On 11 December 2019, Professor Vera Tolz gave a guest lecture at the Department of Politics and History, Brunel University, London. The title of the lecture was “Mediatization and Journalistic Agency: Russian Television Coverage of the Skripal Poisonings”.
On 15 November 2019, Professor Stephen Hutchings delivered a lecture “Reframing Russia for the Global Mediasphere: The Spies Who Came Back From the Snow”. The talk took place at the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies (CERES), the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, the University of Toronto, Canada.
On 14 November 2019, Lucy Birge, Mollie Arbuthnot and Vitaly Kazakov, PhD students affiliated with the project, took part in a workshop at the University of Toronto. The event was called “Strategic Political Communication and Translocal Media Flows”.
On 12 November 2019, the Open University team, including Professor Marie Gillespie, Dr Bertie Vidgen and Dr Alistair Willis (and, in absentia, Dr Rhys Crilley), delivered a presentation at the Conference of International Broadcasters Audience Researchers (CIBAR) at the BBC Headquarters in London. Their paper, titled “Ways of Knowing RT’s Twitter Audiences: Data science meets social science”, offered a fascinating and somewhat surprising birds’ eye view of RT’s global Twitter audiences. It challenged several common misconceptions about the nature, interests and ideological perspectives of RT Twitter followers. The presentation provoked a very rich debate in the conference session “The misinformation problem: How bad is it? Is it getting better or worse?” Werner Neven, head of Audience Research at Deutsche Welle, chaired the discussion. The conference—held under the title “Towards a better informed world: How can research help?” this year—was attended by nearly 100 audience researchers working in the top international news organisations in over 15 countries. Following the presentation at CIBAR, the OU team are working with France Médias Monde, Deutsche Welle and others to glean further insights into RT’s multilingual audiences across platforms.
On 24 October, 2019, Professor Vera Tolz, Professor Stephen Hutchings and Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody presented at the 19th annual Aleksanteri Conference in Helsinki, Finland. They took part in the panel “Russian Information Influence and Democracy in Europe” and delivered a paper “Is RT an Attack on Democracy?” The panel also included papers “RT, Sputnik and Finnish Online Intermediaries” by Teemu Oivo and “Russian Information Influence and the Securitisation of Social Media in EU Policymaking” by Dr Mariëlle Wijermars. Read more about the panel and the conference here.
In September 2019, Dr Rhys Crilley presented a co-authored paper with Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody and Professor Robert Saunders titled ‘ICYMI: RT and the Social Media Aesthetics of the “New Cold War”‘ at the 13th Pan-European Conference on International Relations organised in Sofia, Bulgaria by the European International Studies Association.
The team from Manchester, along with Dr. Rhys Crilley from the OU and our affiliated Ph.D. student Lucy Birge, presented at the 2019 International Conference of Europeanists in Madrid, 20th – 22nd June. Their panel ‘Contemporary global media and the fracturing of state sovereignty’, consisted of four papers: ‘Populism and contemporary global media: populist communication logics and the co-construction of transnational identities’ (Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody/Dr Rhys Crilley); ‘Projecting Russia onto the Global Media Ecology: the Case of Sputnik’ (Lucy Birge); ‘Reframing Russia for the Global Mediasphere: The Spy who Came Back from the Snow’ (Professor Stephen Hutchings) and ‘In/Visible Russia: Russia Today Arabic and the Syrian War’ (Professor Marie Gillespie/Dr Deena Dajani/Dr Rhys Crilley).
In April, Professor Vera Tolz gave a range of lectures at Japanese universities about the project. The first, entitled ‘Reframing Russia for the Global Mediasphere’ took place on 6 April at Waseda Univesity, Tokyo. This was followed by ‘Globalisation, media and Russia’s political transformations: from the Cold War to the present’ and ‘Manufacturing hybrid commemoration in a neo-authoritarian state: Mediating the 1917 revolution for Russian and overseas audiences’ at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, 16 April and 17 April.
Professor Stephen Hutchings, Connell Beggs and Lucy Birge from The University of Manchester took part in a panel entitled ‘Reframing Russia for the Global Mediasphere: from Cold War to “information war”?’ whilst Dr Rhys Crilley from the Open University and Vitaly Kazakov, also from The University of Manchester, were part of a panel called ‘Mediation, Reception, and Memory of Sports Mega Events in Russia and Beyond: From Cold War to “information war”. BASEES, Cambridge, 12-14 April. Abstracts for their individual papers can be found here.
‘Curating identities and dissent in a globalised media ecology: cross-front populism on RT’, Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, invited presentation at the Populism in Context workshop, Hokkaido University, Japan, 17 – 19 April, 2019.
How does RT present information? Interview with Polygraph.info, Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, George Washington University, Washington DC, April 2019.
Politicians, people, power: RT and the curation of global news, Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, National Defence University of Finland, April 2019.
‘Curation, legitimation and populism communication: the packaging of global politics on RT (Russia Today)’, Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, Aleksanteri Institute, Finland, 4 April 2019.
‘Question (even) more? RT (Russia Today) and Information Security in Europe’. – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, ‘Future of European Security Workshop’, Newcastle University, 17 – 18 January, 2019.
Professor Stephen Hutchings and Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody from The University of Manchester and Dr Galina Miazhevich from Cardiff University presented a panel entitled ‘The ultimate (un-)reality show: identity and rebranding in Russian media events’ at the ASEEES conference in Boston, 6-9 December, 2018.
‘Hybrid memory regime’ in a neo-authoritarian state: Commemorating the 1917 revolution for Russian and overseas audiences’, Professor Vera Tolz, invited lecture at the Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies at the Ludwig-Maximilians University, Munich, Germany, 21 November 2018.
Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody was an invited panelist at the ‘SSEESing Salisbury’ public discussion, which took place at UCL SSEES in London on 14 November 2018.
‘Reframing Russia for the Global Mediasphere: From Cold War to ‘Information War’?’ – Professor Stephen Hutchings, The University of Manchester. Keynote at ‘Liberation – Freedom – Democracy? 1918–1968–2018’, Aleksanteri Institute, Finland, 24-26 October, 2018.
‘Globalisation, media and Russia’s political transformations: from the Cold War to the present’ – Professor Vera Tolz, ‘Knowledge, globalization, and government of societies and environments’ at École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris, 21 September 2018.
‘Strategic narratives for international consumption: RT’s representations of international system, state, and security’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, Narrating Russian and Eurasian Security, King’s College, London, 18-19 June, 2018.
Panel entitled ‘Rethinking identity: interrogating the ‘other’ in Russia’s international relations’; paper ‘From a Russian perspective on world events to Russia’s place in the world: how RT navigates ‘us’ and ‘them’ for its international audiences’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, British International Studies Association, Bath, 13-15 June, 2018.
‘Russian soft power for a globalized media ecology: Cross-front populism on the RT (Russia Today) network’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, European Workshops on International Studies, Groningen, 6-9 June 2018.
‘Agitainment: Russia’s new media strategy’ – Professor Vera Tolz, Guest lecture at the Osteuropa Institut, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany, 29 May 2018.
‘Emotions and war on YouTube: Affective investments in RT’s coverage of the conflict in Syria’ – Dr Rhys Crilley and Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody. Dr Crilley presented this paper at the Media, War and Conflict Journal 10th anniversary conference in Florence, Italy 22-23 May, 2018.
‘Mediated militarism: affective investments in RT’s YouTube coverage of conflict in Syria’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody and Dr Rhys Crilley, Comparative Media in Today’s World, Saint Petersburg, 17-19 April, 2018.
‘Measuring networks of influence on Twitter. Why, how and what then?’ – Dr Alistair Willis; ‘RT and the shifting sands of international broadcasting in the Middle East’ – Professor Marie Gillespie and Dr Deena Dejani, ‘What can we learn from RT’s social media re-enactment of the Russian revolution?’ – Dr Rhys Crilley, Conference of International Broadcasters’ Audience Research Services, Bonn, Germany, 15-18 April 2018.
Panel – “Russia and the “Information War”: The Role of RT”. ‘RT and the calibration of Russia’s ‘war on truth’’ – Professor Stephen Hutchings, ‘Cultural memory and political legitimacy in a neo-authoritarian regime: Russian representations of the 1917 revolutions at home and abroad’ – Professor Tolz and Dr Chatterje-Doody,
‘From Russophone to Russophobe: RT, Eurovision 2017 and the Russian-language social mediasphere’ – Vitaly Kazakov, British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies, Cambridge, 13-15 April 2018.
‘From domestic elites to transnational publics: RT’s re-framing of Russian identity for international audiences’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies, Cambridge, 13-15 April 2018.
‘Curating identities and dissent in a globalized media ecology: Cross front populism on RT’ – Dr Pecious Chatterje-Doody, 28th Annual Conference of the Association for the Study of Ethnicity and Nationalism, 28-29 March 2018.
‘’Retweeting History/Reframing Russia: RT’s 1917 revolution centenary project and the ‘information war’’, Professor Stephen Hutchings, invited lecture at the University of Munich, 12 December 2017.
‘Public diplomacy, propaganda, and very good PR: Russian (dis-)information postRevolution to post-fact’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, British International Studies Association Working Group on Russian and Eurasian Security, on “1917 to 2017: Russia’s unfinished revolution?”, King’s College London, 17 November 2017.
‘Reframing Russia for the global mediasphere’, Professor Stephen Hutchings and Professor Vera Tolz, invited lecture at Sheffield University, 13 November 2017.
‘International broadcasting, RT (Russia Today) and the transformation of the global media landscape’ – Professor Stephen Hutchings, 17th Annual Aleksanteri Conference: Russia’s Choices for 2030, University of Helsinki, 25-27 October 2017.
‘Structures, narratives and self-identification: RT’s framing of Russia’s identities in the multipolar moment’ – Dr Precious Chatterje-Doody, RANEPA Workshop: “Concepts and Post-Communist Identities: The Power of Perspective”, St. Petersburg, 18-19 October 2017.
“Digital dilemmas for visual global politics” – Dr Rhys Crilley, EISA 11th Pan-European Conference, Barcelona, 13-16 September, 2017.
‘Retweeting history: RT, the 1917 revolution anniversary and the global media landscape’ – Professor Stephen Hutchings and Professor Vera Tolz, Transnational Russian Studies Symposium, Durham University 14-16 September, 2017.