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Mykola Riabchuk

Senior Research Fellow
Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Institute of Political and Nationalities’ Studies - (FIAS Program)
The ‘Ukraine Crisis’ Revisited: Values, Interests, and a Rebirth of the ‘Geopolitics’
01 September 2021 -
30 June 2022
Political science

Mykola Riabchuk is a Senior Research Fellow in the Institute of Political and Nationalities’ Studies of the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine and a lecturer at the University of Warsaw. He is also the honorary president of the Ukrainian PEN Center and the head of the jury of the “Angelus” international award. He wrote extensively on civil society, state-nation building, nationalism, national identity, East European politics and postcommunist transition. Five of his books were translated into Polish, and one into French, German, Serbian, and Hungarian. His work was distinguished with a number of national and international awards and fellowships, including Fulbright (1994, 2016), Reagan-Fascell (2011), and EURIAS (2013).

In September 2021, he joined the Paris IAS as part of the French Institutes for Advanced Study fellowship program - FIAS - co-funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No 945408. His fellowship also benefits from the support of the RFIEA+ LABEX, with a national funding (Grant ANR-11-LABX-0027-01).

Research interests

Postcommunism, East European politics, International relations (Ukraine/Russia, Ukraine/EU), Nationalism, National identity, and Nation-building

The ‘Ukraine Crisis’ Revisited: Values, Interests, and a Rebirth of the ‘Geopolitics’

The ‘Ukraine crisis’ that lasts since 2014 and affects the entire European politics, is examined as a complex interaction and, in some cases, mutual reinforcement of four different crises: the crisis of Ukrainian identity and of state-nation building; the crisis of Russian identity and of building a modern nation out of the redundant empire; the crisis of traditional Western Orientalizing views of Eastern Europe, often accompanied by a residual Russo-centrism; and the crisis of international, primarily the EU institutions, unable to produce a common foreign policy and respond adequately to external challenges.

As the project is in advance and its first two parts are largely completed, the study is focused now on the international (mis)representations of the ‘crisis’: how it is named and framed in the media, official statements, scholarly and think-tank publications. What these discursive representations imply for the Western policies? The particular challenge is a study of the institutional ‘black-box’ where specific policies and decisions result from complex interactions of various agents who promote their own values, interests, and, as a rule, insufficient knowledge. At this stage, the research requires personal communication and semi-structured interviews with experts, former and actual politicians, and diplomats.

The main outcome of the study should be a book, produced in two language versions – for both a Ukrainian and an international publisher.

Key publications

Riabchuk Mykola, Eastern Europe since 1989: Between the Loosened Authoritarianism and Unconsolidated Democracy, Studium Europy Wschodniej, 2020, 208 p.

Riabchuk Mykola, At the Fence of Metternich’s Garden. Essays on Europe, Ukraine, and Europeanization, ibidem Verlag, 2021, 256 p.

Latest publication

Riabchuk Mykola, "Shifting the Wall Further East. Kundera’s ‘Tragedy of Central Europe’ Three Decades Later", in Aspen Review, n°1, 2021.

Weekly internal seminar
07 Jun 2022 10:00 -
07 Jun 2022 13:00,
War in Ukraine
02 Mar 2022 18:00 -
02 Mar 2022 20:00,
Paris :
Neither the "Crisis" nor "Ukrainian" : What's Next ?
15 Feb 2022 10:00 -
15 Feb 2022 13:00,
The "Ukraine Crisis" Revisited: Values, Interests, and a Rebirth of the "Geopolitics"
Lecture by Mykola Riabchuk, 2021-2022 Paris IAS Fellow, organized by the Centre de Recherches Europes-Eurasie-CREE, Inalco
01 Dec 2021 18:00 -
01 Dec 2021 20:00,
Paris :
How Ukraine destroyed the USSR and why the USSR is still alive
Talk by Mykola Riabchuk, 2021-2022 Paris IAS Fellow, as part of the symposium "Ukraine in the Context of Thirty Years of Identity-Building in Post-Communist Europe"
29 Nov 2021 20:15 -
29 Nov 2021 21:45,
Alberta, CA :
Shifting the wall further east: What remains of ‘Eastern Europe’ thirty years later?
Contemporary period (1789-…)
Eastern Europe