ISET

ISET Economist Blog

A blog about economics in the South Caucasus.
Oct
24

Tourism and Rural Development: The Case of Tusheti

In Georgia, it’s often said that tavisupleba mxolod mtebshia – freedom is only in the mountains. Indeed, the mountains have long shielded the small Georgian nation from much larger invaders, helping it maintain its freedom, as well as its unique culture, language and faith. Even today, getting into Georgia’s mountains is no easy task. Separated from the ‘mainland’ by the 3,000m high Abano pass, Tusheti, is an excellent case in point. The sheer ‘outworldliness’ of Tusheti, as well as its well-preserved indigenous traditions and architecture, are a powerfu...
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Guest — Zurab Garakanidze
There is a huge potential for the development of the trekking tourism in Georgia in general, and in Tusheti particularly. We have ... Read More
Sunday, 26 October 2014 7:07 AM
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Oct
10

How Much Regulation Does a Country Need?

Democracy and Freedom Watch reported October 9, that “Georgia’s controversial new immigration law may be changed”. The law, writes DFW, “has caused a wave of confusion and irritation in the country’s expat community. Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili … told journalists that if any defects become apparent after the enactment of the new law, ‘we’ll surely correct it.” Just a month earlier, confusion, irritation and public outrage were caused by another piece of Georgian legislation – a law greatly limiting the sales of non-prescription drugs (see Florian...
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Recent Comments
Guest — Simon Appleby
The beloved Politician's Logical Fallacy at work......https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vidzkYnaf6Y
Friday, 10 October 2014 12:12 PM
Guest — Y
Wise statesmen listen as much as they act. Moreover, they learn to listen before they act. This is a matter of accumulating politi... Read More
Friday, 10 October 2014 1:01 PM
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Oct
03

Pride and Prejudice in Georgian Food Consumption

GEORGIAN “SUPRAS” AND POVERTY Hospitality is one of the most prized aspects of the Georgian culture. Welcoming (literal translation: "respecting") guests is a matter of great pride for any family. My mother grew up in a small Imeretian village, and as she tells me, the kids of the family were not allowed to eat until the guests were fully "respected", i.e. properly fed. Even the poorest household in the village would go out of its way (and income) to impress its guests with a cornucopia of local delicacies, meats, veggies, and homemade wine. To this day,...
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Guest — Zurab Garakanidze
'...every third household reports difficulties in access to food (in contrast with every 5th urban household)' ----------- It is n... Read More
Monday, 06 October 2014 5:05 AM
Guest — Nino Doghonadze
Dear Zurab, of course, your point is legitimate for any extensive research on this topic. In this short article the main issue was... Read More
Saturday, 11 October 2014 2:02 PM
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Sep
12

Trade with, or Build Walls Around, Frozen Conflict Areas? That is The Question!

With Russia creating or helping sustain so many “frozen conflicts” on its periphery, it is crucially important for countries and nations finding themselves in this predicament to work a sound strategy of dealing with the situation. The military option has been taken off the table ever since the August 2008 attempt by Georgia to forcefully bring South Ossetia back into its fold. Thus, countries such as Moldova, Georgia and now also Ukraine, don’t have too many good alternatives to choose from. One possibility is to isolate and punish in the hope of erodin...
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Guest — Eric Livny
Dear Salome, thanks for your comment - you are right, we have gone very far in isolationism and it would take years before we are ... Read More
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 5:05 PM
Guest — sjapiashvili
I agree that Economic incentives might be very important for the dialogue to start, but "the isolation politics" has gone so far b... Read More
Monday, 15 September 2014 5:05 PM
Guest — Y
While I understand the point of the article, one should perhaps consider more carefully the context of Mr. Lutsenko's words, befor... Read More
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 11:11 AM
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Sep
05

Kazbegi Rooms: with a View to Improvement of Regional Development Policies

When planning a debate about the impact of the new Rooms hotel on the local community in Kazbegi we expected it to be a mixed bag. A colleague who visited Kazbegi Rooms on a private reconnaissance mission told us how much he enjoyed his stay, but added: “for some reason, the relationship between the hotel and the villagers is best described as complex”. As economists, we assumed that Rooms would be a major employer of locals and so the only issue could be competition for tourists between the hotel and the local bed & breakfast providers. And as is of...
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Recent Comments
Guest — AP
Great piece!
Friday, 05 September 2014 3:03 PM
Guest — Hans Gutbrod
great piece, Eric. Hopefully lessons will be learned...
Friday, 05 September 2014 4:04 PM
Guest — William Dunbar
Nice piece, but Kazbegi is on the Tergi (Terek), not the Aragvi
Friday, 05 September 2014 5:05 PM
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Jun
30

Georgian Nepotism

In Georgia, employment is often found not through prevailing in fair, orderly selection processes, but through personal connections. This is a well-known fact almost nobody denies. It is evident in almost every Georgian firm and institution. In a hospital you encounter a “nurse” not capable of the most basic medical accomplishments, in one of Tbilisi’s universities you meet a “cleaning woman” who is mentally ill, known for scaring everybody through aggressive and inappropriate behavior, and in the railway station you buy a ticket from a clerk who knows n...
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Guest — Eteri
Nepotism – one of the forms of corruption – is a use of public office for a private gain that is distributing favors to family mem... Read More
Monday, 30 June 2014 11:11 AM
Guest — Helene Ryding
It seems to me several issues are rolled into "nepotism" as described here, and they need to be unpacked. First of all, everyone ... Read More
Monday, 30 June 2014 5:05 PM
Guest — Eric Livny
Roba’s general observation is spot on!!! Coffee makers and coffee drinkers of Georgia unite!!! I am truly puzzled by nepotism as a... Read More
Monday, 30 June 2014 6:06 PM
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