Georgia – COI

Bill Bowring


Prof Bowring has experience in Azerbaijan dating back to 1986 when he first travelled to the country. In the early 2000s he acted as one of the Council of Europe’s experts advising on the compatibility of Georgian law and practice with European standards. He has worked extensively on bringing cases at the European Court of Human Rights. Prof Bowring has in-depth experience of prison conditions in Georgia. He is closely connected with colleagues at the Georgian Young Lawyers Association to ensure he is constantly up to date with the situation on the ground. Please see the following link for a full breakdown of Prof Bowring’s work in Georgia. Bill Bowring Experience in Georgia.docx

Professor George Hewitt


George Hewitt has some 40 years of experience of, and in, the Caucasus. He has authored several books on Georgia, including  Discordant Neighbours: A Reassessment of the Georgian-Abkhazian and Georgian-South Ossetian Conflicts   (2013). He has prepared over the course of the last 20 or so years a number of COI reports relating to Georgia, Russia (Chechenia), Azerbaijan and Armenia. His statement is based largely on what he has learnt about Georgia and its people(s) from living there and the opportunities thus afforded to draw conclusions from direct observation (as well as on a lifetime of professional study).

Erin Koch


Erin Koch is a cultural and medical anthropologist who has been conducting research in Georgia since 2000. Her areas of research expertise include displacement, cultural and political aspects of humanitarian interventions, and state-based health care and social service reforms. She has studied relationships between health and protracted displacement among victims of the Georgian-Abkhaz civil war that took place from 1992-1993. She has also conducted research about tuberculosis control in Georgia following Soviet collapse. Koch is the author of  Free Market Tuberculosis: Managing Epidemics in post-Soviet Georgia  (2013), which has been awarded the 2014 Davis Center Book Prize for Political and Social Studies by the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies. She has also published articles and edited book chapters on post-Soviet tuberculosis in Georgia, and is currently completing article manuscripts based on her research on protracted displacement, health, and the state in Georgia.

Lincoln Mitchell


Lincoln Mitchell is an international political development consultant. He has lived in Tbilisi, Georgia where he has worked as the chief of party of the National Democratic Institute from 2002-2004, overseeing civic, political party and legislative strengthening programmes. He has been a frequent visitor to Georgia since that time.  He has taught at the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs and has published and spoken widely on the political situation in Georgia. Lincoln Mitchell maintains close ties with Georgia and continues to analyse the country.

Dr Marilisa Lorusso


Marilisa Lorusso has obtained a PhD on Democracy and Human Rights, Faculty of Political Sciences, University of Genoa. She has taught several courses in history, Eastern Europe, international relations, domestic and foreign politics, business, literature and culture in many universities (İstanbul Üniversitesi, Turkey; El Manar, Tunisia; American University, Armenia; Università degli Studi di Genova, Italy). She is a permanent co-operator of Osservatorio Balcani Caucaso Transeuropa, an Italian think tank, and writes for different centres of studies. She has published articles and various contributions for Italian and foreign publications. As an expert of the South Caucasus, she visited Georgia, Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh (Azerbaijan) and networked with local think tanks, NGOs. She was deployed by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the post-war European Union Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM), where she was field office gender focal point, and she was appointed as EU Council Secretariat for the post-war diplomatic discussions held in Geneva. Her research areas are security and democracy sectors reforms, institution building and human rights. She is a Country of Origin Expert for the Center for Gender & Refugee Studies, US.
Her updated list of open-source publications is available at:

Dr Adrian Florea


Abkhazia, South Ossetia

Dr Adrian Florea (PhD Indiana University) is a Lecturer in the School of Social and Political Sciences and Convener of the Global Security Program at the University of Glasgow. He is currently engaged in three large research projects. The first investigates the survival and disappearance of post-WWII de facto states (breakaway entities, like Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh, Northern Cyprus, South Ossetia, Somaliland, Transnistria, or Western Sahara). The second analyses the variation in governance activities conducted by insurgent organisations. The third examines the link between ‘dark’ networks and civil war processes.

Dr Hoehne Turaeva Rano


The Expert is a Country Expert and academic with extensive fieldwork experience and providing expert reports (100+) for more than 40 firms in the UK, US, Netherlands, and Canada with areas of expertise such as but not limited to:

  • Authentication documents originating from countries of expertise
  • Country reports on the indicated countries of expertise
  • Minority groups, religious groups
  • Political, social and cultural groups: LGBT
  • Organised crime and mafia, state crime
  • Extremist and violent groups, including religious groups
  • Human rights violations
  • Women issues: honour killing
  • Human trafficking
  • Psychiatry and prison conditions
  • Disadvantaged groups e.g. children, minorities, mentally ill, disabled, terminally ill
  • Availability of medical services
  • State structure, military and security services
  • Drug dealing and trafficking

Dr. Gavin Slade


Dr. Gavin Slade is a Lecturer in Legacies of Communism at the University of Glasgow. Dr. Slade received his PhD from Oxford University in 2012. He has worked at Ilia State University, Tbilisi and the University of Toronto.  He is a criminologist and sociologist and who specializes in studying organized crime, corruption and criminal justice reform in the former Soviet Union. Particular interests of Dr. Slade are: South Caucasus – Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan – as well as Central Asia and Russia. He has conducted extensive research on organized criminal networks in Georgia and Russia and connections with emigration. In addition to that, Dr. Slade has also worked extensively on the issue of prison reform with a focus on the problems of prison gangs and violence and torture by state actors in police stations, remand and dispersal prisons. He has also done ethnographic research on immigration detention in the UK and issues around deportation and asylum. In the course of his work, Dr. Slade has given expert testimony in numerous asylum cases involving Georgian, Ukrainian and Lithuanian nationals.