Head of the Organising Committee
Sanna Turoma
sanna.turoma [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Coordinator
Kaarina Aitamurto
kaarina.aitamurto [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Secretary
Maarit Elo-Valente
maarit.elo-valente [at] helsinki.fi

Conference Intern
Miikka Piiroinen
miikka.piiroinen [at] helsinki.fi

Conference e-mail:
fcree-aleksconf [at] helsinki.fi

The Aleksanteri Institute

Unioninkatu 33 (P.O. Box 42)
00014 University of Helsinki
phone +358-(0)50-3565 802

aleksanteri [at] helsinki.fi


Past Aleksanteri Conferences

Sinikukka Saari (The Finnish Institute of International Affairs)

Russia and Georgia: Is There Any Room for Trust and Cooperation?

Russia and Georgia: is there any room for trust and cooperation? This paper studies the dynamic of distrust and non-cooperation between Russia and Georgia; it is set on a hypothesis that the relations between post-Soviet states suffer from different degrees of distrust which hampers even mutually beneficial cooperation between them. In other words, there is a causal link between a level of trust and regional/bilateral cooperation. Despite the history of hostility between the political leadership of Georgia and Russia, sources of trust also exist between the two countries. There have been some attempts to harness these limited sources of trust for bringing about constructive cooperation between the states and societies - albeit asymmetries in the relationship make it a challenging setting. This research is based on the belief that trust should not be understood merely as a psychological phenomenon between the leaders of states but as a macro-and multi-level phenomenon comprising civil societies, businesses and public institutions. Naturally, personalities are part of the more complex equation; if leaders trust each other, a cooperative project will be much easier to launch but if trust on other levels is absent, the cooperation is less likely to succeed in the long run. This study advances the current academic debate on trust by combining different levels of (dis)trust single model through it can be analyzed.