The war against democracy and civil society: voices from Ukraine, Russia and Poland

Dr hab Galia Chimiak, prof. IFiS PAN, zaprasza na webinarium “The war against democracy and civil society: voices from Ukraine, Russia and Poland” zorganizowanego z ramienia Civil Society Study Group, Development Studies Association Ireland. 28 kwietnia w godz. 14.00-15.30.

Where: Online. Registration required.
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The on-going Russian invasion of Ukraine shattered the lives of the people of Ukraine and laid bare the assumptions of peaceful co-habitation with authoritarian dictators dreaming of restoring the bipolar world order. The humanitarian crisis that ensued triggered unprecedented upsurge of grassroots organising to greet and accommodate four million refugees (as of the end of March 2022) in countries neighbouring with Ukraine’s western and southern borders, and beyond. The democratization of Ukraine and the development of its civil society proved as unacceptable to the Russian government as its own political opponents and international NGOs aka “foreign agents”. Authoritarian rulers thus disprove any doubts that an authentic civil society is a prerequisite for democracy. To discuss the development of civil society in Ukraine, this webinar features prominent speakers who have played seminal role in the external support for Ukrainian civil society, studied grassroots organising in Ukraine and conducted research among Russian political migrants.

Agenda (Shown as Irish Time)

2pm: Welcome from the Convenor of DSA I CSSG: dr hab. Galia Chimiak (IFiS PAN)

2-2:15pm: HE Jan Piekło (former Polish Ambassador to Ukraine (2016-2019) and director of the Polish-Ukrainian Cooperation Foundation (2005-2016): Ukraine: how to help in times of war – challenges and responsibilities.

2:15-2:30pm: Dr Iryna Pawlowska (Centre of Eastern Europe, Marie Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin): Russian aggression against Ukraine in the perception of Ukrainian and Russian society

2:30-2:45pm: Dr Joanna Fomina (Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences): Russian political migrants’ responses to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine: engagement into anti-war and humanitarian aid activities

2:45-3pm: Discussant: Prof. Donnacha Ó Beacháin (School of Law and Government, Dublin City University)

3-3:30pm: Q&AContributors

Jan Pieklo
Jan Piekło is a former Polish Ambassador to Ukraine (2016-2019). Prior to that he was a director of the Polish-Ukrainian Cooperation Foundation PAUCI in Kyiv and Warsaw (2005–2016). PAUCI was established in 2005 as a legacy organization to the Poland-America-Ukraine Cooperation Initiative, which served as a unique tri-lateral program aimed at sharing the best practices of Poland´s successful transition with Ukraine. In 1992 Jan Piekło took part in the first Polish humanitarian convoy organized by Janina Ochojska to besieged Sarajevo. As a conflict resolution journalism trainer and media consultant Jan Piekło co-operated with Rutgers University of New Jersey, MU Columbia School of Journalism, Jagiellonian University of Krakow, the University of Groningen and other institutions. He was likewise involved in journalism trainings in Bosnia, Slovakia, Ukraine, Romania and Poland.

Iryna Pawlowska
Iryna Pawlowska received her PhD degree in Political Sciences at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin, Poland in 2005. Dr Pawlowska was affiliated with the Faculty of Law and Social Science at the Open International University of Human Development «Ukraine» in Kyiv from 2006 to 2019. Since 2014 she has been an expert at the Centre of Eastern Europe at Maria Curie-Skłodowska University in Lublin. Her sphere of academic interests lays in the political culture of Ukraine, civic education, political behaviour, political processes, and the policy of states from the former Soviet union camp. Her most recent publications are on internally displaced persons in Ukraine, participatory democracy, and the concepts of civil society and civil disobedience.

Joanna Fomina
Joanna Fomina is Assistant Professor at the Institute of Philosophy and Sociology of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw. She earned a Master’s degree from Jagiellonian University, Krakow; a Master’s from Humboldt University, Berlin; and Ph.D. in social sciences from the Polish Academy of Sciences. Her academic interests include EU integration, migration and migrant integration policies, including migrants’ civic and political participation, Euroscepticism and populism, and democratization in Central and Eastern Europe. She also has extensive experience of work with intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, including the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, the Batory Foundation, the Institute of Public Affairs and Amnesty International. Her most recent book “Political Dissent and Democratic Remittances. The Activities of Russian Migrants in Europe” was published by Routledge in 2021.

Donnacha Ó Beacháin
Donnacha Ó Beacháin is Professor of Politics at the School of Law and Government, DCU, where he lectures on post-Soviet politics, unrecognised states, and foreign policy. Professor Ó Beacháin has conducted research in all fifteen former Soviet Socialist Republics and lectured as a visiting professor in several countries in the region, including Georgia, Russia, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan. He has been Principal Investigator of two major EU-funded projects focusing on the post-Soviet space, collectively valued at €7.5 million. Professor Ó Beacháin has twice been awarded the accolade “Champion of European Research” by Ireland’s National Research Support Network. His co-edited volumes include The Colour Revolutions in the Former Soviet Republics: Successes and Failures and Life in Post-Communist Eastern Europe after EU Membership: Happy Ever After? His most recent monograph From Partition to Brexit: The Irish Government and Northern Ireland, is the 2019 recipient of the book of the year award from the Political Studies Association of Ireland.

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