Monthly Archives: October 2012

A promising legal scholar: Fisnik Korenica contributes to political and constitutional processes in Kosovo

Fisnik Korenica is a rising young scholar on the field of legal and political sciences in Kosovo. Born in Gjakova, Fisnik has successfully completed his bachelor studies in law at the University of Prishtina. He completed his masters degree in European Politics at the University of Sussex in the UK. Currently, Fisnik is reading for a PhD in International Law at the Vrije Universiteit Brussels, Belgium. Fisnik lectures at the Faculty of Law at the Univeristy of Prishtina, serves as a Senior Research Fellow with the Group for Legal and Political Studies, a think tank based in Prishtina, and is also engaged as a Research Fellow with the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.

Fisnik has contributed to the overall academic debate on constitutional and institutional design of states under international transition administrations, whereby offering several arguments on the implications that rise from poorly devised international institutional regimes. Giving a more specific contribution on this issue applied upon the case of Kosovo, Fisnik used many of the Ahtisaari Settlement Proposal benchmarks to conclude that, structurally speaking, the model of consociational system of governance built by it elegantly escape from the very institutional repercussions experienced with the Dayton Peace Agreement and the subsequent constitutional regime of Bosnia & Herzegovina.

Besides the solid contribution on this topic from a political science perspective, Fisnik has also contributed on the issue of the relationship between fairly autonomous international legal regimes, thereby offering arguments in favour of a more fragmented and pluralist system of international law. Building upon many hypothetical situations, Fisnik argues that the crisis of legitimacy in international law could fairly well be resolved by more developed and pragmatic mechanisms that counterbalance the very consensual nature of public international law.

Besides engaging with numerous international academic and institutional stakeholders to help Kosovo’s scholars penetrate more in-depth into international academic environments, Fisnik also has teamed up with several international scholars to increase the research on Kosovo and its visibility in global academic gateways.

Fisnik has recently co-authored a book, and has published over 15 articles in prestigious peer-reviewed academic journals.
1. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (April 2012) ‘Constitutional Law in Kosovo’. Amsterdam: Kluwer Law International;


1. (Co-author with Dren Doli & Artan Rogova) (April 2012) ‘The Post-Independence Civil Service in Kosovo: A Message of Politicization’. International Review of Administrative Sciences, forthcoming December 2012.

2. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (April 2012) ‘The Relationship Between International Treaties and Domestic Law: A View from Albanian Constitutional Law and Practice’. Pace International Law Review, 2012.

3. (Co-author with Enver Hasani & Dren Doli) (June 2012) ‘Individual Complaint Mechanism as a Means to Protecting Fundamental Human Rights and Freedoms: The Case of the Constitutional Court of Kosovo’. European Yearbook of Human Rights, 2012.

4. (Co-author with Paul De Hert) (June 2012) ‘The relationship between Luxembourg and Strasbourg in light of the Doctrine of Equivalent Protection: Searching for the Legitimate Interest’. German Law Journal, 2012.

1. (Co-author with Visar Morina and Dren Doli) (2011) ‘The Relationship Between International Law and National Law in The Case Of Kosovo: A Constitutional Perspective’. International Journal of Constitutional Law. Vol. 9, no. 1.

2. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2011) ‘Taking Care of Strasbourg: The Status of the European Convention on Human Rights and the Case-Law of the European Court of Human Rights in Kosovo’s Domestic Legal System’. Liverpool Law Review. Vol. 32, No. 3.

3. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2011) ‘The 2009 parliamentary election in Albania’. Electoral Studies. Vol. 30, no. 1.

4. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2011) ‘Constitutional Rigidity in Kosovo: Significance, Outcomes, and Rationale’. Pace International Law Review. Vol. 23, no. 1.

5. (Co-author with Dren Doli and Artan Rogova) (2011) ‘The Past and Present: A Note on the Civil Service of Kosovo: Discussing its Design, Independence, and Management’. International Journal of Public Administration. Vol. 34, No. 6.

6. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2011) ‘What about the Kosovo Constitution: is there anything special? Discussing the grundnorm, the sovereignty and the consociational model of employed democracy’. Vienna Journal of International Constitutional Law. Vol. 5, no. 1.

7. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘Kosovar Constitutional Court’s Jurisdiction: Searching for Strengths and Weaknesses’. German Law Journal. Vol. 11: no. 8.

8. (Co-author with Dren Doli and Artan Rogova) (2010) ‘Establishing Protection Mechanisms for Bureaucrats: The Case of the Independent Oversight Board of Civil Service of Kosovo’. European Journal of Law Reform. Vol. 12: no. 1.

9. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘The Politics of Constitutional Design in Divided Societies: The Case of Kosovo’. Croatian Yearbook of European Law and Policy. Vol. 6.

10. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘Europe and the Albanian Parliamentary Election of June 2009’. Royal Institute of International Affairs and the European Parties Elections and Referendums Network (EPERN) (Sussex European Institute). Election Briefing no. 56.

11. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘Calling Kosovo’s Constitution: A Legal Review’. The Denning Law Journal. Vol. 22: no. 1.

12. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘Calling for independence. To what extent is the composition of the competition authorities politicized: the case of Western Balkans countries’. International Journal of Law and Management. Vol. 52: no. 5.

13. Fisnik Korenica (2010) ‘Pointing the rule-of-law in a transitional polity: the case of Kosovo’s law on the constitutional court’. Contemporary Issues in Law. Vol 3, issue. 3.

14. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘The Double Face of the European Union: How Distinctive Is the EU Foreign Policy Towards Kosovo?’ Journal of Eurasian Law. Vol. 3, no. 3.

15. (Co-author with Dren Doli) (2010) ‘How powerful are EULEX judges and prosecutors in Kosovo’. Revista General De Derecho Penal. November, no. 14.

16. (Co-author with Dren Doli and Ketrina Cabiri) (2010) ‘Equalizing the Use of Language: A View to Kosovo Law’s Guarantees Upon Minority Languages’. The Open Law Journal, Vol. 2: no. 1.

aFurther information about Fisnik’s work is available in the links below:

Diaspora Minister Suggests Reserving 3-5 Seats for the Diaspora in Kosovo’s Parliament

The Kosovo Minister of Diaspora, Ibrahim Makolli takes a stand for representing the Kosovo Diaspora in the country’s Parliament. In an interview with, Minister Makolli emphasizes the political, academic, intellectual and economic potential of the diaspora, which could be beneficial for the legislative but also for other institutions in Pristina. Last year in September, Makolli demanded the Committee for Constitutional Changes to ensure seats for the diaspora in the Parliament. Mr. Minister, your request for the Diaspora representation is currently being discussed at the Parliament. You requested reserved seats for the leaders of Kosovars living abroad?

Minister Makolli: This idea is not new. Considering the role and contribution of our diaspora and taking into account their political, intellectual and academic potential, it is obvious that the diaspora should have a direct influence on political decision processes.

We have examples of other states, which have reserved seats for their diasporas in their respective Parliaments. Although, the contribution of the diaspora into these countries is much less compared to how much the Kosovo diaspora has contributed to Kosovo. Therefore, I think the voice of the diaspora should be represented in the highest institution of our country. You suggested that the Parliament Committee for Constitutional Changes should consider the question of diaspora representation at the Parliament.

Minister Makolli: Last year [2011] in September, we made an analysis and presented our recommendations to the commission. We demanded representation of the diaspora within the framework of the Constitutional changes. We hope that the Committee will take our request into consideration, which is also being supported by the political parties. How many seats should be reserved for the members of Diaspora in Kosovo’s Parliament?

Minister Makolli: This has to be decided by the Committee. Based on our analysis, we suggested 3 to 5 seats for the diaspora members. It is said that one third of the Kosovo people live abroad. Are 5 seats for the social group enough? And how will the election campaign be organized for these seats?

Minister Makolli: It will be just like in any other country. Our diaspora can be divided in constituencies, for instance, in 2 or 3 constituencies, depending on the number of candidates. 3 seats can be reserved for the European representation, for instance. Elections should follow the criteria and rules that are valid for elections in Kosovo. How difficult are the elections in the diaspora going to be?

Minister Makolli: Elections abroad are complex, even for countries with advanced mechanisms. We cannot remain in a position in which we say that we do not have the necessary means and, therefore, we cannot do anything about it. It is feasible. In some states we have diplomatic representatives, we have an agreement with Albania and we can ask for support in other countries. In a technical aspect, these points should be doable. Regarding financial matters, elections are an expensive affair, however, democracy and its development is priceless. Mr. Minister, would the diaspora have to be registered first, in order for the elections to take place?

Minister Makolli: I think that this is a misinterpretation. This is about two different things. On the one hand, there is the population index and on the other hand, there is the civic index. Our diaspora that lives abroad and has a Kosovar citizenship is in the electoral registry, because every citizen of voting-age is listed in this register. This might be true for the first and second generation. But what about the third generation, that mainly has foreign citizenship?

Minister Makolli: This generation also has Kosovo documentation. According to the Constitution, even children born abroad have the right to Kosovo citizenship. Consequently, they are listed in the electoral registry as well. The number of voters in Kosovo is about the same as the number of population of voting-age, which means that they are included in the voting registry. From this perspective, the elections abroad should be neither a technical, nor a political issue. Mister Makolli, if Diaspora is to be represented in the country’s Parliament, should the Ministry of Diaspora exist in the government?

Minister Makolli: The underlying idea is to be represented in the highest legislative institution. In practice, how does it look like with other states? How do you organize the diaspora-representation in the Parliament?

Minister Makolli: Representation at the Parliament is an indication that the country of origin appreciates the potential abroad. Examples for that are Italy, France, Croatia, and most recently Macedonia. Our diaspora has a great intellectual and political potential, and able to utilize that for Kosovo. The chairman of the Self Determination Movement (Vetëvendosje!) and the head of of the Parliamentary Committee for Foreign Affairs, Albin Kurti, recommended to you to have the Diaspora represented in the government, rather than to have the government represent the diaspora. Do you agree with him?

Minister Makolli: Everyone has his/her own perspective on that. I believe that my actions and those of the Ministry of Diaspora are within the framework of the diaspora interest-representation in Kosovo. Everyone is allowed to have their own opinion and their own viewpoint, but I am saying this with the highest responsibility, we have exclusively been in service for the Diaspora ever since the Ministry was established. Now, I would like to pose a question about investments. Is there a safe climate for diaspora-investments in Kosovo?

Minister Makolli: In the past months, there have been improvements in the legal infrastructure regarding real investments. In order to create a safer investment climate in Kosovo, some laws were passed and some are still under revision. Many communities have specific business-zones, some even repealed taxes, in order to attract as many investors as possible. Also the Judiciary increased its efficiency. An encouraging message is that from January 2013 and on, the judicial system plans to introduce facilitation reforms in this area. Can the most recent Parliamentary debate be discouraging to foreign investors, for instance for the Kosovo Diaspora?

Minister Makolli: Of course this makes people hesitant. There are scenes which try to influence the election campaign. My advice to potential investors is not to let politics of the day influence them. In such politics we attack each other in order to win the elections. Also the wording should be more moderate, since this is what often frightens potential investors.

End of Interview.

Source: “3-5 Seats for Diaspora Members in the Parliament.” March 15, 2012.

Kosovo scholar: Ilir Hoxha is a leading researcher and practitioner working on improving the provision of health care services in Kosovo

Kosovo’s new generation of scholars continues to aid the academia with lessons learned from the examples of transition and state creation of Kosovo. Ilir S. Hoxha’s work on measuring, regulating, and evaluating health care services helps understand and  improve health care services in Kosovo.

Ilir S. Hoxha is one of the leading researchers and practitioners who are working on improving the provision of health care services in Kosovo. Ilir is currently a PhD candidate at the Institute for Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Bern in Switzerland. Prior to this, he has been a Fulbright Research Scholar at the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice in New Hampshire, USA. Ilir has also a MSc on Health Systems Management from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in the UK.

Ilir’s professional and academic interests lies in measuring of variation in provision of health care services, as well as health economics and evaluation of health services, including the assessment of impact on health, cost effective analysis, assessment of coverage, quality and access. In addition, Ilir is also engaged in studying and advising on the regulation of health care service delivery in public and private sector.

Ilir has been pioneering the medical practice variation study with Kosovo data. Medical practice variations examine the difference in medical practice by physicians and hospitals that lead to differences in health and system outcomes. In 2009 he was awarded Fulbright Research Fellowship for the research project that aimed to explore the prospects and limitations for using Dartmouth Atlas methodology in evaluation of clinical practice performance in developing countries, using Kosovo as a case study.  In analysis of human resources in health sector in Kosovo, there was notable variation in supply of primary care physicians and nurses across municipalities. Sometimes three time more and sometimes three times less than national average. The supply of physicians is known to affect the supply of services. This work was followed by couple of pilot studies in frames of Hospital Performance Studies in auspices of Foundation for Healthy Mothers and Babies. Latest work of Ilir is related to measurement of practice variation in Obstetric care in Kosovo. He is also involved in researching the different prospects for establishing health insurance schemes in Kosovo.

Ilir has published a number of academic and policy papers in this field:

  • Hoxha I, Shaipi K. Comparative analysis of health care systems in SEE.  IQ Consulting (intended audience: Kosovo Parliamentary commission for Health, Labor and Social Welfare), 2009.
  • Hoxha I, Bajraktari I, Kotori V. Antenatal Care Services in Kosovo, United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), 2008.
  • Hoxha, I. (September, 2008). Monopoly power in Tertiary Healthcare – UCCK case. Unpublished paper presented at The Annual conference of Al-Shkenca, Tirana, Albania.
  • Bloom, J.D., et al., Ethnic segregation in Kosovo’s post-war health care system. European Journal of Public Health, 2007. 17(5): p. 430-6.

Ilir has also played an active role in academic cooperation among instructions in Kosovo and abroad, notably in the field of medicine and public health. These efforts have supported in numerous ways the education processes, exchange of experience as well as build up of concrete projects and efforts. Recently he has been active in development of programs and projects between Kosovo and Diaspora partners in Switzerland. Some of these programs should support the new health insurance scheme, progress of patient’s rights and establishment of association of medical professionals from Kosovo in Switzerland.

Kosovo comes out with two medals: Judoka Majlinda Kelmendi wins gold and Nora Gjakova wins bronze in Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

Kosovo judoka Majlinda Kelmendi  won Gold in the Abu Dhabi World Judo Grand Prix 2012 title in the 52 kg category. She defeated Brazil’s Erika Miranda in the final. Kosovo came out of the event with two medals, a bronze won by Nora Gjakova in the 57 kg category. 

Kelmendi, the 21 year old fought a measured and careful final contest defeating Brazil’s Erika Miranda to take the gold medal. She had earlier thrown Cammi Kaichi (USA) and then Ilse Heylen (BEL) in the semi-final both with uchi mata for ippon. Never under any real pressure throughout the day, Kelmendi looked comfortable and confident as she continued her medal winning ways since her surprise defeat at the hands of Christianne Legentil (MRI) in London during the Olympic Games.

The other judoka from Kosovo, Nora Gjakova won the bronze medal in 57 kg category,  to  complete Kosovar succes in Abu Dhabi.


Article was taken by the Official International Judo Federation Website at: and

Becoming a world citizen at 22: Liza has the world at her fingertips

Liza Gashi is a 22 year old student from Gjilan, Kosovo. She is a typical young student in many ways, yet her global experiences set her apart. Liza is currently spending a semester abroad in Cordoba, Argentina where she is taking classes on Spanish literature, Latin American history, and politics. She will graduate in May 2013 from Wartburg College, a liberal arts college in Iowa, USA, with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, Political Science, and Spanish.

Thanks to her enthusiasm for foreign languages and curiosity to explore other cultures, Liza won a scholarship to finish her last two years of high school at the renowned United World College in Costa Rica (part of UWC network that brings together bright students from around the world). She tells us of her first impressions of Costa Rica: welcoming people, delicious food, and wonderful wildlife. The seemingly overwhelming language barrier became less daunting as Liza shared the story of her country, the newest state in the world, with classmates coming from Tanzania and Australia to Canada and Germany.

At Wartburg College, Liza has been active on campus by serving as President of the International Club and leading student groups on volunteer service trips to work with refugees and immigrants in America’s Midwest. Eager to change things for the better, Liza won herself the reputation of being a forceful representative of international students on campus. In addition, she participated at the Clinton Global Initiative, which she describes as an extremely inspiring conference where students around the world pledge to work toward a certain issue. Liza met with President Clinton and shared her commitment to empower rural women in Kosovo through education and access to microfinance, a long –term project that she continues to work on.

Recently, Liza took a short trip to Brazil and was amazed by the greatness of Rio de Janeiro. She’s planning to visit Uruguay and Chile after her semester in Argentina is over. When asked about the issue of securing visas as none of these countries have recognized Kosovo, Liza chuckles and says: “Well, it takes time and effort, but it is rewarding to be able to travel and make friends in countries that have not recognized us yet. A lot of people still have the war-ravaged image of Kosovo in their minds; hence, I think that this perception would change if more Kosovar students were able to study in Latin America.”

Filed with optimism for the future, Liza works as the chair of UWC National Committee of Kosovo to select young Kosovars and offer them a unique international educational experience as hers. She hopes that the diaspora of Kosovar students can act as a catalyst for positive change at home while improving the image of Kosovo abroad.

From policy advisory to an emerging scholar: Shqipe Mjekiqi’s quest is to explain electoral systems and parliamentary processes in South East Europe

From policy advisory to an emerging scholar: Shqipe Mjekiqi’s quest is to explain electoral systems and parliamentary processes in South East Europe. A young Kosovar scholar, she brings together understandings from the field of democracy and governance into academic thinking. Shqipe is among the new rising generation of Kosovo scholars to aid the field of political science with theoretical thinking based on the experiences of transition and political developments of Kosovo.

Shqipe Mjekiqi is currently reading for a PhD in Political Science at the Trinity College Dublin, in Ireland. Shqipe is conducting research on possible effects of electoral systems on the way Members of Parliament of South East European (SEE) countries behave. Prior to starting her PhD in Trinity College, Shqipe has worked as an adviser on European Integration to the former President of Kosovo, Dr. Fatmir Sejdiu.

Her main hypothesis is that in weakly institutionalized systems of SEE countries the electoral systems will affect the way MPs behave in terms of both cohesion and constituency links. This is quite contrary to what the existing literature finds in established parliamentary systems, which is that electoral systems have a little, if no, role to play on MPs’ behaviour. One of her greatest research contributions entails collecting and using data on these countries, which have previously not been available. Prof. Michael Gallagher, a leading scholar in political science, is supervising her thesis.

Kosovo is generally not included along the other European countries in academic studies. One explanation to this is perhaps the general lack of data, while another reason might be the lack of awareness of the impact that the study of particular issues in Kosovo and the region can have. She describes her contribution to this lack of available date as follows:

 “by choosing to study Kosovo and other countries of South East Europe I aim to accomplish the following objectives. Firstly, as I consider having greater access to collecting data, I will make this data available to scholars outside the country who might otherwise not be able to collect it themselves. Secondly, I aim to raise the awareness about the importance of studies in this region and how what is taken for granted in Western Europe might be challenged in the region. Finally, implications of my study can teach people back in SEE countries about the different phenomena and the impact they may have on their lives.” 

Parallel to her doctoral research, Shqipe is very active in teaching on democracy and development at Trinity College Dublin. Her teaching practice is highly appreciated as it builds on successful teaching work she has done at the American University in Kosovo, prior to her doctoral studies.

Shqipe’s profile at TCD is available below:

Diaspora youth: Flamur Shala invests in Kosovo and contributes to its development

With an average population of 25 years of age, and a rich deposit of natural resources, Kosovo offers much potential for any kind of investment. Yet foreign investment in Kosovo has dropped recently, which might be due to a lack of trust on the market. Yet, Flamur Shala, a member of the Kosovo-Swiss diaspora was not intimidated and decided to invest in the country.

An unemployment rate of about 45% and many political challenges, Flamur could have had a successful career in Switzerland but instead he chose to look for career opportunities in Kosovo.

Flamur Shala, the son of a “Gastarbeiter”, together with Peter Waldburger, Muhamet Veliu and Drenusha Shala, founded “Baruti – service and contact center” in Prishtina, with a start-up capital of 60.000 Swiss franc. At that time he was a graduate student at University in St. Gallen (Switzerland).

Flamur employs Kosovars who  lived either in Germany, Switzerland or Austria and who fluently speak German. His call center mainly serves the German market. The hourly wage amounts to 3 Euros an hour, which is well above the Kosovar average.

Baruti service and contact center provides services for two market research institutes in Germany. But for the founders of Baruti, this is only the beginning. The team works on expanding their services in the fields of business outsourcing, ordering services and help desk. Flamur argues that Kosovo offers visions and ideas but the country often lacks (material) opportunities. “Opportunities” is something that Flamur provides through his business. If he offers 20 or 30 jobs, then he gives an income source to, at least, the same amount of families.

Flamur and his team pay great importance to providing favorable working conditions to their employees. He faces many challenges in Kosovo, yet he prefers to be heading a business in Kosovo rather than starting a manager career in Switzerland.

The links below show two video reports on Flamur’s company and the web page of Baruti – service and contact center. To see the videos (in German), click on the pictures below.


  • SF, Video Portal. Verheissung Kosovo
    Watch here!
  • Baruti: Company profile
    YouTube, video uploaded by Flamur Shala.

Kosovar in Germany: “I gave [the President] a little glass-statue of Mother Theresa…because we are of the same origin”

The fact that former German president invited Kadri Bekteshi to Schloss Bellevue in January 2010 gives him a very positive feedback and encouragement to continue with his voluntary work. Kadri remembers this event: “I gave him a little glass-statue of Mother Theresa. And the President asked me why I did that. I answered, because we are of the same origin”. I was a bit puzzled so I asked Kadri to elaborate more on the same-origin issue. “Well, it has always been very important to me to dedicate everything I do to my people. It’s about improving the image and reputation of us Albanians and Kosovo. There are too many bad news about us out there and too few good news.

Kadri Bekteshi born in 1964 is a German citizen of Kosovar origin. He studied tourism and economics in Sarajevo (Bosnia) and in 1992, like many other Kosovars, Kadri had to leave Kosovo due to political reasons. Today, he lives in Bielefeld together with his wife and two kids. Besides working at the municipality of Bielefeld, Kadri voluntarily runs the project “Migrant-Integration and Violence-Prevention through Sports”.

“In 1999, I was called to become a season controller for amateur soccer at the Westfalen association”, Kadri continues to explain that the task of a so-called season controller is to give game reports and evaluate the course of the soccer game. Kadri continues to explain that through his positive attitude, he won the attention of former chairman Horst-Dieter Knüppel. Bekteshi remembers: “I worked on this job from 1999 to 2003. In the same year (2003) I completed a mediation training. For a short time I did not do much after I completed the training but then I thought why not present my idea to one of Bielefeld’s schools?”.

Kadri gives part of the credit to Mr Knüppel, for it was he who helped Kadri with the idea and encouraged him to go and present his project. Therefore, Kadri decided to go to the so-called “Hauptschule” in Bielefeld because this is the High-school type with the largest numbers of students with an immigration background. “It took me until 2006 until I was granted to spend two hours a week with students of the Bordhagen Hish-school. Up until this day I run the project ‘Migrant-Integration and violence-prevention through Sports’ at this school”.

The Project:
Once a week Kadri Bekteshi meets with the kids of Brodhagen High-school in Bielefeld to play soccer. The kids know that it is not only about playing soccer, but about learning to work together in groups. Kadri Bekteshi referees the games and teaches the kids to control their temper and to peacefully discuss their disagreements. Working in teams and sticking together is not always easy for the kids in Bordhagen High-school. The schools hosts students of about 35 different nationalities.

Kadri Bekteshi decided to focus on students with an immigration background because he finds that there is an increasing tendency of conflict among kids who are not of the same origin. The students’ different background may not be the reason for conflict but rather a lack of communication among those kids. That is why, during the games, Kadri invites the students to have discussions with each other and share their thoughts and feelings, which proved to be an effective way to strengthen the kids’ social competences.

The students feel comfortable with Kadri Bekteshi because they see him as one of  them. The principal of Bordhaben High-school confirms that the kids at his school argue less since Kadri started his project. Kadri himself found it easier to integrate into the German society by playing soccer for the TuS Jöllenbeck association. Therefore, he felt encouraged to share his positive experience with sports and integration with others, especially with young immigrants.

The fact that former German president invited Kadri Bekteshi to Schloss Bellevue in January 2010 gives him a very positive feedback and encouragement to continue with his voluntary work. Kadri remembers this event: “I gave him a little glass-statues of Mother Theresa. And the President asked me why I did that. I answered, because we are of the same origin”. I was a bit puzzled so I asked Kadri to elaborate more on the same-origin issue. “Well, it has always been very important to me to dedicate everything I do to my people. It’s about improving the image and reputation of us Albanians and Kosovo. There are too many bad news about us out there and too few good news. My project is not a personal enrichment but, but a dedication to my people”. With these words, Kadri Bekteshi closed the interview.

Albina Makolli. Interview with Kadri Bekteshi (2012). 6 Oktober in Bielefeld.

Radio Bielefeld. Projekt “Integration durch Sport”,

Zieger, Volker (2009/2010). Lokales Bielefeld. “Vorbildlicher Streitschlichter”. Westfalen Blatt

International Conference: “The Role of Social Sciences in Transitional Societies with Particular Focus on Kosovo”

The one day conference will be a meeting and discussion place of representatives of public and private universities, Ministry of Education Science and Technology (MEST), decision and policy makers, academics, international scholars, civil society organizations, students, young and promising researchers and other interested stakeholders involved in social science research and teaching.

This conference aims to bring together experts in an academic setting in order to exchange views and experiences in the field of social sciences. The purpose is to identify the best practices on how to strengthen the research capacities in Kosovo and contribute through advocacy and policy recommendations to further engagement of public and private stakeholders in strengthening research capacities and promote academic research in social sciences and humanities in Kosovo and in the region.

Discussions and recommendations from the conference will be published in a form of a policy brief with recommendations and the same will be distributed to all relevant stakeholders that can contribute to further improvement of the research sector in Kosovo.

University of Prishtina,
Faculty of Philosophy,
Department of Political Science,
Room no. 202
5 October 2012

To view the agenda of the conference and more information, click here: The Role of Social Sciences Conference, Agenda.
Source: Regional Research Promotion Center | Western Balkans.

Five New Members in the Vienna Philharmonic: Shkelzen Doli of Kosovo among them

Shkelzen Doli, who left Kosovo at a young age,  became a member of one of the oldest and most prestigious philharmonics in the world, The Vienna Philharmonic.

See biography announcement below from the official Vienna Philharmonic website.

At the Philharmonic general business meeting on August 5, 2009, in Salzburg, five musicians who had begun their service with the Vienna State Opera Orchestra on September 1, 2006, were granted membership in the Association of the Vienna Philharmonic. We would like to introduce them to you at this time.

Born on August 9, 1971, in Elbasan (Albania), Shkëlzen Doli grew up in the former Yugoslavia and at nine years of age received his first violin lessons in his hometown of Gjakove (Kosovo). Due to winning numerous prizes in regional competitions, he was invited to attend the Music School of Novi Sad, the most renowned institution of this kind in the former Yugoslavia. There he studied with the Hungarian violin instructors, Imre Jambor and Csaba Szima. When he was 17, he won first prize in the National Music Competition of Yugoslavia and consequently enrolled in the class of Ewgenia Tschugueva at the Music Academy of Novi Sad. Beginning in 1992, he continued his violin study in Vienna at the College of Music, taking lessons from Dora Schwarzberg, Michael Frischenschlager and Josef Hell. A short time later, he became a substitute for the Vienna State Opera Orchestra, and has now been a member of the second violin section for the past three years.

By taking part in various Philharmonic chamber music ensembles, such as the “Toyota Master Players”, the “Vienna Virtuosen” or René Staar’s “Ensemble Wiener Collage”, Shkëlzen Doli successfully and fully established himself in Vienna’s musical life. Solo and ensemble tours have taken him to numerous European countries and to North America, Africa, Israel and Japan.  Just recently he has become a founding member of the newly formed chamber music ensemble, “The Philharmonics”.

Shkelzen Doli with members of the Vienna Philharmonic “Musik in der Luft” (Music in the Air)

Shkelzen Doli, Albanian Suite

Shkelzen Doli, Sofra Gjakovare folk singer Shkelzen Jetishi (Folk Suite from his hometown)


Article was taken by the Official Vienna Philharmonic Website at: