The Case for Europe: An Interview with Donald Tusk

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Michał Matlak interviews President of the European Council Donald Tusk at his office in Brussels. Photo: Bea Uhart

As president of the European Council, Polish politician Donald Tusk has been at the center of one of the most challenging years in the history of the European Union. Since taking office in December 2014, he has faced an economic crisis in Greece, the conflict in Ukraine and growing Russian aggression in the east, and, since last summer, the largest influx of migrants and refugees Europe has faced since World War II. Now he is struggling to reach a compromise with the British government to avert a possible withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the EU.

Born in Gdansk, the heart of the Solidarity movement, and a founder of Poland’s liberal Civic Platform party, Tusk was prime minister of Poland from 2007 to 2014. As president of the European Council, one of his main tasks is to reconcile the competing views of the various EU member states whose leaders—as members of the council—are responsible for the union’s most important decisions. I spoke to him at his office in Brussels.

Michał Matlak: In the year that you have led the European Council, you’ve witnessed several of the worst crises Europe has ever faced. Was this more than you bargained for?

Donald Tusk: I have absolutely no cause for complaint, because there’s nothing worse in politics than boredom. What’s exciting in politics is power, of course, and the real power is at the level of national governments. But politics is also fascinating when it makes it possible to resolve critical situations, to negotiate, to bring others round to your way of thinking—I have more than enough of that in Brussels.

 You’ve faced a particularly difficult challenge getting European leaders to agree on a common approach to the refugee crisis. Is the growing backlash against migrants a betrayal of core European values?

 One fundamental point must be very unambiguously expressed here. I see a vast amount of hypocrisy among those who say that Europe is closed to migrants, that it isn’t sufficiently tolerant. Last year we received nearly a million and a half asylum seekers, far more than any other Western democracy. Close to Europe we have countries that are very rich and safe, that won’t admit migrants under any circumstances. Accusing Europe of turning its back on migrants is a gross injustice, because it is Europe that is the most open continent, and the standards of behavior toward refugees are very high.

Nevertheless, Central and Eastern European leaders have been deeply skeptical of the EU approach. Is a common immigration policy possible?

From the start of the immigration crisis I have been trying to encourage European leaders and institutions to focus on the practical task of regaining efficient control of the European Union’s outer borders. This is true regardless of what paradigm is in force on migration—whether we want to conduct a more open policy in the German style, or a more closed one. Either way, we must have the tools we need to control the influx of people, screen for security reasons, and so on.

But I also think these differences are not that great. Common sense compels most Europeans to be concerned about border security. And the need to secure the outer EU borders has been universally accepted among European governments. So we can say that today, differences over the basic question of migration are not as great as they seem. Though of course there are various perspectives involved: some countries are simply transit areas for the immigrants, so they place less focus on protecting their borders, while others are in the fairly dramatic situation of receiving large numbers of asylum seekers. This mainly concerns Germany and Sweden. But I think we have succeeded in building a consensus that protecting our external borders is a preliminary condition for conducting any kind of European migration policy.

Realistically, how quickly can a new external border policy be achieved?

Of course it’s not an easy task, especially at sea, starting from the legal questions—we have the Geneva Convention, which, when we’re talking about millions of migrants and refugees, starts to get very hard to uphold. Or for that matter the Dublin regulations and the rules of the Schengen Treaty. But I see no reason to be embarrassed that Europe is not prepared for such a historically unparalleled influx. It’s not surprising that we still need a lot of time to reorganize our external borders. Here we’re dealing with migration on an unprecedented global scale, abetted by the spread of social media and the immense smuggling business. This is why NATO recently got involved in policing traffickers in the Mediterranean. Though of course at the root of all this are the wars surrounding Europe.

Many people think the European Union has been ineffective in trying to end these conflicts. That the Union’s foreign policy doesn’t seem to be working.

That’s obviously not true. In the first place, we are responsible for ourselves, and the European Union is a project for peace. This is the primary reason why the Europeans agreed to sacrifice the sovereignty of their own national states to build the Union. And it works. In this area of direct European responsibility we have pretty lasting peace. Europe is not responsible for everything that is happening in Syria, in the Middle East, or in Afghanistan. Nowadays conflicts are occurring all over Asia, in much of Africa, and in parts of South and Central America. It’s clear that various models of foreign policy—intervention, classic diplomacy, or sanctions—can be ineffective. The situation in Libya is maybe the most clear illustration of this fact. But these are global problems, not exclusively European ones. That is why I appealed to the G20 leaders last year to recognize this as a global crisis. This year, I will take up this challenge at the G7 and G20 summits.

In Europe itself, though, the question of sovereignty is disputed. You’ve said there’s a “real risk” of the UK withdrawing from the EU—the so-called “Brexit”—if an agreement with European leaders on Britain’s special status can’t be reached.

It’s nothing new. From the very start it was clear that Britain’s status within the EU would be slightly different, and we would have to live with that. Now it’s the next act in this debate. The idea of a British referendum is not within the scope of my authority. I can only state that when the prospect of a referendum came up in Britain, everyone knew that we would have to find a way to avoid a negative outcome—a political decision by London to leave the European Union. Not just because the Union without Great Britain would be something else, something defective—including for geopolitical reasons. But also because it might offer an attractive example for anti-European political forces in other countries.

And so from the moment the possibility of a “Brexit” was suggested, I have been looking for a way to protect us from that outcome. And this means reaching an agreement with London that will enable Prime Minister David Cameron to conduct an effective campaign to stay in Europe before the referendum. For me the red line in these negotiations was fundamental European values, such as the free flow of people. And this has been guaranteed in my proposal.

Britain has insisted on being able to suspend social benefits for migrants. Doesn’t this contradict the fundamental values you mention?

That was the hardest dilemma to resolve. My condition was that there can be no question of making changes to the European treaties to allow discrimination, a lack of equality, or limits on the free flow of people. Whereas for the British the most important issue in the entire referendum debate is being able to say “no” to migrants taking advantage of the social system in ways they had not anticipated. So it was important for them to obtain a protective mechanism that would act as a safety brake and temporarily withhold benefits of that kind. For me it was crucial that these arrangements not be retroactive. But people who are only now deciding to immigrate should be aware that something like this could affect them. This is a compromise, of course. The feature of a good compromise in politics is that nobody is satisfied with it, but everyone is able to live with it.

In your recent letter to European leaders, you also acknowledged that the UK would not be required to take part in “ever closer Union.”

To be precise, in the treaties [underlying the European Union] it says that Europe should be closer to its citizens. It does not legally bind the European states to become ever more integrated. But since this phrase has become a symbol of European integration, I understand why it is crucial for Prime Minister Cameron to show that Great Britain will not participate in further political integration of the Union. I too would be very cautious about the most ambitious proposals for a kind of European federation. A year of working in Brussels has been invaluable in showing me that the European Union consists first of citizens, nations, and nation states, and only second of pan-European institutions. If we push too sharply for integration, the result could be the opposite.

You’ve been known to refer to John Gray’s definition of good politics—as the art of reacting to changing circumstances.

Certainly, the past year in Brussels has confirmed that a capacity to foresee the future is not in the realm of man; as the Polish say, “Man plans, and God laughs.” Very often politicians with great visions are actually trying hard to conceal their own incompetence at solving very specific problems. And very often attempting to apply ideologies, great visions, and intellectual ambitions to everyday politics leads to tragedy. All of history teaches us to expect misfortune rather than anything positive from this sort of politician. As far as the current European Union goes, I am entirely convinced we need leaders who are able to focus on solving specific problems, such as the immigration crisis. I think it shows most emphatically how much more valuable a common-sense approach is than an ideological assumption or a long-term vision. If there are politicians who claim to know the future, as a rule they are charlatans.

But Europe has a long tradition of leaders with big visions. Jacques Delors, for example, as head of the European Commission (1985-1995) used the vision of a strongly integrated union as an instrument for solving the continent’s problems.

Of course, a well-constructed opinion, a well-expressed thought and giving the impression that you’re a leader who knows what the future will be like can be a useful tool for mobilizing people and institutions around a specific goal. Certainly Delors and Helmut Kohl belong to the generation that insisted on a common Europe and achieved success. But I repeat: if we examine their specific predictions for the future, they didn’t always get it right, just like everybody else. But one thing is indisputable, they made Europe happen.

You’ve often identified yourself as a liberal, but in recent years this has been debated. Because you value the involvement of the state in the economy you have been described as a social democrat; but you’ve also referred to the concept of Christian democracy, and have said that you are married to conservatism.

I admit that I have a soft spot for Leszek Kołakowski’s text, “How to be a Conservative-Liberal-Socialist.” Even if we regard it as a clever, perverse joke, it also contains a truth about politics that suits me, and by which I have always been guided: there are various kinds of sensibility in which we can find not just ourselves, but also arguments and rationales for resolving specific matters. That’s why Kołakowski’s way of thinking about politics is closest to me: not to set certain political sensibilities against each other, although there is a tendency to do so, because it adds appeal to an argument. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with politicians seeking their own inspiration in many seemingly complicated traditions, because it also immunizes them against ideological blindness. I prefer politicians who think to politicians who believe.

I was born a liberal and I’m sure I’ll die as one, but in the fundamental, very basic meaning of the word. For me freedom will always be the absolute chief value, both in public life and politics, and in my personal life. So I won’t wince if somebody sticks that sort of label on me. But as I’m also a loyal student of the wisest political thinkers, such as Raymond Aron or Isaiah Berlin; it’s important to me to distinguish a predilection for certain values from the ideology that can be built around those values. In this sense I think of a liberal as someone who will take a mistrustful, wary attitude to ideology and precisely constructed systems of thought within politics. Yes, go ahead and call me a liberal, but on condition that it will be very specifically connected with an affirmation of freedom as the most important value in human life.

In recent years this value seems to be weakening in some parts of Europe. Not only Hungary but Poland, since the last election, has become a cause for concern. Do you have a sense of failure, when you’ve spent your entire political career trying to move Poland the other way?

This brings us to the main dilemma of European politics, namely the movement toward official pessimism about what Europe is today. I believe that this could be a dangerous phenomenon—pessimism as European ideology. It’s true that we do have very different, sometimes extreme political models – for instance, there’s Syriza in Greece, or Orbán in Hungary. It’s hard to imagine schools of political thought more distant from each other than those two. Yet if you look at the everyday political life of the Greeks and the Hungarians, it’s quite similar. That’s why the revisions that are appearing in European politics may prompt concern among the most orthodox liberal democrats. The fact is that around Europe, and within it too, there’s no lack of enemies of liberal democracy, and it certainly requires constant mobilization and readiness to defend it. But I am much calmer about it. If we take the area surrounding our continent into consideration, liberal democracy is still doing pretty well in Europe.

 So you wouldn’t call the situation in Poland a crisis of liberal democracy?

In Poland the situation is a little more complicated, because the camp that has come to power contains several strands, one of which is a fairly radical nationalism, very suspicious of liberal democracy and the entire political culture of the West. But is that the leading current? I’m not sure of that yet. As you can guess, I’m not a fan of what’s happening in Poland, but I’d be far from making hysterical judgments about the end of democracy. I’m confident that Polish democracy has a large enough number of defenses to protect itself against threats. The Polish case continues to confirm the European rule of a predilection for liberal democracy.

You spent much of last year trying to reach an agreement between Greece and its paymasters within the Euro. What still has to happen to avert a wider Eurozone crisis?

There is no doubt that apart from short-term rescue measures, such as packages for Greece, we need a serious conversation, and as a consequence of it, progress, where mechanisms such as a banking union are concerned. And so I hope that once the confusion over immigration issues passes, we will return to the realization of this plan and the ideas contained in the five presidents’ report on Eurozone reform, which I co-authored. In my view there is no alternative to this way of proceeding: we will continue to work together on financial, fiscal, and budgetary integration, in order to strengthen the common currency. There is no doubt about it.

The financier George Soros, along with economists such as Thomas Piketty and Joseph Stiglitz, has said that austerity policies are making it impossible for Greece to emerge from economic crisis.

That was at the heart of the debate during the Greek crisis. I don’t think it’s right to blame austerity, which is said to be the source of the misfortunes of several countries in the European Union. There can be no doubt that a major part of failures in countries across the whole world arose out of a lack of financial discipline, not an excess of it; and, to be frank, Greece is no exception. One might consider whether fiscal discipline is the best or the only means of proceeding today. But I’d like to say that Ireland, Portugal, and Spain show that traditional austerity and fiscal discipline bring results, although they are unpleasant. Take Spain, for example. Currently we are projecting that economic growth there will reach over 3 percent. Unemployment is still very high, but falling at a pronounced rate.

So in this respect I’m more of a traditionalist. I don’t think Europe should depart from this traditional liberal way of thinking about the economy. Which doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be flexible in seeking tools, and that’s why the debate on writing off debt is interesting. But not because we should be questioning the need for financial discipline. Maybe I’m old fashioned, but to me the simple idea that you shouldn’t spend more than you earn still applies.

Meanwhile, there is the conflict with Russia and Ukraine. Will Ukraine be able to defend its pro-European course, and what can the European Union do about it?

I feel responsible for taking action on this issue, but not necessarily for providing a forecast. To the question of whether Ukraine will survive this difficult period and will manage to defend its pro-European side, I don’t know the answer. There are too many variables, inside Ukraine as well. But I do know what our task is: we must do everything we can to help Ukraine to maintain its sovereignty and to build Western standards as much as possible. I believe that so far Europe is passing this test pretty well. Though many people in Ukraine expect stronger action.

More money for example.

More money, or stronger support for military confrontation with Russia.

And there isn’t any.

No, and Europe definitely isn’t going to choose direct confrontation with Russia. In my view the model involving consistent pressure on Russia works pretty well, such as applying sanctions and the full involvement of the European leaders in constant persuasion. I am pleased that Europe has defined what is possible as a joint response, and to many people’s surprise we are sticking with this action—the sanctions are the most visible example of it. They may not have a devastating effect on the Russian economy, but they’re a strong enough signal for Putin to have to take European policy into consideration.

The incomplete truce we have reached, and halting the Russians—because it was said that after annexing Crimea they would try to go further – I regard to a large extent as the result of sanctions, and of maintaining solidarity between Europe, the United States, and our other allies. The point is that this policy, even if not the most ambitious, should be common to all, and that nobody should break with it. In any case, this is a continuing task ahead—we shall soon once again be deciding on a potential extension of the sanctions. I have firmly focused on maintaining European and G7 unity on this issue—so far it has succeeded.

What if Russia decides to go further? What can the Union do?

In my view, the wiser approach is to carry out diplomatic, financial, and every other sort of activity to restrain Russia from aggressive behavior, rather than to consider how to react in the event of further Russian aggression. But of course both at the NATO and the European Union level we are determined to maintain the unity of the European Union and of the entire community of the West in the event of increased tension.

Without the US, Europe is weak militarily. Has the standoff with Russia reinforced the transatlantic alliance?

We’re having this conversation shortly after the Americans decided to spend more than three billion dollars on defense systems here, so their presence will be more evident again. The security crisis is undoubtedly strengthening European defense capacities. It may be that we’ll remember Putin as the man who woke up the Western world, and we’ll end up being grateful to him for making Europe and the United States drop their illusion that everything’s all right in this part of the world—that we may be living in the phase that’s the end of history, as Fukuyama would have it. As obvious as it may sound, history tends to repeat itself, and so we are rather dealing with “history as usual,” as Raymond Aron so often said.

-Translated by Antonia Lloyd-Jones

Michał Matlak is a PhD Researcher in the Department of Political and Social Sciences at the European University Institute in Florence and a former fellow at the IWM. In 2011 he published a collection of interviews Polska w Europie, Europa w Polsce [Poland in Europe, Europe in Poland].

First published in New York Review of Books Daily, February 18, 2016.

© Author / New York Review of Books

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  • Aleksander Kwasniewski

    Aleksander Kwasniewski war Präsident Polens. Seine Amtszeit verlief von 1995 bis 2005 über zwei Legislaturperioden.   Print

  • Mladen Lazic

    Professor of Sociology, University of Belgrade
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  • Claus Leggewie

    Professor für Politikwissenschaft, Justus-Liebig-Universität Giessen
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  • André Liebich

    Honorary Professor of International History and Politics, Graduate Institute, Geneva
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  • Burkhard Liebsch

    Burkhard Liebsch ist Professor für Philosophie an der Ruhr-Universität Bochum.   Print

  • Michal Luczewski

    Ph.D. candidate in Sociology, Warsaw University
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  • Charles S. Maier

    Charles S. Maier ist Direktor des Center for European Studies, Harvard University.   Print

  • Andrey Makarychev

    Andrey Makarychev ist Professor und Research Fellow am Institut Osteuropäische Studien an der Freien Universität Berlin.   Print

  • Michał Maciej Matlak

    Ph.D. candidate, Department of Political and Social Sciences, European University Institute, Florence
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  • Erik Meyer

    Erik Meyer ist seit 2000 wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter am Sonderforschungsbereich ‘Erinnerungskulturen’ an der Justus-Liebig Universität Gießen.   Print

  • Krzysztof Michalski

    IWM Founding Rector
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  • Hans J. Misselwitz

    Hans-Jürgen Misselwitz ist ein deutscher SPD-Politiker und Gründungsmitglied des Instituts Solidarische Moderne.   Print

  • Alessandro Monsutti

    Alessandro Monsutti is an associate professor of anthropology and development sociology at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, as well as research associate at the Refugee Studies Centre at the University of Oxford. He worked as a consultant for several nongovernmental and international organizations, icnluding UNHCR. His book War and Migration: Social Networks …
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  • Jan-Werner Müller

    Professor of Politics, Princeton University

    Visiting Fellow
    (September 2016 – August 2017)
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  • Rainer Münz

    Professor für Bevölkerungswissenschaft, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin; Korrespondierendes Mitglied des IWM
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  • Sighard Neckel

    Professor of Sociology, Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main
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  • Katherine Newman

    Katherine S. Newman is the James B. Knapp Dean of The Zanvyl Krieger School of Arts and Sciences. She is a widely published expert on poverty and the working poor who led major interdisciplinary initiatives at Princeton and Harvard universities.     Print

  • Pierre Nora

    Pierre Nora lehrt Geschichte an der École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris.   Print

  • Tereza Novotna

    Political Science, Boston University
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  • Ewald Nowotny

    Ewald Nowotny is Governor of the Austrian National Bank.   Print

  • Thomas Nowotny

    Thomas Nowotny teaches Political Science at the University of Vienna. He has been Austrian diplomat, private secretary to Austrian Chancellor Bruno Kreisky, senior political counselor to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and consultant to the OECD.   Print

  • Vlad Odobescu

    Freelance journalist, Romanian Centre for Investigative Journalism, Bucharest
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  • Andrzej Paczkowski

    Professor für Geschichte, Institut für Politische Studien, Polnische Akademie der Wissenschaften, Warschau
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  • Emilia Palonen

    Politics, University of Essex
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  • Irina Papkova

    Irina Papkova is a Research Fellow of Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs. She spent five years teaching at the Department of International Relations and European Studies at Central European University, Budapest.   Print

  • Agnieszka Pasieka

    Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from the Martin Luther University, Halle/Saale
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  • Gleb Pavlovsky

    President, Center of Effective Policies; Member, Public Chamber of the Russian Federation; Editor-in-Chief, The Russian Journal, Moscow
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  • György Péteri

    Professor of Contemporary European History, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim
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  • Tanja Petrovic

    Tanja Petrovic works at the Scientific Research Center of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, Ljubljana.   Print

  • David Petruccelli

    PhD candidate in History, Yale University
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  • Alexander von Plato

    Alexander von Plato ist ein deutscher Philosoph und Historiker. Er gründete das Instituts für Geschichte und Biographie an der Fernuniversität Hagen, das er bis 2007 leitete. Von 1996 bis 2000 war er Sekretär der International Oral History Association, von 2006 bis 2008 deren Vizepräsident. Er ist Mitherausgeber und Redakteur von BIOS – Zeitschrift für Biographieforschung, Oral …
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  • Andrei Pleșu

    Andrei Pleșu ist Rektor des New Europe College, Bukarest. 1989- 1991 war er rumänischer Kulturminister und 1997- 1999 rumänischer Außenminister.   Print

  • Martin Pollack

    Martin Pollack, geb. 1944 in OÖ, studierte Slawistik und osteuropäische Geschichte. Er war von 1987 bis 1998 Redakteur des “Spiegel” in Warschau und Wien und lebt heute als Schriftsteller und literarischer Übersetzer in Wien und Bocksdorf im Südburgenland. 2011 erhielt er den Leipziger Buchpreis zur Europäischen Verständigung und 2012 den Stanislaw-Vincenz-Preis. Zuletzt erschien von ihm …
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  • Krzysztof Pomian

    Krzysztof Pomian is Professor of History at the Nicolaus Copernicus University (Toruń) and Academic Director of the Museum of Europe in Brussels.   Print

  • Romano Prodi

    Romano Prodi war von September 1999 bis November 2004 Präsident der Europäischen Kommission.   Print

  • Lipin Ram

    PhD candidate and teaching assistant in Anthropology and Sociology of Development, Graduate Institute, Geneva
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  • Mykola Riabchuk

    Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Political and Nationalities’ Studies, Academy of Sciences, Kyiv
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  • Edelbert Richter

    Edelbert Richter ist deutscher Theologe, Politiker und war Mitglied des Deutschen Bundestages.   Print

  • Paul Ricoeur

    Paul Ricoeur ist Philosoph und war Professor Emeritus an der University of Chicago und an der Sorbonne. Er war Mitglied der Académie Francaise und Mitglied des Wissenschaftlichen Beirats des IWM. Er starb 2005.   Print

  • Michel Rocard

    Michel Rocard, former First Secretary of the French Socialist Party and a member of the European Parliament for 15 years, was Prime Minister of France from 1988 to 1991.   Print

  • Akos Rona-Tas

    Akos Rona-Tas is professor at the Sociology Department of the University of California, San Diego and a research associate at Met@risk, INRA, Paris. He is the author of the books Plastic Money: Constructing Markets for Credit Cards in Eight Postcommunist Countries (with Alya Guseva, 2014) and Surprise of the Small Transformation: Demise of Communism and …
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  • Lew Rubinstein

    Lew Rubinstein lebt als Poet und Essayist in Moskau. Nach dem Studium der Philologie war er als Bibliothekar tätig. Seit Ende der 1960er-Jahre verfasst er poetische Arbeiten, seit 1974 serielle Textzyklen als so genannte Kartotheken. Zusammen mit Andrej Monastyrskij, Dimitrij A. Prigov und Vladimir Sorokin gilt er als wichtigster Vertreter des Moskauer Konzeptualismus. Print

  • Jacques Rupnik

    Geschichte und Politikwissenschaft, Paris
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  • Claudia Šabic

    Claudia Šabi? ist Politikwissenschaftlerin und Ethnologin. Seit 1998 ist sie Wissenschaftliche Mitarbeiterin an der Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main. Print

  • Ranabir Samaddar

    Distinguished Chair in Migration and Forced Migration Studies, Calcutta Research Group
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  • Paul Sanders

    Paul Sanders is a historian and management scholar. He is a full-time professor at Reims Management School in Reims, France. He has published across the disciplines of history, international relations and leadership.   Print

  • Karl Schlögel

    Karl Schlögel war Professor für Osteuropäische Geschichte zuerst an der Universität Konstanz, dann an der Europa-Universität Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder. Nach seiner Emeritierung arbeitet er an einer Archäologie des Kommunismus und einer Geschichte des Wolgaraumes. Zurzeit ist er City of Vienna/IFK Fellow am IFK in Wien.     Print

  • Thomas Schmid

    Thomas Schmid is the publisher of the WELT Group, Berlin. He worked for various newspapers, among them as editor of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. From 2006 to 2010 he was Editor-in-Chief of Die Welt.   Print

  • Margit Schratzenstaller

    Margit Schratzenstaller is senior researcher at the Austrian Institute of Economic Research (WIFO) and is currently coordinating (together with Karl Aiginger and Stefan Ederer) ‘WWW for Europe’, a 4-year research project within the 7th Framework Program funded by the European Commission.   Print

  • Dieter Segert

    Dieter Segert ist Professor für Transformationsprozesse in Mittel-, Südost- und Osteuropa am Institut für Politikwissenschaft der Universität Wien. Seit September 2007 ist er Mitglied des Vorstandes des IDM Wien, seit Juni 2008 Mitglied der Leibniz-Sozietät der Wissenschaften zu Berlin.   Print

  • Victoriya Sereda

    Sociologie, Ivan-Franko-Universität, Lviv
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  • Michel Serres

    Michel Serres ist Philosoph und Mitglied der Académie Française.   Print

  • Anton Shekhovtsov

    Visiting Fellow, Ukraine in European Dialogue
    (January 2016 – December 2017)
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  • Marci Shore

    Associate Professor of History, Yale University
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  • Sławomir Sierakowski

    Director, Institute for Advanced Study, Warsaw; Founder, "Krytyka Polityczna" movement
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  • Sara Silverstein

    Ph.D. Candidate in Modern European and International History, Yale University
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  • Ondřej Slačálek

    Assistant Professor of Political Science, Charles University, Prague
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  • Aleksander Smolar

    Political Science, Paris
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  • Timothy Snyder

    IWM Permanent Fellow
    Richard C. Levin Professor of History, Yale University
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  • George Soros

    George Soros is a pioneer of the hedge-fund industry, investor and philanthropist, he is the author of many books, including Financial Turmoil in Europe and the United States: Essays (2012), The Soros Lectures: At the Central European University (2010), The Crash of 2008 and What it Means: The New Paradigm for Finance Markets (2009).   …
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  • Robert Spaemann

    Robert Spaemann ist Professor em. für Philosophie an der Universität München.   Print

  • Pawel Spiewak

    Associate Professor of Sociology, Department of Sociology and Philosophy, Warsaw University
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  • Wilfried Stadler

    Wilfried Stadler ist Unternehmensberater, Wirtschaftspublizist und Honorarprofessor an der Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien. Bis 2009 war er Vorstandsvorsitzender einer österreichischen Spezialbank für Unternehmensfinanzierung.   Print

  • Rudolf Stamm

    Rudolf Stamm war von 1975 bis 1988 Korrespondent der Neuen Zürcher Zeitung für Osteuropa und Österreich, anschließend bis 1999 für Italien, dann bis zu seiner Pensionierung 2002 für die USA mit Sitz in Washington D.C. Er starb 2010 in der Schweiz. 1985 erscheinen seine NZZ-Reportagen aus Osteuropa in dem Band Alltag und Tradition in Osteuropa. …
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  • Paul Starr

    Paul Starr ist Professor für Soziologie an der Princeton University und Mitherausgeber von The American Prospect. Er ist Pulitzer-Preisträger.   Print

  • Martina Steer

    ÖAW APART Fellow (History)
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  • Kristina Stoeckl

    Research Director
    APART Fellow, Austrian Academy of Sciences; Department of Political Sciences, University of Vienna
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  • Roman Szporluk

    Roman Szporluk is Professor em. of Ukrainian History at Harvard and Professor em. of History at the University of Michigan. He is a foreign member of the National Academy of Sciences in Kiev, Ukraine. His research focuses on modern Ukrainian, Russian, and Polish history, and on Marxism and nationalism in Eastern Europe.   Print

  • Charles Taylor

    IWM Permanent Fellow
    Professor em. of Philosophy, McGill University, Montréal
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  • Maria Teteriuk

    PhD candidate in Mass Communications and senior lecturer in Media Studies, National University of 'Kyiv-Mohyla Academy', Ukraine
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  • Philipp Ther

    Junior Professor of Polish and Ukrainian Studies, Europa-Universität Frankfurt / Oder
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  • Maria Todorova

    Professor of History, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
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  • Balázs Trencsényi

    Balázs Trencsényi, Ph.D., is Associate Professor at the Department of History, CEU. His research focuses on the comparative history of political thought in East Central Europe and the history of historiography. He is co-director of Pasts, Inc., Center for Historical Studies at CEU and Associate Editor of the periodical East Central Europe (Brill). He was …
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  • Stefan Troebst

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  • Marius Turda

    Lecturer in the Education Abroad Program, Eötvös Lorand University, Faculty of Humanities, Budapest
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  • Andreas Umland

    Andreas Umland ist Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter am Institut für Euro-Atlantische Kooperation Kiew sowie Herausgeber der Buchreihe Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society, ibidem-Verlag Stuttgart. Print

  • Victoria Vasilenko

    Assistant Professor of Contemporary History and International Relations, Belgorod National Research University
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  • David G. Victor

    David G. Victor is a Professor at the School of International Relations and Pacific Studies at the University of California, San Diego, where he directs the Laboratory on International Law and Regulation.   Print

  • Harald Welzer

    Harald Welzer ist Forschungsprofessor für Sozialpsychologie an der Universität Witten/Herdecke und Direktor des Center for Interdisciplinary Memory Research am Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts Essen.   Print

  • Karolina Wigura

    Adjunct of the History of Ideas, University of Warsaw; Co-Editor of Kultura Liberalna
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  • Volodymyr Yermolenko

    Volodymyr Yermolenko is a Ukrainian philosopher and essayist. He has a degree in Political Science from the EHESS, Paris, and teaches at Kyiv Mohyla Academy in Kyiv. He is the author of the book Narrator and Philosopher: Walter Benjamin and his time (2011, in Ukrainian). Print

  • Oksana Zabuzhko

    Free-lance writer, Kiev
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  • Tatiana Zhurzhenko

    Research Director, Russia in Global Dialogue / Ukraine in European Dialogue
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