Past Events

Past Events - 2023


Panel Discussion on "Small States' Perspectives on AI and Global Security" featuring experts from Sweden and Finland

In partnership with USF's Global and National Security Institute (GNSI), IREES sponsored the following panel discussion, which is part of the March 5-7 GNSI Tampa Summit.

Location: Royal Palm Ballroom of the Marshall Student Center on the USF Tampa campus

** This panel was followed by a breakout session, 1:45 pm – 2:45 pm, on “Europe, Russia and AI-Enabled Security Threats.”


Joel Brynielsson, Research Director at the Swedish Defense Research Agency and Associate Professor at the Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. 

Peter Bovet Emanuel, Researcher at the Swedish Defense University’s Centre for Special Operations Research. 

Juha Kukkola, Officer in the Finnish Defense Forces and expert in strategic, cyber and Russian studies.

Vilma Luoma-aho, Professor of Corporate Communication and Vice Dean at the University of Jyvaskyla, Finland.

This event is part of the Forum on Russian, European, and US Security (REUSS Forum), a partnership between IREES and the J3-International Division at US Special Operations Command. The REUSS Forum is now in its fourth year.


Urban (In)Flux: The Impact Of Russian Emigres, Alliances, and Legacies on Urban Processes and Space in Tbilisi

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Presented by The Institute for Russian, European and Eurasian Studies and the School of Public Affairs

A distinguished international panel of experts including Joseph Salukvadze from Tbilisi State University and Suzanne Harris-Brandts and David Sichinava from Carleton University will discuss the urban impacts of the war on Ukraine as experienced in Tbilisi, Georgia. This fascinating and timely discussion will be moderated by Dr. Evangeline Linkous of USF School of Public Affairs. The event will feature an opening reception with light refreshments and there will be ample time set aside for audience questions. 


Belarus and the Russia-Ukraine War: The Role of IT and the Belarusian Diaspora’s Humanitarian Efforts

The people of Belarus took to the streets after Belarus’s dictator Aleksandr Lukashenko stole the 2020 presidential election. Russian President Vladimir Putin helped Lukashenko to brutally crush the largest protest in the history of independent Belarus. During the 2020-21 popular uprising, the founders of PandaDoc – Belarus’s first unicorn IT company-- offered professional training in the tech industry to police officers to entice them away from their repressive work for Lukashenko’s regime. PandaDoc’s efforts to encourage police officer defections prompted the Lukashenko regime to retaliate by launching a criminal case against the company’s founders.

This IREES event is co-sponsored with ResearchOne

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European Security, the Transatlantic Alliance, and Why Ordinary Russians Support the War in Ukraine

This event is part of the Forum on Russian, European, and US Security (REUSS) that is a collaboration between IREES and the J3-International Division at US Special Operations Command. Military representatives from Finland, Lithuania, and the Czech Republic will discuss their views on European security, the evolving role of the transatlantic alliance, and prospects for peace following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

This IREES event is co-sponsored with ResearchOne


The Holocaust and Jews in the Soviet Union: Art and Memory

Yelena Lembersky is the author of a critically acclaimed memoir, Like a Drop of Ink in a Downpour: Memories of Soviet Russia, cowritten with her mother, Galina. She is also an editor and contributing author of Felix Lembersky: Paintings and Drawings, the first comprehensive catalogue of her grandfather’s art. Felix Lembersky produced paintings of the Holocaust, including Babyn Yar, that remained locked away for years in Yelena’s childhood home. The Soviets did not allow Holocaust-themed paintings in state-controlled public spaces. Her mother and grandmother refused to accept this censorship. Instead, they organized informal shows in their small apartment in Leningrad, where friends and strangers gathered to commemorate the massacre and see his forbidden art. After years of fighting the system, the three women left Russia and brought Felix Lembersky’s oeuvre to the United States. His Execution: Babyn Yar canvases, created between 1944 and 1952, constitute the earliest artistic representation of the massacre in Kyiv, Ukraine. Silenced by Stalin, the communists, and the Soviet secret police, Babyn Yar became the symbol of Soviet Jewish fight for freedom. In October, Felix Lembersky’s paintings will be on display at the Florida Holocaust Museum in St. Petersburg.

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Another Amsterdam: St Petersburg and the Romanov's Maritime Project in the 18th Century

Alexey Kraykovskiy event flyer


European Security and Russia's War in Ukraine

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Panel Discussion Russia's Security Strategy

Marshall Student Center, Oval Theater - Room 2500

The panel is part of the 2023 Central and South Asia Directors of Military Intelligence Conference (CASA DMIC).

For information on the entire conference, March 7-9, see the Global and National Security Institute (GNSI) Tampa Summit Series

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Pulitzer Prize Winning Author David E. Hoffman "Tweet Me to Prison: Protest, Social Media, Free Speech and Autocracy Today"

David E. Hoffman is a contributing editor and member of the editorial board of The Washington Post. He was previously assistant managing editor, foreign editor, Jerusalem correspondent, Moscow bureau chief, and White House correspondent. 

His most recent work is Give Me Liberty: The True Story of Oswaldo Payá and His Daring Quest for a Free Cuba. His other books include The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and Its Dangerous Legacy, which won the Pulitzer Prize, The Billion Dollar Spy: A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal, a New York Times bestseller, and The Oligarchs: Wealth and Power in the New Russia. He has also been a correspondent for the flagship PBS investigative series FRONTLINE. 

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US State Department Diplomat on Russia's War in Ukraine

James Ozzie Coker II is Ukraine Desk Officer in the Office of East European Affairs at the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs in the US State Department

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Issues in European Security: A Conversation with US Special Operations Command J3-International Representatives

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The War Over History? Contextualizing Russian Aggression Against Ukraine: A Talk by Professor Serhy Yekelchyk

This event took place at the Marshall Student Center, Room 3707, on the USF Tampa campus. The event was also be available by livestream. 

Born and educated in Ukraine, Serhy Yekelchyk received a Ph.D. from the University of Alberta in Canada. He is the author of seven books on modern Ukrainian history and Russo-Ukrainian relations including the award-winning Stalin’s Citizens: Everyday Politics in the Wake of Total War (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014) as well as The Conflict in Ukraine (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015) and Ukraine: Birth of a Modern Nation (New York: Oxford University Press, 2007).

A professor of History and Slavic Studies at the University of Victoria, Dr. Yekelchyk is President of the Canadian Association for Ukrainian Studies.

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The Stuart - Ivanov Duo: "The Green Violinist" - A Multimedia Performance

The event took place in person at USF School of Music, Barness Recital Hall, 3755 USF Holly Drive, MUS 101, Tampa, FL 33620. The concert was free and open to the public. 

Svetozar Ivanov is Professor of Piano at the University of South Florida, serves as Artist Faculty at Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival in Vermont, Prague Piano Festival in Czech Republic, Walled City Music International Piano Festival in Northern Ireland, Brancaleoni International Music Festival in Italy, and is the Artistic Director of the Steinway Piano Series in Florida. He is a Steinway Artist and holds degrees from the Bulgarian National Conservatory and University of Michigan (Doctor of Musical Arts).  

Carolyn Stuart is Director of Strings and Chamber Music at the Brancaleoni International Music Festival in Italy, Artist-Faculty at Green Mountain Chamber Music Festival, in Vermont, Associate Professor of Violin at University of South Florida, and recent Visiting Violin Professor at DePaul University School of Music. Stuart earned degrees from The Juilliard School (BM), University of Michigan (MM), and Stony Brook University (DMA). 

Pianist Svetozar Ivanov and violinist Carolyn Stuart have made numerous appearances as recitalists and orchestra soloists worldwide. For over two decades, they have toured as the Stuart-Ivanov Duo, often presenting recitals with unusual concert formats combining music with other art forms. Their critically acclaimed Gega New CD, Nikolai Roslavets: Short Works for Violin and Piano is dedicated to the rarely performed music of this repressed Soviet composer.

The Stuart - Ivanov Duo event flyer

Past Events - 2022


Virtual Event: Sergei Guriev on his Book "Spin Dictators: The Changing Face of Tyranny in the 21st Century"

A virtual conversation with one of the lading intellectuals of contemporary Russia, Provost and Professor of Economics at Sciences Po in Paris, Sergei Guriev, focused on his book Spin Dictators: The Changing Face of Tyranny in the 21st Century.



Distinguished Speaker Series: Eliot Borenstein

Sovpunk (Science Fiction about a Future Soviet Union)

About the Speaker: A world-renowned scholar of Russian and Eastern Europe and cultural critic, Eliot Borenstein is Professor of Russian & Slavic Studies and Senior Academic Convenor for the Global Network at New York University. He has three books forthcoming: Marvel Comics in the 1970s: The World Inside Your Head (Cornell, 2022), Meanwhile, in Russia…: Russian Internet Memes and Viral Video (Bloomsbury, 2022), Soviet-Self-Hatred: The Secret Identities of Postsocialism (Cornell, 2023). He is currently writing HBO’s The Leftovers: Mourning and Melancholy on Premium Cable and Unstuck in Time: On the Post-Soviet Uncanny.

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Distinguished Speaker Series: David Marples

Belarus from the 2020 Elections to the War in Ukraine: Identity, Sovereignty, and the Future

About the Speaker: Dr. David R. Marples is Distinguished University Professor in the Department of History, Classics, and Religion at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada as well as a Research Fellow of the Contemporary Ukraine Program of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies of the same university. His most recent edited book is The War in Ukraine’s Donbas: Origins, Context, and the Future (Central European University Press, 2022) and his most recent monograph is Understanding Ukraine and Belarus: A Memoir (2020).

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In-Person Event: Music, Musicians, and the War in Ukraine

An award-winning conductor and composer with a strong connection to the risch Russian musical tradition, Daniel Black, discussed the ways that Russia's invasion on Ukraine has impacted music and musicians from the two countries. 

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Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era

BUT THE SUN CAME UP AND WE WERE HERE (A DANCE BY CHOREOGRAPHER COLLEEN THOMAS) in partnership with Barnard College Department of Dance, Reid Hall, and the USF School of Theatre and Dance

In 2019, a dance by choreographer Colleen Thomas delved into the embodied experience of self, perception and connection in a climate of heightened political and social unrest. With its international cast – including dancers from Poland, Ukraine, Belarus and the U.S. –"But the sun came up and we were here" asked if the expression of our individual essence, intuition and power could be the antidote to division in a fractured world.


Careers in National Security

A panel discussion with talented individuals from MacDill Air Force Base who work in a variety of national security fields. 

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APRIL 2022

Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era

A Q&A featuring UKRAINIAN ARTISTS who are generating extraordinary work during this difficult time of war.  


Insight into Russia's Affairs - A Virtual Conversation with Dr. Paul Robinson

Dr. Paul Robinson holds a D. Phil. in Modern History from the University of Oxford. Prior to his graduate studies, he served as a regular officer in the British Army Intelligence Corps from 1989 to 1994, and as a reserve officer in the Canadian Forces from 1994 to 1996. He also worked as a media research executive in Moscow in 1995. Having written or edited 14 books, in recent years, he has worked on Russian and Soviet history, military history, intellectual history, defense policy, and military ethics. 

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Putin's Crackdown and Russian Public Opinion - A Virtual Conversation with Dr. Samuel Greene

Dr. Samuel Greene, Professor of Russian Politics and Director of the Russia Institute at King’s College London.

Valery Nechay, Former First Deputy Editor-in-Chief at the St. Petersburg office of radio stationEkho Moskvy. 

Global Threats and Challenges

The USF Institute on Russia and the USF Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion present a conversation between USF students and US Marine Corps Major General Dimitry Henry, Director of military intelligence, US Central Command (CENTCOM).

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MARCH 2022

Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era

Ukrainian Writer Who Escaped the Bombs: Kateryna Babkina Tells Her Story
Kateryna Babkina is a Ukrainian writer and previous Havighurst guest through our Creative Horizons collaborative, told her story of fleeing from Kyiv to the Polish border with her mother and 1-year old daughter as Russia began to bomb Ukraine.


USF-USSOCOM Forum on Russian, European and US Security (REUSS)

SESSION 2: "Russia's Strategic Landscape"


Creative Horizons: An Evening with Ilya Kaminsky and Katie Farris

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USF-USSOCOM Forum on Russian, European and US Security (REUSS)

SESSION 1: "Russia and NATO"


Belarus and European Security: A Conversation with Belarusian Opposition Leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya is the leader of Belarusian democratic forces who beat the autocratic president Aliaksandr Lukashenka in a presidential election on August 9th, 2020, according to independent observers.

She stepped into the race after her husband was arrested for his presidential aspirations. Lukashenka publicly dismissed her as a "housewife," claiming that a woman can't become a president.  

Past events - 2021


USF-USSOCOM Forum on Russian, European and US Security (REUSS)

SESSION 2: "Russia and the Weaponization of Energy"


USF-USSOCOM Forum on Russian, European and US Security (REUSS)

SESSION 1: "The Kremlin's Toolkit: From Military Excercises to Influence Operations"


Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era


Kateryna Babkina is a Ukrainian poet, prose writer, columnist, screenwriter, and playwright. She's the author of four poetry collections ( Lights of Saint Elm, 2002, The Mustard , 2011, Painkillers and Sleeping pills , 2014, Charmed for Love , 2017), a novel ( Sonia , 2013), a novel in short stories ( My Grandfather Used To Dance Better Than Anyone Else, 2019) and two collections of stories ( Lilu After You , 2008 and Happy Naked People , 2016). She has also written 3 books for kids ( The Pumpkin Year , The Hat and The Whale , and Girls Power (co-authored with Mark Livin), which are extremely popular in Ukraine. Visit her at


Historical Memory & Criminal Law: How Authoritarian Regimes Weaponize the Past

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Frontier Forum Lecture Series: Democracy and Disinformation

FEATURED GUEST: Pulitzer-prize winning historian ANNE APPLEBAUM

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Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era


Ermina Takenova is an animator, director and illustrator who hails from Almaty, Kazakhstan. She received her MA in animation from the Royal College of Art in London in 2016. She works as a motion designer at Miri Growth, a marketing and advertising firm.


Russia's Parliamentary "Elections": Neither Free Nor Fair


Russia, Latin America and International Organizations


A Virtual Lunch & Learn: Future Threats to Global Security With Dr. Isaiah "Ike" Wilson III

Dr. Isaiah (Ike) Wilson III (Colonel, U.S. Army, retired) is President of Joint Special Operations University (JSOU), where he has earned a reputation as a versatile and innovative soldier-scholar. A decorated combat veteran with multiple combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan and extensive operational experience across the greater Middle East, Dr. Wilson is a nationally and internationally recognized advocate for change in how America understands and deals with matters of security affairs and the use of force.

Event Recording

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A Discussion on Careers Involving Russia

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Q & A with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

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MARCH 2021

Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era


Szabolcs KissPál is a Hungarian artist based in Budapest. His work engages with the social and political circumstances in which he lives and the role of the artist in society, particularly in the post-communist world. KissPál's recent works question not only the legacy of Communism but also the legacy of the recent failures of capitalism. Like many artists in former eastern Europe his work displays some ambivalence about the current situation as well as hope for a more structured and controlled continuing emancipation. KissPál works with photography, moving image and sculpture.


USF-USSOCOM Forum on Russian, European and US Security (REUSS)

SESSION 1: "The History and Challenge of Russian Disinformation"

SESSION 2: "Social Media and the Russian Disinformation Ecosystem"

SESSION 3: "Strategies for Combatting Disinformation"

SESSION 4: "Comparing Russian and Chinese Influence Campaigns"


Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era


Vladimir Tsesler is one of the most famous Belarusian artists. He is a designer and creator of art objects with about 40 international awards in the field of poster, book and advertising. His works have gained worldwide fame and are stored in the collections of many museums including The Musée de la Publicité, a museum of advertising history located in the Louvre's Rohan and Marsan wings. Mr. Tsesler uses ridicule, humor and even sarcasm in his art work.

Past events - 2020


Shostakovich and the Leningrad Symphony

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Belarus: Putin's Nightmare

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Creative Horizons: Art in the Post-Soviet Era


Victoria Lomasko is a a muralist and graphic reporter, whose 2017 book, Other Russias, attracted widespread reviews and attention, including coverage in The New Yorker, the LA Review of Books, and The Calvert Journal. Other Russias also won the 2018 Pushkin House Prize for the best book in translation. In 2019, Vika visited the Melikian Center and the Havighurst Center, where she created the mural Atlases for the King library. In September 2020, Victoria Lomasko spent time in Minsk, Belarus, covering the extended civic activism protesting the rigged August election results.


Protest Against Authoritarianism: Comparing Poland (1980) and Belarus (2020)

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State Department Career Opportunities With U.S. Department Of State Diplomat In Residence

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Golden Gates Authentic Glimpse Into he Russian Folklore Through Music, Song, and Dance

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FEBRUARY 18-21, 2020

Professor Ronald Suny at the Saint Petersburg Conference on World Affairs

The USF Institute on Russia sponsored the participation of Ronald Suny at the Saint Petersburg Conference on World Affairs. A professor at both the University of Chicago and the University of Michigan, Dr. Suny’s research has centered on the non-Russian nationalities of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, particularly Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia. An expert on nationalities policy as well as the Armenian genocide, Dr. Suny has received many awards, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship. 

February 18-21, 2020 - USFSP Student Center. Dr. Suny served on two panels at conference, one on Wednesday 2/19 and one on Thursday 2/20. For a complete conference schedule, see the Saint Petersburg Conference on World Affairs.


“Courting Gender Justice: Russia, Turkey, and the European Court of Human Rights”

Political scientists and professors Valerie Sperling and Lisa Sundstrom discussed their new book. Based on interviews with human rights activists and lawyers in Russia and Turkey, the book explores the obstacles that confront Russian and Turkish citizens, activists, and lawyers who try to bring gender discrimination cases to court. To shed light on the factors that make rare victories possible, the book draws comparisons among forms of discrimination faced by women and LGBT people in Russia and Turkey.

The talk took place on Thursday, January 30, at 12:30-1:45pm, in the Marshall Student Center, Room 3707, with a reception. This event was co-sponsored with the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies.

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William Burke-White on “The Five Most Powerful People in the World”

William Burke-White is the Richard Perry Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. An international lawyer and political scientist, he has significant regional expertise on Russia and Eastern Europe. From 2009-11, Burke-White served in the Obama administration on the Secretary of State’s Policy Planning Staff. While at the State Department, he was also responsible for issues related to U.S. engagement with the G-20, the G-8, and the United Nations, as well as U.S. policy toward the Russian Federation.

The talk will took place on Tuesday, January 21, at 12:30-1:45pm, in the Marshall Student Center, Room 3707, followed by a reception.

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past events - 2019


Award-winning film, “Women of the Gulag” and discussion with the Director, Marianna Yarovskaya

Russian director Marianna Yarovskaya's film was shortlisted for an Academy Award for best documentary short. The film premiered in Moscow and London and is scheduled to appear on network TV in Russia and Korea. Ms. Yarovskaya was present for a film screening and discussion, Monday, November 4th, 12:30-1:45   /   Marshall Student Center, room 3707

This event was co-sponsored with Russian Heritage.

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Daniel Black, Associate Conductor, The Florida Orchestra

Daniel Black spoke on "The Role of Classical Music in Russian Society," Monday, October 28th, 2:00-3:15pm, in the Marshall Student Center, 3rd Floor, Room 3705. 



Cyber Russia: Global Politics and the Police State

Russian investigative journalists and authors, Andrei Soldatov and Irina Borogan, are experts on the Russian security services and the founders of the website They spoke about contemporary Russian politics, drawing upon their recent books, Red Web: The Struggle Between Russia's Digital Dictators and the New Online Revolutionaries and The Compatriots: The Brutal and Chaotic History of Russia's Exiles, Emigres, and Agents Abroad. This event took place on Wednesday, October 23rd, 12:30-1:45pm, in TECO Hall in the USF College of Education Building.  

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Meeting with Vladimir Kara-Murza, Vice Chairman of the Open Russia Movement and Chairman of the Boris Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom

Vladimir Kara-Murza is vice chairman of the Open Russia movement and chairman of the Boris Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom. He was a longtime colleague of Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov. Kara-Murza is a former deputy leader of the People's Freedom Party and was a candidate for the Russian State Duma. He holds a master's degree in history from Cambridge University and has published several works. He also directed two documentary films, including Nemtsov (see film screening below).

Mr. Kara-Murza has testified before parliaments in Europe and North America, and played a key role in the passage of Magnitsky Laws that imposed targeted sanctions on Russian human rights violators in the U.S., Canada, the United Kingdom, and other Western countries. Twice, in 2015 and 2017, he was poisoned with an unknown substance and left in a coma; the attempts on his life were widely viewed as politically motivated. A contributing writer for the Washington Post, he has previously worked as a journalist for Russian broadcast and print media.

A friend of John McCain, Vladimir Kara-Murza was asked by the late Arizona senator to be a pallbearer at his funeral. Mr. Kara-Murza is a recipient of the Magnitsky Human Rights Award, the Sakharov Prize for Journalism as an Act of Conscience, and the Geneva Summit Courage Award.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019, 7:00PM-9:00PM
Film Screening of the documentary, Nemtsov, followed by Q&A with the Director 
Tampa Theatre, 711 N. Franklin Street, Tampa

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past events - 2018


Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Centennial

In commemoration of the 100th year anniversary of the birth of the great Russian writer Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, this event explores his magisterial multi-volume work, The Gulag Archipelago. USF professor Golfo Alexopoulos will discuss the importance of Solzhenitsyn's analysis of Stalin's Gulag as well as the writer's comparison between the Nazi and Soviet camps. Dr. Alexopoulos will be joined by USF professor Dr. Victor Peppard and USF instructor Evguenia Davenport for a reflection on Solzhenitsyn's novels and legacy in Russia.

Tuesday, December 4th, 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM, Reception begins at 5:30 PM
Harbor Hall Community Room, 1000 3rd St. S.
USF-St. Petersburg

This event is co-sponsored with the Florida Holocaust Museum

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How to Make a Revolutionary Object: The Drawings of Gustavs Klucis by Dr. Maria Gough

Dr. Gough is the Joseph Pulitzer Jr. Professor of Modern Art at Harvard University. Her primary area of research and teaching is early twentieth-century modern European art, with a particular emphasis on the Russian and Soviet avant-gardes.

From 2015-17, Dr. Gough was a scholarly consultant in the preparation of the Art Institute of Chicago's centenary exhibition, "Revoliutsiia! Demonstratsiia! Soviet Art Put to the Test," which opened in October 2017, and also contributed two essays to its accompanying catalog edited by Matthew Witkovsky and Devin Fore. In 2017-18, she was the Mellon Visitor to the University of Chicago and the Art Institute of Chicago, leading workshops for their Chicago Object Study Initiative (COSI). Before joining the Harvard faculty in 2009, Dr. Gough was Associate Professor of Art History at Stanford University (2003-2009). A Guggenheim fellow in 2015-2016 and prolific author, Maria Gough is on the Editorial Board of the journal Modernism/modernity and the International Advisory Board of the journal Art History.

Her talk is titled, "How to Make a Revolutionary Object: The Drawings of Gustavs Klucis." It focuses on a corpus of presentation drawings for new media-driven structures for the revolutionary street: radio-orators, projection screens, advertising stands, slogan signs, and newspaper kiosks. Executed in the early 1920s by Gustavs Klucis (Gustav Klutsis), a Latvian immigrant to Moscow who would later enjoy renown as the leading Soviet photomonteur of the interwar period, these striking drawings have long captivated artists, architects, and designers due to their optical dynamism and graphic presence.

Thursday, November 8th at 7:00 PM
College of the Arts
Fine Arts Building (FAH), Lecture Hall, Room 101
Reception to follow                                                                                                                            USF-Tampa

This event is co-sponsored with the School of Art and Art History and ResearchOne

Maria Gough event flyer


Lectures by Robert W. Courtney, a Globally Successful Entrepreneur, Business Leader, and Senior Strategic and Legal Advisor

Robert Courtney is a globally successful entrepreneur, business leader, and senior strategic and legal advisor, with more than 25 years of experience in international business, including Russia and Eastern Europe. He will give a talk on "Doing Business in Russia."

Mr. Courtney established the first Western medical and dental centers in Russia and Azerbaijan, the first international real estate brokerage network in Russia, and the several new-to-Russia retail brands, including Le Pain Quotidien. He served on the Board and Executive Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce in Russia, which advances the US-Russia commercial relationship through advocacy and business-friendly regulatory improvements.

Robert holds an International MBA from Thunderbird School of Global Management, a JD from Stetson University Law School, and a BA from Vanderbilt University. He is a member of the Bar associations of California and Florida and serves as a lecturer on international business and law in both the US and Russia, including Vanderbilt University, Georgetown University, and the Pericles Law Center in Moscow.

Mr. Courtney will speak to two classes as indicated below, but all USF students are welcome.

Wednesday, October 3rd at 2:00 PM
Science and Technology Building (STG) Room 113
USF-St. Petersburg

Thursday, October 4th at 11:00 AM
Physical Education Building (PED) Room 109

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Russia, Iran and the United States One-day Conference

Meeting with Ambassador John Beyrle

Ambassador John Beyrle served as an American diplomat for more than three decades in foreign postings and domestic assignments focused on Central and Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union, and Russia. He was twice appointed ambassador: to Bulgaria (2005-08) and to Russia (2008-12). Ambassador Beyrle's diplomatic service included two earlier tours at the U.S. embassy in Moscow, including as deputy chief of mission. He also served as a counselor for political and economic affairs at the U.S. embassy in the Czech Republic, and a member of the U.S. delegation to the CFE arms control negotiations in Vienna.

His Washington assignments included a special adviser to the secretary of state for the New Independent States, and director for Russian, Ukrainian and Eurasian affairs on the staff of the National Security Council. He traveled extensively with Secretaries of State George Shultz and James Baker as a staff officer in the 1980s and served as a Pearson Fellow and adviser to Senator Paul Simon, a senior member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Ambassador Beyrle received the Presidential Meritorious Service Award during the Administration of George W. Bush, and the Presidential Distinguished Service Award from President Obama. Secretary of State Clinton presented him with the Distinguished Service Award, the State Department's highest honor. He retired from the Foreign Service in 2012. Ambassador Beyrle serves on the board of directors of the U.S. Russia Foundation for Economic Advancement and the Rule of Law and provides consulting services to non-profit and corporate clients.

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MONDAY, MARCH 26, 2018

Meeting with Ambassadors Greta Holtz and Henry Ensher

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Lecture and Dinner by Legendary Journalist and Author Marvin Kalb

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Reporting Russian Truths in the Era of Fake News with David Fillipov, Moscow Bureau Chief, The Washington Post

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past events - 2017


The Centennial of the 1917 Russian Revolution with Dr. Frederick Corney

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The Launch of the USF Institute on Russia, Featured Keynote Speaker: Russian Political Analyst Lilia Shevtsova

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