Arjan Dyrmishi (
Executive Director and Founder

Arjan Dyrmishi is the Executive Director and Founder of the Centre for the Study of Democracy and Governance. His experience includes both the government and non-government sectors. He has held different senior positions in the Albanian government, including the Prime Minister’s office, the Ministry of Defence, the National Intelligence Service and the State Minister for Diaspora. In the non-government sector he has written a number of publications in the field of security sector reform and governance, regional security and diplomacy, governance, democratisation and anticorruption. He has frequently appeared in the media and public events to comment and advocate on matters related to those fields.

Besnik Baka
Communications Associate

Besnik Baka graduated  in Journalism and Communication (University of Tirana) and holds two post-graduates degrees: MA in Global Journalism (Orebro University & Oslo University College) and MA in Democracy and Human Rights (University of Sarajevo & University of Bologna). He has been involved in the civil society milieu in Albania since 2008 as a researcher, public communication officer and project manager. His fields of expertise include human rights, security studies, environmental issues and democratic governance. He has been involved as a communication officer with various national and international organizations and has a long expertise in designing and implementing communication plans, long/short term communication strategies, campaigns and related Public Relations interventions.

Mirsada HALLUNAJ (
Research Associate 
Mirsada Hallunaj was graduated in Political Science from the University of Tirana and has completed a Master’s Program on Public Administration (MPA) from University of Tirana University of Nebraska. She has completed a number of international training and qualification programs in the areas of anticorruption, security, terrorism and counterterrorism, human rights, EU, and international relations. Her previous working and professional experience with civil society and other international organizations in Albania has focused mainly on projects related to public administration, anticorruption, elections and other governance matters. The respective research studies conducted in the framework of these projects have been published and presented in public events or conferences.
Gentiola Madhi 
Research Associate 
Gentiola Madhi has studied at the College of Europe (Bruges campus) in the Masters programme on EU International Relations and Diplomacy Studies as well as the Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in International Studies at the University of Florence. In 2011 she received a postgraduate annual diploma in Advanced European Studies from the European College of Parma. Gentiola has considerable work experience in project implementation in the Albanian context. She has worked as project manager at the Center of Excellence of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Albania, dealing mainly with the design and management of evidence-based policy making projects. Moreover, she has been engaged as researcher with different civil society organizations on regional research projects. Her research interests include regional cooperation, EU integration and foreign and security policy.