How resilient is Belarusian civil society? A comparative perspective
Katsiaryna Lozka, PhD Fellow at Ghent University
Andrei Yahorau, Analyst of the Centre for European Transformation, Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya's adviser on development aid
Alesia Rudnik, PhD candidate in political science (Karlstad university, Sweden), Research Fellow at Centre for New Ideas
Natallia Riabava, Expert, Director of SYMPA/BIPART
Jeroen Willems, Deputy Head of Unit, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus and Eastern Partnership, European Commission
Susan Jay, Project Director, FHI 360
Over the past two years Belarusian society has demonstrated unprecedented levels of resilience. First, it survived and reorganised itself to respond to the brutality and unprecedented violence unleashed by Lukashenka’s regime on the peaceful protestors following the 2020 elections. Second, it has also evolved to explore various partisan and underground ways of resistance but also while acting from abroad. Some would argue that while on the surface, the regime may seem to have succeeded in thwarting the unrest, in reality, behavioural change is afoot. This has the consequence that, on the one hand, there is more pressure applied from the authorities to keep order and, on the other hand, civil society itself seeks to reshape itself to answer the existing and evolving challenges.
Is change really irreversible? What keeps civically active people determined and resilient? What forms does resilience take? What support to Belarusian civil society has already been provided and what else is needed to prevent resilience wearing off? How do Belarusian Democratic forces and civil society participate in needs’ assessment and programs of support? These and other questions will be discussed in a panel discussion organised by the Office of Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya and the Oxford Belarus Observatory.
Please register here.