Summer School “Belarus and Its Neighbours: Regime Survival in the Times of War” has concluded

An intense study week in Narva, which brought together 20 PhD, MA and advanced BA students and lecturers from all over the globe, came to an end on 8 July 2022. The 2022 Summer School offered lectures and has sparked profound discussions on the political dynamics of the post-protest Belarus, as well as the broader region of Eastern Europe in light of Russia’s military offensive against Ukraine.

“The political developments in Eastern Europe for the past couple of years – mass protests in Belarus after the 2020 presidential election, migrant crisis on the Belarusian border, and now Russia’s renewed aggression in Ukraine – have had a significant effect on the region and will be studied and discussed for years. I am very glad that students made the most of this school by taking part so actively,” said Maili Vilson, Deputy Head for Academic Affairs, Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies, University of Tartu.

The lectures and interactive classes included both theoretical and practical knowledge, touching upon a wide range of topics from repressions and strategies of resistance in Belarus to an exercise in scenario planning on alternative futures of Eastern Europe. “The school has built up an enthusiastic team of people willing to share their perspectives and find answers on most important questions – what will be the future of Belarus and what will be the impact of the war in Ukraine on the region,” Stanislaw Aprilashvili, a student from Poland said.

The cultural component of the school provided “an insider’s perspective” on the current political developments in Ukraine by Denis Girenko, urban artist from Narva, visual elements of mobilization politics by UT professor Andrey Makarychev and UT junior researcher Michael Cole, as well as a guided tour to Kreenholm Area and Narva’s famous Kreenholm Textile Factory.

At the end of the school, all students successfully presented their group works and were granted 4 ECTS certificates from the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies, University of Tartu.

The school is part of a project “Raising awareness on civil society of Belarus through learning and research activities” supported by the 2020 – 2023 Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid programme of the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Further information: Fidan Vali, Communications Specialist, fidan.vali@ut.ee