D9.1 City Report | September 2023


This report examines public spaces in Tbilisi and the extent to which they serve as a meeting point for people from various backgrounds. It relies on expert interviews and focus groups to identify and explore best practices in inclusionary local public spaces as well as some of the exclusionary spaces. By identifying the practice of inclusion and exclusion in public spaces, this report contributes to the study of the role of spatial aspects of deradicalisation and offers policy recommendations to relevant stakeholders. This research identifies: Mzirui, Deda Ena, and the former Hippodrome as exhibiting the best practices of inclusive public space and engages in in-depth analysis of Deda Ena Park. On the other hand, the space in front of the Parliament building and the neighborhood around Metro Station Marjanishvili are analysed as areas where contestation takes place. Key findings of this report suggest that contestations in Tbilisi usually takes place around spaces of political importance/symbols of power or along ethnic lines. Furthermore, public spaces in Tbilisi are designed from top-down, making the rules of interaction and engagement regulated. The local population rarely gets a say in what a space should look like. Some of the stakeholders and civil society actors can raise awareness. or introduce issues for public discussion, yet the success rate of bringing actual change remains rather low. However, the study of reasons for such a disconnect between the stakeholders and citizens goes beyond the scope of this report.