Tatia Tavkhelidze

Research Area 5

Stay at EEGA: August 2023 – January 2024

Research Project: Local and Regional Aspects of Ethnocentrism in Georgia.

Tatia Tavkhelidze was born in Georgia and possess a bachelor’s degree in International Relations and a master’s degree in European Studies. In 2022, she successfully completed her doctoral studies in Philosophy at Europa-Universität Viadrina. Presently, she serves as a research fellow at the University of Leipzig, where her primary focus lies in investigating the phenomenon of ethnocentrism in Georgia. Within her research endeavours, she is particularly interested in Eastern Europe, exploring topics such as cultural transitions, conflicts, racism, Islamophobia, as well as EU policies concerning culture and minority issues.

The research centers on examining the local and regional dimensions of ethnocentrism in Georgia, with a specific focus on its impact on Georgia’s integration into the European Union. By investigating the transitional period spanning from the collapse of the Soviet Union to the present, this study aims to shed light on the profound shifts that occurred in the study of ethnocentric dynamics within the region. The dissolution of the Soviet Union led to a marked increase in nationalist sentiment and presented significant challenges in effectively addressing the concerns and needs of ethnic minority groups. Notwithstanding, the ongoing process of Europeanization has assumed a pivotal role in fostering cultural awareness pertaining to ethnic minorities and facilitating their inclusion and acceptance. Consequently, this research seeks to explore the influence of ethnocentrism on Georgia’s path to EU integration by scrutinizing the prevailing prejudices and discriminatory practices that were prevalent in Georgia, particularly during the 1990s and the early 2000s. Furthermore, the study aims to assess the extent to which these harmful attitudes and practices have been eliminated in the modern era.