The Practice of Policymaking in Contemporary Russia accounts for one third of the taught core of the MSc Russian Politics and Society programme and is designed to run in tandem with the Contemporary Russian Politics and Policy module, contextualizing academic exploration with a direct engagement with invited policy practitioners from various fields.
The Practice of Policymaking in Contemporary Russia will provide a weekly opportunity for students to learn directly from policy practitioners engaged professionally with Russia, including diplomats, journalists, investors, entrepreneurs, lawyers, NGO activists, cultural producers, educators and others. Students will study the primary and secondary literatures on various aspects of Russia’s institutional environment, adding to the theoretical and empirical literatures read in other modules. The course’s reading list includes academic texts, journalistic and professional reports, and novels, designed to provide students with a multifaceted immersion into the realities of political, social, economic and cultural life in contemporary Russia.
Students will be encouraged to make use of all of these sources of information and insight in order to engage in a critical cross examination of both the literature and the evidence provided by practitioners. Invited practitioners will present students with a problematized summary of their own experience working in or with Russia, will respond to students’ questions and be invited to debate with students as they develop their own analytical opinions.
Students will produce a 4,000-word policy analysis and proposal, designed for a professional rather than an academic audience, focusing on a problem identified by one or more of the invited practitioners. In so doing, students will draw on the primary and secondary literatures and will have the opportunity to engage one-on-one with an invited practitioner.
As such, the educational aims of the module are:
To impart to students a thorough knowledge of day-to-day professional and policy life in Russia;
To present students with a range of first-hand experiences of policy and professional engagement in and with Russia from established practitioners in a variety of fields;
To encourage students to engage critically with both received theory and empirical observation, using each to interrogate the other;
To help students develop and execute strategies for the application of social science theory and methods to the resolution of applied policy challenges in a professional setting and across disciplinary and cultural boundaries.
Dr Samuel Greene
10 x 2-hour fortnightly seminars
Module assessment - more information
1 x 4000-word essay