Co-founder, Chairman of GFSIS Governing Board
Ambassador Temuri Yakobashvili is a founder and president of the New International Leadership Institute. Up to fall of 2014, he held position of the Senior Transatlantic Fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the US. From early February 2011 to March 2013 he served as an Ambassador of Georgia to the United States. Prior to his posting, he was a Deputy Prime Minister and State Minister for Reintegration in the Government of Georgia.
Ambassador Yakobashvili is a career diplomat who joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia in 1991 and held various positions, including that of a Director of the Department for USA, Canada and Latin America. He holds a diplomatic rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary granted by the President of Georgia.
Amb. Yakobashvili is a graduate of the Department Physics from the Tbilisi State University. In 1998 he was trained on Mid-career Diplomatic Courses at the Center of Political and Diplomatic Studies at Oxford University. He is a Yale World Fellow (2002) and in 2004 participated in the Security Program at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. 2006 he was visiting researcher at the Silk Road Study Center of Uppsala University, Sweden.
Ambassador Yakobashvili is co founder and has served as an Executive Vice-President of the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies (GFSIS), leading think tank in the Caucasus region. Now he chairs the Governing Board of the GFSIS. Amb. Yakobashvili is co founder of the Atlantic Council of Georgia, as well as of the Council of Foreign Relations of Georgia. He is a member of the Governing Board of the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA) and the Europe House of Georgia.
Amb. Yakobashvili frequently contributes to Georgian and international media on issues of regional security and transformation.
On February, 2012 Amb. Yakobashvili was decorated with Presidential Medal of Excellence.
Eka Metreveli is the President of the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies (GFSIS) since 2016. Prior to that, she was a Senior Research Fellow (2002 -2006), the Director of the Centre for Human Security (2006-2015) and Acting Executive Director since July 2015.Her professional expertise lies in the field of governance and ethnic relations. She has been leading GFSIS’ multi component development initiatives since 2002 in the areas of good governance, public policy and ethnic minority relations. Mrs. Metreveli started her career in 1996 working at the U.S. Embassy in Tbilisi, Georgia at the Defense Attaché Office (1996-1998) and later on, at Public Diplomacy Section (1999-2000). In 2000-2001, she was the Information Analyst at the Center for International Studies at University of Pittsburgh, US. E. Metreveli worked at the National Institute of Justice as a Consultant (2001-2002). In 2002-2004, Dr. Metreveli was the CEP fellow at Tbilisi State University. Mrs. Metreveli holds a Doctor of Science Degree from Tbilisi State University in Art History (1996) and a Master of Public Policy and Management (MPPM) with the specialization in International Security from the School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) at the University of Pittsburgh, where she was the Muskie Fellow in 2000-2001.
Senior Fellow, Member of GFSIS Governing Board
Irakli Menagharishvili is the member of the Supervisory Board and the Co-Chairman of the Center for Strategic Research at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2003. Mr. Menagarishvili has work experience in the government institutions and diplomatic corps. He started his career in early 1970s at the Tbilisi State Medical University. In 1980-82, he was the Head of Department of Tbilisi Public Health Service. From early 1990s until 2003, he held various positions in the government of Georgia: Deputy Prime Minister (1993-1995), Minister of Public Health (1986-1991, 1992-1993) and Coordinator of the International Humanitarian Assistance at the State Council of the Republic of Georgia (1992). In 1995-2003, he served as the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. Irakli Menagarishvili has graduated from Tbilisi State Medical University in 1974. He holds the rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.
Senior Fellow, Director of EU Studies Center
Kakha Gogolashvili is a Senior-Fellow and the Director of the European Studies at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies. From 1990, he worked in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia in charge of international economic relations. From 1994 to 1996 engaged in official negotiations on Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) between Georgia and European Communities. For the subsequent four years (1996-2000) he worked at the Mission of Georgia to the EU as a counselor and later as a Deputy Chief of Mission/ Chargé d'affaires a.i..
As a Director of the Department of Relations with EU at the MFA of Georgia, Mr. Gogolashvili initiated establishment of a governmental Commission on PCA Implementation (2000). He holds a diplomatic rank of the Envoy Extraordinary Plenipotentiary.
For the last 14 years Kakha Gogolashvili has been engaged in different projects contributing to Europeanization of the country, in particular assisting Georgian Government in design and implementation of the institutional and legal reforms carried out according to PCA, ENP and other relevant frameworks for EU-Georgia relations. He worked as a director of such well known EC projects as SIPCA and GEPLAC (2004-2010) providing research and policy analysis on issues related to EU-Georgia relations. In the same time he was actively doing research and policy analyses on issues related to Georgia’s prospective for integration into European structures, published considerable number of papers, contributed to as an author and editor of four books in the mentioned field. In the field of conflict resolution Mr. Gogolashvili has been working (still works) in capacity of project director in 4 multiyear international projects (ENP and Conflict Resolution in Georgia 2006-2008; Black Sea Peacebuilding Network – 2009-2014). Within the scope of one of the mentioned projects he conducted a research and contributed to a comprehensive report on EU’s role in the conflict resolution in Georgia. Other two projects (2010-2013), led by Kakha Gogolashvili, were dedicated to the building of confidence between Georgian and Russian experts and were followed by respective publications of policy papers. He is a research package leader of WP5 in the multiannual FP7 project “Security-Democracy Nexus in the Caucasus” implemented by CASCADE scientific international consortium. Mr. Kakha Gogolashvili holds MA degrees in economics (Tbilisi State University, 1980), journalism (Georgian Technical University, 1980) and international relations (Diplomatic School of Madrid, Spain, 1994).
Senior Fellow, Director of the Center for Applied Economic Studies
Vladimer Papava is the Senior Fellow and the Director of the Center for Applied Economic Studies at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2001. Mr. Papava has over 25 years of work experience. In 1977, he started his career as the Junior Research Fellow at the Paata Gugushvili Institute of Economics of the Georgian Academy of Sciences. In 199, he became the Director of the Institute. Meanwhile, he was the Professor of Macroeconomics at the Tbilisi State University. In 1994-2000, he was the Minister of Economy of Georgia. In 2000, Mr. Papava was assigned to the Position of Deputy Parliamentary Secretary of the President of Georgia. In 2004-2007, he was the Deputy Head of the Budget & Finance Committee at the Parliament of Georgia. In 2005-2006, he was the Fulbright Fellow at the Central Asia - Caucasus Institute, The Nitze School—SAIS, Johns Hopkins University (Washington, DC). In 2013-2016 , he was the Rector and Professor of Economics at Tbilisi State University, and the Chief Research Associate at the Paata Gugushvili Institute of Economics. Dr. Papava is the member of the following professional organizations: the CASE (Center for Social and Economic Research) Advisory Council (Warsaw, Poland, since 2007), International Scientific Council of the International Institute for Social Development (Moscow, Russia, 2007), Editorial Board of the Caucasus & Globalization (Luleå, Sweden, since 2006), Transatlantic Steering Group for Project on Democratic Transitions, American Academy of Political and Social Science (Philadelphia, PA, USA, since 2006), American Political Science Association (Washington, DC, USA since 2006), European Association for Comparative Economic Studies (Turin, Italy, since 2006), Central Eurasian Studies Society (Cambridge, MA, USA, 2006), American Economic Association (Nashville, TN, USA, 2006), International Atlantic Economic Society (IL, USA, 1998), The Royal Economic Society (Cambridge, UK, 1997), The Western Economic Association International (CA, USA, 1996), The New York Academy of Sciences (NY, USA, 1995), The International Informatization Academy (UN, 1994) , The Society of the Advancement of Economic Theory (Illinois, USA, 1990). Since 2010, Mr. Papava has been the Chairman of the Scientific Economic Committee of the National Academy of Sciences of Georgia. Prof. Papava holds a Degree of the Candidate of Economic Sciences from Central Economic-Mathematical Institute of the Academy of Russian Academy of Sciences (1982), Degree of the Doctor of Economic Sciences from St. Petersburg State University (1990) and Tbilisi State University (1989). Mr. Papava is the winner of the State awards and is the author of over 300 publications.
Senior Fellow, Director of the Center for Financial Stability and Competitiveness
Merab Kakulia is the Senior Fellow and the Director of the Center for Financial Stability and Competitiveness (CFS) at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2005. Mrs. Kakulia has over 25 years of work experience in macroeconomics, banking and finances, trade policy, international and transitional economics. He started his career in 1987 as a Professor on faculty of Economics at Tbilisi State University. In 1993- 2005, he was the Head of Foreign Exchange Department and the Vice-President of the National Bank of Georgia (NBG). In 2000- 2005, Dr. Kakulia was the Governor of Black Sea Trade and Development Bank (BSTDB) for Georgia and SWIFT National Chairman (from 1997 to 2005). In 2005-2010, he was the key economic expert of the Georgian-European Policy and Legal Advice Centre (GEPLAC) and the Editor in Chief of Georgian Economic Trends (GET). Mr. Kakulia is the member of the Georgian Academy of Economic Sciences and Executive Secretary of the Scientific Committee for Economics of the National Academy of Sciences of Georgia, also Professor of the School of Law and Politics at the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA), since 2010. Currently, he is the member of Supervisory Board at Caucasus Development Bank. Mr. Kakulia holds a degree in Economics from Tbilisi State University (1983). He received his PhD from the Moscow Lomonosov State University in 1986 and a Doctor of Science Degree from Melkadze Scientific Research Institute (Tbilisi, Georgia) in 2002.
Nodar Kharshiladze is the Senior Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2013. Mr. Kharshiladze has over 14 years of work experience in international relations, defense and NATO integration. He started his career as a civil servant in 2001 at the Ministry of Internal affairs Of Georgia. In 2002-2005, he was the civil servant at the Ministry of Defense in fields of defense planning and NATO integration. Since 2005, Mr. Kharshiladze was the Head of Defense Policy and Planning Department. He was the First Deputy Defense Minister (2009-2012). Mr. Kharshiladze was responsible for strategic planning, transformation and reform, international relations and NATO, management and HR, PPBS and NATO integration. In 2012, he worked as the Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs of Georgia on issues such as portfolio for transformation, international relations, HR, Planning, NATO and EU. Mr. Kharshiladze holds a B.A. from Ankara Police Academy, Turkey (2000) and Master’s Degree in Strategic Security Studies from National Defense University, Washington DC, USA (2008).
David J. Smith
Senior Fellow, Director of the Georgian Security Analysis Center
David J. Smith is the Senior Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies and Director of the Georgian Security Analysis Center.Â He is also Senior Fellow at the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, DC. Mr. Smith holds degrees from the University of Arizona, London School of Economics and Harvard University. From 2002 to 2006 he was U.S. Member of the International Security Advisory Board for Georgia (ISAB).From 1993 to 2002 he was President of Global Horizons, Inc. Prior to that, he was U.S. Chief Negotiator for Defense and Space. He has also served as Chief of Staff for Arizona Congressman Jon Kyl, Assistant for Strategic Policy and Arms Control to Senate Republican Leader Bob Dole, Professional Staff Member for the U.S. Senate, and as a member of U.S. delegations to negotiations on conventional forces and chemical weapons.Â He was a Major in the U.S. Air Force.
Dr. Khatuna Mshvidobadze is a Senior Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Cybersecurity at Utica College, NY, which is designated by NSA and DHS as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance and Cyber Defense Education. In addition, Dr. Mshvidobadze is a Principal at Cyberlight Global Associates, LLC. She has been Deputy Director of the Information Centre on NATO and Adviser to the office of the Minister of Defence of Georgia. An expert on cyber security and geopolitics, her articles have appeared in Georgian and in English, including in Defense News, Jane's Defence Weekly, Jane's Foreign Report, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty and more. She is also the author of numerous “Expert Opinion” papers, reports and training courses on cyber issues. Her presentation, “New threats: Energy Security, Cyber Defense, Critical Infrastructure Protection,” at the 2009 Bucharest Conference on NATO and the New Strategic Concept is listed as a source in the official bibliography of the new NATO strategic concept. Her Presentation on “Russian Cyber Capabilities, Policy and Practice” has been presented at FBI Headquarters and field offices, US Department of Homeland Security, US Department of Justice, US Defense Intelligence Agency, Ministry of Defense of Estonia, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, Ministry of Defense of Georgia, as well as in various American private companies, think tanks and institutions. She is an invited guest speaker at various international conferences. She holds a B.A. in English and Western Literature from Tbilisi State University, an M.B.A. from Caucasus School of Business, an M.S. in Cyber Forensics and Intelligence from Utica College, NY and a Ph.D. from Georgian Technical University. Her M.S. thesis was on Russian cyber threats to its neighbors and to America. Her doctoral dissertation was on policy aspects of global information and cyber security. In the autumn of 2011, she was a Rumsfeld Fellow at the Johns Hopkins University School for Advanced International Studies. She is a native Georgian speaker, fluent in English and Russian and proficient in basic Turkish.
Giorgi Badridze is the Senior Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2013. Mr. Badzridze has over 20 years of work experience in diplomacy. At various times, he was the Second Secretary at the Department of Culture (1992-1993); the Head of the Affiliate Relations Department (1993-1994); the Head of the Western European Department (1996-1997); the Deputy of European & America Affairs Department (1997-1998); the Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Deputy Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey (1999-2002); The Deputy of the United Stated of America Department (2002-2003); The Head of the latter Department (2004-2006); He was the Deputy Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia in the United Kingdom (2007-2009) and the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary in Ireland (2009-2013). Mr. Badridze is the visiting lecturer at Tbilisi State University and the Caucasus University since 2014. He is the author of dozens of publications. Mr. Badridze has graduated from Tbilisi State University, the faculty of History (1992). He has a Master’s Degree of International Relations from Central European University (Prague, Budapest 1995-96). Mr. Badridze holds the rank of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.
Senior Fellow, Director of the Media Center
Giorgi Targamadze is the Senior Fellow and the Director of the Media Center at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2015. He has over 15 years of work experience in mass media. He started his career as a presenter of Youth TV Program in 1987. In 1991-1993, he was the author, presenter and editor-in-Chief of News and Weekly Digests in Ibervizia TV. In 1993-1995, Mr. Targamadze was the Director at Adjara Television and Radio Department. Later on, he was the Director of TV Studio Batumi. In 1997-1999, he was the Head at the Press Center of Supreme Council of Adjarian Autonomous Republic. In 2003-2008, Mr. Targamadze was the Director of news and talk show programs, also the author and presenter of Weekly Program “Droeba” at Imedi TV. Along with his journalistic career, Mr. Targamadze was the MP in 1999-2003. He was the Minority Leader at the Georgian Parliament and Member of Georgia’s PACE delegation in 2008- 2012. In 2008-2013, he was the Chairman of Christian Democratic Movement of Georgia. In 2010-2011, he was the member of State Constitutional Commission. In 2012-2013, Mr. Targamadze was the President of the Association of Christian Democrats of Eastern Europe. Since 2014, he has been the visiting professor of Political Technologies course at School of International Relations, Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA). Mr. Targamadze holds the degree in Journalism from Tbilisi State University (1999). He received his PhD in Social Sciences from Tbilisi State University in 2011.
Shota Utiashvili is the Senior Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International studies since January 2016. Mr. Utiashvili has more over 15 years of work experience in international relations, security, EU integration and analytical fields. In 2012-2015 he was the Fellow at the Tbilisi Centre for Policy Analysis, Free University. In 2012 (September-November) Mr. Utiashvili was the First Deputy Minister at the Ministry of Penitentiary. In 2012 (July-September) he was the Director of Department of International and Public Affairs as well as the advisor of the Prime Minister at the State Chancellery of Georgia. In 2004-2012 Mr. Utiashvili worked at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and held the position of Director of Department of Information and Analysis. Before that, in 2003-2004 he worked as a journalist at the daily newspaper “24 HOURS. In 2002 he was the Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies, conducting research on Government Institutions in Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. In 2001-2002 he was the Fellow at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Mr. Utiashvili holds a degree in International Law and International Relations from Tbilisi State University (1994-1999). He is an Alumni of the program in National Security and Public Policy (GFSIS, 2001-2002) Mr. Utiashvili has certificates from Monterey Institute of International Studies in International Non-Proliferation Programme (2001) and from Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University in Black Sea Security Programme (2012).
Valeri Chechelashvili is a Senior Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2016. Mr. Valeri Chechelashvili has been a career diplomat since October 1989. He held various positions in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia from Second Secretary to Deputy Foreign Minister (1998 - 2000). He was Minister f Finance in 2005 and First Deputy Foreign Minister (2005 - 2007).He has served as an Ambassador to Ukraine (1994 - 1998), Ambassador to Russian Federation (2004 - 2005), Secretary General of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Organization (2000 - 2004) and Secretary General of the Organization for Democracy and Economic Development – GUAM (2007 - 2016).Mr. Chechelashvili has graduated from the Kiev State University, faculty of International Relations and International Law, Department of International Economic Relations (1983) and completed Ph.D. in International Economy.Mr. Chechelashvili was awarded with a number of medals and orders. He is the author of number of articles on the regional economic cooperation and international relations.
Ketevan Emukhvari is the Research Fellow at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2016. In 2006-2016 she held the position of Project Coordinator at the Foundation. She started her career in 2004 as the Analytical Group Member/Interviewer in Marketing Research Company “ACT”. In 2005, Ms. Emukhvari was the trainer of the FOME Program (Fundamentals of Market Economics). In 2006, she delivered lectures on Psychology Advertising at Tbilisi State University. Ms. Emukhvari holds BA in Organizational Psychology and MBA from the Tbilisi State University. She is an Alumnus of the Training Program in International Relations and National Security organized by RAND Corporation (US) and GFSIS. Ms. Emukhvari has some qualification courses in areas of policy development, national security, conflicts resolution and peacemaking.
Head of Administration
Nino Ramishvili is the Head of Administration and Financial Manager at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2001. In 1988-97 she was the research assistant at Niko Muskhelishvili Institute of Applied Mathematics. In 1990-91 she worked at the Council of Calculation Methods and Mathematical Modeling, Tbilisi State University. In 1996, Mrs. Ramishvili worked at “TbilComBank” Operations Department. She was the Chief Accountant at a Consulting Center (1997). In 1997-1998 worked as the Accountant at Grant-Audit Ltd. In 2000-2001 Mrs. Ramishvili delivered lectures in Mathematics at Jordania French College. She has graduated from Tbilisi State University the faculty of Cybernetics and Applied Mathematics in 1989.
Tata Tsereteli is the Administrative Assistant at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2009. In 2006, she was the intern at the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia, the Department of Law. Later on, Ms. Tsereteli worked at the Parliament of Georgia as a specialist at the Department of Research and Analytical Unit. Ms. Tsereteli has graduated from Tbilisi State University, the faculty of Law in 2004.
Public Relations and Social Media Manager
Meri Biniashvili is the Public Relations and Social Media Manager at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since February 2016. Prior to that, she was working at the Department of Public Relations, Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia (2015-2016). In 2012 she was a researcher at the Research Consulting Centre “Psycho Project”. In 2012-2013 Ms. Biniashvili went through the practice at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, the Department of the United States of America. Ms. Biniashvili holds Bachelor Degree in International Relations from Caucasus University (2009-2013) and Master Degree in Public Relations from Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA) (2014-2016). She is an Alumnus of the Training Course for Journalists in Economics, Geopolitics and Political Ideologies organized by the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies and JTI Caucasus, (2016).
Rusudan Margishvili is the Project Coordinator at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2010. Ms. Margishvili has over 20 years of work experience. In 1994-2006, she worked at the Department of Classical Philology at the Tbilisi State University. In 2005-2010, Mrs. Margishvili worked as the teacher at the “Language School”, teaching foreigners the Georgian language. She is invited lecturer at the TSU Institute of Classical, Byzantine and Modern Greek Studies since 2010. Mrs. Margishvili has been the Georgian language editor since 1996, working with different organizations. Mrs. Margishvili coordinated projects at the Georgian Art and Culture Centre (GACC) in 1996-1998 and at the Art House “Tagisi” in 1999-2000. Within the framework of Ethnic Minorities Integration Projects (GFSIS), Mrs. Margishvili was delivering Georgian language lectures (2006-2007, 2009). Mrs. Margishvili holds Master Degree in Georgian Language and Literature and Classical Philology (1991) and PhD in Philological Sciences from Tbilisi State University (2003).
Natia Kaldani is the Project Coordinator at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2015. In 2011-12, she worked for the Civil Development Program at the Center for Strategic Research and Development of Georgia, analyzing international public policy with EU focus. In the framework of Master Degree Program at Tbilisi State University in 2012, Ms. Kaldani was the researcher and data analyst intern at the Department of Security Policy and Euro-Atlantic Integration, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. In 2013-14, Ms. Kaldani was the Program Coordinator for the USAID’s Good Governance Program at Management Systems International, working on Civil Service Reform concept and its operational plan for Georgia, also modern HR Management and Performance Appraisal Systems. In 2014-15, she was the volunteer at Bread for the World (Berlin, Germany). Ms. Kaldani holds a BA in Humanities from Grigol Robakidze University (2010) and MA in Diplomacy and International Politics from Tbilisi State University (2012). Ms. Kaldani participated in various international seminars in the areas of civil development, advocacy for democratic changes and international politics in Turkey, Hungary and Germany.
Ms. Rusudan Chlaidze is the Program Coordinator at the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies since 2014. She received her B.A. in Social Sciences from Georgian Institute of Public Affairs (GIPA) in 2015.