Imagine an academic center in Armenia hosting artists, policymakers, scholars, authors, practitioners, scientists from all over Armenia, Artsakh and the world – giving them time and space to work, to learn from each other, and to turn ideas into actions.

Twenty-five minutes outside of Yerevan, Armenia, in the serene village of Maiakovski, The USC Tacori Center will do just that.

The USC Tacori Center has piloted several programs in anticipation of an official opening later this year. No longer delayed by COVID-19, the Center has already begun to serve as a hub for international scholars, students, artists, and journalists, offering a shared space for research, collaboration, and creation.

The Tacorian Family, founders of Tacori Jewelry, gifted the university the use of their large two-story house and continue to offer support for the programs that take place there. The house, and its adjacent mini-fruit orchard, are in a beautiful village named for Russian poet, playwright Vladimir Maiakovski (1893-1930).

The Institute is grateful to the Tacorian family for their vision at such a pivotal time in Armenia’s and the Diaspora’s future.

Dee-Zoom | USC Tacori
Already this year, five different program sessions took place between April and June.

First, there was Dee-Zoom, a program that invited members of Armenia’s design community and design specialists from six countries for a discussion on challenges and industry gaps. Local and international best practices were shared to improve the diversity and quality of the design industry in the country.

Critical Social Science Workshop | USC Tacori
In May 2021, graduate level students from Armenia gathered at the USC Tacori Center for a four-day Critical Social Science Workshop with Professor Vicken Cheterian from Geneva’s Webster University. The students participated in sessions on Armenia’s geopolitical challenges in the context of domestic expectations and post-Soviet constraints.

During the same month, media representatives and professors gathered for three additional workshops to define methods of collaboration and to begin to set Armenia’s research agenda – what are the urgent questions that need to be asked and answered?

The Center’s future programs will invite participants from Gyumri, Vanadzor, Stepanakert and other regions, for art residencies, translation workshops, international student retreats, exhibitions, and conferences, all of which will examine some aspect of the social, cultural, educational, and political challenges facing Armenia, Karabakh, and the Armenian communities in the Diaspora.

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