bg/publications/publication/statement-of-the-center-for-the-study-of-democracy-on-constitutional-affairs-22014/Only in Bulgarian

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news-493Thu, 06 Feb 2014 02:00:00 +0200Addressing the Threat of Fraud and Corruption in Public Procurement: Review of State of the Art Approacheshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/addressing-the-threat-of-fraud-and-corruption-in-public-procurement-review-of-state-of-the-art-appr/Public procurement is among the governmental activities most vulnerable to corruption and fraudulent activities. Despite the controls in place, a number of government contracts give rise to errors, anomalies, fraud, misuse of public funds or corruption. The present compilation of selected best practices addresses the threat of fraud and corruption in the area of public procurement.
Public procurement is among the governmental activities most vulnerable to corruption and fraudulent activities. Despite the controls in place, a number of government contracts give rise to errors, anomalies, fraud, misuse of public funds or corruption. The present compilation of selected best practices addresses the threat of fraud and corruption in the area of public procurement.

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news-645Fri, 20 Dec 2013 02:00:00 +0200National Report on Legal Aid for Victims of Crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/national-report-on-legal-aid-for-victims-of-crime/The report explores whether the victims of crime receive sufficient information about their legal situation, who is entitled to legal aid and what its scope and extent is.

The report explores whether the victims of crime receive sufficient information about their legal situation, who is entitled to legal aid and what its scope and extent is. The document also relates the opinions of various institutional, private and NGO stakeholders, approached by CSD researchers, on the situation of victims, as regards their access to legal aid and advice. A number of recommendations are given as to the improvement of the legislative and practical framework of legal aid to victims.

The national report on legal aid for victims of crime was prepared within the framework of the Improving Protection of Victim’s Rights: Access to Legal Aid initiative.

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news-497Sun, 15 Dec 2013 02:00:00 +0200Country Background Papers on the Penitentiary System https://csd.bg/publications/publication/country-background-papers-on-the-penitentiary-system/The country background papers present information about the penitentiary system in Bulgaria, Belgium, Germany, Lithuania and Spain.The country background papers present information about the penitentiary system in Bulgaria, Belgium, Germany, Lithuania and Spain. The information includes: (1) legislation and other applicable regulations governing the penitentiary system; (2) structure of the system (types and number of facilities, location, management, etc.); (3) statistical data (prison population, capacity of penitentiary facilities, categories of inmates, budget, etc.); (4) studies and reports by domestic and international institutions and organizations dealing with prison-related issues; (5) additional information on the penitentiary system.

The country background papers are based on the developed Methodology for data collection and analysis on the penitentiary system within the Re-socialization of offenders in the EU: enhancing the role of the civil society (RE-SOC) initiative.

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news-628Sun, 01 Dec 2013 02:00:00 +0200Civil Society in Bulgaria: Between Social Entrepreneurship and State Capturehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/civil-society-in-bulgaria-between-social-entrepreneurship-and-state-capture/This publication analyses the changes in the third sector during the 2010 – 2013 period and at the same time outlines the positive practices in the social entrepreneurship as well as the risks that reduce the chances for nongovernmental organisations to effectively impact the democracy and well-being of Bulgaria.This publication analyses the changes in the third sector during the 2010 – 2013 period and at the same time outlines the positive practices in the social entrepreneurship as well as the risks that reduce the chances for nongovernmental organisations to effectively impact the democracy and well-being of Bulgaria.

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news-491Fri, 29 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 43: Corruption and Anti-corruption in Bulgaria (2012 - 2013)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-43-corruption-and-anti-corruption-in-bulgaria-2012-2013/The corruption trends indices for Bulgaria in 2013 are calculated through the Corruption Monitoring System (CMS) developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy and Vitosha Research. The results show that administrative corruption among the population in Bulgaria over the past two years remains practically unchanged. On average, over the period 2012 – 2013, 14% of the adult population has been involved in corruption transactions at least once per year.

The corruption trends indices for Bulgaria in 2013 are calculated through the Corruption Monitoring System (CMS) developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy and Vitosha Research. The results show that administrative corruption among the population in Bulgaria over the past two years remains practically unchanged. On average, over the period 2012 – 2013, 14% of the adult population has been involved in corruption transactions at least once per year.

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news-950Thu, 28 Nov 2013 21:45:00 +0200Statement of the Center for the Study of Democracy on Constitutional Affairs 21/2013https://csd.bg/publications/publication/statement-of-the-center-for-the-study-of-democracy-on-constitutional-affairs-212013/Only in Bulgarian

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news-489Wed, 20 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 42: The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria in 2013https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-42-the-hidden-economy-in-bulgaria-in-2013/Accurate understanding of the dynamics of the hidden economy is essential for improving public and private sector management. In the case of Bulgaria, the high level of hidden economic activities signals many deficiencies in the functioning of the public institutions and the rule of law, and undermines the economic development of the country. Limiting the grey economy ought to be an issue of imminent priority for policy makers.
Accurate understanding of the dynamics of the hidden economy is essential for improving public and private sector management. In the case of Bulgaria, the high level of hidden economic activities signals many deficiencies in the functioning of the public institutions and the rule of law, and undermines the economic development of the country. Limiting the grey economy ought to be an issue of imminent priority for policy makers. The recent unparalleled global growth of digitalization of economic activities provides ample opportunities to reduce hidden cash flows and directly contribute to positive economic development of the country. Comprehensive, sustained reforms focusing on improvements in market and administrative efficiency are needed to facilitate the process of economic convergence and limit the negative effects of the hidden economy in Bulgaria.

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news-487Thu, 07 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Countering police corruption: European perspectiveshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/countering-police-corruption-european-perspectives/This publication reviews the policies and institutional mechanisms for countering police corruption in several EU member states.
This publication reviews the policies and institutional mechanisms for countering police corruption in several EU member states. To be effective, anti-corruption efforts should be based on a system of independent and mutually accountable institutions which are sufficiently empowered to implement their objectives. This report emphasises the last two decades of experience in the UK, Belgium and Austria in modernising their anti-corruption policies and institutions. In addition to the institutional and legal framework, concrete measures and methods (risk assessment, integrity tests, etc.) are also examined. The Bulgarian and Romanian experience in countering corruption in law enforcement institutions is also reviewed with an emphasis on some of the main problems and gaps that undermine effective counter measures.

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news-477Wed, 06 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Drug policy and drug legislation in South East Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/drug-policy-and-drug-legislation-in-south-east-europe/After several decades of implementation of the current international drug control system, there is worldwide a sense of urgency to adjust the system, correct the aspects that cause adverse consequences and make it more effective.

After several decades of implementation of the current international drug control system, there is worldwide a sense of urgency to adjust the system, correct the aspects that cause adverse consequences and make it more effective. The volume “Drug policy and drug legislation in South East Europe” (ed. Apostolou, T., Athens: Nomiki Bibliothiki Group, 2013) is a part of the efforts of the South East Europe Drug Policy Network to connect developments and initiatives in the SEE region with the European Union’s Drug Strategy and Action Plan, as well as with the global developments in drug policy. It contains reports of ten countries of the South East European Region on drug policy and drug legislation.
The country report on Bulgaria, prepared by Atanas Rusev, Research Fellow at the Center for the Study of Democracy, and Dimitar Markov, Senior Researcher at the Center, provides a comprehensive analysis of all aspects of the current Bulgarian drug policies and their implementation such as the National Strategy on Drugs, the national substantive criminal law, the national drug laws and institutions, drug law enforcement in practice, sentencing levels and the prison situation, initiatives for drug law reform in the past twelve years, debated proposals for future drug law reforms.

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news-479Wed, 06 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Human dimensions in organized crime, money laundering and corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/human-dimensions-in-organized-crime-money-laundering-and-corruption/Тhe eleventh volume of the Cross-border Crime Colloquium series is dedicated to the “Human dimensions in organized crime, money laundering and corruption” (eds. van Duyne, P., Harvey, J., Antonopoulos, G., von Lampe, K., Maljević, A., Spencer, Nijmegen: Wolf Legal Publishers, 2013).Тhe eleventh volume of the Cross-border Crime Colloquium series is dedicated to the “Human dimensions in organized crime, money laundering and corruption” (eds. van Duyne, P., Harvey, J., Antonopoulos, G., von Lampe, K., Maljević, A., Spencer, Nijmegen: Wolf Legal Publishers, 2013). It presents the latest studies and research findings of twenty six European experts. The seventeen chapters cover a range of subjects which are of lasting interest for researchers as well as policy-makers: organized crime, criminal finances, money laundering and corruption. They focus on the human dimension in misdeeds as well as the related policy making.
Authors of the chapter “European lessons from the Bulgarian Serious Organized Crime Threat Assessment” are Atanas Rusev, Research Fellow, Philip Gounev, Senior Analyst and Tihomir Bezlov, Senior Analyst at the Center for the Study of Democracy. By analyzing the experience of Bulgaria, which was one of the first countries to try to implement the much heralded (S)OCTA approach, the researchers examine the obstacles and insurmountable difficulties in its application in much of the developing world and propose some strategies to address these issues. Moreover, the chapter outlines some general shortcomings of the present EU approach to (S)OCTA reports.

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news-481Wed, 06 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Organized Crime and the Fight against Crime in the Western Balkanshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/organized-crime-and-the-fight-against-crime-in-the-western-balkans/The policy paper offers a description of the situation of organized crime in the Western Balkans in general and in individual countries - Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro - as well as a focus on the recent legislation on the recovery and management of criminal assets in Bulgaria, used as a term of confrontation with the consolidated approach applied in Italy to such issues.
The policy paper (ed. Forte, R., Sapucca, 2013) offers a description of the situation of organized crime in the Western Balkans in general and in individual countries - Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro - as well as a focus on the recent legislation on the recovery and management of criminal assets in Bulgaria, used as a term of confrontation with the consolidated approach applied in Italy to such issues. It offers as well a feasibility analysis on the extension of the model to the Western Balkans.

Author of the chapter on the management and disposal of confiscated criminal assets in Bulgaria is Atanas Rusev, Research Fellow at the Center for the Study of Democracy. It examines the Bulgarian Asset Recovery System and the problems with the management of the seized real estate property following court orders and with the sale of confiscated property. On this basis, recommendations are made to improve the safeguarding of confiscated estates, the sales procedures and the transferring of confiscated real estate property for social re-use.

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news-483Wed, 06 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Punishment in Europe. A Critical Anatomy of Penal Systems.https://csd.bg/publications/publication/punishment-in-europe-a-critical-anatomy-of-penal-systems/The collection “Punishment in Europe. A Critical Anatomy of Penal Systems” brings together leading international scholars and practitioners to provide a critical guide to penal systems across Europe. The collection (eds. Ruggiero, V. and Ryan, M., London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2013) brings together leading international scholars and practitioners to provide a critical guide to penal systems across Europe. Through its exploration of twelve different Western and Eastern European countries, it identifies the national particularities and the commonalities between penal systems, such as the overuse of imprisonment and the harsher sanctions against the poor when breaking the law.

In his chapter Dr. Gounev, senior analyst at the Center for the Study of Democracy, argues that the penal process in Bulgaria is not the result of a penal policy but rather a set of practices that serve the interests of various groups – from economic power players to magistrates. The penal culture, that is largely a legacy of the communist era, partially explains the lack of alternatives to custody, as well as the lack of reformatory or post-custodial programmes. Corruption, lack of long-term vision, and lack of resources are to blame for the sorry state of the Bulgarian prisons and the penal system.

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news-485Wed, 06 Nov 2013 02:00:00 +0200Human Trafficking, Border Security and Related Corruption in the EUhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/human-trafficking-border-security-and-related-corruption-in-the-eu/The paper Human Trafficking, Border Security and Related Corruption in the EU by Atanas Rusev, Research Fellow at the Center for Study of Democracy in Bulgaria, investigates the much under-researched aspect of corruption and human trafficking.The paper Human Trafficking, Border Security and Related Corruption in the EU (ed. Giya, G., DCAF Brussels office, 2013), by Atanas Rusev, Research Fellow at the Center for Study of Democracy in Bulgaria, investigates the much under-researched aspect of corruption and human trafficking. In order to explain how organized crime uses corruption of border guards in order to ensure their compliance and non-interference in the human trafficking channels, Rusev analyses in more detail three key contexts – the broader context of human trafficking in the EU, the problems with corruption in border control authorities and the link between corruption and organized crime in relation to human trafficking.

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news-475Mon, 21 Oct 2013 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 41: Crime trends 2012 – 2013https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-41-crime-trends-2012-2013/In 2012 there was a sharp increase in both the number of victims and the number of crimes compared to 2011. These trends take place in the context of a 10-year drop in crime rates.

In 2012 there was a sharp increase in both the number of victims and the number of crimes compared to 2011. These trends take place in the context of a 10-year drop in crime rates. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Interior (MoI) statistics of registered crimes in 2012 showed the opposite trend - a 6% drop from 114,781 in 2011 to 107,828 registered crimes in 2012. This difference is explained by the rising level of unregistered crimes that are not part of the official statistics.
Victims of crime in South Central and South Eastern regions of the country are least likely to report crimes to the police. These areas are also characterized by high levels of crime victimisation.

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news-495Thu, 10 Oct 2013 03:00:00 +0300Methodology for collection and analysis of data on the penitentiary systemhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/methodology-for-collection-and-analysis-of-data-on-the-penitentiary-system/The successful implementation of the activities under the recently launched initiative Re-socialization of offenders in the EU: enhancing the role of the civil society (RE-SOC) depends on the expanded knowledge of the prison systems in the participating countries. Therefore, a separate set of activities is dedicated to the collection, analysis and systematization of the available information and tailoring it to the specificities of the other initiative activities.

The successful implementation of the activities under the recently launched initiative Re-socialization of offenders in the EU: enhancing the role of the civil society (RE-SOC) depends on the expanded knowledge of the prison systems in the participating countries. Therefore, a separate set of activities is dedicated to the collection, analysis and systematization of the available information and tailoring it to the specificities of the other initiative activities.

To facilitate this process a Methodology for data collection and analysis was developed, which includes the following components: (1) list of issues to be covered; (2) recommended sources to be consulted and relevant international standards; (3) methodological guidelines on how to collect, analyze and present information; (4) glossary of terms; and (5) language and style requirements.

The developed methodology will be used for analyzing the information collected for several EU Member States. The analysis will aim to answer specific questions related to the prison system: structure and legal framework of the penitentiary system, prison capacity, number and structure of the prison population, etc. The results of the analysis will be summarized in country background papers.

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news-473Fri, 27 Sep 2013 03:00:00 +0300Media note: Shedding More Light on the New “Simplified” Electricity Billshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-shedding-more-light-on-the-new-simplified-electricity-bills/The media note discusses new “simplified” electricity bills. The decision to decrease by 5% the retail electricity prices as of 1 August 2013 is among the topics at the heart of political debates in Bulgaria this autumn. A similar move in 2010 clearly showed that such a politically mandated price decrease was not sustainable in the long run.
The decision to decrease by 5% the retail electricity prices as of 1 August 2013 is among the topics at the heart of political debates in Bulgaria this autumn. A similar move in 2010 clearly showed that such a politically mandated price decrease was not sustainable in the long run. It ended in the sharp increase (13% y-o-y) of electricity prices in 2012, and subsequent social unrest, which brought down the Bulgarian government in February 2013. The focus on the final consumer bill reduction in the public debate overshadows some of the other structural effects of the decision, which are worth mentioning.

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news-471Thu, 26 Sep 2013 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 40: Bulgaria's Energy Security Risk Index https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-40-bulgarias-energy-security-risk-index/Energy security is of critical importance to Bulgaria. The biggest identified threat to Bulgarian national security is poverty, and in particular energy poverty. Bulgaria’s non-transparent energy sector seriously undermines the country’s economic development. Establishing regular sound monitoring mechanisms on energy security could be key for adequate policy-making in the area.
Energy security is of critical importance to Bulgaria. The biggest identified threat to Bulgarian national security is poverty, and in particular energy poverty. Bulgaria’s non-transparent energy sector seriously undermines the country’s economic development. Establishing regular sound monitoring mechanisms on energy security could be key for adequate policy-making in the area.

The Index of U.S. Energy Security Risk Indicator (IESRI), developed in 2012 by the Institute for 21st Century Energy at the American Chamber of Commerce shows that since 1980, Bulgaria has had one of the worst energy security risk index scores both nominally and compared to the OECD averages and was ranked in 73rd place in 2012. Its scores over the period averaged about 158% higher than those for the OECD.

Bulgaria’s energy security risk index increased since 2010. This recent deterioration relative to OECD averages is based on the energy expenditure volatility of the Bulgarian economy that according to IESRI has increased more than 10 times in the last 3 years (since 2009), reaching in 2012 one of the highest levels since 1980).

Among the main risk factors to Bulgaria’s energy security is its high dependence on fossil fuels import, in particular in the gas sector. The very high concentration of the Bulgarian gas market (monopoly of supply and distribution) provides ample opportunities for rent-seeking. Bulgaria’s involvement in various national, smaller regional, and large international projects can reduce the risks to its energy security if it is based on clear-cut prioritization of preferred options following sound and transparent cost-benefit analysis.

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news-850Thu, 25 Jul 2013 16:35:00 +0300The Prosecutor General: Six Months Laterhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-prosecutor-general-six-months-later/Full text - in Bulgarian

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news-954Mon, 15 Jul 2013 22:56:00 +0300Addressing Environmental Crimes and Marine Pollution in the EU: Legal guidelines and case studieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/addressing-environmental-crimes-and-marine-pollution-in-the-eu-legal-guidelines-and-case-studies/The purpose of this handbook is to provide to judges, prosecutors, forensic officers and other legal practitioners an overview of the existing European and international instruments and rules aimed at tackling environmental crimes and in particular marine pollution, as well as an analysis of the challenges faced in their implementation and enforcement process.The purpose of this handbook is to provide to judges, prosecutors, forensic officers and other legal practitioners an overview of the existing European and international instruments and rules aimed at tackling environmental crimes and in particular marine pollution, as well as an analysis of the challenges faced in their implementation and enforcement process.

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news-952Mon, 15 Jul 2013 22:25:00 +0300Statement of the Center for the Study of Democracy on Constitutional Affairs 16/2013 and 18/2013https://csd.bg/publications/publication/statement-of-the-center-for-the-study-of-democracy-on-constitutional-affairs-162013-and-182013/Only in Bulgarian

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news-955Wed, 10 Jul 2013 23:20:00 +0300Addressing Environmental Crimes and Marine Pollution in the EU: Compendium of International and EU Law Instrumentshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/addressing-environmental-crimes-and-marine-pollution-in-the-eu-compendium-of-international-and-eu-l/The purpose of this CD Rom is to provide to judges, prosecutors, forensic offi cers and other legal practitioners, an overview of the existing international and EU legal instruments and rules aimed at tackling environmental crimes and in particular marine pollution.The purpose of this CD Rom is to provide to judges, prosecutors, forensic offi cers and other legal practitioners, an overview of the existing international and EU legal instruments and rules aimed at tackling environmental crimes and in particular marine pollution.

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news-469Mon, 08 Jul 2013 03:00:00 +0300Media note: Budget Revision for 2013: inconsiderate, vague and anti-social?https://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-budget-revision-for-2013-inconsiderate-vague-and-anti-social/Budget revisions are usually a sign of economic instability and are therefore justified by two main reasons: a serious unexpected economic crisis and/or the introduction of vital new policies. The government’s declaration that the 2013 budget needs to be revised and the Prime minister’s explanation for this proposal in Parliament does not include convincing details related to the aforementioned reasons. The additional instability that this amendment would place on the economy, calls for careful analysis and consideration hasty of the possible scenarios in which a revision is necessary.Budget revisions are usually a sign of economic instability and are therefore justified by two main reasons: a serious unexpected economic crisis and/or the introduction of vital new policies. The government’s declaration that the 2013 budget needs to be revised and the Prime minister’s explanation for this proposal in Parliament does not include convincing details related to the aforementioned reasons. The additional instability that this amendment would place on the economy, calls for careful analysis and consideration hasty of the possible scenarios in which a revision is necessary.

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news-465Fri, 07 Jun 2013 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 39: The Bulgarian Economy: Competitiveness 2013https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-39-the-bulgarian-economy-competitiveness-2013/In 2013, Bulgaria is one of the countries that have seen a decline in their competitiveness according to IMD’s World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY). The country is ranked at 57th position – 3 places below the position achieved in 2012 – 54th.
In 2013, Bulgaria is one of the countries that have seen a decline in their competitiveness according to IMD’s World Competitiveness Yearbook (WCY). The country is ranked at 57th position – 3 places below the position achieved in 2012 – 54th. This is the lowest ranking of Bulgaria since its inclusion in the yearbook in 2006 and it is almost 20 places lower than its highest achievement in 2009 – 38th place. In 2013, only 3 countries lag behind Bulgaria in the IMD ranking – Croatia, Argentina and Venezuela and all of them ranked lower than Bulgaria in the previous edition of the yearbook, as well. Countries like Greece and Ukraine both of which ranked below Bulgaria in WCY 2012 move up to 54th and 49th respectively. There are no significant changes in the ‘winners’ trend in WCY 2013. The USA has regained the No.1 position due to a rebounding financial sector, an abundance of technological innovation and successful companies.

The 5 main challenges which Bulgaria faces in improving its competitiveness are:
 

  • Modernise public administration to increase evidence-based efficiency and regulatory quality;
  • Reduce administrative costs and provide EU funded incentives for innovation and entrepreneurship;
  • Strengthen the judiciary to tackle corruption and reduce business uncertainty;
  • Reform the governance of the energy sector to preserve cost competitiveness, diversify gas supply, and improve energy efficiency;
  • Tackle hidden economy and related labour market inefficiencies.
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news-463Tue, 28 May 2013 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 38: Improving policy and programs for assistance and reintegration of child victims of trafficking in Bulgaria https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-38-improving-policy-and-programs-for-assistance-and-reintegration-of-child-victims/This brief presents the main conclusions related to Bulgaria from a comparative study of support programs and reintegration of children - victims of trafficking in the six member states of the European Union, conducted in 2011 and 2012.

This brief presents the main conclusions related to Bulgaria from a comparative study of support programs and reintegration of children - victims of trafficking in the six member states of the European Union, conducted in 2011 and 2012. The survey was carried out by the Center for the Study of Democracy within the project ARECHIVIC in collaboration with partner organisations from Austria, Italy, Slovakia, Hungary and Sweden. With regard to Bulgaria the main approaches, mechanisms and deficiencies in policies and programs for the reintegration of children - victims of trafficking are presented and some recommendations for their improvement are suggested.

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news-467Sun, 12 May 2013 03:00:00 +0300Assessment of the National Child Strategyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assessment-of-the-national-child-strategy/Implementation of sociological and specialized studies and research on evaluation of the National Child Strategy pursuant to Action 3 and 4 of the project "Assessment of the National Child Strategy" of the OP HRD" Lot № 1The objective of surveys commissioned by State Agency for Child Protection was to register changes in the first three years of implementation of the National Child Strategy to summarize assessments of target groups and the general public on the key priorities of the National Strategy, to establish whether they meet the support and understanding by the general public and of specific groups associated with its implementation, to recognize the knowledge and progress in achieving the main objectives of the overall policy on child protection.

 

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news-461Wed, 08 May 2013 03:00:00 +0300Media Note: Energy Saving Technologies in the Bulgarian Residential Sectorhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-energy-saving-technologies-in-the-bulgarian-residential-sector/The growing consumer prices of electricity have remained at the center of public debates over the past months, especially following their increase last year by 13%. Even though the regulated market supresses their growth, prices have steadily increased since 2005, both in Bulgaria and in the EU.

The growing consumer prices of electricity have remained at the center of public debates over the past months, especially following their increase last year by 13%. Even though the regulated market supresses their growth, prices have steadily increased since 2005, both in Bulgaria and in the EU. In Bulgaria, the liberalization will most likely cause an additional short-term increase in consumer prices, before open competition exerts enough pressure on the market to perform better and eventually bring prices down. In the context of these developments, measures aimed at improving the energy efficiency of buildings are becoming increasingly popular.

Media Coverage (in Bulgarian)

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news-459Thu, 04 Apr 2013 03:00:00 +0300Assisting and Reintegrating Child Victims of Trafficking: Improving Policy and Practice in the EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assisting-and-reintegrating-child-victims-of-trafficking-improving-policy-and-practice-in-the-eu-me/This Handbook presents the main results of an in-depth evaluationstudy of the legal, policy and practical frameworks for assistance toand reintegration of child victims of trafficking in six EU MemberStates – Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, Slovakia, and Sweden.
This Handbook presents the main results of an in-depth evaluation study of the legal, policy and practical frameworks for assistance to and reintegration of child victims of trafficking in six EU Member States – Austria, Bulgaria, Hungary, Italy, Slovakia, and Sweden. The three reports included in this Handbook are based on three standardised methodologies for examination of legal and policy frameworks, for evaluation of programmes for assistance and re/integration of child victims of trafficking and for indentification of good practices in this area. The reports analyse the relevance of legal frameworks for the needs of trafficked children and the effectiveness of services for such children in different areas of assistance, such as: identification of trafficked children, appointment of a guardian, individual case assessment, regularisation of status, interim care and protection, durable solutions and longterm re/integration. The reports offer a comparative analysis of the effectiveness of assistance and reintegration programs and discuss identified challenges that need to be addressed in countries of both destination and origin in order to assure better protection and assistance to trafficked children across the EU.


* Project co-financed under the Directorate General Justice, Freedom and Security; Directorate D; Fundamental Rights and Citizenship. Sole responsibility lies with the author and the Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained herein.

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news-457Thu, 21 Feb 2013 02:00:00 +0200Media Note: Why Electricity Bills in Bulgaria Spoiled the Partyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-why-electricity-bills-in-bulgaria-spoiled-the-party/The so-called “green” premium - a market entry subsidy for renewable energy sources - was used as a convenient explanation for recent increases to the electricity bills in 2012.
The so-called “green” premium - a market entry subsidy for renewable energy sources - was used as a convenient explanation for recent increases to the electricity bills in 2012. However, as time went by, consumers realized that a substantial part of their bills has been determined by another expense - the ”bad governance premium”, which, together with the forthcoming parliamentary elections and the increase of energy consumption during the winter, led to the ascent of social discontent and a search for new culprits for the surge in prices.

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news-455Mon, 18 Feb 2013 02:00:00 +0200Press Release: Surveying how European workplaces have managed in the economic downturnhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/press-release-surveying-how-european-workplaces-have-managed-in-the-economic-downturn/This week Eurofound launches the field work of the third edition of European Company Survey across 32 countries. The sociological and marketing arm of the Center for the Study of Democracy - Vitosha Research will conduct the survey in Bulgaria.
This week Eurofound launches the field work of the third edition of European Company Survey across 32 countries. The sociological and marketing arm of the Center for the Study of Democracy - Vitosha Research will conduct the survey in Bulgaria.

It aims at providing an overview of workplace practices and how they are negotiated, human resource management, and conditions of the working environment. It is based on the views of both managers and employee representatives, and takes into account various aspects of the working environment, including working time, work-life balance, and development of social dialogue in the companies.

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news-679Thu, 31 Jan 2013 19:53:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 37: The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria: 2011 – 2012https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-37-the-hidden-economy-in-bulgaria-2011-2012/The deep penetration of hidden economic activities in Greece and other peripheral Eurozone members – a development which is at the epicenter of the continuing Eurozone debt crisis, has demonstrated that accurate understanding of the dynamics of the hidden economy is essential for improving public and private sector management. In the case of Bulgaria, an assessment of the hidden economy is an issue of particular importance as the country is facing serious challenges in all of its aspects – gray, black and informal economy. It is even more pressing in the light of the country’s current low level of competitiveness and its aspirations for participation in the European stability and sustainable growth initiatives such as Europe 2020 and the Euro-Plus Pact.

The hidden economy in Bulgaria has decreased in 2011 – 2012 among both businesses and the population. Yet, the registered gains are modest. Deep structural labor market problems and long-term business environment issues continue to constitute favorable conditions for the development of hidden economic activities in Bulgaria.

Public Discussion: Hidden Economy in Bulgaria 2011-2012

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news-451Thu, 24 Jan 2013 02:00:00 +0200Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline: Challenges and Prospects for the Black Sea countries and the Balkanshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/trans-anatolian-gas-pipeline-challenges-and-prospects-for-the-black-sea-countries-and-the-balkans/This publication is a compilation of the papers, presented by the twenty-nine experts from twelve countries, who participated in the “Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline: Challenges and Prospects for the Black Sea countries and the Balkans” conference, held on 28-29 September 2012, in Istanbul, Turkey.
This publication is a compilation of the papers, presented by the twenty-nine experts from twelve countries, who participated in the “Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline: Challenges and Prospects for the Black Sea countries and the Balkans” conference, held on 28-29 September 2012, in Istanbul, Turkey by the Entrepreneurship Development Foundation. The discussions of the conference covered various issues related to the construction of a new natural gas export route from the Caspian region to Europe. Mr. Ruslan Stefanov and Mr. Martin Tsanov from the Economic Program at the Center for the Study of Democracy participated with a paper on “SEE Security of Gas Supply: Main Challenges and Perspectives with a Focus on Bulgaria”, included in this compilation.

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news-449Mon, 14 Jan 2013 02:00:00 +0200Assisting and reintegrating child victims of trafficking in Bulgaria: legal, institutional and policy frameworkhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/assisting-and-reintegrating-child-victims-of-trafficking-in-bulgaria-legal-institutional-and-polic/The report explores the legal, institutional and policy framework of countering child trafficking in Bulgaria and assisting and reintegrating its victims. It looks at Bulgarian criminal law and criminal procedure, as well as other legal norms, relevant to the subject, and the extent to which they comply with internationalstandards. The study presents the different stages of referral victims go through, the various institutions and organisations, involved in the process, and the policies and initiatives they pursue in improving child victims’ situation. A number of recommendations are put forward in terms of possible legislativeamendments, strengthening policy framework and furthering capacity building of institutions, entrusted with combating child trafficking.

The report explores the legal, institutional and policy framework of countering child trafficking in Bulgaria and assisting and reintegrating its victims. It looks at Bulgarian criminal law and criminal procedure, as well as other legal norms, relevant to the subject, and the extent to which they comply with international standards. The study presents the different stages of referral victims go through, the various institutions and organisations, involved in the process, and the policies and initiatives they pursue in improving child victims’ situation. A number of recommendations are put forward in terms of possible legislative amendments, strengthening policy framework and furthering capacity building of institutions, entrusted with combating child trafficking.

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news-440Fri, 19 Oct 2012 03:00:00 +0300Right of Defence and the Principle of Equality of Arms in the Criminal Procedure in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/right-of-defence-and-the-principle-of-equality-of-arms-in-the-criminal-procedure-in-bulgaria/The publication analyses the regulation of the right of defencein Bulgaria and explores the principle of equality of the parties in the pre-trial phase. For the purposes of the study the authors present the system of judicial and investigative bodies as well as the most important characteristics of the criminal proceedings, in particular of the pre-trial proceedings. The study discusses the rights of the defence counsels and their procedural role and outlines a number of problems that attorneys face in defending their clients during the criminal proceedings.

The publication analyses the regulation of the right of defence in Bulgaria and explores the principle of equality of the parties in the pre-trial phase. For the purposes of the study the authors present the system of judicial and investigative bodies as well as the most important characteristics of the criminal proceedings, in particular of the pre-trial proceedings. The study discusses the rights of the defence counsels and their procedural role and outlines a number of problems that attorneys face in defending their clients during the criminal proceedings.

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news-438Tue, 02 Oct 2012 03:00:00 +0300The Level of Transparency of Oil and Gas Transit Operations through Bulgaria, Georgia, Turkey and Ukrainеhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-level-of-transparency-of-oil-and-gas-transit-operations-through-bulgaria-georgia-turkey-and-uk/The report assesses the level of transparency in the transit of hydrocarbons and the outstanding issues with the access to information related to the transit of oil and gas in Bulgaria, Turkey, Georgia and Ukraine.
The report assesses the level of transparency in the transit of hydrocarbons and the outstanding issues with the access to information related to the transit of oil and gas in Bulgaria, Turkey, Georgia and Ukraine.

The report is a result of a regional joint initiative for “Promoting Transparency in the Transit of Hydrocarbons through Bulgaria, Turkey, Georgia, and Ukraine” by the Center for the Study of Democracy and the Revenue Watch Institute (New York), which started in 2011. It enables the first of its kind assessment of the hydrocarbon transit environment in these countries and exposes the serious information gaps related to the processes of transiting oil and gas in the region.

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news-428Wed, 25 Jul 2012 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 36: Educational integration of refugee and asylum-seeking children: the situation of Bulgaria and the experience of other European countrieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-36-educational-integration-of-refugee-and-asylum-seeking-children-the-situation-o/This analysis represents the results of a specialised study of the educational integration of refugee and asylum-seeking children (RASC) in the Member States of the European Union, conducted in 2011 by the Center for the Study of Democracy within the framework on the INTEGRACE project. With regard to Bulgaria, the main approaches, mechanisms and deficiencies in the system for educational integration of RASC were presented and recommendations for its improvement were given.

This analysis represents the results of a specialised study of the educational integration of refugee and asylum-seeking children (RASC) in the Member States of the European Union, conducted in 2011 by the Center for the Study of Democracy within the framework on the INTEGRACE project. With regard to Bulgaria, the main approaches, mechanisms and deficiencies in the system for educational integration of RASC were presented and recommendations for its improvement were given.

Past events and publications on this topic

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news-436Mon, 23 Jul 2012 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 35: Corruption and Anti-Corruption in Bulgaria (2011-2012)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-35-corruption-and-anti-corruption-in-bulgaria-2011-2012/The data on the dynamics of corruption used in the current report are the result of the Corruption Monitoring System (CMS), designed and developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) and Vitosha Research. CMS combines significant research and powerful anticorruption advocacy potential. The data on the dynamics of corruption used in the current report are the result of the Corruption Monitoring System (CMS), designed and developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) and Vitosha Research. CMS combines significant research and powerful anticorruption advocacy potential. The purpose of CMS is to measure the actual level and trends in the spread of corruption in the country, as well as to identify related public attitudes and expectations.

After an improvement in 2010, the level of administrative corruption among the population increased in 2011 – 2012, still placing the country in the group of EU Member States experiencing high levels of corruption. The average monthly number of corruption transactions in 2011 was approximately 150,000. In 2011, a quarter of all citizens who dealt with the state administration had to resort to some kind of irregular payment to receive administrative services. This indicates that corruption is a systemic problem of the Bulgarian society.

Round table: Corruption and Anti-Corruption in Bulgaria (2011-2012)

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news-434Mon, 16 Jul 2012 03:00:00 +0300Anti-Corruption Measures in EU Border Controlhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-corruption-measures-in-eu-border-control/The present study, commissioned by FRONTEX, provides academic and policy perspectives, as well as empirical data on corruption and anti-corruption measures observed in border guard institutions across the 27 Member States of the European Union.
The present study, commissioned by FRONTEX, provides academic and policy perspectives, as well as empirical data on corruption and anti-corruption measures observed in border guard institutions across the 27 Member States of the European Union. The report compares and analyses anti-corruption measures in EU Member States’ border guard services, as well as the strategies and instruments used in corruption investigations of border guards. The purpose of this study was to provide border guards with a general overview of the relevant academic and policy research available on the subject of corruption, as well as to review and analyse mechanisms of corruption and the principal anti-corruption measures targeting them.

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news-432Wed, 04 Jul 2012 03:00:00 +0300Corruption and Organized Crime in Europe: Illegal Partnerships https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-and-organized-crime-in-europe-illegal-partnerships/The book Corruption and Organized Crime in Europe: Illegal Partnerships (eds. Gounev, P. and Ruggiero, V.; London: Routledge, 2012) builds upon the 2009 report of the Center for the Study of Democracy Examining the Links between Corruption and Organised Crime. This is the first academic study that takes a Europe-wide approach to analyse the main historic, cultural, economic and political factors that influence the ways in which organised and white collar criminals use corruption. The book Corruption and Organized Crime in Europe: Illegal Partnerships ( eds. Gounev, P. and Ruggiero, V.; London: Routledge, 2012) builds upon the 2009 report of the Center for the Study of Democracy Examining the Links between Corruption and Organised Crime. This is the first academic study that takes a Europe-wide approach to analyse the main historic, cultural, economic and political factors that influence the ways in which organised and white collar criminals use corruption. Combining empirical data and theoretical debates, the book focuses on three main areas of the relationship between corruption and organised crime: public bodies, the private sector and criminal markets. The second part of the book presents case studies, written by some of the foremost international experts on the subject matter, analysing corrupt exchange and criminal organisations, concentrating on specific European countries – Bulgaria, France, Greece, Italy, Russia, Spain and the UK.

Listen to the discussion presenting the book of Dr. Philip Gounev with Mark Lauches.

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news-994Sun, 24 Jun 2012 10:41:00 +0300Countering Corruption in Bosnia and Herzegovina 2001 - 2011https://csd.bg/publications/publication/countering-corruption-in-bosnia-and-herzegovina-2001-2011/The report "Countering Corruption in Bosnia and Herzegovina 2001 - 2011" provides an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption and anti-corruption developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina during the period 2001 – 2011. The report builds on the local insight of the Center for Investigative Reporting in Sarajevo, and the experience of the Center for the Study of Democracy in monitoring corruption and anti-corruption trends in Europe. The report "Countering Corruption in Bosnia and Herzegovina 2001 - 2011" provides an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption and anti-corruption developments in Bosnia and Herzegovina during the period 2001 – 2011. The report builds on the local insight of the Center for Investigative Reporting in Sarajevo, and the experience of the Center for the Study of Democracy in monitoring corruption and anti-corruption trends in Europe. The findings are based on the Corruption Monitoring System, a state of the art tool for monitoring the dynamics of corruption at a national level developed by CSD.

The report notes that concerns over persistent corruption among key institutions like the police, customs, and different ministries remain prevalent among citizens in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Notwithstanding some signs of progress in the fight against corruption, two major deficits in countering corruption are evident in the country: insufficient political will and little evidence of corruption-related justice. Both of these contribute to the public’s growing distrust in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s institutions.

Corruption pressure from the public administration has increased in the past decade and the society has grown more disillusioned with the continuing inability of public institutions to tackle corruption effectively.

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news-426Fri, 01 Jun 2012 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 34: The Bulgarian Economy: Competitiveness 2012 https://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-34-the-bulgarian-economy-competitiveness-2012/The policy brief presents the ranking of Bulgaria at the oldest and most comprehensive competitiveness report of nations – the World Competitiveness Yearbook 2012 of the Institute for Management Development - IMD.

The policy brief presents the ranking of Bulgaria at the oldest and most comprehensive competitiveness report of nations – the World Competitiveness Yearbook 2012 of the Institute for Management Development - IMD. The mere presence of the country in the yearbook shows that the Bulgarian economy ranks among the 59 most important points in the investment world and it has reliable indicators to assess adequately its competitiveness. In 2012, Bulgaria is one of the 24 countries that improved their competitiveness compared to 2011. The country climbed up one place to the rank of 54th out of 59 countries in the ranking of global competitiveness. Although slow, such improvement is important for the country, especially considering the fact that most of the surveyed economies - 29 have registered a decrease of their competitiveness during the global economic crisis. Despite the slight improvement, however, Bulgaria remains one of the most uncompetitive economies in the ranking. With lower positions are only Argentina, Ukraine, Croatia, Greece and Venezuela.

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news-424Mon, 28 May 2012 03:00:00 +0300Countering Organised Crime in Bulgaria: Study on the Legal Frameworkhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/countering-organised-crime-in-bulgaria-study-on-the-legal-framework/The publication analyses and assesses the legal framework on countering organised crime and examines the problems, which arise in its practical application. On this basis, recommendations are made to improve the legislation and bring it into conformity with international standards and the existing good practices, as well as to overcome the weaknesses in the application of law which impede the detection and punishment of organised criminal activity or infringe fundamental principles of criminal procedure and the rights of the participants in it.

The publication analyses and assesses the legal framework on countering organised crime and examines the problems, which arise in its practical application. On this basis, recommendations are made to improve the legislation and bring it into conformity with international standards and the existing good practices, as well as to overcome the weaknesses in the application of law which impede the detection and punishment of organised criminal activity or infringe fundamental principles of criminal procedure and the rights of the participants in it.

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news-453Tue, 15 May 2012 03:00:00 +0300Media Note: Is there really a "green" energy monster feeding on Bulgarian consumers' incomes?https://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-is-there-really-a-green-energy-monster-feeding-on-bulgarian-consumers-incomes/The energy sector in Bulgaria is faced with a number of challenges, the biggest of which is poor governance.

The energy sector in Bulgaria is faced with a number of challenges, the biggest of which is poor governance. Abuses triggered by the poor management of state-owned enterprises have an impact on electricity prices for consumers. As long as the governance of state-owned enterprises remains non-transparent and pricing mechanisms remain opaque, consumer confidence in the system cannot be restored.

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news-420Fri, 06 Apr 2012 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 33: Management and Disposal of Confiscated Criminal Assetshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-33-management-and-disposal-of-confiscated-criminal-assets/Confiscation of proceeds from illegal activities is a widely applied mechanism in combating organized crime. The introduction and application of this mechanism is defined in several international and European acts, and is motivated by the need to restore social justice.

Confiscation of proceeds from illegal activities is a widely applied mechanism in combating organized crime. The introduction and application of this mechanism is defined in several international and European acts, and is motivated by the need to restore social justice. Both the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and the UN Convention against Corruption address the disposal of confiscated assets and recommend its use primarily for compensating the victims of crime. A number of European countries have implemented respective measures and mechanisms like: distribution schemes for compensation of victims of crime, financing of programs for fight against drug use, social re-use of confiscated property.

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news-418Tue, 03 Apr 2012 03:00:00 +0300Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment 2010-2011https://csd.bg/publications/publication/serious-and-organised-crime-threat-assessment-2010-2011/The report Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment 2010-2011 (SOCTA) analyses the current state and trends in serious and organised crime in Bulgaria.

The report Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessment 2010-2011 (SOCTA) analyses the current state and trends in serious and organised crime in Bulgaria. The report estimates the threats generated by these criminal activities and ranks them according to the harm they cause Bulgarian society. The analysis is intended to support a better informed evidence-based design of anti-crime policies.

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news-644Mon, 02 Apr 2012 03:00:00 +0300Green Growth and Sustainable Development for Bulgaria: Setting the Prioritieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/green-growth-and-sustainable-development-for-bulgaria-setting-the-priorities/The report reviews the green growth and sustainable development for Bulgaria. According to the authors, the current pattern of energy use in Bulgaria (including both households and industry) is unsound.

The report reviews the green growth and sustainable development for Bulgaria. According to the authors, the current pattern of energy use in Bulgaria (including both households and industry) is unsound. The country’s energy intensity is striking, when compared to other European countries, thus, Bulgaria’s overriding priority is stimulating energy efficiency by sufficiently utilizing EU funds. Measures to boost energy efficiency mean more jobs and revenues for Bulgarian SMEs, while measures promoting energy savings mean utilizing the existing capacity at a low or no extra cost.

 

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news-430Fri, 30 Mar 2012 03:00:00 +0300Justice Sector Institutional Indicators for Criminal Case Managementhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/justice-sector-institutional-indicators-for-criminal-case-management/The present white paper summarises the main findings of the Justice Sector Institutional Indicators for Criminal Case Management study. It puts forward the main problems which EU countries face in measuring justice system performance – there is no single assessment model and many countries are still in the experimental phase.
The present white paper summarises the main findings of the Justice Sector Institutional Indicators for Criminal Case Management study. It puts forward the main problems which EU countries face in measuring justice system performance – there is no single assessment model and many countries are still in the experimental phase. Besides the legal accountability mechanisms courts tend to be a subject of managerial accountability. Despite the different approaches followed by the studied EU member states and the lack of a leading assessment methodology, certain indicators as caseload, duration of the procedure, available resources per number of cases can be distinguished as best practice.

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news-416Mon, 26 Mar 2012 03:00:00 +0300Justice Sector Institutional Indicators for Criminal Case Management: Efforts on Supranational and National Level, Bulgarian and Polish Perspectivehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/justice-sector-institutional-indicators-for-criminal-case-management-efforts-on-supranational-and-n/This publication reviews the existing practices of courts’ performance measurement and criminal cases management based on the concepts of efficiency and effectiveness, transparency, quality care, benchmarking, result orientation and accountability. These efforts are considered on supranational and national level as two components of the process of implementing a quality model in the justice sector, growing increasingly intense at EU level.

This publication reviews the existing practices of courts’ performance measurement and criminal cases management based on the concepts of efficiency and effectiveness, transparency, quality care, benchmarking, result orientation and accountability. These efforts are considered on supranational and national level as two components of the process of implementing a quality model in the justice sector, growing increasingly intense at EU level.
At national level, the report examines the achievements in implementing performance indicators in England and Wales, Germany, Netherlands, Finland, Belgium, France and Spain, as well as in Romania. The normative, policy and strategic framework of Bulgaria and Poland is also tackled in order to cover the prospects for introduction of such indicators in the two target countries.

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news-422Sun, 04 Mar 2012 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 32: Reinstating the Duty-Free Trade at Bulgarian Land Borders: Potential Setback in the Fight Against Organized Crime and Corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-32-reinstating-the-duty-free-trade-at-bulgarian-land-borders-potential-setback-in/Since the early 1990s the duty-free shops along Bulgaria’s land-border crossings were used as a channel for illegal import of excise goods (cigarettes, alcohol and petrol). With the increase of excise and VAT taxes in the second-half of the 1990s, the risk of alcohol and cigarettes smuggling increased rapidly. The duty-free shops gradually evolved into one of the main channels for the smuggling of cigarettes, alcohol, and fuel. At that period, duty free operators existed without a legal regulation but only with a licensing permit from the Minister of Finance. The smuggling was tacitly tolerated from the highest political level. Since the early 1990s the duty-free shops along Bulgaria’s land-border crossings were used as a channel for illegal import of excise goods (cigarettes, alcohol and petrol). With the increase of excise and VAT taxes in the second-half of the 1990s, the risk of alcohol and cigarettes smuggling increased rapidly. The duty-free shops gradually evolved into one of the main channels for the smuggling of cigarettes, alcohol, and fuel. At that period, duty free operators existed without a legal regulation but only with a licensing permit from the Minister of Finance. The smuggling was tacitly tolerated from the highest political level.

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news-414Sun, 26 Feb 2012 02:00:00 +0200Integrating refugee and asylum-seeking children in the educational systems of EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/integrating-refugee-and-asylum-seeking-children-in-the-educational-systems-of-eu-member-states/This Handbook presents the research instruments and findings developed within the project “Integrating Refugee and Asylum-seeking Children in the Educational Systems of EU Member States: Evaluation and Promotion of Current Best Practices” – INTEGRACE. The research encompasses twenty-six EU Member States participating in the European Refugee Fund, as well as Denmark, Norway, and four Western Balkan states (Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina). The country reports’ main focus is on illustrating successful practices in the educational integration of refugee and asylum-seeking children (RASC).

This Handbook presents the research instruments and findings developed within the project “Integrating Refugee and Asylum-seeking Children in the Educational Systems of EU Member States: Evaluation and Promotion of Current Best Practices” – INTEGRACE. The research encompasses twenty-six EU Member States participating in the European Refugee Fund, as well as Denmark, Norway, and four Western Balkan states (Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina). The country reports’ main focus is on illustrating successful practices in the educational integration of refugee and asylum-seeking children (RASC).

Standardised outlines of select best practices (“inventory tables”) are constructed. They can aid future research in the field of RASC educational integration by forming a basic point of reference in the comparative analysis of best practices.

Review of the best practices in thirty-two countries enabled generalisations on the overall developments of policy and practice in the educational integration of RASC in the EU.

The Handbook also presents an innovative methodology for “mirror” evaluations and impact assessments aimed to identify key transferability conditions and parameters to facilitate the replication of best practices in the area of educational integration of RASC in different contexts.

Past events and publications on this topic



* Project co-financed under the European Refugee Fund. Sole responsibility lies with the author and the Commission is not responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained herein.

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news-410Wed, 22 Feb 2012 02:00:00 +0200Crime and Punishment: Studying Justice System for Shaping Criminal Policyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/crime-and-punishment-studying-justice-system-for-shaping-criminal-policy/The current publication analyses the findings of the survey on public trust in Bulgarian police and courts, including personal assessments about the level of corruption in these institutions and the subjective perceptions of fear of crime.

The current publication analyses the findings of the survey on public trust in Bulgarian police and courts, including personal assessments about the level of corruption in these institutions and the subjective perceptions of fear of crime. Two main factors are moulding the public trust: the state institutions’ effectiveness, their procedural justice and their distributive fairness towards citizens, as well as institutions’ legitimacy, the legality of their actions and the shared moral principles, which build up the obligation to respect the rules and the decisions of these institutions.

The publication suggests that Bulgaria should introduce a system of indicators for assessing the public trust in the criminal justice system. These indicators would be instrumental for the more comprehensive definition of the problems, which criminal justice institutions face, and for more effective monitoring of public opinion fluctuations.

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news-412Mon, 20 Feb 2012 02:00:00 +0200Evaluation reports on the Cohesion Policy in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/evaluation-reports-on-the-cohesion-policy-in-bulgaria/DG Regional Policy at the European Commission published a Report on Bulgaria's progress on the Renewable Energy Sources (RES) and Energy Efficiency in Buildings and an Evaluation Report on the Achievements of the Cohesion Policy in Bulgaria. The two reports were prepared by CSD experts in the framework of the Expert Evaluation Network delivering policy analysis on the performance of the Cohesion Policy 2007 - 2013. DG Regional Policy at the European Commission published a Report on Bulgaria's progress on the Renewable Energy Sources (RES) and Energy Efficiency in Buildings and an Evaluation Report on the Achievements of the Cohesion Policy in Bulgaria. The two reports were prepared by CSD experts in the framework of the Expert Evaluation Network delivering policy analysis on the performance of the Cohesion Policy 2007 - 2013.

The first report provides an overview of the available support by the EU Structural Funds and the national instruments promoting RES and energy efficiency in buildings. It also describes the legislative framework and the operation of various state institutions in this area. Tthe report lists the remaining challenges to the management authorities, the businesses and the households which aim to utilize more efficiently the EU financial assistance and to reduce the energy poverty in the country.

The second report reviews all supported areas by the Cohesion Policy in Bulgaria and in particular the assistance provided by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The report is based on statistical and financial data and interviews with representatives of the Managing Authorities of Operational Programmes (OPs). The text describes the progress under the OPs and the impact of the economic crisis on the implementation of the financed projects. The report presents the main conclusions drawn from the OPs mid-term reviews and foregrounds the remaining challenges to Bulgaria.
 

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news-408Thu, 17 Nov 2011 02:00:00 +0200E-Tools for Criminal Case Management within Selected EU Member Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/e-tools-for-criminal-case-management-within-selected-eu-member-states/This publication provides comparative analysis of current practices of justice recordkeeping and the electronic tools for measuring the judicial system performance in Finland, Belgium, Greece, Italy, Spain, Germany, and England and Wales as well as an overview of the introduction of ICT in the judiciaries of Bulgaria and Poland.In recent years, public authorities have begun to adopt several statutory reforms to incorporate ICT into everyday tasks of judicial systems’ actors. In the European sphere, the concept of e-justice has been mainly developed in justice administration. This publication provides comparative analysis of current practices of justice recordkeeping and the electronic tools for measuring the judicial system performance in Finland, Belgium, Greece, Italy, Spain, Germany, and England and Wales as well as an overview of the introduction of ICT in the judiciaries of Bulgaria and Poland.

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news-956Fri, 11 Nov 2011 12:19:00 +0200Antimafia – The Italian Experience in Fighting Organised Crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/antimafia-the-italian-experience-in-fighting-organised-crime/The current reader presents the Italian policies against organized crime, which encompass a broad set of instruments tailored to counter the threat from ‘mafia’ and other organised crime threats in Italy. The current reader presents the Italian policies against organized crime, which encompass a broad set of instruments tailored to counter the threat from ‘mafia’ and other organised crime threats in Italy. The key measures among these are: the confiscation, administration and utilization of confiscated criminal assets; the dissolution of local municipal councils, infiltrated by mafia; special penitentiary regimes for high-ranking leaders of organized crime.

All these policies are a direct response to the challenges imposed by the organized crime. They expand the scope and the set of instruments available to the prosecution and law-enforcement systems. This set of policies complement the traditional approaches against the mafia, which have proven to be not sufficiently effective in a situation of persisting mafia pressure upon the political and economic life in the country. In light of this, the Italian experience could be applicable to countries, such as Bulgaria, which are vulnerable to corruption and organized crime.

International Seminar: The Italian Experience in Investigating, Confiscating and Administering Property Acquired from Criminal Activity

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news-406Thu, 03 Nov 2011 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 31: Antimafia – The Italian Experience in Fighting Organised Crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-31-antimafia-the-italian-experience-in-fighting-organised-crime/In recent decades the Italian authorities implemented a number of measures and policies as a direct response to the threat of organized crime. These new measures were intended to expand the scope and the number of law enforcement and judicial instruments and were an attempt to complement the conventional approaches, which were no longer effective in light of the persisting mafia influence against public institutions. This is why the Italian experience is specifically valuable for countries like Bulgaria, which are vulnerable to corruption and organized crime.
In recent decades the Italian authorities implemented a number of measures and policies as a direct response to the threat of organized crime. These new measures were intended to expand the scope and the number of law enforcement and judicial instruments and were an attempt to complement the conventional approaches, which were no longer effective in light of the persisting mafia influence against public institutions. This is why the Italian experience is specifically valuable for countries like Bulgaria, which are vulnerable to corruption and organized crime.


International Seminar: The Italian Experience in Investigating, Confiscating and Administering Property Acquired from Criminal Activity
 

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news-958Fri, 28 Oct 2011 13:17:00 +0300The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria and the Global Economic Crisishttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-hidden-economy-in-bulgaria-and-the-global-economic-crisis/This publication provides an overview of the hidden economy dynamics in Bulgaria. The authors make an analysis of the effects of the crisis on the labor market and undeclared work based on the results from the Hidden Economy Monitoring System.This publication provides an overview of the hidden economy dynamics in Bulgaria. The authors make an analysis of the effects of the crisis on the labor market and undeclared work based on the results from the Hidden Economy Monitoring System. After examining the European and the Bulgarian experience of the last five years, they make recommendations to the improvement of the public policies for reducing the hidden economy. The authors also justify the necessity of combining administrative control, socio-economic measures and structural reforms in the control administrations and the law enforcement agencies.


Press Conference: The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria 2002 - 2011: Policy Implications
Past events and publications on this topic

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news-961Wed, 17 Aug 2011 12:46:00 +0300Libya and Syria: the crisis of crisis managementhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/libya-and-syria-the-crisis-of-crisis-management/Text only in Bulgarian

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news-402Wed, 27 Jul 2011 03:00:00 +0300Green Energy Governance in Bulgaria at a Crossroadshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/green-energy-governance-in-bulgaria-at-a-crossroads/The current report reviews existing policies for energy sustainability in Bulgaria and the EU, the main achievementsand challenges in their implementation, and discusses the central issues to Bulgaria’s sustainable development agenda. The report presents a summary of the transition to sustainable development in Bulgaria, and offers policy recommendations for improving the governance of the Bulgarian green energy sector.The current report reviews existing policies for energy sustainability in Bulgaria and the EU, the main achievements and challenges in their implementation, and discusses the central issues to Bulgaria’s sustainable development agenda. The report presents a summary of the transition to sustainable development in Bulgaria, and offers policy recommendations for improving the governance of the Bulgarian green energy sector.

Achieving security, sustainability, and competitiveness in the energy sector is a daunting task for a union of twenty-seven states, especially since the issue of securing the supply of energy has traditionally been a national matter. In their drive to reach climate change and energy targets during the past decade, European governments have utilized quick fix solutions like turning to nuclear power or replacing coal with gas, thus burdening future generations with nuclear waste disposal and increasing EU’s energy dependence on Russia. Yet, two major events – the gas crisis of January 2009 and the Fukusima nuclear disaster of March 2011 – have reshaped the thinking and rekindled the debate on the ways of achieving energy security and stability of supply in Europe.

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news-963Sun, 10 Jul 2011 13:02:00 +0300Crime Trends in Bulgaria 2000 – 2010https://csd.bg/publications/publication/crime-trends-in-bulgaria-2000-2010/The present study examines crime trends in Bulgaria between 2000 and 2010 based on a comparison between surveys of crime victims (National Crime Survey) and police statistics. In addition to overall crime trends data, the report presents data on ten different categories of crime, as well as regional specifics of crime in Bulgaria. Criminal justice and socio-economic data is also analysed in an attempt to explain the observed trends in crime. The present study examines cime trends in Bulgaria between 2000 and 2010 based on a comparison between surveys of crime victims (National Crime Survey) and police statistics. In addition to overall crime trends data, the report presents data on ten different categories of crime, as well as regional specifics of crime in Bulgaria. Criminal justice and socio-economic data is also analysed in an attempt to explain the observed trends in crime.


Public Discussion: Dynamics of Conventional Crime in Bulgaria 2000-2010

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news-400Fri, 17 Jun 2011 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 30: Practices and Forms of Cooperation between Customs and Border Guards in the European Unionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-30-practices-and-forms-of-cooperation-between-customs-and-border-guards-in-the-eur/The economic crisis and the increased threats from terrorism, organised crime and illegal migration have brought to light the issue of efficient and effective management of the external borders of the European Union. For Bulgaria it has become even more important with regard to its upcoming accession to the Schengen area.
The economic crisis and the increased threats from terrorism, organised crime and illegal migration have brought to light the issue of efficient and effective management of the external borders of the European Union. For Bulgaria it has become even more important with regard to its upcoming accession to the Schengen area.

Round Table: Cooperation between Border Guards and Customs Administrations for Better Management of the External Borders of the European Union
 

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news-965Fri, 10 Jun 2011 13:53:00 +0300Sustainable development and good governance of the energy sector: national, regional and global perspectiveshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/sustainable-development-and-good-governance-of-the-energy-sector-national-regional-and-global-pers/Text only in Bulgarian

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news-973Wed, 08 Jun 2011 16:39:00 +0300Anti-Corruption in Public Procurement: Balancing the Policieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-corruption-in-public-procurement-balancing-the-policies/This paper analyzes the mechanisms of corruption in public procurement in the context of the EU policies in this area. The analysis focuses on the implications of governance failures in procurement as experienced in two countries of quite different corruption propensities – Norway and Bulgaria – for the European anti-corruption and public procurement policies. This paper analyzes the mechanisms of corruption in public procurement in the context of the EU policies in this area. The analysis focuses on the implications of governance failures in procurement as experienced in two countries of quite different corruption propensities – Norway and Bulgaria – for the European anti-corruption and public procurement policies. The paper intends to inform the development of the expected EU policy updates in these areas by analyzing the trade-offs that are necessitated when combining competition and anti-corruption goals.

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news-396Wed, 11 May 2011 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 29: Public Trust in the Criminal Justice System – an Instrument for Penal Policy Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-29-public-trust-in-the-criminal-justice-system-an-instrument-for-penal-policy-as/The policy brief presents the results of a survey of the public trust in the police and the courts in Bulgaria, the public perceptions of the level of corruption in these institutions and the fear of crime in the Bulgarian society.The policy brief presents the results of a survey of the public trust in the police and the courts in Bulgaria, the public perceptions of the level of corruption in these institutions and the fear of crime in the Bulgarian society.

Of all the EU member states, Bulgaria is the country whose citizens are the least satisfied with the performance of the main government institutions. Trust in the main institutions concerned with criminal justice – the police and courts, is low and has remained practically unchanged over the last decade. At the end of 2010, a positive evaluation of police performance was given by less than half of the country’s adult population and barely one in five gave a favorable opinion of the courts. The low public trust in the courts and police can also be accounted for by the high level of corruption in these institutions. It is also conducive to public attitudes of insecurity and the society begins to perceive crime as an inherent part of reality rather than a problem that can actually be addressed.

A state’s penal policy can only produce results if sufficient attention is paid to trust, legitimacy, and security. It is therefore recommended to adopt a system of indicators for the assessment of public trust in criminal justice.

Public discussion: Public Trust in the Criminal Justice System – an Instrument for Penal Policy Assessment

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news-394Fri, 15 Apr 2011 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 28: The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria after the Economic Crisishttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-28-the-hidden-economy-in-bulgaria-after-the-economic-crisis/Thе policy brief presents the dynamics and the components of the Hidden Economy Index 2010. It also examines the recent trends in the Bulgarian economic development and expected effects on the informal sector.Thе policy brief presents the dynamics and the components of the Hidden Economy Index 2010. It also examines the recent trends in the Bulgarian economic development and expected effects on the informal sector.

The dynamics of the hidden economy is an important indicator of the state of a country’s institutions as well as of its competitive potential. The hidden economy has a serious impact on private sector activities, the productivity and competitiveness of the workforce, on economic development and growth, as well as the social security and support systems of the country. According to different estimates about a third of the world’s GDP is within the “shadow turnover”. It is argued that the current financial and economic crisis will result in an increase in the hidden economy in most European countries. The recent debt crisis in Greece has exposed drastically the need to better account for and to grasp the implications of the existence on large hidden economy on economic performance. This is even more pressing in the light of achieving Europe 2020 results and calculating each country’s contribution to the European Stability Mechanism and the Euro Plus Pact.

Press Conference: The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria after the Economic Crisis, 15 April 2011

More on the Informal economy topic

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news-392Tue, 05 Apr 2011 03:00:00 +0300Penitentiary Policy аnd System in the Republic оf Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/penitentiary-policy-and-system-in-the-republic-of-bulgaria/The report explores the state of the penitentiary system in Bulgaria.
The report explores to what extent Bulgaria has introduced the European standards in the legal regulation of the prison system and the execution of the penal sanction of imprisonment, how are they implemented in practice, what is the State’s penal policy and strategy in this area in general and in respect to drug-addicted prisoners in particular, and what is the opinion of the people working in the penitentiary system and the non-governmental organizations monitoring the activities of penitentiary facilities.

Public Discussion: Judicial Reform and Execution of Penalties in the Republic of Bulgaria

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news-969Thu, 31 Mar 2011 16:03:00 +0300The situation in Syria and Libya: A comparative analysishttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-situation-in-syria-and-libya-a-comparative-analysis/Text only in Bulgarian

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news-971Tue, 22 Mar 2011 16:14:00 +0200The end of Jamahiriyahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-end-of-jamahiriya/Text only in Bulgarian

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news-390Wed, 09 Feb 2011 02:00:00 +0200Better Management of EU Borders through Cooperation https://csd.bg/publications/publication/better-management-of-eu-borders-through-cooperation/The study Better Management of EU Borders through Cooperation was commissioned by Directorate General ‘Home Affairs’ of the European Commission. CSD led a team of international experts to examine and identify the best practices of cooperation between Border Guards and Customs administrations working at the external borders of the European Union.The study Better Management of EU Borders through Cooperation was commissioned by Directorate General ‘Home Affairs’ of the European Commission. CSD led a team of international experts to examine and identify the best practices of cooperation between Border Guards and Customs administrations working at the external borders of the European Union. During the yearlong effort, the CSD team interviewed representatives of all customs and border guard agencies of EU Member States. In twelve Member States the CSD team visited 25 land border crossings, ports, and airports to discuss with Customs and Border Guard officers how the cooperation between them takes place in practice. The study examines eleven particular areas of cooperation including: strategic planning, information exchange, workflow coordination at Border Crossing Points (BCP), risk analysis, criminal investigations, joint operations, control over ‘green’ and ‘blue’ borders, emergency situations, infrastructure and equipment sharing, and training and human resource management.

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news-967Tue, 18 Jan 2011 14:33:00 +0200Energy and Good Governance in Bulgaria. Trends and Policy Optionshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/energy-and-good-governance-in-bulgaria-trends-and-policy-options/The report explores the major deficiencies in the strategic, institutional, and legal framework of the Bulgarian energy sector. The analysis of the management of state-owned energy companies and large energy infrastructure projects reveals the disregard for even the most fundamental principles of accountability and control in their planning and implementation. The report explores the major deficiencies in the strategic, institutional, and legal framework of the Bulgarian energy sector. The analysis of the management of state-owned energy companies and large energy infrastructure projects reveals the disregard for even the most fundamental principles of accountability and control in their planning and implementation. This has affected negatively the Bulgarian taxpayers and consumers, has jeopardized the financial stability of the state-owned energy companies, and, ultimately, has reduced the energy security of the country. The report recommends that the implementation of the large energy infrastructure projects be reconsidered and be based on a sound cost-benefit analysis with regard to Bulgaria’s energy security.

Policy Forum: Energy and Good Governance in Bulgaria: Trends and Policy Options, 18 January 2011

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news-386Fri, 19 Nov 2010 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 27: Developing an EU Competence in Measuring Corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-27-developing-an-eu-competence-in-measuring-corruption/The policy paper provides overvew of the evolution of the EU anti-corruption agenda and the practices in monitoring and measuring corruption. It also provides recommendations for the development of an EU competence in measuring corruption, including a corruption measurement facility for the EU. The problem of corruption has been occupying the minds of policy makers, analysts and the public all over the world for quite some time now. In the EU, it has been on the agenda since the mid 1990s, the focus on it possibly sharpened by the two latest waves of enlargement.

The policy paper provides overview of the evolution of the EU anti-corruption agenda and the practices in monitoring and measuring corruption. It also provides recommendations for the development of an EU competence in measuring corruption, including a corruption measurement facility for the EU.

CSD Contribution to the EU Consultation on a future reporting and monitoring mechanism on EU Member states progress on fighting corruption

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news-384Tue, 16 Nov 2010 02:00:00 +0200Policy Brief No. 26: Organised Crime and Corruption: National Characteristics and Policies of the EU Member-Stateshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-26-organised-crime-and-corruption-national-characteristics-and-policies-of-the-eu/The European Commission (EC) contracted the Centerfor the Study of Democracy (CSD) to analyse the linksbetween organised crime and corruption.The European Commission (EC) contracted the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) to analyse the links between organised crime and corruption. The main objectives of the study were to identify:



Round Table: Corruption without Boundaries: The Link between Corruption and Organized Crime in the EU

  • causes and factors that engender corruption by organised crime (including white-collar criminals)
  • the scope and the impact of that corruption on society and institutions;
  • organised crime’s main corruption schemes, the areas or risks they create, and the related differences amongst European Union (EU) Member States (MS);
  • best practices in prevention and countering corruption linked to organized crime; framework for a future assessment of trends in the link between organized crime and corruption, as well as corresponding counter measures.
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news-985Mon, 15 Nov 2010 23:03:00 +0200CSD Contribution to the EU Consultation on a future reporting and monitoring mechanism on EU Member states progress on fighting corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-contribution-to-the-eu-consultation-on-a-future-reporting-and-monitoring-mechanism-on-eu-member/The document presents the Responses by the Center for the Study of Democracy to the questionnaire for the Consultation on a future reporting and monitoring mechanism on EU Member states progress on fighting corruption. The document presents the Responses by the Center for the Study of Democracy to the questionnaire for the Consultation on a future reporting and monitoring mechanism on EU Member states progress on fighting corruption.

The questionnaire gathers opinions on the establishment of a reporting mechanism on the fight against corruption in the EU-27, the relevant anti-corruption measures, the proposed tools to gather data on corruption across the EU, the vulnerable to corruption sectors, etc.

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news-974Thu, 30 Sep 2010 18:32:00 +0300Civil Society in Bulgaria: Trends and Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/civil-society-in-bulgaria-trends-and-risks/The current analysis depicts the major trends in and risks to the development of civil society in Bulgaria. The suggested legislative changes and measures target state and municipal structures related to non-profit organizations. In addition, this paper outlines measures aimed at self-regulation and greater transparency in the "third sector".The current analysis depicts the major trends in and risks to the development of civil society in Bulgaria. Three groups of risks are identified related to the establishment of public-private partnerships, the capture of civil society by politicians at local and national level, and the nature of commercial activities performed by non-profit organizations. The suggested legislative changes and measures target state and municipal structures related to non-profit organizations. In addition, this paper outlines measures aimed at self-regulation and greater transparency in the "third sector".

Presentation of the report: Civil Society in Bulgaria: Trends and Risks, 30 September 2010
Media coverage (in Bulgarian)

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news-380Tue, 20 Jul 2010 03:00:00 +0300Bulgaria goes ‘green’?https://csd.bg/publications/publication/bulgaria-goes-green/Bulgaria’s energy sector suffers from deep governance and security challenges, which hold the first pages of the mainstream media in the past year with stories of fraud, nepotism and political corruption. The urge for action to transform the sector’s governance and open up markets for competition has been growing louder in the face of shrinking resources and increasing demands from different lobbies. The EU green policies and funding have been one of the precious few anchors, which the Bulgarian government should use to diversify its energy sources and liberalize its markets. Can the Bulgarian government really deliver for the benefit of its citizens? Bulgaria’s energy sector suffers from deep governance and security challenges, which hold the first pages of the mainstream media in the past year with stories of fraud, nepotism and political corruption. The urge for action to transform the sector’s governance and open up markets for competition has been growing louder in the face of shrinking resources and increasing demands from different lobbies. The EU green policies and funding have been one of the precious few anchors, which the Bulgarian government should use to diversify its energy sources and liberalize its markets. Can the Bulgarian government really deliver for the benefit of its citizens?

 

CSD Policy Brief No 25: The Green Element in the Sustainable Energy Policies of Europe

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news-382Tue, 20 Jul 2010 03:00:00 +0300The Energy Sector in Bulgaria: Major Governance Issueshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-energy-sector-in-bulgaria-major-governance-issues/The report analyses the major governance issues of the energy sector in Bulgaria, as well as the common energy crimes. It makes an overview of the 2020 Strategy and presents a recommended governance approach.
Contents

The report analyses the major governance issues of the energy sector in Bulgaria, as well as the common energy crimes. It makes an overview of the 2020 Strategy and presents a recommended governance approach.

The Bulgarian energy sector is key for the future development of the country’s economy. For the past decade energy exports and imports formed on average 12% (16% in 2008) and 21% (22% in 2008) of the value of the country’s outgoing and incoming trade flows respectively. Every fourth public procurement contract is concluded in the energy sector, making it one of the biggest taxpayers’ money spenders in the country. In 2008, in a single year, the Bulgarian government committed to energy projects, requiring budgetary investments equal in value to the whole EU funds support for the country for the current European seven year budget period 2007 – 2013.

Energy Security subpage

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news-656Fri, 16 Jul 2010 03:00:00 +0300Examining the links between organised crime and corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/examining-the-links-between-organised-crime-and-corruption/The study Examining the links between organised crime and corruption was commissioned by the European Commission (DG JLS). This is the first study that examines systematically across all 27 EU Member States how organised crime uses corruption as a tool. The study is based on more than 150 interviews with corruption specialists (police, prosecutors, criminologists, and fraud specialists). More than 120 statistical and survey indicators on corruption and organised crime were analysed to examine the trends and patterns in organised crime’s use of corruption.The study Examining the links between organised crime and corruption was commissioned by the European Commission (DG JLS). This is the first study that examines systematically across all 27 EU Member States how organised crime uses corruption as a tool. The study is based on more than 150 interviews with corruption specialists (police, prosecutors, criminologists, and fraud specialists). More than 120 statistical and survey indicators on corruption and organised crime were analysed to examine the trends and patterns in organised crime’s use of corruption.

The study focuses on how organised and white collar criminals use corruption to target public institutions (politicians, police, judiciary, and customs), as well as how it is used for the operation of key criminal markets (cigarettes, drugs, prostitution, car-theft, and extortion-racketeering). The study also examines how private sector company employees are corrupted by organised criminals. Although the study does not map the specifics of how corruption is used in each EU Member State, six in-depth studies (on Bulgaria, France, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, and Spain) provide a more in-depth look in the situation in these countries.

The study was presented in April 2010 at a meeting organised by the EC to representatives of ministries of interior of all 27 EU Member States. In July 2010, the study was presented at a hearing of the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) of the European Parliament.
 

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news-978Sun, 11 Jul 2010 23:20:00 +0300Commentary on the draft Energy Strategy of Bulgaria 2020https://csd.bg/publications/publication/commentary-on-the-draft-energy-strategy-of-bulgaria-2020/Text only in Bulgarian

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news-976Fri, 25 Jun 2010 05:14:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 25: The Green Element in the Sustainable Energy Policies of Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-25-the-green-element-in-the-sustainable-energy-policies-of-europe/Main purpose of this study is to review and discuss the development of regulation at EU level to guide corresponding national legislation and policies designed to address the challenges of sustainable development, notably those on the environment dimension and as regards to the most relevant economic sector – energy. Main purpose of this study is to review and discuss the development of regulation at EU level to guide corresponding national legislation and policies designed to address the challenges of sustainable development, notably those on the environment dimension and as regards to the most relevant economic sector – energy. The paper will briefly examine the development of the idea and strategy for sustainable development in Europe over time, the concrete EU legislation and instruments to facilitate national policies to support such development.

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news-378Fri, 18 Jun 2010 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 24: Introducing Organized Crime Threat Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-24-introducing-organized-crime-threat-assessment/During the past decade organised crime threats have taken on an increasing importance and have become central to the national and EU policy debates on domestic security and citizen safety. The dynamics of globalisation combined with the dismantlement of the Iron Curtain in the heart of Europe led to growing cross-border flows of people, goods, money and information. During the past decade organised crime threats have taken on an increasing importance and have become central to the national and EU policy debates on domestic security and citizen safety. The dynamics of globalisation combined with the dismantlement of the Iron Curtain in the heart of Europe led to growing cross-border flows of people, goods, money and information. On the other hand East European transition was marked from its start by a fast rise of criminality, which soon translated into unprecedented levels of transnational organised crime across Europe. Further to that the growing complexity of financial markets created opportunities for white collar criminals, adding some hitherto unknown criminal phenomena.

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news-986Tue, 15 Jun 2010 23:13:00 +0300The Cooperation and Verification Mechanism Three Years Later: What Has Been Done and What Is Yet to Comehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-cooperation-and-verification-mechanism-three-years-later-what-has-been-done-and-what-is-yet-to/On 1 January 2007 Bulgaria became a member of the European Union. However, according to the European Commission, the country’s judicial system and law enforcement bodies still lacked the necessary capacity to implement and apply the measures adopted to establish the internal market and the area of freedom, security and justice. The remaining issues warranted the establishment of a mechanism for cooperation and verification of the progress of Bulgaria to address specific benchmarks in the areas of judicial reform and the fight against corruption and organised crime.On 1 January 2007 Bulgaria became a member of the European Union. However, according to the European Commission, the country’s judicial system and law enforcement bodies still lacked the necessary capacity to implement and apply the measures adopted to establish the internal market and the area of freedom, security and justice. The remaining issues warranted the establishment of a mechanism for cooperation and verification of the progress of Bulgaria to address specific benchmarks in the areas of judicial reform and the fight against corruption and organised crime.

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news-980Fri, 11 Jun 2010 23:34:00 +0300Organised Crime Threat Assessment: Methodological Problems and International Experiencehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/organised-crime-threat-assessment-methodological-problems-and-international-experience/The report contains methodology models and samples used for the assessment of threats associated with organised crime as well as official documents of EU member states combining the analysis of criminal phenomena with forecasts and recommendations for counteractions to be taken by national bodies and specialized European organizations such as Europol. The report contains methodology models and samples used for the assessment of threats associated with organised crime as well as official documents of EU member states combining the analysis of criminal phenomena with forecasts and recommendations for counteractions to be taken by national bodies and specialized European organizations such as Europol.

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news-376Mon, 31 May 2010 03:00:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 23: Energy Efficiency in Bulgaria: The Case for Market-Based Approach and Transparencyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-23-energy-efficiency-in-bulgaria-the-case-for-market-based-approach-and-transpare/Measured by using market currency exchange rates, Bulgaria has consistently ranked as the most energy intensive economy in the EU: in 2007, it used over a ton of oil equivalent to produce 1,000 Euro worth of gross product. Even though still negligible by any standard, Bulgaria’s energy efficiency has actually improved by about 50% since 1996 and has been on an uninterrupted path to a change for the better by about 5% per year.Measured by using market currency exchange rates, Bulgaria has consistently ranked as the most energy intensive economy in the EU: in 2007, it used over a ton of oil equivalent to produce 1,000 Euro worth of gross product. Measured by using purchasing power parity, Bulgaria’s energy intensity is still dismal, around 600 kg of oil equivalent per 1,000 Euro of product. Even though still negligible by any standard, Bulgaria’s energy efficiency has actually improved by about 50% since 1996 and has been on an uninterrupted path to a change for the better by about 5% per year.

Overall, the Bulgarian economy seems to have completed the transition from heavy industry to less energy intensive light industry and thus already picked the low hanging fruit of natural gains in efficiency. The country is probably at a point, as some experts argue, from which onwards any additional gain in efficiency will have to be attained through advances in technologies of energy production, conversion, transportation, and use which will call for cost-effective approach and a strong incentive system.

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news-983Sat, 22 May 2010 22:34:00 +0300Policy Brief No. 22: Energy Sector in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/policy-brief-no-22-energy-sector-in-bulgaria/The brief "The Energy Sector of Bulgaria" is elaborated jointly by the Center for the Study of Democracy and the Atlantic Council of US. It presents the main challenges that the energy sector in Bulgaria faces.The brief "The Energy Sector of Bulgaria" is elaborated jointly by the Center for the Study of Democracy and the Atlantic Council of US. It presents the main challenges that the energy sector in Bulgaria faces.

By virtue of its geography, Bulgaria finds itself in a difficult nexus, drawn into Eurasia’s contentious energy geopolitics and as a European Union member, involved in the Union’s fragmented energy policy and complex regulatory, energy efficiency and climate change objectives. That position is challenging, but it also presents decision-makers in Sofia with opportunities.

Round table: Energy Policy and Energy Diversification, 18 May 2010

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news-372Mon, 19 Apr 2010 03:00:00 +0300Media note: Exposing Bad Governance in the Energy Sector: Reinventing the Wheel?https://csd.bg/publications/publication/media-note-exposing-bad-governance-in-the-energy-sector-reinventing-the-wheel/During the first two weeks of April 2010 the Bulgarian government and media announced details of abuses and irregularities in the Bulgarian energy sector and proposed ideas for restructuring, which confirmed the existance of serious governance problems in the sector. These findings are not new. In 2006 - 2007, during a previous public outcry, which led to the resignation of the then Energy Minister, the Center for the Study of Democracy published a detailed analysis of the most common bad management practices in the energy sector. The conclusions and recommendations of this analysis apply with full force today.During the first two weeks of April 2010 the Bulgarian government and media announced details of abuses and irregularities in the Bulgarian energy sector and proposed ideas for restructuring, which confirmed the existance of serious governance problems in the sector. These findings are not new. In 2006 - 2007, during a previous public outcry, which led to the resignation of the then Energy Minister, the Center for the Study of Democracy published a detailed analysis of the most common bad management practices in the energy sector. The conclusions and recommendations of this analysis apply with full force today. CSD has summarized them in this media note and with reference to the original analysis.

Media Coverage (in Bulgarian)

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news-3Mon, 15 Feb 2010 01:00:00 +0200CSD Brief No 21: Investigation of Money Laundering: An Institutional Approachhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-21-investigation-of-money-laundering-an-institutional-approach/The policy brief makes an overview of the organized crime, corruption and money-laundering in Bulgaria. According to the authors, in spite of several legislative initiatives and a growing amount of prosecutorial decrees for money-laundering in the last decade, the prosecution for this type of crime in Bulgaria remains insignificant.Organized crime in Bulgaria is quick to adapt to the new realities and by and large enters the legal economy by legalizing capital accrued from criminal activities. This process poses a significant threat to the country: while in developed democracies money-laundering is carried out through the complex financial operations or investments in the legal economy (for instance through the purchasing of real estate and movables), in Bulgaria money-laundering takes on a specific form – political investment.

The policy brief makes an overview of the organized crime, corruption and money-laundering in Bulgaria. According to the authors, in spite of several legislative initiatives and a growing amount of prosecutorial decrees for money-laundering in the last decade, the prosecution for this type of crime in Bulgaria remains insignificant. The complexity of the crime, the objective difficulties for its investigation, as well as the necessary inter-institutional approach on an international level to combat such activities explain the relatively small number of prosecutions.

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news-2Mon, 08 Feb 2010 11:52:00 +0200Monitoring and Assessment of Public Policies and Programmeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/monitoring-and-assessment-of-public-policies-and-programmes/The report entitled Monitoring and Assessment of Public Policies and Programmes reviews the methods for monitoring the activity of the public sector, central and regional authorities and public-private partnerships.The report entitled Monitoring and Assessment of Public Policies and Programmes (available in Bulgarian only) reviews the methods for monitoring the activity of the public sector, central and regional authorities and public-private partnerships.

The systematic and thorough use of integrated tools for the monitoring and evaluation of public policies and programs is yet to become the norm in Bulgaria. The underestimating of the importance of these practices is one of the reasons for the relatively low level of preparedness of the country in adjusting to the requirements and challenges of EU membership. The lack of monitoring and evaluation of public policies and programs leads to many problems, e.g. related to the mismanagement of EU pre-accession and structural funds, the implementation of the harmonized European legislation, the capacity of the Bulgarian administration. In this context, the knowledge and use of these methods and techniques is a prerequisite for sound, effective and accountable governance. They are also needed for increased public participation and involvement of all stakeholders in the development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of public policies and programs.

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news-320Wed, 06 Jan 2010 02:00:00 +0200Are Bulgarian consumers willing to pay for clean energy?https://csd.bg/publications/publication/are-bulgarian-consumers-willing-to-pay-for-clean-energy-1/Bulgarian households pay the lowest price of electricity in Europe in absolute terms. Price increases are inevitable to cover costs of new investments in production and transmission. Bulgaria has signed binding agreements within the European Union to achieve 16% of final or energy consumption from renewable energy sources (RES) by 2020, which will bring further pressure on prices for final consumers. Are Bulgarian households ready to foot the bill of more expensive electricity?Bulgarian households pay the lowest price of electricity in Europe in absolute terms. Price increases are inevitable to cover costs of new investments in production and transmission. Bulgaria has signed binding agreements within the European Union to achieve 16% of final or energy consumption from renewable energy sources (RES) by 2020, which will bring further pressure on prices for final consumers. Are Bulgarian households ready to foot the bill of more expensive electricity? How much more are they willing to fork out of their budget for green energy?

A mere 13% of Bulgarian households are willing to pay extra for clean energy. Of those 82.5% would only bear a modest increase in their electricity bills – with up to 10%. Willingness to pay a ‘green energy premium’ is directly linked to the level of income. Low income households support cheaper although ‘dirtier’ energy. 63% of the population has used wood for heating, which remains the cheapest energy source. This shows that sustainable development through RES is not readily supported by Bulgarian consumers and there is a need of economic stimuli and campaigns to activate people and businesses in that direction. The Bulgarian government needs to balance carefully between new investments and the effects of price increases on socially and energy vulnerable members of society.

Media Coverage (in Bulgarian)

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news-987Sun, 20 Dec 2009 23:50:00 +0200CSD Brief No 20: Policies to Counter the Effects of the Economic Crisis: Hidden Economy Dynamics 2009https://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-20-policies-to-counter-the-effects-of-the-economic-crisis-hidden-economy-dynamics-200/The policy brief focuses on the impact of the governemnt measures put forward to counter the economic crisis and their effect on the hidden economy. The hidden economy has been a central topic for discussion in the public space upon each amendment to the economic legislation and particularly before elections or the passing of the national budget. The policy brief focuses on the impact of the governemnt measures put forward to counter the economic crisis and their effect on the hidden economy. The hidden economy has been a central topic for discussion in the public space upon each amendment to the economic legislation and particularly before elections or the passing of the national budget. Nevertheless, aside from the Annual Hidden Economy Index released by the Center for the Study of Democracy and a few sporadic analyses by other non-governmental, academic and business organizations, there is a lack of an adequate government system of ex ante and ex post impact assessment of the proposed measures to fight hidden activities of the wider economy. The adjustments of GDP done by the National Statistical Institute aiming to include hidden economy in the system of national accounts are not made public and do not serve as a basis for decision-making. Thus, public debates on hidden economy become little more than displays of rhetorical skills or actually serve completely different agendas rather than the implementation of measures to curb its negative impact.

The current analysis aims to outline a framework for policy assessment in the area of hidden economy by providing:
1.) an overview of the main macroeconomic imbalances related to the presence of hidden economy;
2.) the Hidden Economy Index values for 2002-2009;
3.) a summary of the measures to tackle hidden economy proposed in the past three years and a commentary on the expected effectiveness of the latest package of measures proposed by the Bulgarian Government.

Round Table: The Hidden Economy in Bulgaria: Policy Responses to the Economic Crisis, 10 December 2009

Seminar: The Informal Economy in Bulgaria in a Crisis: New Trends and Methods of Measuring, 27 February 2009

Round table: The informal economy in Bulgaria: Policy responses in an economic crisis, 3 December 2008

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news-318Wed, 09 Dec 2009 02:00:00 +0200CSD Brief No 19: Energy Strategy of Bulgaria 2020: A Better Governance Perspectivehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-19-energy-strategy-of-bulgaria-2020-a-better-governance-perspective/Energy is a key sector for Bulgarian economy, both because of its size and because of its importance to national competitiveness. This requires decisions to be made on the basis of reliable and accessible data, broad based discussions and clearly identified strategic priorities, which rely on established practices and mechanisms for good governance.Energy is a key sector for Bulgarian economy, both because of its size and because of its importance to national competitiveness. This requires decisions to be made on the basis of reliable and accessible data, broad based discussions and clearly identified strategic priorities, which rely on established practices and mechanisms for good governance. The latest strategic document at national level is the Bulgarian Energy Strategy from 2002. Without updating it, the Bulgarian government has committed in the years following its EU accession to substantial investments with long-term impact on the energy sector, which is a vivid example of failure in good governance. Bulgaria’s membership in the European Union (EU), climate change negotiations, the financial and economic crisis and Bulgaria’s inclusion in several international investment projects have changed the conditions for the development of Bulgaria’s energy sector. These latest developments require updating of the national energy strategy and providing for better and transparent governance in the sector.

Media Coverage (in Bulgarian)

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news-316Mon, 07 Dec 2009 02:00:00 +0200Copenhagen 2009: Outliers among CO2 emitters: choose your pickhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/copenhagen-2009-outliers-among-co2-emitters-choose-your-pick/Bulgaria needs to take decisive actions in improving the energy efficiency of its industrial and energy production and in introducing green technologies and further measures for sustainable consumer behavior. But how much is it willing to pay for it?Reaching an agreement at the Copenhagen conference on climate change starting on 7 December 2009 will be tough. Everyone is a sinner in a way: (1) the main advocates of binding agreement on climate change such as the European countries (EU plus Norway) and Japan are big emitters, taken together; (2) the main suspects - US and China are the biggest emitters, each in its own different way and are seen as dragging their feet over target agreements; (3) the rest are falling in between with less access to novel technologies and gaping inefficiencies in their economies.

Bulgaria has evidently fulfilled its target commitments under Kyoto and it is a small emitter. Nevertheless, Bulgaria remains more carbon-intensive than China as per capita and than US as per GDP. Its inefficient economy, however, holds considerable potential for a greener future. This is particularly true for its industry. Bulgaria needs to take decisive actions in improving the energy efficiency of its industrial and energy production and in introducing green technologies and further measures for sustainable consumer behavior. But how much is it willing to pay for it?
 

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news-990Sun, 18 Oct 2009 22:39:00 +0300CSD Brief No 18: Better Governance for Sustainable Energy Sector of Bulgaria: Diversification and Securityhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-18-better-governance-for-sustainable-energy-sector-of-bulgaria-diversification-and-se/The Policy Brief focuses on the Bulgarian energy sector, which has historically been and will remain of strategic importance for the country’s economic development and national security, especially in the context of growing EU and Balkan markets.The Policy Brief focuses on the Bulgarian energy sector, which has historically been and will remain of strategic importance for the country’s economic development and national security, especially in the context of growing EU and Balkan markets. However, recent shifts in the world’s economy, policy, regional dynamics, and geo-political situation are the driving factors necessitating the need to introduce major reforms focused on a transparent, diversified, efficient, and market based energy sector in Bulgaria. Bulgaria needs to actively participate in the European and international energy debate and to address the whole complex of energy related policies.

Round table: Energy Diversification and Energy Security, 5 October 2009
Media Coverage (In Bulgarian)

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news-314Tue, 01 Sep 2009 03:00:00 +0300Review of Need: Indicators of Public Confidence in Criminal Justice for Policy Assessmenthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/review-of-need-indicators-of-public-confidence-in-criminal-justice-for-policy-assessment/In September 2009 a report, entitled ‘Review of Need: Indicators of Public Confidence in Criminal Justice for Policy Assessment’ came out, published by the European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control, Affiliated with the United Nations (HEUNI). The publication is the first volume of the working papers of the EUROJUSTIS project, designed to provide EU institutions and Member States with new indicators for assessing public confidence in justice. It is a result of the implementation of one of the project’s specific objectives: to assess the perceived need for European social indicators of public confidence in justice for policy assessment and to examine the state of current tools. The working paper was jointly prepared and edited by experts from the Law Program of the Center for the Study of Democracy and from HEUNI, since the Center was leading the project partners’ effort for needs assessment.In September 2009 a report, entitled ‘Review of Need: Indicators of Public Confidence in Criminal Justice for Policy Assessment’came out, published by the European Institute for Crime Prevention and Control, Affiliated with the United Nations (HEUNI). The publication is the first volume of the working papers of the EUROJUSTIS project, designed to provide EU institutions and Member States with new indicators for assessing public confidence in justice. It is a result of the implementation of one of the project’s specific objectives: to assess the perceived need for European social indicators of public confidence in justice for policy assessment and to examine the state of current tools. The working paper was jointly prepared and edited by experts from the Law Program of the Center for the Study of Democracy and from HEUNI, since the Center was leading the project partners’ effort for needs assessment.

The publication contains three parts. The first part contains a joint report on the review of importance of public confidence as a tool for policy assessment in the countries participating in EUROJUSTIS, carried out by interviewing experts such as scientists, criminal justice managers and government officials. The second part comprises country reviews on literature and current indicators of confidence in justice and fear of crime. The third part of the report is a review on current indicators of public confidence on a supra-national level, assessing the measurement of confidence in justice in international initiatives such as the International Crime Victimisation Survey and the European Social Survey.
 

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news-992Tue, 25 Aug 2009 23:52:00 +0300Police in the Modern Society: The Necessary Reform in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/police-in-the-modern-society-the-necessary-reform-in-bulgaria/The issues of security and rule of law are central for the development of societies and their prosperity. The level of security provided by the state is an important prerequisite for the quantity and quality of investments coming into the economy. The issues of security and rule of law are central for the development of societies and their prosperity. The level of security provided by the state is an important prerequisite for the quantity and quality of investments coming into the economy. The personal safety of citizens frees and energizes their creative capabilities. Establishing the rule of law will factor in significantly for the rise of trust in Bulgaria on the international scene, and particularly among its partners from the European Union.

The police guarantees the security and public order in the country. By law it is obligated to counteract crime and protect citizens’ rights and freedoms, to preserve their life, health and property.

A few of the Bulgarian policemen continue to work and live with the understanding of being part of a power structure, established to exercise mainly repressive functions. These views are being shared to a great extent by the political class and by society as a whole. This is not the case with developed democracies, in which police is perceived as a state authority designed and bound to provide citizens with security services.

Media Coverage (in Bulgaria)

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news-312Sat, 22 Aug 2009 03:00:00 +0300Conventional Crime in Bulgaria: Levels and Trendshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/conventional-crime-in-bulgaria-levels-and-trends/Conventional crime constitutes the main share of crimes committed in Bulgaria. Its level and trends define the condition and changes in the general criminological situation in the country. The necessity of increasing the law enforcement authorities’ efficiency in countering crime has become one of the highest priorities in Bulgaria after the country’s entry into the European Union.Conventional crime constitutes the main share of crimes committed in Bulgaria. Its level and trends define the condition and changes in the general criminological situation in the country. The necessity of increasing the law enforcement authorities’ efficiency in countering crime has become one of the highest priorities in Bulgaria after the country’s entry into the European Union. In these conditions, the assessment of conventional crime levels in the country, as well as the performance assessment of the police, is no longer the sole monopoly of the relevant specialized state institutions. The above facts necessitate all the more that conventional crime be assessed in its dynamics by applying generally recognized standards, criteria and approaches.

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news-838Wed, 28 Jan 2009 13:24:00 +0200Crime without Punishment: Countering Corruption and Organized Crime in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/crime-without-punishment-countering-corruption-and-organized-crime-in-bulgaria/The report provides an overview of the state and dynamics of the corruption in Bulgaria as well as of the Bulgarian anticorruption policy and initiatives during the first two years of Bulgaria`s EU membership. This period can be described with a high rate of crimes without punishment such as political corruption and organized crime. This report explores the facets and sources of political corruption in Bulgaria. It tracks the dynamics of the hidden economy in the country and the main channels for corrupt interaction between business and politics.The report provides an overview of the state and dynamics of the corruption in Bulgaria as well as of the Bulgarian anticorruption policy and initiatives during the first two years of Bulgaria`s EU membership. This period can be described with a high rate of crimes without punishment such as political corruption and organized crime. This report explores the facets and sources of political corruption in Bulgaria. It tracks the dynamics of the hidden economy in the country and the main channels for corrupt interaction between business and politics.

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news-306Mon, 21 Jul 2008 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 17: Bulgaria and the Multiannual Community Programme on Protecting Children Using the Internethttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-17-bulgaria-and-the-multiannual-community-programme-on-protecting-children-using-the-i/In February 2008 the European Commission (EC) adopted a Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a Multiannual Community Programme on Protecting Children Using the Internet and Other Communication Technologies - COM (2008) 106.In February 2008 the European Commission (EC) adopted a Proposal for a Decision of the European Parliament and of the Council establishing a Multiannual Community Programme on Protecting Children Using the Internet and Other Communication Technologies - COM (2008) 106. It aims at ensuring the continuation and expansion of the activities under the Safer Internet Action Plan (1999–2004) and the Safer Internet (1999-2005) and Safer Internet plus (2005-2008) programmes, which are seen as a success in the development and implementation of a Pan-European policy for stimulating the use of the Internet by children and fighting the illegal and harmful content therein.

This policy brief presents the main points of the proposed Decision, the achievements of the public-private partnerships in Bulgaria under the previous two EU programmes on Safer Internet, as well as the recommendations of the experts of the Center for the Study of Democracy and the Applied Research and Communications Fund as to Bulgaria’s position on the proposed Decision and the legislative and practical measures, which the country may undertake to further promote safer use and counteraction of crimes and offences on the Internet.

Round Table on Public-Private Partnerships in the Area of Safer Internet Use

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news-304Mon, 02 Jun 2008 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 16: Bulgaria and the Lisbon Strategy: Challenges and Opportunitieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-16-bulgaria-and-the-lisbon-strategy-challenges-and-opportunities/The policy brief makes an overview of the European Commission’s assessment and recommendations in regard to the Lisbon Strategy and the National Reform Programme of Bulgaria. Based on the analysis the authors recommend a number of specific measures for policy improvement.The policy brief makes an overview of the European Commission’s assessment and recommendations in regard to the Lisbon Strategy and the National Reform Programme of Bulgaria. Based on CSD analyses of Bulgaria's competitiveness and good governance the brief recommends a number of specific measures for policy improvement. The most important are:

  • Creating a Coordinating unit of the National Reform Programme of Bulgaria;
  • Focusing the National Reform Programme’s priorities on: competitiveness and innovations, improving the business environment, decreasing corruption and grey economy.

The policy brief was presented at a meeting of the Public Consultations Council to the European Affairs Committee to the National Assembly.

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news-302Tue, 27 May 2008 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 15: Levelling the Playing Field in Bulgaria. How Public and Private Institutions Can Partner for Effective Policies Targeting Grey Economy and Corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-15-levelling-the-playing-field-in-bulgaria-how-public-and-private-institutions-can-pa/This policy brief outlines the result of the consultations, which the Center for the Study of Democracy held with representatives of business and government on the feasibility of public-private partnerships in promoting a level paying field in Bulgaria. This policy brief outlines the result of the consultations, which the Center for the Study of Democracy held with representatives of business and government on the feasibility of public-private partnerships in promoting a level paying field in Bulgaria. Its findings seek to inform further discussions with Bulgarian and international stakeholders on the modalities of possible future initiatives in this area on the example of public policy on the grey economy.

If the efforts of the Bulgarian government and the business community to reduce the adverse impact of grey economy on the nation’s welfare are to succeed they need to bring on board the experience from successful coalition building for good governance from the non-government sector, based on best international practices. International experience has revealed that there are no easy fixes to pervasive grey economy and corruption. This brief proposes an overview of measures undertaken thus far to tackle the grey economy in Bulgaria and outlines a possible platform for engagement of the business, NGO and government sectors for long-term partnership for leveling the paying field in the country.

Round Table Discussion: Grey Economy: Trends and Challenges, 27 May 2008

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news-995Wed, 21 May 2008 11:40:00 +0300Democracy that Delivers: Unlocking the Potential of Transitionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/democracy-that-delivers-unlocking-the-potential-of-transition/This publication contains the materials from an international conference, “Democracy that Delivers”, held on May 21, 2008, in Sofia.This publication contains the materials from an international conference, “Democracy that Delivers”, held on May 21, 2008, in Sofia.

The construction of democracy has never been an easy undertaking. The constant trade-offs between openness and security, oversight and efficiency, between pluralism and the need for consensus on strategic reforms make sure that democracy is never taken for granted. Its advancement becomes all the more difficult when– in times of transition from repressive regimes – it is associated with great expectations that have to be met within short periods of time. The massive transformation from authoritarian regimes to open access societies that was prompted by the fall of communism required the unbundling of the concept of democracy. Reforms had to be sequenced, the provisions of public goods prioritized, the need for various institutions demonstrated. Post-communist transition became a giant laboratory for the engineering of democratic governance.

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news-300Fri, 25 Apr 2008 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 14: Criminal Justice and Law Enforcement along Bulgaria's Borders: The Impact of EU Accessionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-14-criminal-justice-and-law-enforcement-along-bulgarias-borders-the-impact-of-eu-acc/Enhanced criminal justice and improved cross-border cooperation between judicial and law enforcement authorities are essential for the EU and its Member States in order to effectively respond to the increasing threat of cross-border criminality. This policy brief is a follow up to the 2007 CSD report Reinforcing Criminal Justice in Border Districts and examines the attitude of and measures undertaken by the relevant stakeholders as regards the policy recommendations formulated by the report.Enhanced criminal justice and improved cross-border cooperation between judicial and law enforcement authorities are essential for the EU and its Member States in order to effectively respond to the increasing threat of cross-border criminality. The last two EU enlargements resulted in significant changes in the Union’s external borders. Some of the countries that used to have such borders are now neighbors to other EU Member States. Their responsibilities regarding the security at the external borders are gradually transferred to new Member States which have become the outermost countries of the Union. The duties of these countries on protecting the external borders are yet to increase substantially. Further to Bulgaria's accession to the European Union, the country's frontiers with Turkey, Macedonia and Serbia, as well as its Black Sea border, have become external borders of the EU. Hence, border crossing-related criminal offences and customs violations no longer represent a problem of Bulgarian national security alone: they have turned into a problem of EU security.

This policy brief is a follow up to the 2007 CSD report Reinforcing Criminal Justice in Border Districts and examines the attitude of and measures undertaken by the relevant stakeholders as regards the policy recommendations formulated by the report.

Round Table: Reinforcing Criminal Justice in Border Districts
Report: Reinforcing Criminal Justice in Border Districts

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news-295Fri, 04 Jan 2008 02:00:00 +0200CSD Brief No 13: Effective Policies Targeting the Corruption – Organized Crime Nexus in Bulgaria: Closing Down Duty-Free Outletshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-13-effective-policies-targeting-the-corruption-organized-crime-nexus-in-bulgaria-cl/The policy brief examines duty-free trade in Bulgaria in regard to turnover and tax revenue losses from the operation of the duty-free outlets. It also analyses the regulation of duty-free trade in Bulgaria which bears all the marks of a state capture. The brief presents possible courses of action towards reducing the negative effects of duty-free trade.Duty-free trade-related smuggling of excise goods has been one of the most potent and sustainable sources of political corruption in Bulgaria for the last fifteen years. The operation of land border area outlets has been a major channel for flooding the Bulgarian market with tons of illegal cigarettes and alcohol and the sale of millions of gallons of excise-free petrol. The resulting profit, running into hundreds of millions each year, has been funding many a Bulgarian party and has become the foundation of untouchable political oligarchies.

The policy brief examines duty-free trade in Bulgaria in regard to turnover and tax revenue losses from the operation of the duty-free outlets. It also analyses the regulation of duty-free trade in Bulgaria which bears all the marks of a state capture. The brief presents possible courses of action towards reducing the negative effects of duty-free trade.

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news-996Wed, 05 Dec 2007 12:19:00 +0200Organized Crime in Bulgaria: Markets and Trendshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/organized-crime-in-bulgaria-markets-and-trends/The report Organized Crime in Bulgaria: Markets and Trends summarizes the analyses carried out by the Center for the Study of Democracy throughout the last decade which have focused on specific aspects of organized crime in Bulgaria (contraband, the drug market, tax fraud, human trafficking, arms proliferation, etc.), the systemic spread of corruption, and the linkages between the two.The report Organized Crime in Bulgaria: Markets and Trends summarizes the analyses carried out by the Center for the Study of Democracy throughout the last decade which have focused on specific aspects of organized crime in Bulgaria (contraband, the drug market, tax fraud, human trafficking, arms proliferation, etc.), the systemic spread of corruption, and the linkages between the two. The report presents the latest trends and manifestations (or market niches) of syndicate crime and its particularly damaging effects. It goes further to offer a historical review of the facts and available expertise in the area, and to draw conclusions about the origin, characteristics and developmental features of organized criminality in Bulgaria in the context of the transition to democracy.

Media Coverage (international)
Media Coverage (in Bulgarian)
The report on the Policy Documentation Center website, Hungary.
The report on the Social Science in Eastern Europe Newsletter, GESIS, Germany

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news-293Wed, 05 Dec 2007 02:00:00 +0200Commentary of the Law on the Commercial Registerhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/commentary-of-the-law-on-the-commercial-register/The entry into force of the Law on the Commercial Register will start a long deferred, but much needed reform in the system of commercial registration, which was incepted in the middle of the 90’s. It started with the legislative regulation of the Central Pledges Register, of the electronic document and electronic signature and the concepts for the Electronic Registries Center, initiated and developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy. The Commentary aims at supporting the reform and facilitating the use and provision of register services. It was written by experts of the Center for the Study of Democracy – renowned lawyers, working in the fields of commercial and civil law.The entry into force of the Law on the Commercial Register will start a long deferred, but much needed reform in the system of commercial registration, which was incepted in the middle of the 90’s. It started with the legislative regulation of the Central Pledges Register, of the electronic document and electronic signature and the concepts for the Electronic Registries Center, initiated and developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy. The Commentary aims at supporting the reform and facilitating the use and provision of register services. It was written by experts of the Center for the Study of Democracy – renowned lawyers, working in the fields of commercial and civil law.
 

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news-291Fri, 28 Sep 2007 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 12: The Competitiveness of the Bulgarian Economy 2007https://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-12-the-competitiveness-of-the-bulgarian-economy-2007/With the partnership of CSD this year Bulgaria was included for the second time in the World's oldest and most comprehensive annual report on competitiveness, the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2007. Bulgaria’s competitiveness was covered and ranked together with 54 other leading world economies. This year Bulgaria came 41st on the scoreboard, surpassing Italy, Romania, Ukraine, Turkey, Poland, and Croatia among others.With the partnership of CSD this year Bulgaria was included for the second time in the World's oldest and most comprehensive annual report on competitiveness, the IMD World Competitiveness Yearbook 2007. It has been published without interruption since 1989 by IMD (International Institute for Management Development). Bulgaria’s competitiveness was covered and ranked together with 54 other leading world economies. This year Bulgaria came 41st on the scoreboard, surpassing Italy, Romania, Ukraine, Turkey, Poland, and Croatia among others. The position is an achievement in its own right, considering that the country is measured up against the champion nations setting the trends in the world economic competition.
In 2007 Bulgaria has largely kept its position compared to the previous year, but its business efficiency has declined. Meanwhile, the country’s overall economic performance has improved.
The policy brief makes an overview of the report's main findings and recommendations with focus on the Bulgarian economic performance.

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news-1004Sat, 15 Sep 2007 15:41:00 +0300Reinforcing Criminal Justice in Border Districtshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/reinforcing-criminal-justice-in-border-districts/The report makes an overview of the general problems and specifics in the detection, investigation and punishment of cross-border crime, i.e. actions, connected with illegal crossing of or illegal transfer of goods across the border. The publication also presents views about the necessary measures – legislative, organizational and technical – for enhancing justice and law enforcement in the districts close to the Bulgarian-Turkish, Bulgarian-Macedonian and the Southern Black Sea borders.The report makes an overview of the general problems and specifics in the detection, investigation and punishment of cross-border crime, i.e. actions, connected with illegal crossing of or illegal transfer of goods across the border. The publication also presents views about the necessary measures – legislative, organizational and technical – for enhancing justice and law enforcement in the districts close to the Bulgarian-Turkish, Bulgarian-Macedonian and the Southern Black Sea borders.

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news-1006Thu, 16 Aug 2007 16:12:00 +0300Corruption in the Healthcare Sector in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-in-the-healthcare-sector-in-bulgaria/At a time of heightened social sensitivity to persisting problems in the Bulgarian healthcare system, the report examines the causes and consequences of corruption in the Bulgarian healthcare. In the context of slow institutional reforms the analysis reveals the incentives of medical personnel for corruption, as well as the size and scope of corruption in the Bulgarian healthcare sector.At a time of heightened social sensitivity to persisting problems in the Bulgarian healthcare system, the report examines the causes and consequences of corruption in the Bulgarian healthcare. In the context of slow institutional reforms the analysis reveals the incentives of medical personnel for corruption, as well as the size and scope of corruption in the Bulgarian healthcare sector.

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news-285Wed, 16 May 2007 03:00:00 +0300Private Actors and Security Governance https://csd.bg/publications/publication/private-actors-and-security-governance/This volume situates security privatisation within a broader policy framework, considers several relevant national and regional contexts and analyses different modes of regulation and control relating to a phenomenon with deep historical roots but also strong links to more recent trends of globalisation and trans-nationalisation.The privatisation of security - understood as both the top-down decision to outsource military and security-related tasks to private firms and the bottom-up activities of armed non-state actors such as rebel opposition groups, insurgents, militias and warlord factions - have profound implications for the state's monopoly on the legitimate use of force. Both top-down and bottom-up privatisation have significant consequences for effective, democratically accountable security sector governance as well as on opportunities for security sector reform across a range of different reform contexts.
This volume situates security privatisation within a broader policy framework, considers several relevant national and regional contexts and analyses different modes of regulation and control relating to a phenomenon with deep historical roots but also strong links to more recent trends of globalisation and trans-nationalisation.

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news-287Wed, 16 May 2007 03:00:00 +0300Corruption in Public Procurement: Risks and Reform Policieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-in-public-procurement-risks-and-reform-policies/The report examines the corruption in public procurement and assesses the losses from it. It also focuses on big corruption in public procurement with a view to the fine-tuning of the policy tools.Public procurement is among those spheres in the management of the public sector in Bulgaria which are characterized by the highest corruption risk. Generally speaking, the abuses in this sphere relate to the awarding of the public procurement contract to a pre-selected supplier to the detriment of the public interest through violation of the principles of competition for the purpose of gaining personal benefit.
The report examines the corruption in public procurement and assesses the losses from it. It also focuses on big corruption in public procurement with a view to the fine-tuning of the policy tools. This type of corruption covers all transactions and procedures which fall or should fall within the scope of the public procurement legislation. These are most of the supplies whose price or qualitative parameters are subject to negotiation between the contracting authorities in the public sector and the suppliers from the private sector.

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news-840Mon, 23 Apr 2007 13:56:00 +0300Anti-Corruption Reforms in Bulgaria: Key Results and Riskshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anti-corruption-reforms-in-bulgaria-key-results-and-risks/This is the eighth Corruption Assessment Report providing an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption in Bulgaria and Bulgarian anticorruption policy. It analyzes the main results and risks of the anticorruption process from the period immediately preceding Bulgaria’s accession to the EU through to the first months of EU membership.This is the eighth Corruption Assessment Report providing an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption in Bulgaria and Bulgarian anticorruption policy. It analyzes the main results and risks of the anticorruption process from the period immediately preceding Bulgaria’s accession to the EU through to the first months of EU membership.

The report builds on regular monitoring of the spread of corruption, its trends, evaluations of the anti-corruption efforts and initiatives implemented by government institutions and by civil society, as well as a number of suggestions and recommendations on anti-corruption measures, including considerations related to the administration of EU’s structural funds.

In addition to the main corruption indexes which have consistently displayed lower values throughout 2006 and early 2007, the report draws on authoritative international surveys to assess corruption levels in Bulgaria in comparison to EU member states.

Furthermore, Bulgaria’s EU member status demands that national anti-corruption initiatives are implemented in close coordination with EU and international efforts in this area. Therefore, corruption would be most appropriately measured and assessed by a common EU benchmarking methodology as the most reliable yardstick for international comparisons.

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news-289Sun, 01 Apr 2007 03:00:00 +0300Legal Framework of Public-Private Partnershipshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/legal-framework-of-public-private-partnerships/This background paper provides legal overview of the regulatory arrangement and the practical implementation of public-private partnerships (PPPs) in 11 countries: USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy and Poland as well as relevant European Union legislation.This background paper provides legal overview of the regulatory arrangement and the practical implementation of public-private partnerships (PPPs) in 11 countries: USA, Canada, United Kingdom, Austria, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy and Poland as well as relevant European Union legislation. The profiles of the different countries allow comparison between the regulation of PPPs in them along four lines: (1) overview; (2) definition of PPPs; (3) types of PPPs; (4) application. The background paper summarizes the main PPP regulation types and juxtaposes them with the existing Bulgarian legislation. The paper concludes that the Bulgarian legislation currently does not cover any PPP relations outside classic forms such as public procurement and concessions and there is no specific mention of PPPs in the Bulgarian laws and regulations.

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news-1008Sun, 25 Feb 2007 17:17:00 +0200CSD Brief No 11: The Future of Corruption Benchmarking in the EUhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-11-the-future-of-corruption-benchmarking-in-the-eu/The experience gained with monitoring of corruption during the last round of EU enlargement should be utilized for the development of EU’s own corruption benchmarking instrument.Matters of justice and home affairs, and in particular corruption, have been among the key challenges during the last wave of EU enlargement. Significant efforts have been invested by member states, the European Commission and Bulgaria in meeting these challenges. Still, identifying anti-corruption progress remains largely arbitrary. Corruption – and this is true not just within the EU but worldwide - remains a fluid concept, signifying different things to different people.
Monitoring of the EU of Bulgaria’s anti-corruption progress has not only encouraged reform policies but has motivated the perfection of domestic measurement instruments. These instruments have been developed by CSD and applied for over eight years now. Thus, the Bulgarian experience has brought policy institutions and researchers a step closer to the development of a methodology of benchmarking corruption which could be the foundation of a future EU anti-corruption policy.
Diagnosing the state of corruption and obtaining reliable information about its dynamics are crucial to the implementation of successful prevention and control policies, including within the EU itself. The evolution of the EU’s policies in the area of anti-corruption suggests that the next logical step in this process is the development of EU’s own methodology for benchmarking corruption, as has been done in other areas. This would entail a capacity to diagnose the spread of corruption through a common measurement technique and comparing it against a certain best practice standard.

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news-281Tue, 09 Jan 2007 02:00:00 +0200Monitoring of Anti-Corruption Reformshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/monitoring-of-anti-corruption-reforms/The assessment of the effectiveness of anticorruption policies and trends in the spread of corruption is a key element of the Strategy for Transparent Governance and Counteraction of Corruption for the period 2006-2008. The Bulgarian Government’s 2006 Program for the implementation of this Strategy envisions the development of a system of indicators to monitor progress and actual impact. The System of Indicators was developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy based on the best European and world practices and draws on the experience gained in Bulgaria in the period between 1997 and 2006 from the implementation of the Corruption Monitoring System within the Coalition 2000 anticorruption initiative.The assessment of the effectiveness of anticorruption policies and trends in the spread of corruption is a key element of the Strategy for Transparent Governance and Counteraction of Corruption for the period 2006-2008 adopted by the Bulgarian Government. The Bulgarian Government’s 2006 Program for the implementation of this Strategy envisions the development of a system of indicators to monitor progress and actual impact. The System of Indicators was developed by the Center for the Study of Democracy based on the best European and world practices and primarily draws on the experience gained in Bulgaria in the period between 1997 and 2006 from the implementation of the Corruption Monitoring System developed by the CSD within the Coalition 2000 anticorruption initiative.
The indicators for the evaluation of the results from the measures to counteract corruption and to enhance the transparency of government differ by type and methods of data collection and analysis:
The first set of indicators reflects the adequacy, effectiveness, timeliness, implementation progress, etc., of the measures outlined in the Strategy and the Program.
Another group of indicators aims to evaluate the social environment factors directly affecting the level of corruption and governance transparency.
A third group of indicators show the effect of the implemented programs and measures by monitoring their outcomes and impact. These are of greatest value in assessing the effectiveness of anticorruption policies and the prevention and counteraction of corruption.
As a follow up, CSD has published a policy brief on the need for a Europe-wide initiative to develop a corruption benchmarking instrument for the EU. Its purpose is to suggest ways of utilizing the experience with corruption monitoring and measuring during Bulgaria’s accession to the Union.

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news-1010Wed, 20 Sep 2006 23:22:00 +0300Police checks and use of ethnic profiles in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/police-checks-and-use-of-ethnic-profiles-in-bulgaria/Text only in BulgarianThe text is available only in Bulgarian.

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news-283Wed, 13 Sep 2006 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No. 10: A Painful Shift in Bulgarian Anti-Corruption Policies and Practicehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-10-a-painful-shift-in-bulgarian-anti-corruption-policies-and-practice/The most important shift in Bulgaria’s anti-corruption policies in recent months is the move from “soft” (awareness-raising) campaigns to “hard” (prevention and sanctions oriented) measures with immediate anti-corruption effects.
In its March 2006 annual corruption assessment report On the Eve of EU Accession: Anti-Corruption Reforms in Bulgariathe Center for the Study of Democracy emphasized that “corruption, particularly in the high echelons of power, is one of the most critical problems faced by Bulgaria on the eve of its accession” as the Bulgarian “public tolerates less corruption and is increasingly concerned by it.” Bulgaria needs to present clear evidence of results in its fight against corruption, in particular on high political level.

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news-253Mon, 05 Jun 2006 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 9: The Introduction of a Specialized Anti-Corruption Service back on the Anti-CorruptionAgendahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-9-the-introduction-of-a-specialized-anti-corruption-service-back-on-the-anti-corruptio/On the eve of Bulgaria’s EU accession significant results in prosecution and punishment of highlevel political corruption are still outstanding. In this context, the idea for creating an independent specialized anti-corruption service again became a topic in the anti-corruption agenda.On the eve of Bulgaria’s EU accession significant results in prosecution and punishment of high level political corruption are still outstanding. In this context, the idea for creating an independent specialized anti-corruption service again became a topic in the anti-corruption agenda.
In January 2003 the President of the Republic Georgi Parvanov proposed the idea of establishing a separate independent service for countering corruption. Such a service, according to the President, should be an independent civil institution.
The policy brief makes an overview of the genesis of the idea and initial vision, the recent developments, the best practices in other countries, the debate and the pros and cons, offering policy recommendations.

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news-255Thu, 01 Jun 2006 03:00:00 +0300Fighting VAT Fraud: The Bulgarian Experiencehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/fighting-vat-fraud-the-bulgarian-experience/This paper draws on the experience of Bulgaria in identifying the types and modus operandi of VAT frauds with a focus on the abuse of tax credit. It analyses the elements of tax design permissive of such abuses and discusses the possible solutions in the light of the international and domestic experience and the capacity of the tax administration. This paper draws on the experience of Bulgaria in identifying the types and modus operandi of VAT frauds with a focus on the abuse of tax credit. It analyses the elements of tax design permissive of such abuses and discusses the possible solutions in the light of the international and domestic experience and the capacity of the tax administration. It offers a critical analysis of the Bulgarian anti-fraud device the VAT account, as well as the various alternative policy and administrative measures proposed or applied as barriers to abuse of VAT credit, including those pertaining to the domain of commercial registration, or those related to indicative “market” prices of commercial transactions. The study concludes that the possible solutions should be sought along the lines of optimizing risk management and the principle of joint liability rather than through tighter controls at entry and on the conduct of business.

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news-251Sat, 20 May 2006 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 8: The Competitiveness of the Bulgarian Economy 2006https://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-8-the-competitiveness-of-the-bulgarian-economy-2006/Bulgaria’s position in the world oldest and most comprehensive annual report on the competitiveness the World Competitiveness Yearbook 2006 of IMD (International Institute for Management Development) was presented several days before the European Commission report on Bulgaria’s readiness for accession.Bulgaria’s position in the world oldest and most comprehensive annual report on the competitiveness the World Competitiveness Yearbook 2006 of IMD (International Institute for Management Development) was presented several days before the European Commission report on Bulgaria’s readiness for accession. With the partnership of the Center for the Study of Democracy this year Bulgaria was included for the first time in the report, issued since 1989. The report ranks and analyzes how 61 selected economies creates and sustain the competitiveness of their enterprises. It stands out among reputed international ratings with the predominance of more reliable statistical data over the qualitative (survey) data. The rating uses 312 indicators covering a broad spectrum of competitiveness, classified in four major groups: economic performance, business efficiency, infrastructure and government efficiency.
The policy brief makes an overview of the report's main findings and recommendations with focus on the Bulgarian economic performance.

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news-247Wed, 03 May 2006 03:00:00 +0300Crime Trends in Bulgaria 2000 - 2005https://csd.bg/publications/publication/crime-trends-in-bulgaria-2000-2005/The latest report of the Center for the Study of Democracy Crime Trends in Bulgaria 2000 – 2005 for a second consecutive year presents information about Bulgaria’s crime rate from an alternative source - victimization surveys - and attempts to make a systematic comparison of the crime level according to victim-reported crime and police crime data.On 3 May 2006 The Center for the Study of Democracy resealed its latest report Crime Trends in Bulgaria 2000 – 2005.
The report for a second consecutive year presents information about Bulgaria’s crime rate from an alternative source - victimization surveys - and attempts to make a systematic comparison of the crime level according to victim-reported crime and police crime data. The crime situation in Bulgaria is also compared to crime in a number of European countries. The findings of three national crime victims surveys, referred to throughout this report as National Crime Surveys (NCS), offer an opportunity to assess street crime in Bulgaria in the period 2000–2005.
The first NCS 2002 and NCS 2004 examined only 11 categories of offenses against households and persons, while NCS 2005 also incorporates 11 categories of offenses against companies. The 11 categories of offenses included in the NCS correspond to about 80% of all police-registered crimes in Bulgaria. The report does not cover corruption, drug-related or organized crime offenses, as they are the subject of other CSD analyses.
Toward the end of the 1990s and, particularly after the year 2000, as the prospect of EU membership became more likely, greater political stability and economic prosperity in Bulgaria led to a gradual decrease in crime. This trend, which was most perceptible in the period 2000–2005, was the result of several factors. Declining unemployment, rising incomes and economic growth provided alternatives to many individuals with criminal incomes. Demographic processes and emigration also contributed to the reduction in crime. Further strengthening of the judiciary and the law-enforcement systems, in an attempt to meet EU-set requirements, revived the criminal justice system, which in 2004 issued six times more sentences than it did in 1993.
A comparison of the NCS 2005 with the European Union International Crime Survey (EUICS) shows that Bulgaria’s level of street crime has remained lower than the average level of EU countries. Whereas in 2004 the average EU prevalence rate for the eleven crime categories among citizens above 15 was 15.6%, the prevalence rate in Bulgaria was 12.9%. The dynamics of some types of crimes, however, calls for special attention.
The report was developed with the support of the British Embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria. It was released at the public session of the National Crime Prevention Council held on 3 May 2006.

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news-257Mon, 01 May 2006 03:00:00 +0300Healthcare Reforms in Bulgaria: Towards Diagnosis and Prescriptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/healthcare-reforms-in-bulgaria-towards-diagnosis-and-prescription/The paper studies the policy response to the market failures and challenges of healthcare in transition. Bulgaria chose a halfway shift from healthcare services provided entirely by the state to a system with private providers of outpatient services and public providers of inpatient services, both sectors financed mainly by state-run compulsory payroll insurance system.The paper shows the evolution of this reform path to low compliance by both customers (contributors) and service-providers (contractors with the National Health Insurance Fund), which leads to excessive regulations and control, and crowding out of the private sector. The outcome is a system that is increasingly driven by administrative controls at the expense of market incentives. Based on this analysis it identifies the relevant policy implications and opportunities for moving the stalled health reforms out of the institutional impasse.

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news-259Mon, 01 May 2006 03:00:00 +0300‘The rifle has the devil inside’, Gun Culture in South Eastern Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-rifle-has-the-devil-inside-gun-culture-in-south-eastern-europe/This report examines how cultural beliefs and practices influence gun ownership and use in SEE, and how these might affect SALW control interventions. It was initially researched by the Center for the Study of Democracy, Bulgaria during Autumn 2005 and Spring 2006.This report examines how cultural beliefs and practices influence gun ownership and use in SEE, and how these might affect SALW control interventions. It was initially researched by the Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD), Bulgaria during Autumn 2005 and Spring 2006. It was compiled and drafted by Mr. Philip Gounev, Research Fellow, Centre for the Study of Democracy and Mr. Marko Hajdinjak, Researcher, International Centre for Minority Studies and Intercultural Relations, Bulgaria.
An anthropological approach was taken to better understand the reasons for civilian gun ownership and use, and the ways in which society represents these behaviours, in Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Moldova, Serbia and Montenegro (including the UN Administered Territory of Kosovo). A wide variety of research tools were used including household surveys (HHS) conducted by SEESAC and UNDP, focus group transcripts, secondary literature searches, statistical data, anthropological field studies, the Internet, print and electronic media.

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news-242Fri, 28 Apr 2006 03:00:00 +0300Nato Transformation - Facing New Security Frontiershttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/nato-transformation-facing-new-security-frontiers/The present publication summarizes the discussions at the International Security Conference “NATO Transformation – Facing New Security Frontiers” held on April 28-29, 2006 in Sofia, Bulgaria.The present publication summarizes the discussions at the International Security Conference “NATO Transformation – Facing New Security Frontiers” held on April 28-29, 2006 in Sofia, Bulgaria. The conference’s discussions benefited from the participation of the Bulgarian Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr. Ivailo Kalfin, Assistant Secretary General of NATO Ambassador Adam Kobieracki, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Mr. Borys Tarasyuk, Prime Minister, PISK, Kosovo Mr. Agim Çeku, senior offcials from Southeast European and EU countries, Ukraine, USA, Japan, representatives of international organizations and aid agencies, diplomatic missions, academic institutions and non-governmental organizations.

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news-1013Tue, 28 Mar 2006 12:43:00 +0300Security Risks and Transformation - Euroatlantic and Regional Perspectiveshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/security-risks-and-transformation-euroatlantic-and-regional-perspectives/This publication summarizes the discussions at the International Security Conference "Security Risks and Transformation - Euroatlantic and Regional Perspectives" held in November 19-20, 2005 in Sofia, Bulgaria. The conference discussions benefited from the participation of the Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev, Supreme Allied Commander Europe General James Jones, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria Ivailo Kalfin, Minister of Defense Vesselin Bliznakov, Minister of the Interior Rumen Petkov and other senior oficials from Southeast Europe (SEE).This publication summarizes the discussions at the International Security Conference held in November 19-20, 2005 in Sofia, Bulgaria. The conference discussions benefited from the participation of the Bulgarian Prime Minister Sergey Stanishev, Supreme Allied Commander Europe General James Jones, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bulgaria Ivailo Kalfin, Minister of Defense Vesselin Bliznakov, Minister of the Interior Rumen Petkov, senior oficials from Southeast Europe (SEE), Russia, Ukraine, USA and West European countries, representatives of international organizations and aid agencies, diplomatic missions, academic institutions and non-governmental organizations.

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news-655Fri, 17 Mar 2006 02:00:00 +0200On the Eve of EU Accession: Anti-corruption Reforms in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/on-the-eve-of-eu-accession-anti-corruption-reforms-in-bulgaria/This is the seventh consecutive Corruption Assessment Report providing an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption in Bulgaria and Bulgarian anti-corruption policy. It analyzes the main opportunities and challenges of the anti-corruption process in the context of Bulgaria’s approaching accession to the EU.This is the seventh consecutive Corruption Assessment Report providing an overview of the state and dynamics of corruption in Bulgaria and Bulgarian anti-corruption policy. It analyzes the main opportunities and challenges of the anti-corruption process in the context of Bulgaria’s approaching accession to the EU.

The report builds on regular monitoring of the spread of corruption, its trends, evaluations of the anti-corruption efforts and initiatives implemented by government institutions and by civil society, as well as a number of suggestions and ecommendations on anti-corruption measures. 2005 marked a reversal of the positive trend in the decline of corruption since 1998, while still emaining at half the level of seven years ago. This development suggests that “soft” anti-corruption measures have exhausted their potential and more effective approaches to counteract and prevent corruption must be found, especially at the administrative and political levels. These should be supported through a corruption monitoring and assessment by civil society of the public sector, articularly the agencies administering EU’s structural funds. The report also refers to external risks which could emerge after Bulgaria’s
accssion to the EU.

 

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news-1011Wed, 01 Mar 2006 12:20:00 +0200The Healthcare Ombudsman – Best Practices and Prospects for Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-healthcare-ombudsman-best-practices-and-prospects-for-bulgaria/This edition is devoted to different aspects of the institution of the specialised healthcare ombudsman and the possibilities for its introduction in Bulgaria. The publication contains an overview of the good practices and the experience in the United Kingdom, Australia, Switzerland and Israel. The edition includes also a detailed summary of a discussion in relation with two draft laws concerning the institution of the health ombudsman and the comments and the recommendations on them of the experts of the Center for the Study of Democracy.This edition is devoted to different aspects of the institution of the specialised healthcare ombudsman and the possibilities for its introduction in Bulgaria. The publication contains an overview of the good practices and the experience in the United Kingdom, Australia, Switzerland and Israel. The edition includes also a detailed summary of a discussion in relation with two draft laws concerning the institution of the health ombudsman and the comments and the recommendations on them of the experts of the Center for the Study of Democracy.

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news-1014Sat, 21 Jan 2006 13:44:00 +0200Corruption Trends and Anti-Corruption in Bulgaria 1998 – 2006https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-trends-and-anti-corruption-in-bulgaria-1998-2006/Corruption in the forms it appears in present day Bulgarian society is a new phenomenon closely associated with the specific forms of transition in the period after 1990. The Bulgarian public identifies corruption as a negative phenomenon. However, Bulgarian society has been largely unprepared to properly identify corruption risks appearing in different social sectors. This publication is devoted to the trends in corruption and anti-corruption policy during the period 1998-2006. Corruption in the forms it appears in present day Bulgarian society is a new phenomenon closely associated with the specific forms of transition in the period after 1990. The Bulgarian public identifies corruption as a negative phenomenon. However, Bulgarian society has been largely unprepared to properly identify corruption risks appearing in different social sectors. More importantly, it has not been prepared to effectively deal with corruption as a problem of governance at all levels. Governments have, in the period after 1990, constantly lagged behind the shifting balance between the public and the private spheres. The increased corruption risk associated with this shifting balance has found all governments of the country in shortage of proper mechanisms, rules, legislation and institutions to cope with existing and emerging forms of corruption and bad governance.

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news-234Wed, 18 Jan 2006 02:00:00 +0200CSD Brief No 7: Development of the Second National Anti-Corruption Strategy for Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-7-development-of-the-second-national-anti-corruption-strategy-for-bulgaria/On January 12, 2006, the Council of Ministers adopted a National Strategy for Good Governance, Prevention and Counteraction of Corruption 2006-2008. The document was part of the commitments made by Bulgaria in the field of anti-corruption in the context of its EU accession. The strategy was expected to be adopted and presented to the European Commission by the end of 2005.On January 12, 2006, the Council of Ministers adopted a National Strategy for Good Governance, Prevention and Counteraction of Corruption 2006-2008. The document was part of the commitments made by Bulgaria in the field of anti-corruption in the context of its EU accession. The strategy was expected to be adopted and presented to the European Commission by the end of 2005. In the beginning of 2006 an inter-ministerial task force submitted a draft version of the strategy to the government but it revealed so many flaws that the government postponed its adoption. As a result, the task force invited the Center for the Study of Democracy to redraft the strategy.
With the active participation of CSD in the fall of 2001 the first comprehensive governmental anti-corruption document was elaborated – the National Anti-Corruption Strategy. The strategy was largely based on the 1998 Action Plan of Coalition 2000 and ushered in a period of public-private partnership against corruption.

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news-1015Mon, 09 Jan 2006 13:52:00 +0200Crime Trends in Bulgaria 2000 – 2005: Executive Summary of CSD Reporthttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/crime-trends-in-bulgaria-2000-2005-executive-summary-of-csd-report/The current publication focuses on the main findings from the National Crime Surveys. Toward the end of the 1990s and, particularly after the year 2000, as the prospect of EU membership became more likely, greater political stability and economic prosperity in Bulgaria led to a gradual decrease in crime. more »The current publication focuses on the main findings from the National Crime Surveys. Toward the end of the 1990s and, particularly after the year 2000, as the prospect of EU membership became more likely, greater political stability and economic prosperity in Bulgaria led to a gradual decrease in crime. This trend, which was most perceptible in the period 2000–2005, was the result of several factors. Declining unemployment, rising incomes and economic growth provided alternatives to many individuals with criminal incomes. Demographic processes and emigration also contributed to the reduction in crime. Further strengthening of the judiciary and the law-enforcement systems, in an attempt to meet EU-set requirements, revived the criminal justice system, which in 2004 issued six times more sentences than it did in 1993.

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news-263Sun, 25 Dec 2005 02:00:00 +0200Injecting Drug Users In Bulgaria https://csd.bg/publications/publication/injecting-drug-users-in-bulgaria/Despite the epidemic rate of growing use of psychoactive substances after 1990, the public continues to know too little about the drug users, as well as about the risks related to them. Despite the epidemic rate of growing use of psychoactive substances after 1990, the public continues to know too little about the drug users, as well as about the risks related to them. In the summer of 2003 four Bulgarian non-government organizations – Initiative for Health Foundation - Sofia, Dose of Love Association - Bourgas, Panacea Foundation - Plovdiv, and Pleven 21 Century Foundation in cooperation with the Addiction Research Institute IVO - Rotterdam succeeded in conducting a survey requiring special efforts. They implemented an outreach approach to the IDUs providing needles and syringes for exchange, as well as health services. As a result from this experience the programmes were able to secure a unique possibility to interview a great number of not easily approachable persons (from hidden and encapsulated communities) who were to provide answers to questions that are not easy to talk about. Author of the publication is Mr. Tihomir Bezlov, senior analyst at Center for the Study for Democracy.

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news-236Thu, 01 Dec 2005 15:36:00 +0200Judicial Reform: The Prosecution Office and Investigation Authorities in the Context of EU Membershiphttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/judicial-reform-the-prosecution-office-and-investigation-authorities-in-the-context-of-eu-membershi/This is the second publication of the Center for the Study of Democracy dedicatedto the judicial reform in relation to the place and the role of the prosecution officeand the investigation service. It presents the experience of the European UnionMember States and the candidate countries as regards the organization and thestructure of the prosecution office and the investigating authorities.This is the second publication of the Center for the Study of Democracy dedicated to the judicial reform in relation to the place and the role of the prosecution office and the investigation service. It presents the experience of the European Union Member States and the candidate countries as regards the organization and the structure of the prosecution office and the investigating authorities. It contains contributions from representatives of the courts, the prosecution offices and the investigating authorities of Spain, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary and the Czech Republic as well as judges, investigators, representatives of the legislature and the executive and non-governmental organizations in Bulgaria. The publication aims to continue the broad public and expert discussion on the different options to reform the judiciary in Bulgaria, following the successful models implemented in other countries.
 

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news-261Thu, 01 Dec 2005 02:00:00 +0200Heroin Users in Bulgaria One Year After Outlawing The Dose for "Personal Use"https://csd.bg/publications/publication/heroin-users-in-bulgaria-one-year-after-outlawing-the-dose-for-personal-use/The report reveals the place of heroine use in Bulgaria and its development since the amendment to the Penal Code repealing Paragraph 3 of Art 354a and its provision. The revision gained public popularity as „the single dose law”. The report reveals the place of heroine use in Bulgaria and its development since the amendment to the Penal Code repealing Paragraph 3 of Art 354a and its provision. The revision gained public popularity as „the single dose law”. It renders criminal every drug substance possession, regardless of the type or quantity of the substance, or whether the individual in possession of the dose is dependent or not. Under the new regulation, the drug wholesalers, the small drug dealers, and those just using, not trading in drugs, are treated equally harshly. The change was carried out, despite keen objections on the part of experts and civil society organizations that it might lead to severe and unpredictable consequences. The research, however, revealed that the ban on the „single dose”, and its negative implications, are only part of a larger nationwide problem caused not only by the legislative framework, but also by the inadequate institutional response. Author of the publication is Mr. Tihomir Bezlov, researcher from Center for the Study of democracy

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news-230Tue, 18 Oct 2005 03:00:00 +0300Corruption and Tax Compliance. Policy and Administration Challengeshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-and-tax-compliance-policy-and-administration-challenges/National and international corruption indices suggest that the Bulgarian tax administration has an important role to play in fighting corruption. While the general public and the business community are inclined to think better of the tax administration, in terms of the levels and spread of corruption, by comparison with other institutions, such as customs, the police or the judiciary, corruption in the tax administration is still admittedly rather high.National and international corruption indices suggest that the Bulgarian tax administration has an important role to play in fighting corruption. While the general public and the business community are inclined to think better of the tax administration, in terms of the levels and spread of corruption, by comparison with other institutions, such as customs, the police or the judiciary, corruption in the tax administration is still admittedly rather high. Business largely believes that most, if not all, tax officers are involved in corruption. Over the last five years, one out of five businesses on average has come under corruption pressure at the hands of tax officers. While they would not go as far as to accept the taxpayers’ perception of the situation, members of the tax administration do not deny the problem. They see the administration’s functional areas for Tax Audit and Operational Control as worst affected in terms of, respectively, the amounts of money changing hands and the frequency of such transactions. International surveys are inconclusive about the level of corruption in the Bulgarian tax administration on a comparison basis. The World Economic Forum rates it as relatively low within the enlarged European Union. By contrast, the World Bank has found it to be higher than corruption levels in most of the Balkans and the former Soviet republics.
The purpose of this study is not primarily to add another estimate of the level and scale of tax corruption in Bulgaria but rather, to contribute to an in-depth diagnosis of the phenomenon in terms of its drivers at work in individual and institutional behaviour.

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news-238Thu, 01 Sep 2005 03:00:00 +0300The Flat Tax: Economic and Social Implications (available only in Bulgarian)https://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-flat-tax-economic-and-social-implications-available-only-in-bulgarian/Drawing lessons from the classic Hall-Rabushka flat tax concept and from the experience with flat taxes in Central and Eastern Europe this paper studies the economic and social consequences of such a solution for Bulgaria. While Bulgarian debate is preoccupied withapplying the same marginal tax rate to all income levels (referred to here as the vertical dimension of the “flatness”), the study argues that the horizontal dimension – which is taxing equally all incomes irrespective of the source and eliminating most exemptions and deductions – deserves much more attention in Bulgarian tax reforms.These however do not necessarily call for the flat rate tax of the design experimented in several of the new market economies. The study argues as well that vertical flattening in itself tends to redistribute the tax burden towards the mid-income groups. Furthermore it cautions that the expectations that the flat income tax will limit tax evasion might be overly optimistic. The paper suggests alternative supply side tax incentives.

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news-228Thu, 04 Aug 2005 03:00:00 +0300Ombudsman Institution in BulgariaCenter for the Study of Democracyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/ombudsman-institution-in-bulgariacenter-for-the-study-of-democracy/The handbook presents a summarized overview of the process of establishment and development of the ombudsman institution on national and local level in Bulgaria (1998-2005). It offers comments and analysis of the legal framework as well as comprehensive information on the election of the first Bulgarian ombudsman and the activities of the local public mediators before and after their operation has been regulated in the legislation. The handbook presents a summarized overview of the process of establishment and development of the ombudsman institution on national and local level in Bulgaria (1998-2005). It offers comments and analysis of the legal framework as well as comprehensive information on the election of the first Bulgarian ombudsman and the activities of the local public mediators before and after their operation has been regulated in the legislation. The public attitudes towards the ombudsman institution are also presented. In addition, the book includes a set of annexes such as the full text of the Law on the Ombudsman and the Regulation on the Organization and the Activity of the Ombudsman, an excerpt from the Law on Local Self-Government and Local Administration, materials related to the operation of the local public mediators, etc.
 

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news-272Fri, 15 Jul 2005 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 6: First Steps of the Bulgarian Ombudsman https://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-6-first-steps-of-the-bulgarian-ombudsman/The sixth policy brief, once again dedicated to the process of establishment of the ombudsman institution, focuses on the successful election of Bulgaria’s first parliamentary ombudsman and the initial stages since the institution’s kickoff. The sixth policy brief, once again dedicated to the process of establishment of the ombudsman institution, focuses on the successful election of Bulgaria’s first parliamentary ombudsman and the initial stages since the institution’s kickoff. The brief presents the key points of the Rules on the Organization and Activities of the Ombudsman and the steps taken to set up its office and administrative functions. It dwells on the requisite need for further constitutional amendments so that the Constitution incorporates provisions governing the ombudsman.

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news-1016Wed, 22 Jun 2005 15:41:00 +0300The Courts, Prosecution and Investigation in the EU Member States and Accession Countrieshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-courts-prosecution-and-investigation-in-the-eu-member-states-and-accession-countries/The book reviews the organization and principles of activity of the courts, prosecution and investigation in the EU member states, including the new ones, and the accession countries.
The judicial reform in Bulgaria still remains a priority in the process of EU accession. The reorganization of the investigation and the improvement of the efficiency and accountability of the prosecution continue to remain disputable issues.
The book The Courts,Prosecution and Investigation in the EU Member States and Accession Countries reviews the organization and principles of activity of the courts, prosecution and investigation in the EU member states, including the new ones, and the accession countries.
The edition is aimed at supporting the process of Bulgaria's EU accession and contributing to the strenghtening of the judiciary, especially regarding the organization and place of the prosecution and investigation in compliance with the good practices, applied in the EU member states and the other accession countries.
 
 
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news-189Tue, 10 May 2005 03:00:00 +0300Taming the Arsenal: Small Arms and Light Weapons in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/taming-the-arsenal-small-arms-and-light-weapons-in-bulgaria/ The report summarizes the findings of a research conducted on questions relating to small arms and light weapons in Bulgaria from July to November 2004 by the CSD, and London-based Saferworld.The report summarizes the findings of a research conducted on questions relating to small arms and light weapons in Bulgaria from July to November 2004 by the CSD, and London-based Saferworld. It sets out the findings of a comprehensive assessment of:
1) the distribution of SALW in Bulgaria;
2) the impacts of SALW on individuals, communities and the state;
3) public perceptions of SALW and security; and
4) the capacity of the state to control the proliferation and misuse of SALW

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news-191Sun, 01 May 2005 03:00:00 +0300Anticorruption Reforms in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anticorruption-reforms-in-bulgaria/The report makes an overview of the conducted anticorruption reforms in Bulgaria since 1997 and analyses the spheres of penetration, as well as the levels and dynamics of corruption in the Bulgarian society and presents the major achievements and problems of anticorruption reforms.Contents

The report makes an overview of the conducted anticorruption reforms in Bulgaria since 1997 and analyses the spheres of penetration, as well as the levels and dynamics of corruption in the Bulgarian society and presents the major achievements and problems of anticorruption reforms. It also defines the challenges for the conducting of anticorruption reforms, which ensue from the pending accession of Bulgaria to the European Union: i.e. overcoming of structural and institutional barriers in counteracting corruption; effective functioning of judiciary and law enforcement systems; restriction of corruption-generating practices of the organized crime and grey economy.

Coalition 2000 is an initiative of Bulgarian non-governmental organizations launched in the spring of 1997, which aims at counteracting corruption in th Bulgarian society through a partnership between state institutions, non-governmental organizations and individuals, who developed and have been implementing an Anti-Corruption Action Plan, a Corruption Monitoring System, and an anti-corruption public awareness campaign.

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news-1018Sun, 24 Apr 2005 17:04:00 +0300Bulgarian Constitutional Reform in the Context of Bulgaria's EU Accessionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/bulgarian-constitutional-reform-in-the-context-of-bulgarias-eu-accession/The report Bulgarian Constitutional Reform in the Context of Bulgaria's Accession to the European Union (2003-2005) was prepared by a Task Force with the Center for the Study of Democracy within the framework of the Communication Strategy for Bulgaria’s EU Membership.The report analyzes the Bulgarian constitutional reform (the amendments and supplements to the Constitution of the Republic of Bulgaria in the period 2003 – 2005) and traces the socio-political factors, which have affected it, where external factors are identified as most crucial.

The two phases of the constitutional reform are examined and the determinant role of the external requirements, related to the country’s EU accession negotiations and its overall integration process are discussed. The amending and supplementing constitutional texts dealing with the reform of the judiciary (2003) and Bulgaria’s forthcoming EU membership (2005) are considered in detail.
 

  • The 2003 constitutional provisions regarding the irremovability and immunity status of magistrates, the fixed terms of office of judiciary bodies’ administrative heads, and the powers of the Supreme Judicial Council are thoroughly scrutinized. Their adoption is assessed as a necessary first step to the much needed reform of the judiciary. In addition, a number of amendment proposals not taken into account by the Law on the Amendments and Supplements of the Constitution are reviewed. These were submitted to the Ad Hoc Parliamentary Committee on Preparation of Proposals for Constitutional Amendments, and many of them, including those of the Center for the Study of Democracy, offered multi-faceted changes of the judicial system’s structure aiming to match EU requirements for a speedy and effective judiciary. Their incorporation into the analysis aims to make them available if future constitutional reforms are to be undertaken.



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  • The February 2005 amendments and supplements were directly linked to Bulgaria’s pending EU membership, i.e. they were mandatory and included provisions on:

    - transfer of national sovereignty to EU organizations, so that member states are able to jointly wield state authority;

    - direct effect of legal instruments adopted by EU institutions in Bulgaria legal order;

    - European Parliament elections and the participation of EU citizens in local elections in Bulgaria;

    - commissioning state bodies to represent Bulgaria in EU institutions and defining the mission of Bulgarian Parliament to prepare national positions on EU secondary legislation adopted by the EU;

    - acquisition of real property in Bulgaria by EU citizens.



The September 2003 and February 2005 amendments and supplements to the Constitution currently in force are evaluated as moderate and cautious. They were based on a broad political consensus, but policy makers were nonetheless unsure as to how permanent this consensus is and how far it can be stretched. Constitutional amendments are viewed as the beginning of more comprehensive changes in current legislation, also gradual and circumspect in character. The reform follows the essential inflexibility of Bulgaria’s Constitution. Its provisions challenge the possibility for political consensus and foster constitutional conservatism in both society as a whole and among decision makers. Thus, the constitutional regime remains limited within the necessary and sufficient provisions and reforms and entrusts the more detailed legal provisions and the respective reforms to the remaining national legislation.

Bulgarian constitutional reforms are placed in a comparative context where the experience of the countries that joined the EU in 2004 is presented. This serves to illustrate the similarities and distinctive features in their approaches to constitutional reforms as related to EU membership and the commitments it involves.

The report contains several annexes offering additional information on some of the issues under consideration, such as: proposals on the continuation of the judicial reform, the procedure for the application of the European Arrest Warrant and the legal background of real property sales (including the sale of land) in the EU member states.

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news-1020Thu, 24 Mar 2005 17:12:00 +0200The development of the relations between the European Union and Libya and their influence on the Bulgarian-Libyan dialoguehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-development-of-the-relations-between-the-european-union-and-libya-and-their-influence-on-the-bul/Only in BulgarianOnly in Bulgarian

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news-1022Thu, 24 Feb 2005 17:48:00 +0200Crime Trends in Bulgaria: Police Statistics and Victimization Surveyshttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/crime-trends-in-bulgaria-police-statistics-and-victimization-surveys/The report uses a crime victimization survey as an alternative analytical tool to make an independent assessment of the crime situation in Bulgaria for the period 2001–2004.The report uses a crime victimization survey as an alternative analytical tool to make an independent assessment of the crime situation in Bulgaria for the period 2001–2004. The crime victimization survey polls people’s experiences with crime. Unlike official government crime statistics, the regular crime victimization surveys help the police and government authorities, as well as the public to understand:

• whether the official police crime data reflect the real crime rate and crime trends;

• the volume of the unreported crime;

• the reasons victims do not report crimes to the police;

• whether the police avoids registering reported crimes;

• the profile of the social groups that are most at risk of falling victims to crime.

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news-98Tue, 16 Nov 2004 02:00:00 +0200Corruption in 100 Answers Second Editionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-in-100-answers-second-edition/The manual is dedicated to the most frequently asked questions about corruption and aims at supporting anticorruption education.The manual is dedicated to the most frequently asked questions about corruption and aims at supporting anticorruption education. Despite the fact that many of the definitions in the manual are debatable and subject to opposing opinions, the publication unites the predominant viewpoints of the experts, the Bulgarian legislature, the current European standards and the essence of the domestic and international publications on this topic.

The hundred answers to those questions are classified in five sections:

Definitions
Laws and corruption
Corruption in the public life
Corruption in Bulgaria
Counteracting corruption.

The manual could be used as a resource material for trainings and lectures on anticorruption topics in the secondary schools and universities and will aide the teaching of elective courses on anticorruption introduced by the Ministry of Education and Science in the fall of 2004 in the Bulgarian secondary schools. The manual could be also useful for trainings and seminars for civil servants working at public institutions, which try to implement ethical codices of conduct and to improve transparency in public services provision to citizens.

The authors of the manual are Dr. Emil Tsenkov, Senior Fellow, the Center for the Study of Democracy; Krassimir Dobrev, journalist, Sega Daily, prof. Liliana Strakova, Department of Pedagogy, Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski.

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news-96Wed, 03 Nov 2004 02:00:00 +0200Corporate Governance in Development: Bulgaria 2002-2004https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corporate-governance-in-development-bulgaria-2002-2004/The objective of the publication “Corporate Governance in Development” is to review most of the major events and practices, related to corporate control. The authors pinpoint the achievements and ommisions in the legislative framework, the characteristics of the Bulgarian shareholders and corporate organization, as well as the relations between the members of the boards of a company and the company itself, in order to show the nessessity of social and responsible corporate governance. The principles of the good corporate governance are not well-known in Bulgaria, probably because of the novelty of the topic, the specific characteristics of the Bulgarian shareholders and the companies, which became public in an administrative way through the mass privatization, as well as the underdevelopment of the capital market and the insignificant stock market participation of the public companies. However, the authors of the publication consider it would be wrong for the problems of corporate governance to be ignored because of the facts mentioned above. Without sound corporate governance the capital market will languish, the growth of new firms will remain difficult and many investment projects will not find financing. The publication “Corporate Governance in Development” reviews most of the latest major events, practices and problems, related to corporate control in Bulgaria during the period 2002 - 2004. The authors pinpoint the achievements and omissions in the legislative framework, the characteristics of the Bulgarian shareholders and corporate organization, as well as the relations between the members of the board of a company and the company itself, in order to show the necessity of social and responsible corporate governance.

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news-93Fri, 29 Oct 2004 03:00:00 +0300 Ombudsman Institution in Europe and Bulgaria: Legal Nature and Practicehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/ombudsman-institution-in-europe-and-bulgaria-legal-nature-and-practice/This educational manual is designed for the elaboration and carrying out of specialized courses and programs in Bulgarian universities and schools as well as for everyone who is interested in these scope of issues.This educational manual is designed for the elaboration and carrying out of specialized courses and programs in Bulgarian universities and schools as well as for everyone who is interested in these scope of issues. Learning about the ombudsman institution's origin, evolution, powers, efficiency and forms would be a necessity for students of law, political sciences and sociology, experts in public administration, individuals studying the mechanisms for human rights protection in the country, etc. The knowledge about the ombudsman institution would also increase the opportunities of individual citizens to defend their rights against omissions, illegal or inappropriate actions, or abuse of power on the part of public administration as well as local self-government authorities and local administration.

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news-274Fri, 15 Oct 2004 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 5: The Long Way of the Emerging Ombudsman Institution in Bulgaria: Six Months Laterhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-5-the-long-way-of-the-emerging-ombudsman-institution-in-bulgaria-six-months-later/The fifth consecutive issue of the CSD Brief is a follow-up of the CSD Policy Brief No. 3 of May 2004 and examines the recent developments in the introduction of the ombudsman institution on national and local level in Bulgaria. The brief presents the significant progress in the establishment of the local public mediators (municipal ombudsmen) throughout the country in contrast with the second failed attempt of the parliament to elect the national ombudsman. The fifth consecutive issue of the CSD Brief is a follow-up of the CSD Policy Brief No. 3 of May 2004 and examines the recent developments in the introduction of the ombudsman institution on national and local level in Bulgaria. The brief presents the significant progress in the establishment of the local public mediators (municipal ombudsmen) throughout the country in contrast with the second failed attempt of the parliament to elect the national ombudsman. It contains also a critical review of the legal framework of the local public mediators and underlines once again the need of timely election of the national ombudsman through an open, transparent and non-partisan procedure with the active involvement of the civil society.

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news-1024Fri, 24 Sep 2004 18:36:00 +0300Transportation, Smuggling and Organized Crimehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/transportation-smuggling-and-organized-crime/The report analyses the participation of transportation companies in smuggling practicesThe report analyses the participation of transportation companies in smuggling practices, more specifically:

• it examines and describes a range of companies and individuals involved in organized crime groups whose main business is the trafficking of consumer goods.

• it also gives and overview of the criminal and semi-legal networks involved in smuggling Chinese and Turkish goods.

• it presents new data on oil and oil products smuggling.

• it examines the role of duty-free shops and their involvement in illicit cigarettes imports.
 

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news-1026Tue, 24 Aug 2004 19:01:00 +0300The Hidden Economy in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-hidden-economy-in-bulgaria/In Bulgaria the tax and tax enforcement burden, ineffective enforcement of laws and administrative barriers for businesses are the main factors stimulating informal economic activities. The publication presents the latest trends and challenges of the hidden economy to the private and public sector. It describes the various manifestations of the hidden economy and assesses its size, scope and characteristics in Bulgaria through six different methods. According to international estimates the share of the hidden economy worldwide accounts for 10-12% of global GDP. In the transition economies however hidden economy reaches one fourth of GDP. Economic analyses show that if the share of the hidden sector exceeds a critical level (around 50% of GDP) it changes the ‘rules of the game’ in the whole economy.

In Bulgaria the tax and tax enforcement burden, ineffective enforcement of laws and administrative barriers for businesses are the main factors stimulating informal economic activities. The publication presents the latest trends and challenges of the hidden economy to the private and public sector. It describes the various manifestations of the hidden economy and assesses its size, scope and characteristics in Bulgaria through six different methods. The publication underscores the necessity of international cooperation in the area of hidden economy. The authors conclude with recommendations for improvement of the legislative and regulatory framework for the business and its implementation.

The publication includes contributions from experts of the National Social Security Institute, the Bulgarian National Bank, the National Statistical Institute, the Agency for Economic Analysis and Forecasting and the Center for Study of Democracy.

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news-91Tue, 10 Aug 2004 03:00:00 +0300Migration and Internal Security. Challenges to the Immigration Policies of the EU and Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/migration-and-internal-security-challenges-to-the-immigration-policies-of-the-eu-and-bulgaria/Traditionally, migration processes are examined in the context of the labor market, humanitarian crises or social integration. The present study reveals a new dimension of migration which is considered one of the new security risks. Traditionally, migration processes are examined in the context of the labor market, humanitarian crises or social integration. The present study reveals a new dimension of migration which is considered one of the new security risks.

The first chapter of the paper defines the various forms of migration with a focus on the consequences of illegal immigration.

The second part discusses immigration as a threat to the public order and societal security in the EU member states and looks into the main stages of development of an EU immigration policy. After a review of the most important political and legal documents of the EU since the 80s, the study concludes that despite the active work of both the member states and the European Commission, currently a common European policy in the field of immigration does not exist.

Further, the study examines the new trends in migration to the EU and the challenges to the establishment of a European “area of security, freedom and justice”, such as the anti-terrorism measures and the need for “replacement migration” due to the demographic changes.

The third chapter is dedicated to Bulgaria as a country of origin and transit for immigrants to the EU. The main conclusion is that Bulgarian citizens represent a small percentage of the total number of immigrants in the EU and do not put its integrity and social security at risk. Particular attention is paid to the achievements of Bulgaria in harmonizing its immigration legislation with the “acquis communautaire” as well as to the need of further institutional and legislative improvements.

The study also touches upon the following issues:

• Who are the immigrants in the European Union and do they pose a risk to the internal order and safety of the European citizens?

• Is the post-enlargement “immigrant wave” realistic?

• What is EU’s reaction to the immigration from third countries?

• What is the Bulgarian immigration policy with regard to the future external border of the EU?

• What are the “pushing” factors for the Bulgarian immigrants to the EU?

• How the EU countries treat Bulgarian immigrants?

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news-87Thu, 01 Jul 2004 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 4: The Outstanding Agenda for Political Party Reform in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-4-the-outstanding-agenda-for-political-party-reform-in-bulgaria/The fourth consecutive issue of CSD brief concentrates on the status of political parties’ system reform in Bulgaria. It describes the shortcomings of the present Law on Political Parties, namely the insufficient legal requirements for founding a political party, the inadequate rules on political parties funding and the absence of effective legally grounded mechanisms for civic control. The fourth consecutive issue of CSD brief concentrates on the status of political parties’ system reform in Bulgaria. It describes the shortcomings of the present Law on Political Parties, namely the insufficient legal requirements for founding a political party, the inadequate rules on political parties funding and the absence of effective legally grounded mechanisms for civic control.

The paper argues that the start of the reforms depends on the adoption of the Draft Law on Political Parties, which is expected to be voted soon by the Parliament and would overcome the current situation of lack of control and transparency. The Brief also presents the constant efforts of CSD and Coalition 2000 for promoting the necessity of reforming the political parties system by organizing public discussions and providing expert assistance to the policy makers.
 

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news-85Mon, 31 May 2004 03:00:00 +0300CSD Brief No 3: The Long Way of the Emerging Ombudsman Institution in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/csd-brief-no-3-the-long-way-of-the-emerging-ombudsman-institution-in-bulgaria/The third consecutive issue of the CSD Brief focuses on the recent developments with the establishment of the ombudsman institution in Bulgaria and in particular the failed election of the first Bulgarian ombudsman. The document outlines several reasons for the unsuccessful election the most important of them being the flaws in the existing legislation, the absence of politcal will for reaching a consensus during the nomination and election procedure as well as the lack of transparency and publicity, which prevented the active participation of the civil society. The third consecutive issue of the CSD Brief focuses on the recent developments with the establishment of the ombudsman institution in Bulgaria and in particular the failed election of the first Bulgarian ombudsman. The document outlines several reasons for the unsuccessful election the most important of them being the flaws in the existing legislation, the absence of political will for reaching a consensus during the nomination and election procedure as well as the lack of transparency and publicity, which prevented the active participation of the civil society.

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news-308Thu, 18 Mar 2004 02:00:00 +0200Partners in Crime: The Risk of Symbiosis between the Security Sector and Organized Crime in Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/partners-in-crime-the-risk-of-symbiosis-between-the-security-sector-and-organized-crime-in-southeas/The report is a necessary contribution to heightening public awareness of the considerable risks arising from criminal partnership within the security sector in Bulgaria and the Western Balkans and the need for measures to counteract and prevent it. The penetration of the organized crime into the security sectors of the countries in transition is one of the darkest aspects of the post-communist transformations of states. During the past 15 years the growing impact and influence of organized criminal groups was felt not only in the countries in transition but also in the European Union. This process was facilitated by the increasingly free movement of people, goods and finances around Europe.

The report is a necessary contribution to heightening public awareness of the considerable risks arising from criminal partnership within the security sector in Bulgaria and the Western Balkans and the need for measures to counteract and prevent it.

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news-81Tue, 09 Mar 2004 02:00:00 +0200Weapons under Scrutinyhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/weapons-under-scrutiny/The report concludes that despite the evolution of Bulgaria’s arms export controls and its relatively clean record, compared to most of the 1990s, there is still room for improvement. The best approach to tackling all the issues raised in this report is through stricter implementation of the new export control mechanism adopted in2002.The report concludes that despite the evolution of Bulgaria’s arms export controls and its relatively clean record, compared to most of the 1990s, there is still room for improvement. The best approach to tackling all the issues raised in this report is through stricter implementation of the new export control mechanism adopted in 2002.

The report is divided into five parts. Part one provides an analysis of the social and economic reasons that have contributed to the reluctance among Bulgarian politicians to strengthen arms controls. It describes the transformation of the defense industry in the post-Communist transition period, as well as its current state. Part two provides an analytical description of Bulgaria’s arms control mechanism. Part three examines the factors contributing to illegal arms exports from Bulgaria and offers some data from recent cases. Part four focuses on the potential social, economic, and political effects of stronger arms controls. The last section offers a number of recommendations for the improvement of the export-control system.

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news-79Tue, 02 Mar 2004 02:00:00 +0200Corrupt Practices and Prevention of Corruptionhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/corrupt-practices-and-prevention-of-corruption/The manual aims to promote anti-corruption education as an important instrument to prevent corruption. The reader is specifically designed for the curricula of the military high schools in Bulgaria. Countering corruption is part of the efforts to build democratic public institutions and streanghtening the role of the civil society. The achieved results in preventing corrupt practices are important to measure the success of the transition and introduce modern stadarnds of transparency and democratic control.

The present manual, developed by the CSD in the framework of the project Prevention of Corruption in the Security Forces, aims to promote anti-corruption education as an important instrument to prevent corruption. The reader is specifically designed for the curricula of the military high schools in Bulgaria.

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news-193Wed, 31 Dec 2003 02:00:00 +0200Corruption Assessment Report 2003 https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-assessment-report-2003/Countering corruption in Bulgaria needs to go further than institutional or legislative measures and be aimed at creating the kind of political and economic culture which is built on trust in public institutions, transparency and accountability of all actions of the public administration and a determination to achieve a stable and predictable economic and social environment.Countering corruption in Bulgaria needs to go further than institutional or legislative measures and be aimed at creating the kind of political and economic culture which is built on trust in public institutions, transparency and accountability of all actions of the public administration and a determination to achieve a stable and predictable economic and social environment.

Coalition 2000 is an initiative of Bulgarian non-governmental organizations launched in the spring of 1997 with the aim to help restrict corruption in Bulgarian society through a partnership between state institutions, non-governmental organizations and individuals, who developed and have been implementing an Anti-Corruption Action Plan, a Corruption Monitoring System, and an anti-corruption public awareness campaign.

The Corruption Assessment Report – 2003 follows the approach of the Action Plan adopted by the Policy Forum in November 1998. The Report contains a general evaluation of the state and dynamics of corruption in Bulgarian society and of anti-corruption efforts in the year 2003 emphasizing the anti-corruption dimensions of judicial reform in Bulgaria.
 

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news-1032Tue, 25 Nov 2003 23:53:00 +0200Shaping a Common Security Agenda for Southeast Europehttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/shaping-a-common-security-agenda-for-southeast-europe/The document summarizes the speeches that were delivered and the discussions that took place during the international conference Shaping a Common Security for Southast Europe - New Approaches and Shared Responsibilities held on 5-6 September, 2003 in Sofia.Тhe document summarizes the speeches that were delivered and the discussions that took place during the international conference Shaping a Common Security for Southeast Europe - New Approaches and Shared Responsibilities held on 5-6 September, 2003 in Sofia.

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news-1028Tue, 25 Nov 2003 23:21:00 +0200The Drug Market in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/the-drug-market-in-bulgaria/The latest CSD analysis looks into the genesis and structure of drug distribution in Bulgaria, markets cartelization, hierarchy in the drug networks and the role of the organized crime for developing these markets. It also addresses the problem of drug abuse which was fueled by the drug epidemic of the late 1990s and has grown to become a real social threat.The Center for the Study of Democracy has undertaken a special inquiry into the topic of drug abuse - which was fueled by the drug epidemic of the late 1990s and has grown to become a real social threat - and the problem of drug dealing, which is a major mechanism for the generation of organized crime in Bulgaria.

This report addresses drug supply and demand in Bulgaria with the ambition of mapping a vast information void and identifying the basic mechanisms and stakeholders of the drug market. However, the peculiarities of drug diffusion and consumption do not allow the use of the standard suite of economic research tools and vehicles throughout the study.

This analysis has been divided into three sections. The first addresses the genesis of drug distribution, while the second describes its structure and functioning. The findings about supply presented in the first two parts are based on a series of in-depth interviews with dealers of different groups of drugs, long-term drug users, with police and security officers (experienced in combating drug traffic, drug production, and drug dealing), doctors, and civil organizations engaged in treatment services to drug addicts. Section 3 highlights drug demand, and brings into play the findings of the First National Population Survey on Drug Consumption in Bulgaria conducted by Vitosha Research. For the purpose of this study, CSD and Vitosha Research used the research tools of the European Monitoring Center on Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA).

While paying attention to a variety of views, the team of authors has tried to find common ground upon which to evaluate the actual number of drug users in the country. Even if population-based surveys are often unreliable due to stigmatized and hidden patterns of drug use, they are the type of surveys that provide a comprehensive representation of the situation in the country, as well as reference material for later in-depth studies.In addition, a series of indirect variables, tailored to Bulgarian circumstances, were drawn up to register psychoactive substance use. Two more surveys, of the qualitative type, were conducted: one among heroin addicts and frequent users of soft drugs, and another among experts and treatment agencies.

This report was developed by the CSD as part of project evaluating the patterns of drug supply and demand in Bulgaria.
 

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news-1030Sat, 15 Nov 2003 23:42:00 +0200Anticorruption Education Manualhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/anticorruption-education-manual/The new anticorruption education manual was compiled by the Coalition 2000 expert group on anticorruption education in 2003. It reflects the new priorities in the fight against corruption and is adapted for university curricula. A special expert group on anticorruption education was set up in the framework of Coalition 2000 with the task of preparing an updated version of the Anticorruption Education Manual published in 2000. The new manual was published in only in Bulgarian. It reflects the new priorities in the fight against corruption and is adapted for university curricula.

The anticorruption manual contains the following main chapters:
I. Corruption as a Social Phenomenon
II. Anticorruption Strategies in the Public Sphere
III. Anticorruption Strategies in the Economy
IV. Civil Society against Corruption
V. International Practices against Corruption

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news-49Thu, 02 Oct 2003 03:00:00 +0300Judicial Anti-Corruption Programhttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/judicial-anti-corruption-program/The Judicial Anti-Corruption Program was developed by eminent Bulgarian lawyers, including magistrates, and resulted from the combined efforts of influential non-governmental organizations, representatives of state institutions, and experts.

The Judicial Anti-Corruption Programhas been developed by eminent Bulgarian lawyers, including magistrates, and has resulted from the combined efforts of influential non-governmental organizations, representatives of state institutions, and experts.

In the course of the work the Program was presented to a number of state institutions, non-governmental organizations, professional associations, the media, experts and citizens so that they could provide their opinions, recommendations and proposals. A draft version of the document was discussed at a workshop attended by representatives of the stakeholders.

The Judicial Anti-Corruption Program draws on most of the remarks and proposals received and is aimed to prompt a further debate on the discussed issues.

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news-51Tue, 13 May 2003 03:00:00 +0300Opportunities for Establishment of Central Register of Legal Persons and Electronic Registries Center in Bulgariahttps://csd.bg/publications/publication/opportunities-for-establishment-of-central-register-of-legal-persons-and-electronic-registries-cente/The second consecutive brochure on registration reform in Bulgaria, published by CSD, includes the full text of the updated version of the report developed by the CSD Task Force, review of the foreign experience in developing central electronic registers and a proposal for the structure of an Electronic Registries Center in Bulgaria.The second consecutive brochure on registration reform in Bulgaria, published by CSD in May 2003, includes the full text of the updated version of the report developed by the CSD Task Force, review of the foreign experience in developing central electronic registers and a proposal for the structure of an Electronic Registries Center in Bulgaria.

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news-195Tue, 31 Dec 2002 02:00:00 +0200Corruption Assessment Report 2002 https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-assessment-report-2002/Coalition 2000 is an initiative of Bulgariannon-governmental organizations launched in the spring of 1997 withthe aim to counter corruption in Bulgarian society through apartnership between state institutions, non-governmentalorganizations and individuals, who developed and have beenimplementing an Anti-Corruption Action Plan, a CorruptionCoalition 2000 is an initiative of Bulgarian non-governmental organizations launched in the spring of 1997 with the aim to counter corruption in Bulgarian society through a partnership between state institutions, non-governmental organizations and individuals, who developed and have been implementing an Anti-Corruption Action Plan, a Corruption Monitoring System, and an anti-corruption public awareness campaign.

The Corruption Assessment Report - 2002 follows the structure and approach of the Action Plan adopted by the Policy Forum of Coalition 2000 in November 1998. The Report contains a general evaluation of the state and dynamics of corruption in Bulgarian society and of anti-corruption efforts in the year 2002.

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news-198Mon, 31 Dec 2001 02:00:00 +0200Corruption Assessment Report 2001 https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-assessment-report-2001/Limiting corruption in Bulgarian society calls notonly for institutional and legal measures but also for establishingthe rule of law. In this sense, it is of crucial importance tofoster a political and economic culture based on trust and respectfor public institutions, on transparency and openness in theactions of public administration, and the will to achieve stabilityand predictability of the economic and social environment.Limiting corruption in Bulgarian society calls not only for institutional and legal measures but also for establishing the rule of law. In this sense, it is of crucial importance to foster a political and economic culture based on trust and respect for public institutions, on transparency and openness in the actions of public administration, and the will to achieve stability and predictability of the economic and social environment.

Coalition 2000 is an initiative of Bulgarian non-governmental organizations which was launched in the spring of 1997 aimed at limiting corruption in Bulgarian society through a partnership between state institutions, non-governmental organizations, and individuals, who developed and have been implementing an Anti-Corruption Action Plan, Corruption Monitoring System, and an anti-corruption public awareness campaign.

The Corruption Assessment Report 2001 follows the structure and approach of the Action Plan adopted by the Policy Forum of Coalition 2000 in November, 1998. It presents a general evaluation of the state and dynamic of corruption in Bulgarian society and of the efforts to counteract corruption in the year 2001.

 

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news-200Sun, 31 Dec 2000 02:00:00 +0200Corruption Assessment Report 2000 https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-assessment-report-2000/Corruption Assessment Report - 2000 is the second in a row,which attempts to outline the general framework and the specificdimensions of corrupt practices in Bulgaria introduced in theirdynamics. As before, our evaluation criteria take into accountreputable international analyses and domestic indexes about thespread and the frequency of different forms of corruptbehavior.Corruption Assessment Report - 2000 is the second in a row, which attempts to outline the general framework and the specific dimensions of corrupt practices in Bulgaria introduced in their dynamics. As before, our evaluation criteria take into account reputable international analyses and domestic indexes about the spread and the frequency of different forms of corrupt behavior.

The analysis of the Corruption Indexes of Coalition 2000 shows that, over the past year, the public in this country has still perceived corruption as an obstacle to Bulgaria's development that is especially difficult to overcome.

Respondents in various polls have indicated that unemployment, low incomes and poverty are the only factors ranking higher than corruption in terms of social significance.

Moreover, the problem of corruption has been given more weight in comparison with the previous year. The latter fact demonstrates that, in the opinion of the public, no sufficiently effective means exist yet to combat corrupt practices so as to suppress them to a tolerable level.

 

 

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news-67Fri, 31 Dec 1999 02:00:00 +0200Corruption Assessment Report 1999 https://csd.bg/publications/publication/corruption-assessment-report-1999/The Corruption Assessment Report 1999 follows the structure and approach of the Action Plan adopted by the Policy Forum of Coalition 2000 in November 1998. It presents a general evaluation of the state and dynamic of corruption in Bulgarian society and of the efforts to counteract it in 1999.Limiting corruption in Bulgarian society calls not only for institutional and legal measures but also for establishing the rule of law. In this sense, it is of crucial importance to foster a political and economic culture based on trust and respect for public institutions, on transparency and openness in the actions of public administration, and the will to achieve stability and predictability of the economic and social environment. Coalition 2000 is an initiative of Bulgarian non-governmental organizations which was launched in the Spring of 1997 aimed at limiting corruption in Bulgarian society through a partnership between state institutions, non-governmental organizations, and individual personalities, who developed and have been implementing an Anti-Corruption Action Plan, Corruption Monitoring System, and an anti-corruption public awareness campaign.

The Corruption Assessment Report 1999 follows the structure and approach of the Action Plan adopted by the Policy Forum of Coalition 2000 in November 1998. It presents a general evaluation of the state and dynamic of corruption in Bulgarian society and of the efforts to counteract it in 1999.

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news-69Thu, 31 Dec 1998 02:00:00 +0200CLEAN FUTURE. Anti-Corruption Action Plan for Bulgaria. Monitoring. Corruption Assessment Indices. https://csd.bg/publications/publication/clean-future-anti-corruption-action-plan-for-bulgaria-monitoring-corruption-assessment-indices/The Anti-Corruption Action Plan has been developed within the framework of the Coalition 2000 process with the purpose of becoming part of the social agenda as a broadly approved system of measures and actions for curbing the extremely dangerous social phenomenon of corruption. The Anti-Corruption Action Plan has been developed within the framework of the Coalition 2000 process with the purpose of becoming part of the social agenda as a broadly approved system of measures and actions for curbing the extremely dangerous social phenomenon of corruption. The Anti-Corruption Action Plan gained credit as a document, which was often referred to in Bulgaria and used in other countries as a model for mapping out national anti-corruption priorities. In the words of George Soros, the Bulgarian anti-corruption plan is the most comprehensive and ambitious document of its kind.

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