Mariam AMASHUKELI, Georgia
PROJECT: En/Countering Stigma of Terrorism: The Case of Pankisi

Highly skilled in conducting social research, Mariam has a profound working experience in implementing research projects funded by international and local donor organizations. Currently, Mariam is a Research and Development Officer at the Center for Social Sciences (CSS) – a leading Georgian research institute in the Social and Political Sciences. Since 2012 she has participated in more than 15 projects and is the author/co-author of a number of academic publications concerning Georgia’s Europeanization, higher education, labor market, gender equality, etc. Mariam is a member of various local and international professional communities, and her academic publications can be retrieved from the ResearchGate platform. 

In her capacity as an Invited Lecturer at the Tbilisi State University (Georgia) and the Free University of Tbilisi, she delivered lectures in Sociology and Social Research Methods. Mariam holds a Master’s degree in Anthropology – Interdisciplinary Research Program from Tbilisi State University (Georgia). Currently, she is a Ph.D. student in Media and Cultural Sociology at the same academic institution. Her Ph.D. research studies the Europeanization processes of the Georgian higher education system. 

“While applying to the EaP fellowship, my professional inclination was to gain new knowledge in the field of Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) I have been interested in for a long time. I’ll be more than happy to contribute to the CVE studies in my country and share my research findings with the respective policymakers and field experts.” – Mariam AMASHUKELI

En/Countering Stigma of Terrorism: The Case of Pankisi

The project En/Countering Stigma of Terrorism: The Case of Pankisi was a research implemented in the frame of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Fellowship. Through conducting a number of in-depth interviews and focus-group discussions with the young women and men residing in Pankisi gorge, Mariam analyzed their views about the stigma of terrorism, the factors triggering religious radicalization and young peoples’ outflow to Syria, and the role of the State in maintaining peace and security in the gorge. To finalize the research analysis Mariam met field-professionals at the Central European University in Budapest and accessed the CEU Library for two weeks. 

The project produced the research paper reflecting concerns of the young Pankisi residents regarding the stigma of terrorism, their religious preferences, and attitudes towards the Syrian armed conflict. This study is valuable as it introduced an insider’s perspective on the changing social landscape in Pankisi, based on the collected narratives of local young women and men. Furthermore, the research findings discussed the harsh and reactive policy employed by the Government towards the Gorge and its residents that need to be substituted by preventive measures and proactive CVE (Countering Violent Extremism) policies.

Fellowship Programs 2017
Country Georgia
Areas of Interest Awareness raising
Topics Mitigating misinformation
Support to IDPs and vulnerable groups
Project duration November 2017 - April 2018