The Institute for European Studies


The Institute for European Studies was estbalished in 1998. It integrates academic research and practical experience in the field of European Social Studies. The Institute addresses social and political aspects of European integration in a national and regional context. In December 2003 the institute was merged into Audentes University. In June 2008 International University Audentes was merged into Tallinn University of Technology (TUT) and the Institute became a part of the TUT as well. On the 31st of August, 2010 the Institute became an independent research and development institution.

Research programmes
Since 1998 IES' research work has been organized within three year research policy programmes. For the years 1999-2001 IES was carrying out a programme on European integration in a national and regional context which contains three major research areas:

The main focus of research of IES are is on reviewing of economic and social conditions of EU Eastern Partnership countries as of possible future member states and their their moving toward convergence with the European Union, changes of people's social and economical well-being in the period of contemporary rapid changes.

There are studies on the relations, conflicts and co-operation patterns between the states and majority/minority societies of the region. Also around this theme the central question is, how the whole Baltic Sea region could develop toward a genuine security community.

Research topics in 2012-2016
Estonia and the Baltic states in general are a decently studied region from the aspect of European studies. At the same time these countries represent clearly several new orientations. What are CEE countries opportunities for fast economic growth and social integration in the Convergence Context?

The question of socio-political relevance in home affairs is also about whether Baltic countries rapid movement towards European Union membership contributes to the cohesion within the society or is an obstacle to its achievement with various side effects. The recent economic modernisation of CEE countries has been fast which can't be said about its administrative and social capacity.

In this aspect three academic sub-themes are important:

Research methods
a) quantitative - sociological surveys of national samples and elites have been carried out in co-operation with ARIKO MG Consulting, which has a nation-wide network of professional interviewers;
b) qualitative - focus group interviews by professional moderators;
c) Identity Structure Analysis - research method for identity exploration, developed by Prof. P. Weinreich (see publication: Tuisk, T. (2012). The Ethno-National identity of Estonian and Russian Youth in respect of their Primordialist or Situationalist Orientations. Baltic Journal of European Studies, Vol. 2, 124 - 159.).