Monday, October 31, 2016

Cultural Fellowships in Russia

Maura Shelden via Facebook
2 hrs
The Likhachev Foundation (St. Petersburg, Russia) and the Boris Yeltsin Presidential Center (Moscow, Russia), with support of the Committee on External Relations of St. Petersburg, announce a competition for 2-week cultural fellowships in Russia (St. Petersburg) from 15 to 28 May 2017 for foreign professionals in the field of arts and culture who work on projects related to Russian culture and history and aimed at a broad foreign audience. Airfare (economy class) and accommodation in St. Petersburg will be covered by the organizers.
Until February 15, 2017 the Likhachev Foundation will accept applications from professionals in the field of culture and arts from foreign countries who are currently working on creative projects related to Russian culture, arts, or history. Command of the Russian language is very helpful but not required.
We accept applications from artists, scholars, writers, managers of museums, theatres, and festivals.
Students are not eligible.
Working languages of the program are English and Russian.
The creative project could be a book (fiction or non-fiction), a museum exhibition project, a theatre production, a theatre or music festival, a film, a photo exhibition, etc. related to Russian culture or history. The creative project should ultimately take place in a country other than the Russian Federation, with the goal being to broaden the audiences’ perception of Russia. The two-week residency in Russia should serve as an important stage in the preparation and realization of the applicant’s cultural project.
The Likhachev Foundation will prepare individual programs for the Fellows according to their projects’ specifics, to help them achieve maximum results during their fellowships. These programs will include meetings with Russian colleagues, opportunities to work at St. Petersburg museums, libraries, archives, and other organizations.
The fellowships will be organized from 15 to 28 May 2017 in St. Petersburg (Russia).
Deadline for submitted applications is February 15, 2017.
All the recipients of the fellowships will be notified of the review panel decision by March 15, 2017.
List of fellows will be published on the website of the program by 20 March 2017.
Application should include:
• CV (including information on Russian language skills, previous creative projects related to Russia, and previous visits to Russia).
• Description of the creative project (up to 3 pages) a book (fiction or non-fiction), a museum exhibition project, a theatre production, a theatre or music festival, a film, a photo exhibition, etc. related to Russian culture or history.
It should be clear from the project description why a residency in St. Petersburg is necessary for the applicant’s creative project and which cultural organizations in St. Petersburg the applicant would like to work with.
Please, email your application in Russian or English to the competition coordinator Mrs. Elena Vitenberg at and with subject line «application for the fellowship».
All the applicants will be notified about the receipt of their applications by e-mail.
If you haven’t received such confirmation within three days after submitting your application, please resubmit your application.
All the recipients of the fellowships will receive e-mail invitations by 15 March 2017.
List of fellows will be published on the website of the program by 20 March 2017.
The D. S. Likhachev International Charitable Foundation
The name of the Academician D. S. Likhachev (1906-1999) is symbolic for the 20th century Russian culture. A Russian intellectual, survivor of the Soviet Gulag, a great scientist and thinker, a popular figure, he managed to preserve under the totalitarian regime his integrity, honor, and fealty to Russia. In the 90s he became a moral gold standard for many Russians. During his late years D. S. Likhachev conceived the idea of a humanitarian charitable foundation. The idea was implemented after his death.
The D. S. Likhachev International Charitable Foundation was founded in St. Petersburg at the end of 2001. The mission for the Foundation had been stated by D. S. Likhachev himself as promotion of the Russian culture, education, humanities as well as affirmation of democratic and humanistic values in the society. The foundation supports both regional and international programs, awards grants, promotes seminars and conferences, publishes books, etc.
The Boris Yeltsin Presidential Center (Yeltsin Center)
The Boris Yeltsin Presidential Center is a new Russian noncommercial organization, directed at promoting the development of the Institute of Presidency in Russia. The mission of the Boris Yeltsin Presidential Center is to preserve, study, and present to the public the historical legacy of the first president of the Russian Federation. Presidential Center includes a museum, exhibition and discussion center, a branch of the Boris Yeltsin's Presidential library and Center for information and education activities and expertise. The Yeltsin Center supports activities in the following areas: Education, Culture, Youth, International, Humanitarian Cooperation, Publishing, Literary Awards.
Committee on External Relations of Saint Petersburg
The executive authority - The City Administration is the superior executive body of St. Petersburg headed by the Governor of the city and other executive departments - the city committees and the administrative-territorial departments. The St. Petersburg Administration is formed of the Governor, the Government, The Governor's Chancellery, the city committees and the administrative-territorial departments of the Administration subordinate to him. The Committee on External Relations is responsible for state policy of Saint Petersburg in external relations.

A note from Richard Arndt on the Fulbright Association

image from

Fulbright Association’s appreciation of Woody Demitz’ advice, downplayed by Woody’s modesty, has prompted FA president Nancy Neill to award volunteers a title—Senior Fellow (sounds like the International Executive Service Corps retired execs from business, NGOs and the professions for longer foreign assignments). While titles mean little, FA’s idea may appeal to retirees and spouses.

Dr. Arndt image from

FA’s appreciation of Woody reminds me to share my own experience. Since 2011, I have watched FA rebuild after two decades of drift. My most stimulating assignment came from chairing the 5-continent selection committee for the bi-annual Fulbright Prize for International Understanding (2014 to Hans Blix, 2016 to Richard Lugar). FA celebrates the 70th anniversary of the Fulbright Act this year at its conference at George Washington U, 10-13 November. Two or three hundred alumni and two dozen foreign Commission Execs are expected, among others.

Every USIA-PD vet had something to do with Fulbrighters, in my case, dozens of US and foreign alumni and Commission-member friends. The rebuilders of FA anticipate many special needs: conference management; Congressional and State Department relations; US membership recruitment through universities, regional chapters, or alumni from Counntry X; public speaking, e.g. to some of the 60 FA US chapters; relations with foreign FAs; website management; FA library-documentation help; assistance to FA board-members, staffers or junior fellows with specific needs. To remind: FA has a potential US membership of over 70,000, globally perhaps 400,000.

Anyone interested in undertaking a part-time commitment is urged to contact chief staffer Shaz Akram (her email:, telephone: 202-775-0725).

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Global media in foreign policy and public engagement (pertains to "narrative" as a foreign policy tool)

How governments and civil society use media and journalism to promote narratives; text (not image) via LJB by email; see also; my planned question, not meant to be provocative, to the below distinguished panel:

The question, most simply put: "Is making up a 'narrative' just a respectable way of lying"?

In more detail:

Traditionally, "narrative" (if it can be defined, which I doubt) has been an artistic instrument of fiction meant to tickle/challenge the imagination. So, my question: Is the current, "fashionable" use of the term "narrative" by USA powers-that-be (military, governmental, think-tank-"thinkers") just a "real-world" way of making things up (undiplomatically put, "lying"?) to "persuade" audiences (mostly abroad) so that they (the powers-that-be) can further their own rather unimaginative, narrow "homeland" interests (by receiving increased funds for their "innovative" programs [but the funding part is of course not part of their "narrative"])?
Global media in foreign policy and public engagement

How governments and civil society use media and journalism to promote narratives

Please join The Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) for a public panel on international media’s effect on policy. CSIS’ Project on Prosperity and Development will be joined by John Lansing, the CEO and Director of the BBG, for a conversation on how journalism and media steers opinion and policy around the world.

CSIS and BBG will discuss forming narratives which can alter public opinion. Some countries increasingly use messaging as a soft-power tool to promote a particular viewpoint, while external actors like civil society advance alternative policy agendas. As part of this event, we expect to cover the closing civil society and public diplomacy space in Russia.

The panel will also feature Shannon Green, the Director of CSIS’ Human Rights Initiative, and Jeffrey Mankoff, the Deputy Director of CSIS’ Russia and Eurasia program to steer social and regional topics.

WHEN: 9:50 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.,
October 31, 2016
WHERE: CSIS Headquarters
1616 Rhode Island Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
Register for this Event
For more information, please contact Aaron Milner at (202) 775-3236 or by e-mail at

John F. Lansing
Chief Executive Officer and Director
Daniel F. Runde
William A. Schreyer Chair and Director, Project on Prosperity and Development
Shannon N. Green
Director and Senior Fellow, Human Rights Initiative
Jeffrey Mankoff
Deputy Director and Senior Fellow, Russia and Eurasia Program
H. Andrew Schwartz
SVP for External Relations
Tel: 202.775.3242

Contact the BBG
330 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20237

(202) 203-4000

Saturday, October 29, 2016

"Narrative" and Public Diplomacy

from; see also.

Research Notes for an article on "Narrative" (1)

image from

Note: I am doing research on the use (misuse?) of the mot du jour "narrative," mostly as it pertains to efforts by the U.S. government (honorable efforts, some of which are suggested by some inside-the-Washington beltway think-tank international relations "experts") to present/explain the USA and its foreign policy to overseas audiences.

My two favorite citations in this first "narrative" research round-up (more citations below): 

"May the better story win Otago Daily Times The problem is that often the truth does not speak 
for itself - it has to be interpreted through a narrative
This means facts alone are not enough."


Columbus College of Art & Design's Illustration program is seeking applicants for a full-time faculty position. Our ideal candidate is an illustrator/writer ..."

Monitor the web for interesting new content
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