This year’s workshop addressed the role of academia in dealing with and, more important, in moderating conflicts.
On 27th our workshops topic was “The Minsk Process: Taking Stock”, we talked with Alexander Hug, Dr. Hanna Shelest and Dr. Andreas Wittkowsky about the situation in Eastern Ukraine
In the context of the main topic “What Academia can Contribute to Moderating Conflicts”, the panel added to our understanding about the main impediments for solving the territorial, political, and cultural issues in Eastern Ukraine. This includes to a careful analysis of the situation of the so called Minsk Process. Our distinguished experts addressed this issue from different conceptual and practical positions.
Alexander Hug is currently serving as the Principal Deputy Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine. Before his appointment to the OSCE SMM to Ukraine, Alexander Hug was a Section Head and a Senior Adviser to the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities. Hug has also worked for the OSCE Mission in Kosovo, the Temporary International Presence in Hebron, and the EU Rule of Law Mission in Kosovo (EULEX).
Dr. Hanna Shelest is currently the Co-Editor-in-Chief of Ukraine Analytica. She is also a Member of the Board at the Foreign Policy Council “Ukrainian Prism” and Head of the Board of the NGO “Promotion of Intercultural Cooperation”. Prior to this, she had served for more than 10 years as a Senior Researcher at the National Institute for Strategic Studies under the President of the Ukraine, Odessa Branch. Her main research interests are conflicts resolution, security and cooperation, especially in the Wider Black Sea region and the Middle East, and foreign policy of Ukraine.
Dr. Andreas Wittkowsky is Head of the Peace and Security Project at the Center for International Peace Operations (ZIF) in Berlin. From 2001-2008 he worked in various functions for the Economic Reconstruction Pillar of the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo. He served as the Pillar’s Deputy Head from 2006-2008, after having established and managed the mission’s Economic Policy Office. Dr. Wittkowsky was the Director of the German Association of East European Studies (DGO) from 2008-2010 and a research fellow at the German Development Institute (DIE) from 1997-2001.
The second workshop “Framing Strategies for the Conflict in (Eastern) Ukraine” came off on 28th April. As our experts we invited Petro Burkovskyi and Dr. Gulnaz Sharafutdinova, who made an impression on their diverse and profound knowledge.
As we have learned in the last decades, conflicts may be addressed for their material substance, but certainly also regarding how they are framed by different interest groups and stakeholders. Framings may be text based or may be tied to visuals. They may be embedded in historical memes or in ideational narratives. This workshop aims at presenting and deconstructing some of the most relevant frames and how they are related to and impacting on this particular conflict.
Petro Burkovskyi is the Head of the Department of Political System Development at the National Institute for Strategic Studies and has been on civil service since 2005. He is alumnus of the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies (2007) and also completed a defense management course at Cranfield University, Defense Academy of UK (2015). His areas of expertise include history, comparative analysis, constitutional law, decision-making processes, security policy, energy policy and international relations.
Dr. Gulnaz Sharafutdinova joined King’s Russia Institute as Senior Lecturer in September 2013. Previously she worked at Miami University (Ohio), where she was an associate professor of political science and international studies and an associate of the Havighurst Center for Russian and Post-Soviet Studies. Her book “Political Consequences of Crony Capitalism inside Russia” is among the most careful studies of the mechanism through which informal practices of economic power have shaped contemporary Russia.
We thank all experts and participants for their interesting and remarkable input and are looking forward to the next workshops.