Budapest-based economist András Inotai, member of the journal's Editorial Board, has conceptualised a thematic focus that is very pertinent not only with an eye on the recent elections in Slovakia and Poland:
Andrea Éltető and Tamás Szemlér (Hungary), Aleksandra Polak, Christopher A. Hartwell and Katarzyna W. Sidło (Poland), Iulia Monica Oehler-Șincai (Romania), Lucia Mokrá and Hana Kováčiková (Slovakia) as well as Maja Bučar and Boštjan Udovič (Slovenia) present, on the basis of comprehensive data, the (pre-)history and present of the EU integration process in the respective five countries. Their studies offer a sound basis for further policy-oriented and historical research on the experiences and developments since the socalled "Eastern Enlargement" of 2004/2007, opening up a research field dearly in need of expansion in order for the European Union to consolidate politically and tackle the challenges ahead. The authors' focus is on economic performance, sociopolitical change, the aftermath of the Covid-19-pandemic and the consequences triggered by the Russian war against Ukraine. The latter concern the European Union as a whole, but especially those member states which share a territorial border with Russia and/or Ukraine: Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, and Romania.
Bojan Aleksov and Nicholas Lackenby analyse the relationship between church and state in Serbia since the election of the new Patriarch Porfirije in February 2021. They show how the entanglements between political and clerical power in the country remain strong, but how, with the new Patriarch, the interests of the clerical and the political elites have been increasingly diverging.
In the Open Section, Tijana Matijević contributes a Critical Essay with whom she commemorates the work and life of Dubravka Ugrešić, who passed away in March 2023.
Comparative Southeast European Studies 71, no. 3 (2023) (open access)