In the post-Cold War era, the issues of nationalism, ethnopolitics, and ethnic conflict have been most pressing in the three Transcaucasian states -- Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia -- and in the North Caucasus region of the Russian Federation. The Caucasus is extraordinarily diverse, with a rich and complicated history; along with significant linguistic diversity is a diversity of ethnically-defined "autonomous areas" that often do not coincide with the actual territorial distribution of ethnic groups, many of whom have conflicting territorial claims. The combination of extreme ethnic diversity, administrative recognition of certain minority peoples but not others, and competing territorial claims accounts, in part, for the political violence and instability in the region since the late 1980s. This has been a considerable security concern for the West, including the United States, especially due to the risk that conflict could draw in regional powers -- such as Russia, Turkey, and Iran -- and due to the oil and gas reserves in the Caspian Sea region. This is a report from the 1997 Caucasus Conference.