Social Directives Must Be In The Core Of Economic Policy

From Left: Matthias Jobelius (FES Regional Director South Caucasus), Arthur Khatchatryan (moderator), Maria Titizian (HMF Director)

The Hrayr Maroukhian Foundation, in cooperation with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, has published a policy paper entitled “Social Reforms in Armenia” in both Armenian and English, focusing on employment, healthcare, and social housing.

The group of experts (economists, parliamentarians, historians) who have worked on the study provided an analysis and solution approaches to the mentioned topics.

During the policy paper presentation the authors of the studies elaborated on their research that was conducted the last six months. The audience, consisting of representatives from political parties, ministries and international organizations as well as ARF-D members of Parliament, was given the opportunity to pose questions to the speakers and engage in a dialogue with them.

“Our aim was to conduct a study and form a strategy to help not only legislators but the citizens as well so as they echo correctly the constantly changing political issues on the national or the regional level” said Maria Titizian, Director of the Hrayr Maroukhian Foundation.

The study can be downloaded here. ENG ARM

The “Preface” of the publication says:

The need to identify and analyze important policy issues by leading experts and researchers in their
respective fields has never been more pressing in the Republic of Armenia as it is today. In the face of
mounting social exclusion, polarization, an absence of public policy discourse and lack of trust in government by the electorate, informed policy-making and policy solutions need to be formulated.

This study, “Social Reforms in Armenia,” commissioned by the Hrayr Maroukhian Foundation (HMF)
and made possible through the support of the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) of Germany provides a
timely analysis of issues confronting policy-makers in Armenia for three critical sectors: Healthcare,
Social Housing and Employment.

Applying best practices and evidence-based research to help understand these issues and to explore
the implications of this research for the design and implementation of policy initiatives will lead to more
modern policy-making. It will result in better public services, foster broader involvement of the public in
the decision-making process, encourage greater citizenship and better utilize creativity in organizations
and communities and the final result will be securing public confidence through greater transparency.
The aim of “Social Reforms in Armenia,” is to supply high quality, independent research that will foster
and inform the public policy debate in Armenia. By tapping into wider sources of information, perspectives
and potential solutions, the government can improve the quality of policy making and build public
trust in government, and contribute to strengthening democracy and civic capacity.

Ultimately, the aim of this study is to begin to embark upon a national discourse in those areas where
there are serious shortcomings and in some cases a lack of an enduring and coherent policy. We foresee
that “Social Reforms in Armenia” will be a first in a series of such studies to help broaden the scope of
diverse approaches and begin to close the gap that exists between current government practices and the
expectations of citizens for better access to services. The right of everyone to affordable and accessible
healthcare, housing and employment are among the many challenges that the government of Armenia
must address in the coming years if it wants to mitigate the dangers of social exclusion, disillusionment,
migration and lack of trust in the authorities.

Both the Hrayr Maroukhian Foundation and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung stand firm in the belief that
the objective of coherent public policy is to identify and solve problems, and by doing so improve the
lives of citizens, contribute to their quality of life and ensure a just and socially sustainable society.