Organization

As a result of the international conference named “Terror Topography – Rethinking Soviet Georgian History (Stalinism, Totalitarianism, Repressions)”, which took place in the Caucasus on November 9 – 10, 2009, and was organized by the Institute of International Cooperation of German Public Universities Association (DVV International) and Heinrich Boell Foundation (Heinrich Boell Stiftung), an initiative group consisting of the participants of the conference was established. Working on the topic of Stalinism, terror and repressions and initiating research with the aim of creating documental and educational routes of Soviet terror and repressions in Tbilisi was assigned as the first project of the group.
 
On March 29, 2010 the group was registered as a an non-governmental organization “Soviet Past Research Laboratory”.
 
Soviet Past Research Laboratory has so far carried out the project called “Red Terror Topography”. The project implies developing routes of repressions and terror in the center of Tbilisi (Sololaki - Mtatsminda district) and preparing corresponding educational programs, based on the synthesis of archive and library materials, memories and oral histories. Based on the materials gained within the project scope a 2010 calendar was published which presents short historical background of part of the buildings included in the tour. Since January 2010 a route map of “The Red Terror Topography” has been published. On January 25, 2011, the organization started working on a new project – “Virtual Platform – Rethinking the Soviet Past”. This project implies three main types of activities:

  1. Organizing 10 public lectures/discussions on the topics related to the Soviet past and rethinking the soviet history;
  2. Recording 10 oral stories with the victims of family members of the victims of the Soviet repressions;
  3. Adding extra cutting edge web-technology features to the website of the organization;

Eight lecture/discussion have been organized within the scope of the project. The video and photo materials of the discussion can be viewed on the Facebook and YouTube web-pages of Soviet Past Research Laboratory. The project is functioning with the financial support of “Open Society – Georgia Foundation”.
 
In February 2011, with the financial support of the Institute of International Cooperation of German Public Universities Association (DVV International), Soviet Past Research Laboratory started one more project – “Soviet Tbilisi”. Two main products will be created within the scope of the project. First of all, a new virtual tour called “Soviet Tbilisi” will be prepared, where various buildings, events and people connected with Soviet history of Tbilisi will be listed. Besides, a publication “Red Terror Topography” will be prepared which will actually be a collection of essays of various authors and will represent an educational resource.
 
In the future the organization is planning to carry out versatile research and publishing activities.