Nations in Transit evaluates the state of democracy in the region stretching from Central Europe to Central Asia.
Nations in Transit 2021 was made possible with the generous support of the US Agency for International Development and the Lilly Endowment. Freedom House is solely responsible for the report’s content.
Research and Editorial Team
Zselyke Csaky is the research director for Europe and Eurasia. Research analysts Mike Smeltzer and Noah Buyon and intern Guldastan Aidarbekova contributed to this report.
Elisha Aaron, David Meijer, Shannon O'Toole, and Tyler Roylance provided editorial assistance for the report.
Albania: Gjergji Vurmo, Programme Director and Senior Researcher on governance and EU integration at the Institute for Democracy and Mediation (IDM) in Tirana, and a member of the Balkans in Europe Policy Advisory Group (BiEPAG).
Azerbaijan: Robert Denis, editor, translator, and contributor at Baku Research Institute.
Belarus: Artyom Shraibman, a political analyst and head of Sense Analytics consultancy and a nonresident scholar with Carnegie Moscow Center. Hanna Hubarava, researcher at Sense Analytics.
Bosnia: Aleksandar Brezar, Southeast Europe/Western Balkans Network Lead for The Democratic Society, a non-profit organization working for democratic participation and dialogue in Europe and elsewhere.
Bulgaria: Angel Petrov, journalist on the International News Desk of Dnevnik.bg, a Bulgarian news website, and has a soft spot for covering the Balkans, the Middle East, and the post-Soviet space.
Croatia: Dr. Tena Prelec, Research Associate at the Department of Politics and International Relations (DPIR), University of Oxford, and at LSEE-Research on South Eastern Europe, London School of Economics and Political Science. Tena is also a member of the Balkans in Europe Policy Advisory Group (BiEPAG) and a Region Head at Oxford Analytica.
Czech Republic: Lenka Buštíková, Associate Professor in the School of Politics and Global Studies at Arizona State University.
Estonia: Liisa Talving, Research Fellow in Comparative Politics at the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies, University of Tartu, Estonia.
Georgia: Nino Gozalishvili, PhD candidate at Central European University (CEU) in Vienna pursuing Nationalism Studies and Comparative History joint doctoral program.
Hungary: Zsuzsanna Végh, lecturer and research fellow at the Chair of Comparative Politics, European University Viadrina, and an associate researcher at the European Council on Foreign Relations.
Kazakhstan: Malika Toqmadi, independent researcher with several years of work experience in the civil society and research sectors.
Kosovo: GLPS, Group for Legal and Political Studies, an independent, non-partisan, and non-profit public policy organization based in Pristina. Dr. Arbëresha Loxha Stublla, Executive Director and Senior Research Fellow at GLPS. Njomza Arifi, Programme Manager at GLPS.
Kyrgyzstan: Medet Tiulegenov, Assistant Professor at the Department of International and Comparative Politics at American University of Central Asia.
Latvia: Maija Spurina, sociologist and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Latvian Academy of Culture, former research fellow at the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale University.
Lithuania: Dr. Ieva Petronytė-Urbonavičienė, Assistant Professor and Researcher at Vilnius University’s Institute of International Relations and Political Science.
Moldova: Victor Gotisan, Media and politics researcher focusing on such issues as public media, media ownership, digitalization, media funding, and media law.
Montenegro: Dr. Jovana Marović, Executive Director of the Politikon Network, a think tank based in Podgorica.
North Macedonia: Jovan Bliznakovski, PhD Fellow at the University of Milan, Italy, and Associate Researcher in the Institute for Democracy “Societas Civilis” (IDSCS) in Skopje, Macedonia.
Poland: Anna Wójcik, co-founder of the rule of law monitoring initiative The Wiktor Osiatyński Archive and the website ruleoflaw.pl. Miłosz Wiatrowski, PhD candidate in contemporary Polish history at Yale University and editor of Wyborcza in English.
Romania: Laura Ștefan, anticorruption expert, former director in the Romanian Ministry of Justice, and international expert on rule of law; Sorin Ioniță, expert in public administration reform and development and an associate lecturer at Maastricht School of Management (MSM) and Babeş-Bolyai University (Cluj); Septimius Pârvu, expert in good governance and electoral process; and Ana Otilia Nuțu, expert on energy and infrastructure, state-owned companies, regulators.
Russia: Nicholas Trickett, political risk and energy analyst focusing on post-Soviet political economy, institutions in transition economies, and the intersection of global markets and geopolitics and local and regional politics in Russia and Eurasia.
Serbia: Miloš Damnjanović, Political analyst, Belgrade, Serbia.
Slovakia: Peter Učeň, Political scientist and former democracy assistance worker, Bratislava, Slovakia.
Slovenia: Marko Lovec, Research Fellow and Associate Professor at University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Sciences.
Ukraine: Dr. Oksana Huss, researcher in Political Science at Bologna University, Italy. Oleksandra Keudel, PhD Candidate at the Freie Universität Berlin (Germany), and a research consultant for international organizations and Ukrainian non-governmental organizations.
The authors of the Armenia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan reports have chosen to remain anonymous.
Kristie D. Evenson, researcher focusing on the Balkans and Eastern Europe, Split
Petra Guasti, Assistant Professor of Democratic Theory at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Charles University in Prague
Samuel Greene, Director of the Russia Institute at King`s College London and a reader in Russian politics
Nicu Popescu, Director of the Wider Europe programme at the European Council on Foreign Relations
Luca Anceschi, Senior Lecturer in Central Asian Studies at the University of Glasgow
The Nations in Transit team is grateful to Petra Bárd, Jakub Jaraczewski, Dan Kelemen, and Laurent Pech for additional expert input.
Countries & Data
Nations in Transit is Freedom House’s research project on democracy in the 29 formerly communist countries from Central Europe to Central Asia.