The Caucasus Project




The Caucasus Project

15 years after the fall of Soviet Union



The Caucasus Project

+ Documentary

+ A tour - episode TV serie

+ Photographic exhibition

+ Illustrated Book

+ A series of university lectures

Proyecto Cáucaso is a documentary and a series of four chapters whose main purpose is to portray the actual state of civil society in three ex-Soviet republics (Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan) 15 years after the end of the USSR.

Focusing on stories of young people in these societies, the documentary will show the huge changes that have occurred after the arrival of new political and economic models brought about by democracy and market economy.

Proyecto Cáucaso consists mainly of a documentary and a series of reports for television. However, additional pieces will also be prepared. Thus, Proyecto Cáucaso includes:

A documentary for exhibition in cinemas, national and international documentary festival circuits, and over-the-air television

A tour-episode series for cable television

A photographic exhibition

An illustrated book

A series of university lectures on the subject

In support of this initiative, and accrediting the sustainability of the idea and the quality of the team, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile (PUC) is the official sponsor of Proyecto Cáucaso.





In the year 2006, 15 years will have passed since the world stopped being organized in two factions; 15 years since communism and capitalism stopped struggling to win a fight that lasted almost half a century; 15 years since the moment when, in a global scale, we experienced changes that dramatically altered our view of the world.

The Soviet Union disintegrated, and a group of countries with unpronounceable names emerged after the collapse of the communist giant. But let's look closer at this statement. Did they really emerge?

15 years ago, nobody would have doubted that with the end of the Soviet communist regime these countries would quickly walk towards the consolidation of the paradigms that finally triumphed after the end of the Cold War: democracy and free market. The majority of these incipient republics' population also thought they would. However, the road hasn't been the same for all the countries that appeared –or reappeared– on the maps after this international earthquake.

Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan are three countries in the Caucasus region. “Where's that?", people usually ask when they hear these names. “Is it in Asia?” No, it's not in Asia. These countries are the last corner of Europe. Falling off the map of the Old Continent, away from the so-called “First World”, these three nations, more than European, are the paradigm of a hybrid. Geographically, they belong to Europe, but few locate them in that continent. They proclaim to be western; however, their cultural ethos says a lot about the East.

The Old Continent seems to be a synonym of democracy, order, and stability. Various areas of the Caucasus nowadays have been, more than anything else, a synonym of authoritarianism, disorder and corruption.

We focus on a different Europe: a torn, alienated, frustrated Europe. Civilizations that centuries ago were world powers, today struggle to prosper, loaded with a recent history of coups d'état, quiescent corruption, ethnic conflicts and civil wars. Societies that, in many cases, look nostalgically at that communist past that few would imagine could be remembered with a taste of romanticism.

Because we are confident that by looking back beyond our frontiers we can help enrich our identity, we embark on this project. We want to hold a point of view which is unknown for Chileans: from what truly makes a difference.

We set this documentary project that will take us through Georgia, Armenia, and Azerbaijan to experience directly what has happened after 15 years of the downfall of communism and a series of promises whose fulfillment is still uncertain.

Because with the help of new points of view we can understand better the direction where we are heading, we plan to go deep into the Caucasus. We believe that globalization is not just sharing economic ties, but also sharing goals, hopes and concerns.


An International Project Carried Out by Chileans    


It usually happens that we Chileans learn about facts of global reach and importance through small capsules that last a few minutes in national television news reviews. It seems that what happens in the world does not appeal to our nation's audience.

When we want to know more deeply through television the details, causes and consequences of these facts, we usually resort to international productions. As Chileans, we seldom manage to or, at least, we rarely have the chance to show these global events through our own point of view.

Proyecto Cáucaso wants to assume this challenge,

tackling issues of extreme international importance,

addressing them from our own perspective,

so as to bring them closer, and make them interesting –and not just important–

to our national audience.

The documentary format was chosen precisely to address a massive audience more directly, not only to scholars or researchers. On the one hand, our documentary does not wish to portray the political views and analyses of experts, commentators of current affairs or economists, but the stories of young people who have become the heirs of all these huge changes that have followed one another so quickly since 1991.

On the other hand, the issues that will be dealt with in this documentary are becoming increasingly more important in terms of decisions, alliances and connections that happen in the international world: oil, energetic conflicts, globalization, the founding of democracy, the economic model, among others. In a globalized context, these issues cannot be dealt with only through news reviews; therefore, the documentary offers a valuable opportunity to bring closer and explain this reality which is so distant from our Chilean reality.


Production Team    


Cristóbal Emilfork - Director

PUC journalist. He was the person in charge of communications in the Public Policies Program at PUC, and worked as professor in the Communications Faculty at PUC in international politics issues. He worked as an intern in the Allocation Table in CNN in Spanish, in Atlanta, as part of the production team covering the war of Iraq. He was producer and investigator in the documentary series “Lugares Comunes”, broadcasted by Chilean television channel Canal13 Cable in 2003. In 2004, he worked as editor of "Voices of the Future APEC 2004", a television program in English addressed to Asian and North American satellite channels and broadcasted by Canal13 Cable. He received the 2004 Escuela de Periodismo award as the best graduate of his generation.

Catalina Huidobro - General Producer

PUC journalist, 25 years old. She worked as press producer at Calypso Televisión in the program “Sueños Urbanos”, broadcasted in 2005 and 2006 by Chilean channel Chilevisión. She worked as general producer in the documentary series “Lugares Comunes”, broadcasted by Canal 13 Cable in 2003. She is founder of Vereda Sur Producciones, an audiovisual association that has carried out video clips, advertising spots, press notes and television programs. She has studied journalism and international politics at the Institut d'Études Politiques in Paris –Sciences Po–. She was also Executive Adviser at the PUC Student Federation and President of the Journalism Student Center at PUC.

Paulina Hernández - Audiovisual Director

PUC journalist, 25 years old. She worked in the production and mounting of the documentary series “Lugares Comunes”, broadcasted by Canal13 Cable in 2003. She was founder of the audiovisual association Vereda Sur Producciones, where she has participated in various projects such as video clips, advertising spots, press notes and television programs. She worked in the mounting of "Voices of the Future APEC 2004”, a television program in English addressed to satellite channels in Asia and North America, and broadcasted in Chile by Canal13 Cable. She also worked at the PUC Communications Faculty, in various audiovisual projects.

Fernando Severino - Photography Director

PUC Journalism and Sociology minor graduate. 23 years old. He worked as reporter and cameraman in two television programs in English that dealt with globalization and international integration issues, addressed to satellite channels in Asia and North America: "Voices of the Future APEC 2004”, broadcasted in Chile by Canal13 Cable, and "Meeting of Democracies", developed in 2005. He has also collaborated in Fondecyt investigations on the measurement of journalistic quality. He has studied photography in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA.


Existing Support    


At present, Proyecto Cáucaso is supported by:

1. Canal13 Cable

Canal13 Cable will broadcast the report series for television.

2. Radio Horizonte

This radio will support the spreading of the project and of the various activities that will take place around it.

3. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile

Through its Vice-Rectory of Communications and Public Affairs, P. Universidad Católica de Chile has granted the official sponsorship to this initiative.

4. Iberoamerican Youth Organization (OIJ)

This organization has sponsored the project.

5. Chilean-Russian Chamber of Commerce

This organization has sponsored the project.

6. Caucasian Research Resources Center (CRRC)

The CRRC, located in the three countries of the Transcaucasus, works at present offering logistic on-site support to the production team.

7. Cultural Affairs Direction (DIRAC) – Foreign Affairs Department, Chile

The DIRAC has helped the project by providing documents that facilitates the management of permissions in the area where the documentary will be filmed.

8. Chilean newspaper El Mercurio

At present, a lot of progress has been made in the conversations with El Mercurio, so that this printed media can sponsor the project through the communication of the main activities it involves.