About the Institute

The Kennan Institute is the premier U.S. center for advanced research on Russia and Eurasia and the oldest and largest regional program at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. The Institute was co-founded in 1974 as a joint initiative of Ambassador George F. Kennan, then Wilson Center Director James Billington, and historian S. Frederick Starr. The Institute was named in honor of Ambassador Kennan's relative, George Kennan "the Elder" (1845-1924), a nineteenth-century explorer of Russia and Siberia.

The Kennan Institute is committed to improving American expertise and knowledge of Russia, Ukraine, and the region. Through its residential fellowship programs, public lectures, workshops, and publications, the Institute strives to attract, publicize, and integrate new research into the policy community.

Our Fellowships

The Institute offers residential fellowships in the humanities and social sciences to academic scholars and specialists from government, the media, and the private sectors. Thanks to its location in Washington, D.C., scholars at the Kennan Institute have access to libraries including the Library of Congress, as well as to archives, research facilities, policy makers, and other resources that are among the finest in the world.

Our Scholars

We offer our scholars comprehensive media trainings to refine their communications skill set. These trainings include sessions on television and radio presence, as well as op-ed writing. Our scholars also frequently contribute their expertise on an array of topics through masterclass sessions and lectures on Capitol Hill with congressional staff.

In addition to our presence in Washington, we maintain a steady stream of outreach around the U.S. We provide our scholars the opportunity to take part in the Kennan Conversations program which brings our current scholars and alumni from the United States, Russia, and Ukraine to locations throughout the country to give lectures and conduct media outreach. We aim to connect with Americans across the nation who are interested in events transpiring in Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia, but who do not always have the opportunity to hear from leading experts and academics firsthand.

Our Events and Publications
The Institute also administers an active program of public lectures and conferences featuring scholars and public figures from the United States, Ukraine, Russia, and other states from the region. The Institute makes all of its events and research publicly available through a variety of publications including blogs, audio and video recordings, special reports, articles, and commercially published books. Our Russia File and Focus Ukraine blogs, along with our KennanX podcast, serve as a platform offering insight into current events in Russia and Ukraine, as well as U.S.-Russia and US-Ukraine relations.