What Unites Ukrainians? 14 October 2020, 6.30pm BST

DATE & TIME: Wednesday 14 October, 6.30pm BST
£5 / £3 students. Book via eventbrite.

Ukraine has long been portrayed as a divided country, split along linguistic, ethnic and historical lines. However, following the Euromaidan revolution, several studies have shown the strength of civic identity in Ukraine, and that the regional variability of social attitudes is far more nuanced than the supposed east-west dichotomy. 

A groundbreaking new study by the Arena Initiative based at the LSE Institute of Global Affairs and Johns Hopkins University has investigated what lies beneath propaganda-driven divides in Ukraine. It found that a strong stance against corruption, a shared experience of historical traumas, and a passion for freedom bring Ukrainians together, regardless of where they come from or what language they speak.  

This webinar will feature a discussion with leading experts in sociology and media production, debunking the myth of divided Ukraine and exploring the latest social research on what unites and motivates Ukrainians.

This event is held in partnership with the LSE Institute of Global Affairs and the Center for Governance and Culture in Europe of the University of St. Gallen. The event will be held in English.


Peter Pomerantsev

Peter Pomerantsev is an author, journalist and director of the Arena Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins University, which recently published the report ‘From Memory Wars to a Common Future: Overcoming Polarisation in Ukraine’. The Arena Iniative is dedicated to overcoming the challenges of polarisation and disinformation through sociological and media research projects involving journalists, academics and data scientists. Peter is the author of the award-winning book on Russian propaganda Nothing is True and Everything is Possible (2015, Faber & Faber) and This is Not Propaganda : Adventures in the War Against Reality (2019, Faber & Faber).



Anna Chebotarova

Anna Chebotarova is a research fellow at the School for Humanities and Social Sciences, St. Gallen University (Switzerland) and the Center for Urban History in East-Central Europe (Lviv, Ukraine). Anna is the coordinator of the initiative 'Ukrainian Regionalism: a Research Platform'. She is a PhD candidate at the Graduate School for Social Research (Warsaw, Poland).





Vira Kostenko-Kuznetsova

Vira Kostenko-Kuznetsova is a Ukrainian media expert with more than 15 years of experience. Vira started her career as a communications expert at a Ukrainian Media NGO. After 4 years she moved to a production house and then became the brand manager of one of the top 3 national TV channels. After the Revolution of Dignity in Ukraine, Vira moved into the international development field supporting the regions affected by the conflict. Since 2017 Vira has been a team member of Ukraine Confidence Building Initiative supported by USAID/OTI and works on the portfolio of media activities for the project. By now more than 50 media activities have been developed including TV drama series, reality shows, news, online media activities, and national communication campaigns.



Ursula Woolley

Ursula Woolley is a Trustee of the Ukrainian Institute London. Ursula was Project Manager (Kyiv) and then Assistant Director of the British Council in Ukraine (1991-95), where she organised the opening of the first British Council offices in Kyiv, Lviv and Odesa. She was First Secretary (British Council) at the British Embassy in Moscow (1996-2000); Deputy Policy Director for East and South-East Europe at the British Council (2004-2006); Deputy Leader of Islington Council (Liberal Democrat) (2008-2010); and Director of Pushkin House (2012-2016). She is currently conducting PhD research supervised by Andrew Wilson at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies at UCL, where she is also a member of the Advisory Board.