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Georgian Development Research Institute Established

By Messenger Staff
Friday, November 25
Well known public figures, analyst Gia Khukhashvili, philosopher Zaza Shatirishvili and constitutionalist Vakhtang Khmaladze have established an NGO, the Georgian Development Research Institute. In a statement the founders said:

“Since regaining independence, successive Georgian governments have tried to implement appropriate reforms for establishing a civilized system based on modern values. Unfortunately all these attempts failed and the maximum the country achieved currently is faux-democracy and nomenclature capitalism. For more than twenty years the country has been circulating in this vicious circle unable to pass the simplest test: the change of government through elections. It is time to learn from our mistakes, to analyze attentively the old and current reforms and find the mistakes which have led for so long to defeat in combating the Soviet influences in the system and to consider all plans for our future.

Our aim is not just to write a new plan or a document for new strategic development. Many similar attempts were taken, tests compiled, and forgotten. We don’t want to create a similarly useless opus. Our goal is to find out aspirations, dreams, concerns and hopes. We want to study and research the type of mentality of our society and its system of values. We would like to highlight those issues such as labor and relations towards labor, wealth and poverty, attitudes towards wealth and wealthy people as well as alternative directions. We are also interested in relations with the legal system and justice, and how we understand these concepts.

We think that this kind of research will facilitate an understanding of where modern Georgian society is located and what position we are in regarding development in Georgia, what kind of reforms are needed and most importantly what speed reforms and their implementation should have. We are aware that it is the level of readiness for reforms in society that usually determines the success or failure of those reforms. Such research will enable us to determine the priority directions of these reforms.

Professionally justified and appropriate programs should be prepared and the ways and the stages of the implementation of these programs should also be identified. With this purpose the Georgian Development Research Institute has been established. We asked potential donors to support this needed initiative. First to respond was Bidzina Ivanishvili, who expressed his willingness to support the institute financially. He is well aware that the institute should not be influenced by any political party or group of interests. The results of the work of the institute should be targeted at the entire society and it should be accessible for all political forces active in Georgia as well as public or international organizations - in short, for all Georgian citizens. Ivanishvili also expressed his willingness to actively collaborate in discussions carried out by the institute. The activities of the institute will be transparent, all conferences, roundtable meetings, public discussions and the publication of results of the researches are planned to be open to all. The institute invites scholars, political or public figures and potential donors for cooperation. We hope that such operations will considerably facilitate our achieving the targeted goals."

Professor Iago Kachkachishvili, head of the Social Research and Analysis Institute, carried out the first research for GDRI. More than 3,000 respondents have answered questions on the processes taking place in the country and their attitude, preferences and stance on a range of issues. The results will be available in near future and the readers will receive the information immediately.