Though Ukraine appears to be “caught between East and West,” Ukrainians themselves do not see it this way, writes Matthew Rojansky. "The protest movement appears to be an expression of support for a modern, European, democratic Ukrainian state."
Kennan Institute's Deputy Director, William Pomeranz, is interviewed by the Wall Street Journal about Russia's surprise closure of RIA Novosti.
"The bigger problem with lamentations about “who lost Ukraine” is that they offer no useful assessment of why Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovich actually decided to walk away from the table, while painting the future with a hopelessly broad brush, and sidestepping the most urgently important question—what to do next," writes Matthew Rojansky in The National Interest.
The West has yet another opportunity to learn more about Ukraine. Although it’s not under the best circumstances, we hope that someday the opportunities will change in their quality, not just increase in quantity, and the word “Ukraine” will evoke, in the minds of EU citizens, something specific and positive rather than vague and negative.
Forbes dubbed Russian President Vladimir Putin the most powerful man in the world. Yet all these successes obscure a basic fact: Russia is running out of money, writes William Pomeranz.
Over the last two decades since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the potential of education and scholarship in Russia has slowly but steadily declined. On the one hand, despite all of the difficulties these spheres have faced, they have proven to be particularly resilient. With their built-up workforce capacity and asceticism (or inability to "adapt to market conditions"), thousands of scholars and teachers have not allowed the education system to fail, despite the reduction in state funding.
"The suspended sentence handed down to the anti-corruption crusader Alexei Navalny has once again placed an unflattering spotlight on Russia’s legal system. Navalny himself recognized that the verdict was not a result of the judge’s private deliberations but a gesture of lenience mandated from above," writes Will Pomeranz in The National Interest.
The Kennan Institute is pleased to report that it has been awarded Title VIII funding for the coming program year. Please check back for more details on the next research scholarship competitions, the deadlines for which will be in January 2016.