Some of the results of the convention voting on March 11 displayed on a large wall screen at the Dvin Music Hall (photo Aram Arkun)

Future Armenian Convention Announces Voting Results


WATERTOWN — The Future Armenian Convention or citizens assembly, which took place in March in Yerevan (see accompanying article), voted over three days on questions of policy and proposals for action in three broad fields. The main results are summarized below. In theory, the 200 individuals selected to participate from various parts of the Armenian world were to form a microcosm of the total Armenian population so that their votes would be a type of barometer on how Armenians view the issues examined. Whether or not they are fully representative or the Future Armenian initiative will succeed in facilitating the actions proposed, the voting results are interesting in and of themselves. The full data may be found at, where further analysis of the data may be posted later.

Historic Responsibility

On efforts aimed at recognition of the Armenian Genocide conducted by the Armenian state, communities, Armenian organizations and individuals to date, 30.61 percent voted that they have been effective, but today, pan-Armenian efforts should be directed more toward solving security problems, while another 30.61 percent voted that on the contrary, they have not been very effective, and so changes in the approach to achieve recognition may be needed.

In response to the question, for whom is Artsakh an issue, the 120,000 residents of Artsakh, these residents plus the 3 million Armenians in Armenia, or all ten million Armenians around the world, an overwhelming 92.71 percent voted for the latter, indicating that it remains a pan-Armenian issue. Furthermore, 54.84 percent voted that “Armenians all over the world should jointly assume responsibility for Artsakh and not leave the state and the citizens of Armenia and, even more so, the people of Artsakh, alone to solve this issue. The Armenian nation should not be afraid of victories,” while only 6.45 percent voted that adventurism is dangerous concerning Artsakh and its security and the position of Artsakh was weakened after the 2020 war. However, 29.03 percent voted that the two aforementioned claims do not contradict one another.

Some of the results of the convention voting on March 11 displayed on a large wall screen at the Dvin Music Hall (photo Aram Arkun)

As far as preservation of heritage was concerned, 61.74 percent voted that “It is our duty to preserve our historical and cultural heritage and pass it on to the next generations. Both the state and Armenians around the world should dedicate as many resources as necessary to this purpose, and do this effectively, while another 28.86 percent voted for a more entrepreneurial approach: “We should be able to preserve our historical and cultural heritage similar to a business profit model. This means viewing our heritage not as a burden or responsibility, but rather as a valuable asset that can generate revenue and be further developed while also being preserved for future generations.”

Regarding the Armenian language and Armenian preservation, 72.90 percent voted that “While knowledge of the Armenian language is undoubtedly important, it should be acknowledged that language is merely a tool, and the act of forcing language knowledge can often have the opposite effect. Instead, it is crucial to create an environment and implement effective mechanisms that make learning Armenian both beneficial and interesting for individuals. Only then can we expect to encourage Armenian youth from around the world to learn and embrace their language and culture.” On the other hand, 19.36 percent took a more rigid position, voting that: “To facilitate communication among Diaspora community institutions, the Church, and Armenia, it is essential to make the Armenian language mandatory. This will encourage Armenian youth from all over the world to learn and embrace their language and culture.”

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Many initiatives or programs received votes of approval to be pursued. The top three were to create: an “All-Armenian Web Army” (75.64 percent) in order to gain advantages in virtual information wars and on all social networks by involving all willing Armenians; a unified list of all items of the Armenian heritage, something similar to the UNESCO World Heritage List (71.79 percent); and a coordinating council to coordinate and enhance youth programs involving educational exchanges, camps, meetings and mutual visits ( 70.51 percent). Other programs that received over 50 percent of the votes include the establishment of: an online coordinating council for the Genocide recognition process; a campaign to include materials about the Genocide in other countries’ educational programs; an Armenian “Anti-Defamation League” human rights defending legal mechanism, leading the fight against Genocide denialism; an “Artsakh: 10 million” forum of Armenians of the world to institutionalize the connection between Artsakh and the Armenians of the rest of the world; a campaign for the digitization of historical heritage assets held in all museums; an “Armenian language through modern computer games” program; an “Artsakh Foundation” to fund projects advancing the economy,  development, and security of Artsakh; a network of Armenian virtual universities, providing online education for the world’s Armenians especially on Armenian history and language; and opening 3 overseas branches of the Genocide Museum, thus increasing the scale of presentation of materials dedicated to the Armenian Genocide in the world.

Armenia-Diaspora Unity

The voting of the second day decided that the main agenda of Armenia-Diaspora cooperation should be, according to 53.16 percent, the strengthening of Armenia, with the expectation that a stronger Armenia will contribute to the preservation of Armenianness in the Diaspora much more easily. Smaller numbers voted for Armenian preservation in the Diaspora and tackling the issues that Diaspora communities face, acknowledging that the danger of assimilation has become quite grave (20.89 percent); and helping each other as much as possible, while also realizing that resources in this case are split in two, therefore decreasing their impact (20.25 percent).

The majority (56.96 percent) voted that new cooperation platforms are necessary, as the crisis of confidence is surmountable, and unity will multiply the results. A lesser number voted that efforts at Armenia-Diaspora cooperation have not been enough. There is a crisis of confidence and unity is only at the level of appeals (27.86 percent). A smaller minority voted that such efforts have been sufficient but not strategic, and we have not noticed how we are slowly losing both the diaspora and Armenia, trying to contrast the preservation of one to the other (13.92 percent).

The top three initiatives accepted by a majority include creating a collaborative network of Armenian businesspeople living in various parts of the world to implement joint projects (82.39 percent); creation of a foundation/institute that will arrange regular trips of Armenian language teachers from Armenia to Diaspora communities to develop Armenian study centers or teach Armenians abroad (66.67 percent); and a pan-Armenian movement “Back to Armenia,” a largescale immigration strategy at the state level (64.78 percent).

Other top suggestions include: a pan-Armenian lobbying network, supplementing the great work carried out by Armenian lobbying institutions in a unified, pan-Armenian format (64.15 percent); an investment company named Armenia, creating an opportunity for every Armenian to participate in the development of Armenia’s economy in the form of buying shares (57.23 percent); a pan-Armenian IT company (46.54 percent); the possibility of participation by people in different formats in the model of a joint-stock company; and the creation of Armenian online museum, based on the Armenian Genocide Museum-Institute (38.99 percent).


Of the voters, 74.6 percent decided that a demographic policy should be proclaimed as one of the chief directions of the country for the future, and that policies in other spheres should support it, while 54.9 percent voted that a combination of efforts to increase the birth rate, decrease emigration, increase immigration should be employed in order to assure demographic growth in Armenia. The majority thought that in order to reverse the population decline, it was necessary to simultaneously increase the rate of natural growth, organize repatriation, and halt emigration.

Of those voting, 54.61 percent believed it was most realistic to organize the repatriation of Armenians who previously had emigrated from Armenia. Armenians who had settled in Ukraine, on the other hand, have not returned for the most part to Armenia during the ongoing war. Safety, trust and hope are necessary factors. Only 19.74 percent believed that it was realistic to organize the repatriation of Armenians of the traditional diaspora, and only 3.95 percent thought it probably to organize immigration of non-Armenians.

The top three initiatives voted on were: the creation of a professional agency of immigration organization, management and advocacy (79.49 percent); a “Children First” initiative, a platform for the interaction of many existing programs aimed at children’s development and learning, which will significantly increase their inclusiveness (70.51 percent); and a public health, healthy lifestyle awareness and marketing initiative (68.59 percent).

Other initiatives that received over 50 percent of the vote include: an online, pan-Armenian dating platform, facilitating contacts among Armenian youth interested in getting to know each other and starting a family, through a competently managed, thorough verification of applications and registration of only Armenian participants (56.41 percent); organizations for conflict management support in young families, providing professional support for family issues, for families who stand on the verge of divorce in regions and Yerevan, creation of a network of counseling centers (including existing ones) (56.41 percent); lobbying the US Congress to amend the Social Security Act, giving an opportunity for Armenian-American pensioners to receive their pensions while absent from the United States, which will promote repatriation (54.49 percent); and an “At least 4 children” public movement (51.92 percent).

For more on the convention, see this article.

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