Journal of Liberty and International Affairs 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Goran Ilik Open Journal Systems <p><span class="text14_333"><span class="blue16"><em>Journal of Liberty and International Affairs </em>is a triannual (3 regular issues per year), international, open-access, and peer-reviewed journal published by the<em> Institute for Research and European Studies. </em>This journal follows a regular publishing schedule with the occasional addition of a special issue. The journal aims to provide an active international forum for analysis, research, and debate in the fields of political sciences, international relations, and law. Beginning with Vol. 10, No. 2 (2024), JLIA will steadfastly focus on these designated scientific fields. The journal embraces multi- and interdisciplinary scholarship and comparative approaches. </span></span><strong>The journal is <a href="">indexed</a> in SCOPUS, EBSCO, DOAJ, CEEOL, SSOAR, ERIHPLUS, HeinOnline, ANVUR, Columbia International Affairs Online, ProQuest, UGC-CARE List Group II, etc.</strong></p> <hr /> <p><strong>Journal of Liberty and International Affairs | JLIA<br /></strong></p> <p>First publication: April 2015</p> <p>ISSN: 1857-9760 (online) | Open Access | Language: English</p> <p>JLIA is indexed in <a href="">Scopus</a> (<a href=";tip=sid&amp;exact=no">Q3</a>) (CiteScore 2022: 0.3 | SJR 2022: 0.137 | SNIP 2022: 0.273)</p> <p>JLIA uses the plagiarism screening tool: <a href="">PlagScan</a></p> <p>The authors are strongly encouraged to read the <a href="">Review Policy</a> section, the <a href="">Article Guidelines</a>, and the <a href="">Publication Ethics</a> section carefully before preparing an article for <a href="">submission</a>, as well as to check the article for conformance before submitting it for publication.</p> <p><strong>The authors must complete the registration process with the JLIA before submitting. If already registered, authors can directly log in and initiate the submission through the <a href="">online submission system</a>. <br /></strong></p> <p>Contact:</p> <hr /> Cover Page and Table of Contents 2023-12-19T10:03:04+01:00 Journal of Liberty and International Affairs <p><span class="text14_333"><span class="blue16"><em>Journal of Liberty and International Affairs </em>is a triannual (3 regular issues per year), international, open-access, and peer-reviewed journal published by the<em> Institute for Research and European Studies. </em>This journal follows a regular publishing schedule with the occasional addition of a special issue. The journal aims to provide an active international forum for analysis, research, and debate in a broad range of fields. It welcomes submissions primarily from the fields of political sciences, international relations, and law. Additionally, contributions from economics and related fields are also encouraged. The journal embraces multi- and interdisciplinary scholarship and comparative approaches. </span></span>The journal is <a href="">indexed</a> in SCOPUS, EBSCO, DOAJ, CEEOL, SSOAR, ERIHPLUS, HeinOnline, ANVUR, Columbia International Affairs Online, ProQuest, UGC-CARE List Group II, etc.</p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Journal of Liberty and International Affairs SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF TRUST AND POLICE PRESENCE IN SCHOOLS: IMPLICATIONS FOR SCHOOL SAFETY POLICY 2023-11-23T18:39:16+01:00 Bojan Jankovic Vladimir M. Cvetkovic Zvonimir Ivanovic Aleksandar Ivanov Svetlana Jovanovic Bozidar Otasevic <p><em>The study aims to determine the trust and presence of police officers in schools in Serbia, as well as the perception of the principals and secretaries, teachers and staff, parents, and students on how successful the specific police units dedicated to schools were in fulfilling their tasks. The ex-post analysis was conducted through PEST/SWAT analysis, mapping the key actors and using batteries of online questionnaires, besides interviews with the MOI representatives, surveyed with personal interviewing, computer-aided surveying, desk analysis, and content analysis. The survey was conducted from September 2021 to June 2022. The research methods were implemented in 1140 schools in Serbia, and 8,617 people were included in surveys: police officers (308); principals and secretaries (1085); the team for protection against discrimination (982); teachers and staff (2988); parents (938) and students (2316). The relationships between the covariates and perception were investigated using the t-test, one-way ANOVA, multivariate linear regression, and binary regression. The results showed that a project of school police officers was not fully recognized as one of the strategically essential instruments for safe schools; trust is low, but presence is high. Besides that, the results suggest that the entire public believes that police are needed in schools and that it positively affects school safety. Regarding school safety policy, it is necessary to undertake three measures for the sustainable development of trust and the presence of police in school: regulatory, informative-educational, and institutional-organizational. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 METHODOLOGY FOR DEVELOPING A SECURITY ENVIRONMENT 2023-11-23T19:02:28+01:00 Oleh Borovyk Dmytro Kupriienko Artem Bratko Anatolii Mysyk Oleksandr Andrushko Serhii Burbela <p><em>The research conducted in this article is a substantiation of the method for strategic management of the development of the Ukrainian border security environment. The essence of the method is to determine the phases for the current state and the projected period for particular sectors of the state border, depending on their inherent characteristics, further selecting the concept of border security on this basis, establishing the type of barriers and criteria for ensuring border security that are appropriate for use. Further application of the methodology involves conducting a SWOT analysis for particular sectors of the state border, which identifies the strengths and weaknesses of the internal environment, opportunities and threats inherent in the external environment, and the formation of possible strategies for ensuring border security in three variants of organizing activities (in the conditions of day-to-day activities, a complication of the situation and martial law). Based on the results of the analysis and the illustrative example, it can be concluded that the proposed method for strategic management of the development of Ukraine’s border security environment is one of the possible effective mechanisms in the activities of the subjects ensuring Ukraine’s border security.<strong> </strong></em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 POLITICAL PARTY PREFERENCES ON LOCAL ELECTION IN INDONESIA: HOW DOES RATIONAL CHOICE INSTITUTIONALISM WORK IN CANDIDATE SELECTION? 2023-11-24T08:37:30+01:00 Syafhendry Andi Luhur Prianto Nina Yuslaini <p><em>The rational choice institutionalism approach provides insight into political parties’ personal and institutional preferences in determining their strategic and technical-operational decisions. Institutional and personal preferences in political parties have shaped rational choices in selecting regional head candidates. Political party preferences provide rational choices based on the values they believe have shaped political responses to individuals and institutions. This study will examine selecting mayor and deputy mayor candidates in regional head elections. This study maps the preferences of political parties in determining their rational choices. The qualitative research method involves field interviews, online media analysis, and the examination of social media data. The data processing includes content analysis conducted using NVivo 12 Plus software. The study results indicate that political parties as political institutions are very centralized and pragmatic in determining the results of selecting regional head candidates. There are variations in the types of preferences of political parties in the candidates, namely systemic, practical, and normative preferences. Internal regulations support systemic preferences, practical preferences are determined by party procedures, directors, and selection criteria, and normative preferences are based on political parties’ ideology, values, and goals. Normative preferences will only become mainstream in the candidacy of political parties if party ideology strengthens and the candidate selection mechanism is transformed into a democracy-based selection.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 ECONOMIC CHALLENGES TO UKRAINIAN REFUGEE INTEGRATION IN CENTRAL AND EASTERN EUROPE 2023-11-24T08:59:05+01:00 Atanas Dimitrov Vasil Pavlov <p><em>The invasion of Ukraine by Russia has resulted in the displacement of millions of Ukrainians, leading to socio-economic and political challenges for the host countries. The Refugee Response Plan, encompassing heavily affected EU Member States, has been the focus of this study, examining how the issue of refugee integration was addressed, with a specific emphasis on flaws and omissions in the approach. Various demographic and socioeconomic data and strategic national documents related to refugee integration were compared for this analysis. Employment was identified as a key tool for the integration of Ukrainian refugees. The findings revealed a lack of a common refugee integration policy among the surveyed countries despite similar past and current socioeconomic circumstances and security environments, including mixed migration. Ambiguities across these countries, including local population perceptions hindering Ukrainian refugee integration, were observed. Consequently, we assert the necessity for EU harmonized measures, emphasizing their long-term implementation to alleviate the economic burden of the war in Ukraine and provide predictability in the actions of individual governments.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 ASSESSING DISPROPORTIONATE TERRITORIAL DEVELOPMENT: INSIGHTS FROM 10 COUNTRIES 2023-11-24T09:03:59+01:00 Davit Hakhverdyan Gagik Badadyan <p><em>Territorial development disparities are an undeniable reality for all the countries of the world, which implies that no country can practically avoid them. However, how different countries respond to these disparities is another matter. The effectiveness of policies in overcoming territorial development disparities depends significantly on how deeply these disparities are recognized and studied. In this context, assessing disparities in territorial development is necessary, and the article proposes a methodology for its implementation. The methodology examines territorial development indexes and their relative standard deviation. In the article, the developed methodology was also applied to 10 countries, as a result of which the levels of territorial development disparities in Canada, Poland, Bulgaria, Hungary, Finland, Serbia, Georgia, Moldova, Kazakhstan, and China were evaluated. Based on the assessments, general conclusions are also presented for each country in the article.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 ESTIMATING TAX REVENUES ON ECONOMIC GROWTH FOR SOUTHEAST EUROPEAN COUNTRIES 2023-11-24T09:18:08+01:00 Luljeta Gllogjani Esat Durguti <p><em>The study aims to identify and empirically analyze the impact of direct tax and indirect tax revenues on economic growth in the transition countries of Southeast Europe, based on panel data for the period 2005-2019. Factors that are included in the study as independent variables are direct tax and indirect tax revenues. In contrast, the dependent variable is defined as the annual GDP growth in percentage, an indicator of economic growth. The econometric approach is OLS regression analysis, random effects regression, and fixed effects regression. The model’s reliability has been tested by applying diagnostic tests, such as autocorrelation, normal distribution, and heteroscedasticity. Moreover, the result of the Breusch and Pagan Lagrangian multiplier and Hausman test suggests that the adequate model is a regression with fixed effects. Therefore, the findings with a regression with fixed effects confirm that the revenues from indirect taxes resulted in a positive and statistically significant effect. In contrast, direct tax revenues did not significantly affect economic growth but resulted in a positive sign. The analysis through the econometric model enabled the achievement of the aims set in this paper and the achievement of the final goal, providing observed evidence that the role of tax policy is crucial to encouraging economic growth.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 EFFECT OF AUTOMATED TELLER MACHINES AND BANK BRANCHES ON THE PROFITABILITY OF BANKING BUSINESSES: EVIDENCE FROM KOSOVO AND NORTH MACEDONIA 2023-11-24T09:59:14+01:00 Erëza A. Arifi <p><em>The core objective of this study is to explore whether the installation of automated teller machines (ATM) and commercial bank branches (CBB) affects the profitability of the banking systems in Kosovo and North Macedonia. Additionally, several influential variables, such as bank capital-to-assets (BCA), inflation (INF), and GDP growth (GDP_G), were used in the research. More specifically, the research deals with secondary data from 2010 to 2022 using the dynamic data analysis technique generalized method of moments (GMM). The evidence indicates that ATM adoption has a substantial positive influence on bank profitability. Similarly, BCA and GDP_G have a positive influence on bank profitability. Nevertheless, CBB and inflation have had a substantial negative influence on both metrics. The research’s scientific merit and novelty are derived from features unique to earlier studies. The study claims to open up new avenues of debate involving scholars and legislative authorities about identifying influencing components of profitability in the banking business.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 A BIBLIOMETRIC ANALYSIS OF HEALTH DIPLOMACY RESEARCH BASED ON VOSVIEWER AND CITESPACE 2023-11-24T10:57:35+01:00 Liu Jiangwei Sity Daud <p><em>Research on health diplomacy not only deepens global health governance but also enhances the sharing of information and resources in the field of public health. A bibliometric study was conducted on health diplomacy works published between 1993 and 2023 with “health diplomacy”, “medicine diplomacy”, “health and foreign policy”, or “vaccine diplomacy” as the keywords. VOSviewer and CiteSpace were used to perform the bibliometric analysis. A total of 2,216 articles from the Web of Science database were analyzed. Results found that the United States held a prominent and influential position in health diplomacy studies, followed by China, the United Kingdom, and Australia. The London School of Hygiene &amp; Tropical Medicine, the University of Toronto, and Harvard University were the top three research institutes for health diplomacy. The article from Feldbaum et al. (2010) served as the representative and symbolic reference. These findings showed that topics including power, Covid-19, security, soft power, WHO, vaccine diplomacy, and governance, though with shorter spans, were the focal points in recent years. In addition, health diplomacy research exhibited interdisciplinary, cross-cutting, and temporal characteristics closely related to factors such as politics, economics, environment, and public goods.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 EXPLORING THE CORRELATION BETWEEN HRM PRACTICES AND TQM IN PRIVATE COMPANIES: AN EMPIRICAL INVESTIGATION IN KOSOVO 2023-11-24T11:09:29+01:00 Faruk Ahmeti Nazmi Zeqiri <p><em>The research aims to broaden the current discussion surrounding the intricate relationship between Human Resource Management (HRM) and Total Quality Management (TQM) within the realm of private enterprises in Kosovo. The paper suggests that the arrangement and presence of HRM practices influence the successful implementation of TQM. Data was collected from a diverse range of companies, with 171 employees participating in the study, to explore this relationship. The collected data underwent analysis using Partial Least Squares Structural Equation Modelling (PLS-SEM) via path analysis, enabling a thorough examination of the causal connections between the variables. Investigation delves into the overall impact of HRM on TQM, with a specific focus on enhancing quality orientation and criteria related to individuals within the selected companies. The findings highlight the substantial and positive influence of teamwork, staffing, performance appraisals, and compensation on TQM. Conversely, training and development exhibit a noteworthy negative impact on TQM. Furthermore, the research demonstrates the significant and favorable effect of TQM on HRM practices within organizations. Additionally, performance outcomes exhibit positive and significant correlations with HRM. These outcomes underscore the fundamental significance of TQM as an integral component of HRM within the realm of private enterprises.<strong> </strong></em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 AN EVIDENCE-BASED ANALYSIS OF THE EU’S HAMPERED TRANSFORMATIVE POWER IN THE WESTERN BALKANS 2023-11-24T11:26:51+01:00 Doris Malaj Elena Polo <p><em>The objectives of this paper were to assess the role of the EU in the countries willing to join and committed to the negotiation processes (with a particular focus on the WB region) and to explore further and explain the dynamics of the EU’s crucial role onto the political performance, summarizing internal and external country and region-based developments. For this purpose, the deployed methodology consists of conducting a comparative quantitative analysis, comparing evidence from selected countries and from selected enlargement waves. The main results of the analysis confirmed that the EU’s role in ensuring democratic performances at the country/region level is seriously weakened over time and that it is therefore essential that the EU, especially in uncertain times, rethink and revitalize its democracy-promoting mechanisms to rebuild and re-test itself as a transformative power.</em></p> <p><em> </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 NEW MODEL OF TERRORISM THREAT IN INDONESIA: EAST JAVA CASE STUDY 2023-11-24T11:37:31+01:00 Gonda Yumitro Rizki Febriani Ali Roziqin Sukma Oktaviani <p><em>This article discusses a new model of the threat of Indonesian terrorism, especially in the East Java region. Indonesian terrorism continues to grow even more dangerous than before because terrorism has a dynamic nature following the times. The research method for this article was a literature study, with data collection techniques using the Harzing PoP 8 application and some data from Google Scholar. The relevant references collected were converted into RIS data types using the Mendeley application. The RIS data was then processed using VOSviewer software to visualize data about previous research related to a new model of the Indonesian terrorism threat. The authors found that terrorism has survived to this day because it found new ways of recruiting and carrying out its acts of terror. Terrorism no longer focuses on a man as the perpetrator but involves women and even children in their actions. Terrorism can also utilize technological sophistication to support group movements and their acts of terror. This is evidenced by the blocking of 600 social media accounts by BNPT, which often uploads radical content in Indonesia. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 THE PARADOX OF ASEAN WAY IN MARINE PLASTIC POLLUTION: THE CHALLENGE OF COMPLIANCE AMONG MEMBER STATES 2023-11-24T12:01:56+01:00 Ria Wierma Putri Febryani Sabatira <p><em>ASEAN countries are considered significant contributors to global pollution, particularly concerning marine plastic pollution (MPP), which has emerged as a critical concern in the region. To address this issue, ASEAN has established three specific instruments: the Bangkok Declaration on Combating Marine Debris in 2019, the ASEAN Framework of Action on Marine Debris 2019, and the ASEAN Regional Action Plan for Combating Marine Debris in the ASEAN Member States 2021-2025. However, being soft laws, these instruments lack legally binding force, allowing states to choose not to implement them effectively and promptly, leading to low compliance rates. The root cause of this compliance challenge lies in the ASEAN Way’s foundational principle, which promotes non-intervention, resulting in non-legally binding instruments. This raises genuine concerns about the potential inefficacy of implementing ASEAN instruments. Nonetheless, the issue of marine plastic pollution is considered a contemporary environmental catastrophe in the region, demanding Member States to prioritize compliance. Hence, this study delves into two key issues: (1) the ASEAN Way and compliance and (2) regional mechanisms to bolster Member States’ adherence in combating marine plastic pollution. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 CREATIVE FREEDOM AND CENSORSHIP: A COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS OF REGULATORY FRAMEWORK FOR OTT CONTENTS IN THE UK, INDIA, AND CHINA 2023-11-26T12:02:47+01:00 Siddharth Kanojia <p><em>The emergence of over-the-top (OTT) services has lately revolutionized the way people consume media content. These services have emerged as a significant disruptor in the media industry in recent years. With the advent of OTT platforms, various concerns have arisen over the censorship and regulation of content on these platforms. Accordingly, this paper has examined the current trends in censorship and regulation of OTT content through the perusal of various legal and regulatory frameworks in the United Kingdom, India, and China. It has probed into cases of censorship and examined various aspects of civil and political liberties. The analysis has revealed a persuasive connection between the degree of freedom of expression and creative freedom dispensed in each region. Lastly, the paper has provided recommendations for policymakers and other stakeholders on balancing the need for freedom of expression and access to information with responsible content management and regulation.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 THE ROLE OF THE GEOPOLITICAL POSITION OF THE HASHEMITE KINGDOM OF JORDAN TOWARDS AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY FROM 1990 TO 2017 2023-11-26T12:06:31+01:00 Ala Alkhawaldeh Mohammad Ahmad Nayef Alakash Hani A. M. Akho-Rashida Ziad Mohammad Al Wahshat Mohammad Saleh Bani Issa <p><em>The role of the geopolitical location of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan towards United States (US) foreign policy from 1990 to 2017 is the focus of this study, which addressed the impact of important regional and international political events, positively or negatively, on the development of relations between the two countries in terms of political and security aspects. The study adopted a qualitative approach, and primary data was collected through interviews with 16 participants from political, economic, and security experts in Jordan and the US. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the data obtained. The study concluded that US foreign policy recognizes Jordan as a close ally and considers its stability extremely important; Jordan has a suitable location to defend Israel because critical Arab countries surround it, and Jordan enjoys a unique geographical location in the Middle East. Some political events play an essential role in US foreign policy concerning security aid to Jordan, as the US links its aid to Jordan to political events. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 THE EFFECT OF FINANCIAL DEVELOPMENT ON INCOME INEQUALITY 2023-11-26T12:16:28+01:00 Vesë Qehaja-Keka Atdhetar Gara Erblina Hajdari Arber Hoti <p><em>The imperative goal of attaining sustainable development necessitates mitigating income inequality and bolstering access to financial institutions. This research explores the influence of an array of independent variables, namely credit demand, GDP per capita, inflation, government consumption expenditure, and education, on the Gini coefficient across the EU’s 27 Member States from 2008 to 2019. The investigation procured secondary data from the esteemed international entity, the World Bank, with 324 observations belonging to the panel type. Because of the utilization of panel data, this study implemented various econometric models, commencing with the OLS model, followed by the fixed effects model (FE) and random effects model (RE). According to the outcomes of the econometric models, credit demand and education positively impact income inequality. At the same time, GDP per capita, inflation, and government consumption expenditures have a negative effect on income inequality. Additionally, the findings demonstrate the significant impact of credit demand, GDP per capita, inflation, and government consumption expenditures on income inequality. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 POLITICAL PARTY INSTITUTIONALIZATION FROM A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE: THE CASE OF THAILAND 2023-11-26T12:25:53+01:00 Wichuda Satidporn Stithorn Thananithichot <p><em>This article examines the importance of institutionalizing political parties in developing democracy. This article develops the conceptual framework of the institutionalization of political parties, which combines institutionalization factors in both internal and external dimensions and applies this conceptual framework to extract lessons on the institutionalization of political parties in various democratic countries, including Thailand. The results of applying the aforementioned conceptual framework, in particular to the case of Thailand, indicate that the failure to apply the notion of institutionalization to political parties in this country stems from the traditionally narrow-minded approach to considering the institutionalization of political parties rather than problems with the idea itself. Thus, this article suggests that building an institution for a political party is something that can be designed by giving importance to the development of political parties in a structured manner, along with promoting political parties to have the ability to play a solid political role under the democratic regime. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 GREECE AND TRIPARTITE PARTNERSHIPS IN THE EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN: A RECOMMENDED POLICY FOR GREEK STRATEGIC INTERESTS 2023-11-26T12:31:42+01:00 Dimitrios Grekos <p><em>The Eastern Mediterranean is an area of strategic importance not only in the peripheral but worldwide. In recent years, the field of the Eastern Mediterranean has entered a new dynamic since there are trends of Tripartite Partnerships between neighboring states. These partnerships are political, cultural, economic, energy (due to the hydrocarbon surveys), immigration, and especially at the level of dealing with common security threats. By conducting tripartite partnerships, Greece achieved balance while playing a major role in the region. The study examined this Greek initiative in the sectors above under the vacuum left by the great powers (Russia and the USA). Greek foreign policy, through Tripartite Partnerships, defended its strategic interests and shaped the region’s good relationships. The analysis of this policy employed the theory of neoclassical realism in order to present the international and internal (state) system and their impact on the Greek initiative of tripartite cooperation with the states of the Eastern Mediterranean. According to said method, a recommended policy for Greek strategic interests was designed, which may be utilized by other regional states. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 THE EUROPEAN UNION AND CHINA TRADE PRESENCE IN SERBIA 2023-11-26T12:37:45+01:00 Lubica Zubalova Kristina Drienikova Livia Ujlaky Eva Maria Durcekova <p><em>The European Union has been the dominant trade partner of Western Balkan countries for a long time; however, China’s trade and economic influence in the region is growing yearly, and its engagement in the region has intensified after the launch of the Belt and Road Initiative. Serbia is the region’s most important strategic trading partner for the EU and China. This paper addressed the trade presence of the EU and China in Serbia, examined the trade position of the EU and China in Serbia, the intensity of their mutual foreign trade (TII index), and the trade competitiveness of Serbia’s export in selected traded commodities (RCA1 index). The trade position of the EU in Serbia was confirmed as clearly more substantial than that of China, and trade intensity was high. However, China’s trade position grew despite its trade exchange intensity, which was well below potential. However, the low values of Serbia’s competitiveness index are a severe obstacle to the increase of Serbian exports and some persistent obstacles in the framework of export procedures. The growing passive trade balance in relations with China remains also disturbing.<strong> </strong></em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 ALBANIAN PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION IN THE LIGHT OF OPENING ACCESSION NEGOTIATIONS: CHALLENGES AND PERSPECTIVES 2023-11-26T12:50:36+01:00 Ferdinant Xhaferaj Gentjan Skara <p><em>This paper aims to analyze the Europeanization of Albanian public administration in light of opening negotiations. The main research question is whether and to what extent Albanian public administration can approximate domestic legislation and ensure effective implementation. The core methodology in this paper is the traditional legal doctrine, which is based on analyses and interpretations of the EU acquis and Albanian legislation with a specific focus on reforming public administration. A reference to secondary sources in the Europeanization of public administration enriches the study. The paper argues that Albania has improved the legal framework for public administration in compliance with the EU acquis. However, it fails to ensure the proper implementation due to the following challenges: i) politicized bureaucracy, ii) the lack of capacity, iii) lack of public consultation with stakeholders, and iv) the inability to put in sound planning mechanisms and to carry out a realistic assessment. The paper concludes that Albania must establish a professional public administration with sufficient knowledge of EU acquis and adequately qualified staff to harmonize the domestic legal system and ensure proper implementation. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 EAST SEA POLICY OF THE UNITED STATES IN THE CONTEXT OF THE US-CHINA COMPETITION 2023-11-26T12:55:04+01:00 Lan Anh Le Tuan Anh Nguyen Thuy Linh Phan <p><em>The East Sea has a vital position for maritime powers worldwide and is a crucial point of strategic competition for significant countries. Currently, the East Sea is where many fierce disputes over sovereignty, sovereign rights, and jurisdiction occur between coastal countries because the views and interests of each side are far apart, and they need help finding a consensus on how to solve the problem. The US interests in the East Sea include diverse interests in freedom of navigation, economics, politics, military, and security. The article aims to systematically analyze and explain the US policy towards the East Sea issue since the US Administration announced the Pivot to Asia-Pacific strategy. The US foreign policy towards the East Sea has changed in the direction of increased US involvement in response to rising tensions over disputes, especially towards increased interests of China in this region. Although the United States does not take sides in sovereignty claims, it nevertheless increases its involvement in the issue, focusing on peaceful control of claims and resolving disputes through peaceful negotiation measures. </em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 “NEIGHBOURHOOD FIRST POLICY” UNDER NARENDRA MODI: INDIA’S STRATEGIC CONCERNS IN SOUTH ASIA 2023-11-26T13:12:36+01:00 Do Thanh Ha <p><em>After becoming the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi made many efforts to consolidate his dominance in South Asia and expand India’s influence in the Indian Ocean. The “neighborhood first policy” was highlighted in India’s foreign policy. Based on historical and logical research methods and studies in international relations, the paper aims to examine the implementation of “neighborhood first policy” through bilateral relations between India and its neighboring countries. These relationships have been facing challenges from the more profound influence and interference of China as well as frequent terrorist incidents due to border disputes, which threatened regional security. Although this policy connected India with its neighboring South Asian countries, there were still challenges. It can be seen that the “neighborhood first policy” was Prime Minister Modi’s effort to nurture bilateral relationships, enhance regional connectivity, and strengthen and elevate India’s position in the region. The progress of the “Neighborhood First” policy is expected to continue more successfully in the next phase.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 KOSOVO-SERBIA DIALOGUE: FROM BRUSSELS TO OHRID 2023-11-26T16:24:31+01:00 Bashkim Rrahmani Petrit Bushi Flamur Gashi <p><em>The EU-facilitated dialogue between Kosovo and Serbia, from its inception until today, has not realized the anticipated expectations and specified goals. Despite more than a decade of diverse engagement approaches by the involved parties, the situation remained precarious. The disputing parties persisted in their respective demands. Conversely, the facilitator/mediator primarily adhered to abstractly proclaimed declarations concerning integration perspectives rather than formulating instruments, measures, and strategies that could be imperative for a final settlement. The Russian aggression in Ukraine further complicated the dialogue, elevating the significance of geopolitics in the process. This paper aims to offer insights into the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue, emphasizing key factors and circumstances crucial for stability and the EU integration of the Balkans. The Franco-German proposal, recognized as an official EU document, holds particular importance. To achieve the paper’s objectives, the authors employed the methods of legal analysis, teleological analysis, description analysis, logical analysis, and comparative analysis.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 PREVENTION AND DETECTION OF CRIME WITH NARCOTICS (DRUGS) IN THE REPUBLIC OF NORTH MACEDONIA 2023-11-26T16:54:08+01:00 Muhamet Racaj Arben Agushi Arianit Racaj <p><em>Drug abuse constitutes a significant societal and health challenge in the Republic of North Macedonia, the broader region, and globally. The detrimental consequences, stemming from both direct and indirect effects, profoundly impacted individuals, families, and society, extending to jeopardizing state security. The paper aimed to scrutinize the implementation of the criminal legislation of the Republic of North Macedonia concerning the prevention and detection of criminality involving narcotic substances (drugs) and the penalization of offenders engaged in illegal trafficking and unauthorized production of drugs. Employing the theory of change, which centered on identifying realistic positive transformations in the short and long term, coupled with applying the statistical method, the paper offered an overview of the number of criminal offenses. This overview was based on the official statistical data the Ministry of Internal Affairs provided for 2017 to 2022. Subsequently, the paper extended its focus to international cooperation, engaging in a comprehensive discussion on preventing and detecting criminality involving narcotic substances.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 FRANCE’S INDO-PACIFIC STRATEGY AND THE ROLE OF VIETNAM 2023-11-26T17:10:43+01:00 Hanh Thi Nguyen Linh Hoang Vo <p><em>The Indo-Pacific has partially replaced the term Asia-Pacific and emerged as a geo-economic and geostrategic concept over the last decade, with Japan, Australia, the United States, and India launching their respective plans. As a resident power and a long-time partner, France seized the opportunity. In May 2018, the French Indo-Pacific strategy was initiated during President Macron’s state visit to Australia and released as an official document a year later, making France the first European power to adopt such a strategy. To unveil the driving forces behind French policies and the roles of France in the region, this article employs major theories in international relations (realism, liberalism, and constructivism). In particular, the authors analyze France’s tactical actions concerning like-minded partners and a rising China, addressing how France can protect its interests and amplify its leverage in the region amid Sino-American tensions. The paper specifies several differences between the French approach and other major countries. Last but not least, given the importance of the Franco-ASEAN links mentioned in Section Three of the official strategy, the article also clarifies recent developments in their relationship, focusing on the role of Vietnam in France’s overall scheme.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 DATA PROTECTION AND PRIVACY AS A FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT: A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF BRAZIL AND INDIA 2023-11-26T17:37:59+01:00 Paulo Campanha Santana Faiz Ayat Ansari <p><em>This paper aimed to analyze how Brazil and India faced the challenge of a large amount of personal information being exchanged, stored, and analyzed. The relevance lies in the fact that data protection and privacy were concepts discussed almost everywhere in the world since the era of Big Data highlighted the challenge of protecting these fundamental rights. Therefore, the research problem was to analyze to what extent these countries effectively faced the challenge presented. The methodology used was exploratory and hypothetical-deductive. As a result, it was identified that the rights to privacy and personal data were not absolute and had to be balanced with other social interests, such as public security, law enforcement, and freedom of expression. It was concluded that inspired by international standards on the subject, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) of the European Union, both countries had legislative protection over these rights and a framework to address them. The legislation provided fundamental principles, but only time will show their effectiveness.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 SOUTH KOREA AND THE INDO-PACIFIC STRATEGY: FROM STRATEGIC AMBIGUITY TO STRATEGIC AUTONOMY 2023-11-26T17:45:46+01:00 Yen Pham Thi <p><em>Despite being urged and called upon by the United States to develop an Indo-Pacific strategy since 2017, South Korea showed signs of reluctance until the end of 2020, only officially announcing its strategy in 2022. This article aimed to clarify the reasons for South Korea’s ambiguity from 2017 to 2020 and the factors behind its transformation in the subsequent period. Utilizing the comparative analysis method and autonomous strategic theory, the article argued that South Korea shifted from a “strategic ambiguity” to a “strategic autonomy” to reduce dependence on China and the United States, asserting its position as a middle power. The results showed that before 2020, challenges from North Korea and economic relations with China made South Korea cautious about participating in the Indo-Pacific strategy. However, staying on the sidelines risked isolating it within the US alliance network. Meanwhile, concessions created opportunities for China to extend its influence over South Korea, even in cultural and social domains. Based on this, the article concluded that South Korea’s shift in approach to the Indo-Pacific region was necessary to affirm its middle power status.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 NAVIGATING THE GEOPOLITICAL LANDSCAPE OF ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: REFLECTIONS AND CHALLENGES 2023-11-26T17:49:26+01:00 Elena Tilovska-Kechedji <p><em>Artificial Intelligence (AI) has enormously impacted everyday life’s economic, social, and political spheres. This impact is even more significant in today’s globalized world. Artificial Intelligence and new technologies influenced the geopolitical domain, shifting and influencing the balance of power. The power that excelled in governing, educating, and reproducing novelties in AI claimed the title. However, instead of aspiring to be the best, the great powers balanced out their antagonism and joined forces. They cooperated in the domain of new technologies and AI, aiming for the benefit of humanity. AI had to be adequately harvested to produce peace, prosperity, and stability, acting as a bridge in an interconnected, globalized world. The purpose of the research was to discuss and analyze, through qualitative research analysis, the present and future influences, effects, and policies of Artificial Intelligence and new technologies in the geopolitical domain and their impact on humanity.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 CHINA’S STRATEGIC PRESENCE IN EAST AFRICAN PORTS: IMPLICATIONS FOR INDIAN OCEAN SECURITY 2023-11-26T17:55:01+01:00 Sharmistha Hazra Pranav Bhaskar <p><em>This paper examines how China’s presence in the East African seaports has created a threat to the Indian Ocean’s security. In particular, the research empirically analyses whether China’s growing activities in the Western Indian Ocean along the East African coast have dismantled the security architecture of the Indo-Pacific. This paper aims to understand the responses of India and her allies in containing China’s rise in the region. The paper has taken three East African ports, Dar es Salaam, Lamu, and Doraleh port of Djibouti, as a case study to examine how Chinese presence in these three ports could dismantle the security architecture of Indo-Pacific in the Western Indian Ocean region. The paper demonstrates that the present competition of power projection in the Indian Ocean is a power maximization strategy for the national security of each state. Using primary and secondary data available on China, India, and other states’ policies and activities, the study finds that it is a policy failure of the Indo-Pacific, accelerating China’s rise in the region. However, the Indo-Pacific partners are revamping their policies to check China’s rise in the Indian Ocean region.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 RETHINKING EUROPEAN SECURITY: THE STRATEGIC NEXUS AFTER RUSSIAN-UKRAINE WAR 2023-11-26T17:59:39+01:00 Tamta Tskhovrebadze Kakha Putkaradze Zurab Zerekidze <p><em>This research is focused on the ongoing Russian aggression towards Ukraine, which has already resulted in a changed security architecture of Europe and, hence, increased security concerns not only in the region but also facilitated geopolitical shifts globally. Through the prism of exploratory-descriptive qualitative methodology, research strived to analyze the increased geopolitical concerns and challenges for Europe that led to significant changes in the security paradigms of the countries within the EU and increased accountability, as well as reluctance in terms of current security arrangements. Volatile military and political security and economic, social, and transnational challenges emerged as vibrant signs that European and global security will not be the same in the upcoming years.</em></p> 2023-12-26T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023