Conflict and Cooperation in Eastern Europe

The Consequences of the Reconfiguration of Political, Economic, and Social Spaces since the End of the Cold War (KonKoop)

Grant no. 01UG2209A-F

Research Scope

Within the Research Network KonKoop, we look at conflict and cooperation in Eastern Europe since the end of the Cold War. Nowhere else in the world have there been so many wars of secession – some of them unresolved to this day – and newly founded states. Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine is the latest shocking example.

The research network examines various conflict constellations and dynamics of cooperation in Eastern Europe, Southeast Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus. Our aim is to understand and explain interactions and integrate the expertise available in Germany.

The boundaries and titles of the mentioned countries imply official endorsement and acceptance by the United Nations. In addition, Germany officially recognizes and supports diplomatic relations with the Republic of Kosovo after the country declared its independence in 2008

The highligted territories are foremostly represented as research case studies toponyms of geographical regions and settlements and do not imply a defined status of belonging to states, independence recognition or exact border extent

Topic Lines, Key Questions and Projects

The project involves several research teams working in six topic lines in order to identify how conflicts arise in Eastern Europe, which actors are involved and which factors contribute to escalation and de-escalation, but also which conditions guarantee security or enable cooperation. KonKoop is an interdisciplinary project and draws on expertise from the fields of political science, geography, history and environmental sciences.

The six topic lines are:


Post-imperalistic Nation Building Processes

Under what circumstances do political reconfigurations like the dissolution of the Soviet Union or Yugoslavia trigger violent conflicts?


Ethnic and
Religious Diversity

What role do ethnic or religious identities play in the emergence or resolution of conflicts?