Kyiv Security Forum

Yevhen Hlibovytsky: Level of vulnerability of Ukrainians should be taken into account during reformation process

26 March 2015, 13:00

One of the cultural peculiarities of Ukrainians is a sense of vulnerability acquired as a result of damage caused to the nation during the last century. Particularly this and other cultural peculiarities are to be taken into account in the course of reformation process in Ukraine and forecasting the outlooks of the development, said the founder of  Pro.mova, a member of Nevsorivska group Yevhen Hlibovytsky during the 3rd Youth Kyiv Security Forum organized by Arseniy Yatsenyuk Open Ukraine Foundation. 

“In fact there are processes that are still pending. And when we do not see and understand there processes, the happening events seem to be very unexpected. One cannot understand and foresee everything, but some baselines can be forecasted. The events of 2008 have shown a particular thing clearer in Ukraine that in Poland – Ukrainians have bigger sense of vulnerability, insecurity which is an outcome of our thorny history of the past 100 years,” – he said dwelling on the difference between situations in Ukraine and Poland during the global economic crisis of 2008, when Ukrainians succumbed to monetary panic as opposed to, for example, the Poles.

According to the expert, Poland had a thorny history as well and suffered repressions, but Ukraine has experienced far more serious damage: “The loss of independence in 1919, famine in 1932-1933, World War II, Chornobyl, difficult transition from command to a market economy in the late 1980s”. 

The outcome of this all is that the Ukrainians are waiting for bad news: “Ukrainians have this internal instrument of self-defense. And once they hear signals that something is going wrong, they begin to panic.  In many cases, panic unnecessarily. But this factor shall nevertheless be taken into account.”

Y.Hlibovytsky noted that is one of the reasons why different predictions about Ukraine failed to justify, “the matter was that institutional factors were taken into account, the rules and procedures, the factor of development of different organizations, but not the cultural peculiarities”. “And it is relevant in terms of reformation. When we simply copy German way of reformation, we can forget that if we want the reforms to be successful, we have to discuss them first of all. Neglecting cultural factors leads the misperception of the country. We create certain expectations, those expectations are not met, and then we are disappointed,” – he said.

According to the expert, if events developing in Ukraine over the past year and a half “actually confirmed that we managed to take into account these factors, institutional and cultural, we could imagine where would Ukraine now  move.” “And the following 5-7 years could be foreseen even with the level of volatility of Russian factor” – he believes.

For your information:

The Youth Kyiv Security Forum is a new initiative of the Arseniy Yatsenyuk Open Ukraine Foundation, which aims at creation of a discussion platform for young experts from different countries on important issues of international relations and foreign policy. The main goal of the Forum is to empower the new generation by increasing their capacity to participate in policy analyses and policy development processes.

The Arseniy Yatsenyuk Open Ukraine Foundation is a non-governmental organization aimed at facilitating the development of public diplomacy and international cooperation with Ukraine.