Current ECMI Consultants

Dr. Tamara Hoch (Sweden)

JEMIE Editor

Dr Tamara Hoch obtained her PhD in 2014 at the Department of Society and Globalisation at Roskilde University in Denmark. Her thesis, entitled “Reinventing national minority rights through European Integration: from top-down to bottom-up Europeanisation” deals with changes in domestic policies pertaining to national minorities as triggered by the EU and the Council of Europe. At the same time, her thesis also considered how a changing European context influences actorness and self-identification among minority actors as they explore new levels and norms. As such her research is firmly rooted in contemporary European Studies, comparative politics and minority studies, and her knowledge is especially strong on minority rights within an EU context, which she has dealt with in most of her publications. Throughout her PhD, Tamara was involved in teaching within courses of EU-studies and Global studies at Roskilde University and she also spent a few months at Exeter University as a visiting researcher. Tamara also has experience with the ECMI, primarily by teaching within the European Minority Regime Seminar which is offered for the students of European Studies Master Programme at the European University of Flensburg.  And she has also contributed with a chapter on Europeanisation and minority rights in Minority Issues in Europe: Rights, Concepts and Policy (2013), which is part of the course material for the aforementioned ECMI seminar. After completed PhD, Tamara has been involved in teaching at Roskilde University and the South Danish University (Odense) within courses on EU politics and Global Organisations.  At the ECMI, she will be the editor of the Journal of Ethnopolitics and Minority Issues in Europe and she will also support the ongoing designation of the Minority Map and Timeline of Europe (MMTE). 


Forrest Kilimnik (USA)

Project Leader/Editor

Following graduation from the Erasmus Mundus Master’s Course “Global Studies – A European Perspective” with his detailed thesis titled The War of Laws: South Ossetia’s Movement for Self-Determination Between the Russian and Georgian Fronts, Forrest joined the ECMI regional office in Tbilisi in April 2010. Following his internship, Forrest collaborated with Tom Trier, director of ECMI - Caucasus, and George Tarkhan-Mouravi, co-director of the Institute for Policy Studies in Tbilisi, in writing a monograph on Meskhetian Turks and their planned repatriation to Georgia. From August 2010 onwards, he has reconceptualized and redesigned the ‘ethnopolitical map’ project based at the ECMI headquarters in Flensburg as the new interactive research website titled the Minority Map and Timeline of Europe (MMTE). Forrest is also currently a research associate at the University of Leipzig and has undertaken extensive schooling in the Czech Republic, Poland, Germany, Japan and the United States with a concentration on pan-European issues, particularly in Central and Eastern Europe as well as the former Soviet Union.


Dr Kyriaki Topidi

Dr Topidi holds a degree in law from the Robert Schuman Faculty of Law in Strasbourg, an MA in International Studies from the University of Birmingham and a PhD in European Studies from Queen's University Belfast. She has lectured extensively and researched in the areas of Public International Law, European Law, Human Rights and Comparative Law.

In the past, she has occupied research positions in various institutions and was a senior lecturer at the Faculty of Law of the University of Luzern in Switzerland. She has also worked as managing director of the Centre for Comparative Constitutional Law and Religion at the same institution. She has been a guest scholar at Fordham University (US), the IDC (Israel) and the Max Planck Institute (Halle), the Institute of Law and Religion of the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) as well as the National Law School Delhi (India) among others.

Her research interests focus on diversity management, minority protection rights and mechanisms (with a special interest in religion) and human rights law. Her current research project deals with religious diversity in education through the interplay of the rights to religious freedom, equality and education. She is the author and editor of a number of volumes, including EU law, Minorities and Enlargement (Intersentia, 2010), Constitutional Evolution in Central and Eastern Europe: Expansion and Integration in the EU (Ashgate, 2011), Transnational Legal Process and Human Rights (Ashgate, 2013) and Religion as Empowerment: Global Legal Perspectives (Routledge, 2016).

She has recently edited a collection on Normative Pluralism and Human Rights (Routledge, 2018). Her next book will focus on comparative religious diversity in education (Routledge, forthcoming). At the ECMI, she will be contributing in the design and implementation of a research agenda on hate speech and freedom of expression as it affects minority rights on a comparative European basis. She will also be working on religious minority governance aspects within the Centre's current activities.

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