5th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

Russia and the Oil Price Crash

Can Russia survive the crash in oil prices? Like every energy exporter, Russia is suffering from low commodity prices. But, since the beginning of the slump (mid-2014), Russia's economic policy response has been reasonably effective. Drawing on policies developed over the past 15 years, Russia has let its currency fall against the dollar, helping to balance the budget, and has continued adjusting oil taxation to incentivize exports. With Duma elections coming this fall, 2016 is likely to be a more difficult environment for Russian policy makers.

The Nuremberg Idea: Crimes against Humanity in History, Law & Politics

“The Nuremberg Idea” offers a historically-informed answer to one of the key social theory questions of our time: How did “human rights” become a concept that even the most heinous regimes feel they need to buy into? In tackling this question through the vector of the term “crimes against humanity,” this history offers a new transdisciplinary analysis of how human rights norms are formed, transmitted, and sustained, both domestically and at the supra-national level.

Natalia Zubarevich: Russian Financial Crisis Comes to the Regions

Every economic recession has a unique geographic distribution. The current Russian financial crisis differs from previous ones in both its roots and the ways in which it affects the country’s regions. Natalia Zubarevich examines the details of the current downturn to discuss how the crisis manifests itself in various Russian cities and regions, and how local authorities, businesses, and individuals are adapting.

The Billion Dollar Spy: A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal

From 1979 until 1985, the CIA ran an immensely productive spy in the heart of the Soviet military-industrial complex in Moscow. Author David E. Hoffman will describe this singularly-important operation, based on declassified CIA cables and his new book, The Billion Dollar Spy, and argue that despite the many achievements of technology in espionage, human sources are still vital.

Iranian Public Opinion on Foreign Affairs on the Eve of Parliamentary Elections

Four experts offered their analysis on Iranian public opinion and assessed its implications for the upcoming parliamentary elections.

**Postponed** Belarus: Between a Rock and a Hard Place

This event has been postponed due to complications from weather and government closure. Please look for a new announcement coming soon with the rescheduled date, time, and location. Your RSVP will not carry over, so please be sure to re-register when you receive the updated invitation.

 

Conflict and Cultural Destruction: Why Totalitarian Regimes Seek to Destroy Historical Memory

Evoking memory of the Nazi onslaught on cultural icons, the Taliban’s destruction of the Bamiyan statues and ISIS's pillaging of pre-Islamic sites has horrified contemporary observers and raised new concerns about the ways certain regimes seek to destroy historical memory. At the same time, new narratives of cultural persistence and survival are emerging, such as Romanian efforts in the Cold War to circumvent censorship through theatre, or contemporary ways to counter hardline censorship of Persian literature in Iran.

Turkey in 2016: Domestic Politics, EU Relations and Beyond

Four experts offered their analysis on the future of domestic politics in Turkey and assessed the country’s evolving relationships with the West.

Climate Change, Disasters, and Security: Unconventional Approaches to Building Stability

It is “not sufficient to look at history for lessons on how we should prepare for and prevent future security risks in a climate change world,” said Swathi Veeravalli, research scientist at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Geospatial Research Laboratory, at the Wilson Center on January 14.

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