GLOBSEC Policy Institute -GPI (formerly the Central European Policy Institute) carries out research, analytical and communication activities related to the activities of foreign hostile powers aimed at changing the perception and attitudes of the general population in Central European countries and their political representation. Such efforts often employ disinformation and propaganda as primary tools. In order to counter the negative effects of such efforts, GPI pioneered several activities related to strategic communication:
1. Information War Monitor
Since 2015, GPI has been monitoring disinformation and propaganda activities and publishing analysis of such efforts in the form of a bi-weekly Information War Monitor covering the countries of Slovakia, the Czech Republic and Hungary.
2. GLOBSEC Trends – public opinion poll analysis in CEE
To map the effects of the propaganda campaign on public perception, the GLOBSEC Policy Institute commissioned a series of opinion polls in the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Slovakia. This unique opinion poll carried out on a regional level using the same methodology enabled us to compare public perceptions of the EU, NATO, and the role of the US in these three Central European countries vulnerable to Russian propaganda. The latest edition of Globsec Trends also covers Slovak public perception of political leaders – heads of states and presidents of Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, Turkey, but also Russia and the US.
3. Online counter-narratives
In order to balance the negative impact of disinformation, GPI has developed a series of products for countering the Russian narrative. Short animated video explainers were developed to present basic facts about NATO and its role in Europe, the conflict in Ukraine and Russian participation in the conflict. These were followed by a series of short expert interviews explaining the most common myths and disinformation regarding NATO, EU and other conspiracy theories.
4. Raising awareness among decision makers
Thanks to GPI activities, the issue of Russian propaganda has been prominent at high-level international meetings such as GLOBSEC, but also recognised as a threat on the domestic political level and mentioned in reports by the Ministry of Interior or the Security Service for the first time.
5. Transfer of know-how on STRATCOM
With the aim of fostering exchanges of best practices and the lessons-learned related to information warfare and strategic communication, GPI implemented a project connecting the key actors in NATO member states with NATO candidate countries (Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine) and the NATO STRATCOM CoE.
6. Coordination and networking
GPI also initiated creation of a national platform on disinformation and propaganda – the Slovak Forum Against Propaganda, fostering closer communications and the exchange of information among key institutions (Members of parliament, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Interior, think-tanks, media)