September 24, 2012 // 12:00pm — 1:00pm
Cosponsored by the Middle East Program, Woodrow Wilson Center || Kennan Institute U.S. Alumni Series || Moscow does not want to see Tehran acquire nuclear weapons. Despite this, Russia has been reluctant to cooperate much with the U.S. in preventing this. In his talk, Mark N. Katz, Professor of Government and Politics, George Mason University, and former Title VIII-Supported Research and Short-Term Scholar, Kennan Institute, will discuss why this is.
September 21, 2012 // 9:00am — 5:00pm
Using a comparative approach to incorporate research initiatives into a global context can make a significant contribution to the current understanding of migration. In partnership with the Social Science Research Council, the Kennan Institute will host leading specialists on migration issues from Russia and the United States to discuss their most recent work, as well as share preliminary findings from research supported by the National Science Foundation. This research was conducted as part of the MINERVA initiative grant “People, Power, and Conflict in the Eurasian Migration System,” led by Cynthia Buckley, Beth Mitchneck, and Blair Ruble.
September 20, 2012 // 12:00pm — 1:00pm
Though little is known about such efforts, Soviet cultural and propaganda institutions attempted to reach directly the hearts and minds of East European societies in Moscow’s new sphere of influence created after World War II. In the process, the Soviets squandered considerable human potential on their side, which could have promoted more effective soft power initiatives. Stalin’s death in 1953 offered new possibilities for reciprocal cultural relations and more flexible Soviet approach. Patryk Babiracki, Assistant Professor of History, University of Texas-Arlington, and Title VIII-Supported Research Scholar, Kennan Institute, will explain that other aspects of “the Thaw” in the USSR and Poland further complicated the work of Soviet international outreach institutions, revealing the limitations of Soviet soft power and of the Kremlin’s capacity to maintain empire.
June 18, 2012 // 12:00pm — 1:00pm
“Is local media, produced for Russia’s ethnic minorities and often in local languages, stoking ethnic conflict and hastening destabilization of the federation?” asked Kathryn Graber, Title VIII-Supported Research Scholar, Kennan Institute at a 18 June 2012 lecture. Graber studied the local, ethnic media of the people of the Republic of Buryatia, a semi-autonomous region of the Russian Federation that borders Lake Baikal. Rather than create ethnic strife between the Buryats and Russians, Graber found that local, ethnic media has produced a framework of titular nationalities that work together in the Russian Federation, and which supports positive and pacifist relationships that reaffirm the belief that as a national minority, ethnic peoples can belong both to an ethnic state and the larger Russian state.
June 12, 2012 // 3:30pm — 5:30pm
Twenty years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, it is clear that democracy has failed to take root in most former Soviet republics. Based on extensive field research in the region, Kennan Institute Title VIII-Supported Research Scholars Jody LaPorte and Danielle Lussier will discuss the varieties of non-democratic regimes that have developed and will offer some explanations for the failure of democracy in Russia, Central Asia, and the Caucasus.
June 11, 2012 // 12:00pm — 1:00pm
“Why were Georgian trade networks so successful?” asked Erik R. Scott, Title VIII-Supported Research Scholar, Kennan Institute, at an 11 June 2012 lecture. Georgian businessmen and their trade networks and products occupied a unique position in the informal economy in the Soviet Union and supplied many of the scarce and exotic goods Soviet consumers desired. Georgian trade networks exploited the mobility made possible by the porous internal borders of the Soviet Union. Scott characterized the Soviet Union as an “empire of diaspora” comprised of mobile ethnicities who could move and trade throughout the Union.
June 05, 2012 // 3:30pm — 5:30pm
Armenia and Azerbaijan fought a brutal war two decades ago over the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh. A ceasefire -- not a peace agreement -- has separated the combatants for years, but is now endangered by frequent violations and by a growing arms race. How dangerous is this situation and what can be done to avoid another open conflict?
June 04, 2012 // 12:00pm — 1:00pm
As modern Belarus seems to be caught in limbo between the West (EU\NATO) on one side, and Russia with her post-imperial ambitions on the other, it is still undecided where it really belongs. Some observers claim that the modern Belarusian state is Soviet by its origin and design, but there were also suppressed historical alternatives to it in the recent 20th century Belarusian past. Aliaksandr Paharely, Visiting Scholar, Center for Belarusian Studies, Southwestern College, Kansas, will address the putative evolutionary and revolutionary scenarios of social change and nation and states building that were debated in Poland’s West Belarus during the interwar years.
May 29, 2012 // 12:00pm — 1:00pm
Cosponsored by the Russian-American Community Center of Florida, Open Dialogue (Moscow) and the Spiritual Diplomacy Foundation, in this discussion Nikolai Borodin, Director, Museum of the Allies and Lend-Lease in Moscow, will explore the history of the museum and the role of America in the Lend-Lease program during World War II. “The Museum of the Allies and Lend-Lease is a unique, one-of-a-kind museum,” said Borodin. The museum was established inside a former school and has been open for 8 years. Borodin said he wished to honor and show gratitude to the United States and its veterans who rendered aid to the Soviet Union during World War II. “Those years were a very trying time and the aid received from the U.S. was substantial,” he stated. In Russia, the museum is dedicated to the WWII allies but mainly to the American contribution.
May 23, 2012 // 12:30pm — 2:00pm
On May 7, Vladimir Putin began his third term as president of the Russian Federation. With the Russian political season over, and the American political season heating up, what are the implications of political transition for the important issues in the U.S.-Russian bilateral relationship?
Experts & Staff
- Matthew Rojansky // Director, Kennan Institute
- William E. Pomeranz // Deputy Director, Kennan Institute
- F. Joseph Dresen // Program Associate
- Mary Elizabeth Malinkin // Program Associate
- Mattison Brady // Program Assistant
- Blair A. Ruble // Director, Global Sustainability and Resilience Program, and Senior Advisor, Kennan Institute