Below you will find a list of the conference speakers in alphabetical order.

Maria Anikina holds a PhD in Philology from Lomonosov Moscow State University (2006). She is an associate professor at the Department of media sociology, Journalism Faculty, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia. Dr. Anikina is the Chair of young scholars’ council of Journalism Faculty (MSU), member of academic council of Journalism Faculty (MSU) and coordinator of national research team in "The worlds of journalism" and "Journalism in change" projects. She has taught Journalism theory, Sociology, Media Sociology, Sociologic culture of journalists at Lomonosov Moscow State University. Her publications include articles on journalistic cultures in Russia, modern specifics of mass consciousness studies, Journalism as a Profession in the First Decades of the 21st Century. She is co-editor of the book series Discovering Grushin,representing contemporary approaches to mass consiousness study. Her current research examines acute trends in media consumption, new media users' behavior and professional culture of journalists.

Mark Bassin is Research Professor of the History of Ideas, in the Center for Baltic and East European Studies at Södertörn University in Stockholm. His research focuses on problems of space, ideology and identity in Russia and Germany. He is the author of Imperial Visions: Nationalist Imagination and Geographical Expansion in the Russian Far East 1840-1865 (Cambridge, 1999), and has co-edited the collections Soviet and Post-Soviet Identities (Cambridge, 2012), Space, Place and Power in Modern Russia: Essays in the New Spatial History (Northern Illinois University Press, 2010) and География и Идентичность в Постсоветской России (St. Petersburg,  2003).

Per-Arne Bodin is Professor of Slavic Languages at the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Stockholm University. He defended his dissertation on the poetry of Pasternak at Stockholm University in 1976. He has written extensively on Russian, Polish and Ukrainian literatures. One special interest is the relation between Russian culture and Russian Orthodox Tradition. His most recent books are Eternity and Time: Studies in Russian Literature and the Orthodox Tradition (2007) and Language, Canonization and Holy Foolishness: Studies in Post-Soviet Russian Culture and the Orthodox Tradition (2009). He has written several collections of essays in Swedish on Russian culture, literature and church history. He has also translated poetry from Russian, Polish and Ukrainian. For the moment he is working on two projects: Russian culture and linguistic violence and Russian cultural mythologemes in a Post-Soviet world. He is member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History and Antiquities and doctor honoris causa at Uppsala University.

Maria Engström holds a PhD in Slavic languages and literatures from Stockholm University (2004). She is an Assistant Professor of Russian Language and Literature at the School of Humanities and Media Studies at Dalarna University, Sweden. She has taught Russian cultural history and literature at Stockholm University, Uppsala University, Stockholm School of Economics, and University of Tampere. Her publications include articles on the Orthodox Church and Russian politics, Russian utopian imagination, and imperial aesthetics in contemporary Russian literature and art.

Anton Gumenskiy is a researcher and lecturer in communication and media theory, media anthropology, corporate culture and communications and cross-cultural communications. Anton Gumenskiy graduated from School of Public Relations, Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO University) in 2000. He spent three years in Copenhagen, Denmark at the Trade Representation of the Russian Federation, contributing to the bilateral cooperation and managing media relations. Upon return to Moscow he has been working in corporate affairs and in marketing in private sector. Since 2007  Anton Gumenskiy has been pursuing academic career conducting research, lecturing students and training executives in disciplines related to media, communication, and culture. He is currently affiliated to the MGIMO University, the Moscow State University, the Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences, the Russian School of Management. The spheres of his scientific interests include communication and media theory, social and media anthropology, and cross-cultural communications.  

Stephen Hutchings is Professor of Russian Studies and Director of Research in the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures at the University of Manchester (UK). He is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences. Previously he worked at the University of Surrey (UK), and the University of Rochester, New York (USA). From 2010 to 2013 he was President of the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies. His research is in the area of Russian literary, film and media studies. He is the author of 5 monographs including Russian Modernism: The Transfiguration of the Everyday, Cambridge: CUP, 1997, Television and Power in Putin’s Russia: Remote Control (co-authored with Natalya Rulyova), London: Routledge, 2009, and Islam, Security and Television News: A Comparative Study (co-authored with Chris Flood et al), London: Palgrave, 2012. The 6 volumes he has edited include Screening Intercultural Dialogue: Russia and its Other(s) on Film, London:  Palgrave, 2008, and Soviet and Post-Soviet Screen Adaptations of Literature: Screening the Word (co-edited with Anat Vernitski), London: Routledge, 2005. He has published widely in leading refereed journals including Slavic Review, Russian Review, Nationalities Papers, Television and New Media and International Journal of Cultural Studies.

Irina Kotkina holds PhD from European University Institute (Florence) in History and also Candidate of Cultural Studies degree (PhD equivalent) from Russian State University for Humanities in Moscow. She is employed as project researcher at Sodertorn University in Sweden. Her current project is called "The Vision of Eurasia: Eurasianist Influences on Politics, Culture and Ideology in Russia Today".  Dr. Kotkina is studying cultural politics and all aspects of Russian culture. She publishes broadly on Russia's cultural policy, opera and theatre. She is particularly interested in the Bolshoi Theater opera history in the XX century and among her recent peer-reviewed publications are articles on Medvedev's modernization and the Bolshoi Theater, Stalinist Bolshoi Theater and the search for the model Soviet opera, and building of national operatic traditions in the Soviet republics under Stalin.

Sergiy Kurbatov, PhD, senior researcher at Institute of Higher Education, National Academy of Pedagogical Sciences of Ukraine and affiliated researcher at UCRS as well as Junior Fulbright alumnus (2003-2004, Brown University, USA). Among his main research interests are transformation of university education in the context of globalization, internationalization, quality assurance in education, university rankings. He served as a national expert at Bologna Evaluation Project (University of Twente, Netherlands, 2009) and since 2014 is a member of IREG Audit Team. Also, Sergiy Kurbatov is actively involved in the process of analyzing the  problem of political and social transformations in Ukraine. 

Fabian Linde is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the Uppsala Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies (UCRS), who specializes in Russian intellectual history. He received his Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literatures from Stockholm University in 2011. His doctoral thesis, entitled The Spirit of Revolt: Nikolai Berdiaev’s Existential Gnosticism, was a re-examination of Gnostic themes in the thought of Nikolai Berdiaev. Following his postgraduate studies, he moved to Moscow where he was employed as a lecturer in Swedish at the Russian State University for the Humanities. At present, he is leading a project financially supported by the Swedish Research Council, which examines varieties of civilizational discourse within the Russian political sphere. The research project focuses primarily on constructions of a Russian civilizational identity disseminated by the Russian government and on how they relate to the initiative to create a Eurasian (Economic) Union.

Alla Marchenko holds a Ph.D. in Sociology and is Associate Professor of the Chair of Methodology and Methods of Sociological Research, Faculty of Sociology, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv (Kyiv, Ukraine). She is also Associate Researcher of Laboratory for Comparative Social Research, National Research University “Higher School of Economics” (Moscow, Russian Federation). Sphere of her academic interests includes comparative research, historical sociology, quantitative and qualitative methods of research, measurement of civic engagement.

Sirke Mäkinen is a Research Fellow at the School of Management, University of Tampere, Finland. She has a PhD in Political Science from the University of Tampere. Her PhD thesis, published in 2008, focused on the geopolitical argumentation of Russian political parties on an internal threat,  Chechnya, and on an external threat, NATO. Her current research interests include Russia's public diplomacy and higher education.  Her papers on discourses of the Russian political elite, on geopolitical culture and geopolitics teaching have appeared in journals such as Geopolitics, Europe-Asia Studies and Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics.

Elena Namli is Professor of Ethics at the Faculty of Theology and one of the three Research Directors at UCRS Uppsala Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies (both at Uppsala University). She teaches Ethics at the Faculty of Theology and supervise several doctoral projects (in Ethics). At UCRS Uppsala Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies Elena is leading a very ambitious team of researchers who focus on processes that characterize Russia’s new, social and cultural identity (Identity Formation) and have published extensively in prominent international journals. Her current major project is entitled Human Rights as Ethics, Politics and Law. The project questions “Western” conception of human rights and aims to provide ethical analysis of contemporary human rights discourse with particular regard to its communicative aspects. Elena’s other project Social Ethics and the Russian Orthodox Tradition examines Russian Orthodox Church’s involvement in Russian politics and aims to suggest a critical analysis from a theological perspective. Elena’s most recent publications include Jewish Thought, Utopia, and Revolution (Rodopi, 2014), Universal Rights versus Sharia? Reflections on the Moral and Legal Dimensions of Human Rights Law and Sharia (Religion and Human Rights, 2013), Power and Legitimacy – Challenges from Russia (Routledge, 2012) and Religion and Politik i Ryssland (Swedish Science Press, 2012).

Evgeny Pashentsev is a professor at the Department of the Philosophy of Language and Communication at Lomonosov Moscow State University and the Director of the International Center for Social and Political Studies and Consulting (ICSPSC). ICSPSC has organized a series of international roundtable discussions and meetings concerning the issues of national and international security, and the role of mass communications in the present day society. ICSPSC has published twenty-five monographs and collected articles since 2002. Among the authors of the books are more than 70 specialists from 20 countries of Europe, Asia, North and South America: members of national and international academies, directors of research centers, diplomats, and members of cabinets of ministers. Throughout his academic career Professor Pashentsev has presented his papers at more than 50 international academic conferences and seminars in 18 countries during last ten years. In 2014 Professor Pashentsev has published four monographs: The Presidents in Media Focus: The Practice of Information Warfare in Latin America (in co-authorship with Olga S. Polunina); Communication Management and Strategic Communication: The Contemporary Technologies of  Global Influence and Management; Hugo Chavez. In the Flames of the Information Warfare; The “Ukraine” Strategic Provocation.

Saara Ratilainen is a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer at the University of Tampere, School of Language, Translation and Literary Studies and at Helsinki University’s Aleksanteri Institute. She graduated with a PhD degree in Russian Language and Culture from the University of Tampere in June 2013. The title of her doctoral thesis is 'Women’s Print Media and Consumer Culture in the New Russia'. Her research covers such topics as post-Soviet class and gender, Russian consumer society and consumer culture, glossy magazines, and lifestyle media. Her recent publications include: Ratilainen, Saara & Olga Gurova (2014) ‘Itäturisti venäläisen kuluttamisen suunnannäyttäjänä’  [The Eastern tourist as the model of Russian consumption] published in the Finnish Review of Eastern European Studies Idäntutkimus, and Ratilainen Saara (2012) ‘Business for Pleasure: Elite Women in the Russian Popular Media’ published in _Rethinking Class in Russia_ (edited by Suvi Salmenniemi, Ashgate Publishing). Her current research project focuses on digital lifestyle media and representations of travel and tourism in contemporary Russia.

Rubén Ruiz Ramas is Research and Teaching Fellow in the Political Science Department at the UNED in Madrid, Spain. His field of expertise is related with the post-Soviet area where he has developed fieldwork in Russia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. Ruiz Ramas research concerns are focused on the study of state-building, political regimes, political communication, electoral processes, revolutionary situations, political instability, and the persistence of informal institutions. Ruiz Ramas has published broadly in refereed journals and prestigious publishers such as Routledge or Cambridge. The most recent publications are: Ucrania: Crisis, Revolución y Desintegración. Claves de un Conflicto (2014) Madrid: Comunicación Social; “The Institutional Persistence of Patrimonialism in the Kyrgyz Republic: Testing a Path Dependency (1991-2010)”, in Ahrens, Joachim (2013), Institutional Change in Central Asia, London: Routledge. “Parental Informal Payments and the Marketization of Education in Kyrgyzstan: Analyzing the Strongest and the Weakest Link”, Journal of Eurasian Studies, (2014).  Parallel to his research, he has also worked as an international election observer for OSCE/ODIHR in five different missions in Kyrgyzstan, (2007, 2010 and 2011), Russia (2012) and Bulgaria (2013).  To conclude, Ruben coordinates www.eurasianet.es and collaborates with Eurasian Hub, http://eurasianhub.com, Casa Asia, www.casaasia.es,  or OPEMAM (www.opemam.org) as analyst focused on the post-Soviet area.

Anke Schmidt-Felzmann is Researcher in the Special Research Programme for International Studies at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs (Utrikespolitiska Institutet, UI) in Stockholm as well as a Senior Lecturer in International Relations at Dalarna University (Högskolan Dalarna) in Falun. She holds a Ph.D from the University of Glasgow, Scotland. From 2011-2014, after working for two years as a full-time lecturer at Maastricht University in the Netherlands, she held a postdoctoral research fellowship from the Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet, VR) at Stockholm University, with a project studying the EU’s performance as an international actor, with a focus on the EU’s relations with Russia. Dr. Schmidt-Felzmann has published on EU energy policy towards Russia in Geopolitics (2011) and on the EU-Russian relationship in Journal of Contemporary European Studies (2008) and Contemporary Politics (2006, with G. Bosse and G. Bogutcaia).

Hanna Smith is a researcher at the University of Helsinki, Aleksanteri Institute and the Finnish Centre of Excellence on Russian Studies. She is an expert on Russian and former Soviet Union area foreign, security and domestic politics. Her research interests include also regional cooperation, Nordic cooperation and international institutions. She has degrees from Sweden and Great Britain in Russian language, history and politics as well as international relations. In 2001-02 she was a visiting researcher at the University of Birmingham, and in 2006 at the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, unit for research and policy planning. Hanna Smith has worked in numerous Finnish and international academic and policy-oriented projects, and headed the Finnish Foreign Ministry funded project on ‘Russian Foreign Policy’ in 2004-05. She is frequent lecturer at the Finnish land defense courses, organized by the Finnish defense forces and thought course on different aspect on Russian foreign and security policy in University of Helsinki and University of Eastern Finland. She is known commentator in Finnish media.

Vlad Strukov is Associate Professor in Digital Culture at the University of Leeds. Previously he held academic positions in universities in Belgium, Finland, Russia, Scotland and the USA. At the University of Leeds he is the director of the Leeds Russian Centre (Russia[n] in the Global Context). His research is on digital culture, technology and visual culture, including film, animation, art, media, television, and popular culture. His current research projects are concerned with such issues as (a) global media in the post-broadcast era (the BBC, Al Jazeera and Russia Today); (b) popular geopolitics, memory and securitization; and (c) film in the digital era. In his research he focuses on the visual aspects of communication, identity construction, modifications of cultural traditions, prosumption and power discourses. His recent publications include such books as Shocking Chic: Glamour and Celebrity in Contemporary Russian Culture (2010), New Media in New Europe-Asia (2014), and From Central to Digital: Television in Russia (2014). He is the founding and principal editor of a journal entitled Studies in Russian, Eurasian and Central European New Media (Digital Icons; www.digitalicons.org), which publishes pioneering research on digital networked systems and cultures in the region. He regularly appears in international media.

Vladimir Suchan holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada and currently is an independent activist publishes in the new media his analyses and comments focusing mainly on the wars in Ukraine and Syria. Born in Ostrov, Czech Republic he graduated from the Moscow State Institute of International Relations in 1985. From 1985 untill 1994 he worked at the Czechoslovak, respective Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In 1993-1994 he worked for UNHCR in the former Yugoslavia. He has taught at Norwich University, the Middlebury College, Hendrix College, Saint Michael’s College, the University of Maine at Fort Kent, the Akron University and the OSCE Academy in Bishkek.

Mikhail Suslov is a Marie Curie postdoctoral researcher at the UCRS. He studies Russian intellectual history, (geo)political imagination, ideological genealogies and cultural history of the Russian Orthodox church. He holds a PhD in history from European University Institute (Florence), and works towards a Dr.habil. degree at the Russian State University for the Humanities in Moscow. His most recent publications include 'Holy Rus': The Geopolitical Imagination in the Contemporary Russian Orthodox Church,' Russian Politics and Law 52, no. 3 (2014), and in Russian: 'Genealogy of the Idea of Monarchy in Post-Soviet Political Discourses of the Russian Orthodox Church,' Gosudarstvo, religiia, tserkov' v Rossii i za rubezhom 32, no. 3 (2014).

Andrei Tsygankov is Professor at the Departments of Political Science and International Relations at San Francisco State University. He teaches Russian/post-Soviet, comparative, and international politics since August 2000. A Russian native, Tsygankov is a graduate of Moscow State University (Candidate of Sciences, 1991) and University of Southern California (Ph.D., 2000).  Tsygankov is a contributor to both Western and Russian academia. In the West, he co-edited collective projects, and he published National Identity and Foreign Economic Policy in the Post-Soviet World (2001), Russia's Perception of American Ideas after the Cold War (2004), Anti-Russian Lobby and American Foreign Policy (2009), Russia and the West from Alexander to Putin (2012), and The Strong State in Russia (2014) as well as many journal articles. Tsygankov also published well-received textbook Russia’s Foreign Policy (2006, the second edition, 2010, the third edition, 2013). In Russia, his best known books are Modern Political Regimes (1996), Russian Science of International Relations (2005, co-edited with Pavel Tsygankov, also published in Germany and China), Sociology of International Relations (2006, co-authored with Pavel Tsygankov, also published in China), and International Relations: Traditions of Russian Political Thought (2013). Tsygankov spoke at various forums at Berkeley, Stanford, World Affairs Council, and other venues in the Bay Area and outside, and he contributed to Current History, Los Angeles Times, Moscow Times, PBS Newshour, Politique étrangère, Russia in Global Affairs, Voice of Russia, and other media publications. Tsygankov consulted various publishers and state agencies, and he served as Program Chair of International Studies Association (ISA), 2006-07. ISA has well over three thousand members in North America and around the world and is the largest scholarly association in this field. His recent publications include Russia and the West from Alexander to Putin (Cambridge, 2012), The Strong State in Russia (Oxford, 2014).

Dirk Uffelmann studied Russian, Polish, Czech and German Literature at the Universities of Tübingen, Vienna, Warsaw, and Constance. He obtained his PhD from the University of Constance in 1999 and defended his second thesis (Habilitation) at the University of Bremen in 2005 before teach­ing as Lecturer in Russian at the University of Edinburgh. He also was a visiting professor at the University of Bergen, Norway, Western Michigan University and University of Puget Sound, USA, and visiting fellow at the University of Cambridge and the University of Munich. At present, he is full professor of Slavic Literatures and Cultures at the University of Passau and research fellow of the joint Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies of the Universities of Munich and Regensburg. From 2011 to 2014 he served as Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs. His research interests are Russian, Polish, Czech, Slovak and Central Asian literature, philosophy, religion, migration, masculinity and internet studies. He is co-editor of the journal Zeitschrift für Slavische Philologie as well as of the book series Postcolonial Perspectives on Eastern Europe and Polonistik im Kontext.

Galina Zvereva is Professor in Cultural Studies and Head of the Department for History and Theory of Culture at the Russian State University for the Humanities (Moscow). She has published in the field of modern history and historiography as well as of cultural studies and Russian studies.