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Browse FSI scholarship on geopolitics, global health, energy, cybersecurity and more.

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Journal Article

Putin, Putinism, and the Domestic Determinants of Russian Foreign Policy

Michael A. McFaul
International Security , 2020

Why did Russia's relations with the West shift from cooperation a few decades ago to a new era of confrontation today? Some explanations focus narrowly on changes in the balance of power in the international system, or trace historic parallels and cultural continuities in Russian international behavior. For a complete understanding of Russian foreign policy today, individuals, ideas, and institutions—President Vladimir Putin, Putinism, and autocracy—must be added to the analysis.

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Commentary

Why didn’t the U.S. rebuke Russia for its Taliban bounty deal? Four things to know.

Asfandyar Mir, Asfandyar Mir
Washington Post , 2020

President Trump is in the middle of another controversy involving Russia. A New York Times article on June 26 revealed Trump was informed in March that Russia offered bounties to the Taliban to kill U.S.

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Book

Ill Winds: Saving Democracy from Russian Rage, Chinese Ambition, and American Complacency

Larry Diamond
2019

From America’s leading scholar of democracy,a personal, passionate call to action against the rising authoritarianism that challenges our world order—and the very value of liberty

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Book

Dialect Jokebooks and Russian-Yiddish and English-Yiddish Dictionaries (Chapter in The Whole World in a Book: Dictionaries in the Nineteenth Century)

Gabriella Safran
Oxford University Press , 2019

Edited by Sarah Ogilvie and Gabriella Safran

  • Advances new arguments and theories about the development of lexicography and how changes in the nineteenth century resonate today
  • Covers a wide range of languages, and represents the first time some of these dictionaries have been addressed by academic scholarship
  • Draws on unpublished and archival material not previously analyzed in the literature
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White Paper

Evidence of Russia-Linked Influence Operations in Africa

Shelby Grossman, Daniel Bush, Renee DiResta
2019

Russia’s global strategy for reasserting itself as a geopolitical superpower has led to an increased presence in Africa, where it has broadened efforts to shape the continent’s politics and pursue new economic opportunities to allay the effects of sanctions.

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Journal Article

Computer Science Skills Across China, India, Russia, and the United States

Prashant Loyalka, Ou Lydina Liu, Guirong Li, Igor Chirikov, Elena Kardanova, Lin Gu, Guangming Ling, Ningning Yu, Fei Guo, Liping Ma, Shangfeng Hu, Angela Sun Johnson, Ashutosh Bhuradia, Saurabh Khanna, Isak Froumin, Jinghuan Shi, Pradeep Kumar Choudhury, Tara Beteille, Francisco Marmolejo, Namrata Tognatta
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America , 2019

We assess and compare computer science skills among final-year computer science undergraduates (seniors) in four major economic and political powers that produce approximately half of the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics graduates in the world. We find that seniors in the United States substantially outperform seniors in China, India, and Russia by 0.76–0.88 SDs and score comparably with seniors in elite institutions in these countries. Seniors in elite institutions in the United States further outperform seniors in elite institutions in China, India, and Russia by ∼0.85 SDs. The skills advantage of the United States is not because it has a large proportion of high-scoring international students. Finally, males score consistently but only moderately higher (0.16–0.41 SDs) than females within all four countries.

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Conference Memos

Russia's Promotion of Illiberal Populism: Tools, Tactics, Networks

Laura Rosenberger, Tom Morley
2019

This document is a memo from the "Global Populisms and their International Diffusion Conference" held at Stanford University on March 1-2, 2019.

This is a work in progress. DO NOT cite without checking with the authors first.

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Conference Memos

How Can We Know if Russia is a Threat to Western Democracy? Understanding the Impact of Russia's Second Wave of Election Interference

Lucan Way, Adam E. Casey
2019

This document is a memo from the "Global Populisms and their International Diffusion Conference" held at Stanford University on March 1-2, 2019.
This is a work in progress. DO NOT cite without checking with the authors first.

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Conference Memos

The Two-Sided Sword of Russian Propaganda

Julia Davis
2019

This document is a memo from the "Global Populisms and their International Diffusion Conference" held at Stanford University on March 1-2, 2019.

This is a work in progress. DO NOT cite without checking with the authors first.

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Commentary

It's Not Too Late to Prevent a Russia-China Axis

Anja Manuel, Anja Manuel
2018

Chinese tanks splashed through the mud, while a few dozen helicopters flew in formation overhead in eastern Russia, and a young Chinese military recruit explained, “I have never experienced an overseas deployment of this scale.” The scene neatly summed up the much-written-about, enormous Russian military exercises that took place this week.

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Journal Article

Authenticity, Complaint, and the Russianness of American Jewish Literature

Gabriella Safran
Prooftexts , 2018

Bernard Malamud, Saul Bellow, Philip Roth, and their critics embraced the notion that their work displayed an affinity to Russian and Yiddish literature, especially to the work of Fyodor Dostoevsky, Nikolai Gogol, and Sholem Aleichem. Like these writers, the prominent American Jewish writers of the 1960s were understood as producing writing that emerged from their authentic, often negative emotions, work that voiced complaints.

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Book

From Cold War to Hot Peace: An American Ambassador in Putin’s Russia

Michael A. McFaul
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt , 2018

In 2008, when Michael McFaul was asked to leave his perch at Stanford and join an unlikely presidential campaign, he had no idea that he would find himself at the beating heart of one of today’s most contentious and consequential international relationships. As President Barack Obama’s adviser on Russian affairs, McFaul helped craft the United States’ policy known as “reset” that fostered new and unprecedented collaboration between the two countries. And then, as U.S.

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Conference Memos

Vladimir Putin’s Populism, Russia’s Revival, and Liberalism Lost

Kathryn Stoner
2017

This document is a memo from the "Global Populisms: A Threat to Democracy?” workshop held at Stanford University in 2017.

This is a work in progress. DO NOT cite without checking with the authors first.

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Conference Memos

Is Russia a Threat to Western Democracy? Russian Intervention in Foreign Elections, 1991-2017

Lucan Ahmad Way, Adam Casey
2017

This document is a memo from the "Global Populisms: A Threat to Democracy?” workshop held at Stanford University in 2017.

This is a work in progress. DO NOT cite without checking with the authors first.

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Commentary

The Magnitsky Act - Russian lawyer in Trump Jr. meeting lobbied against it; why does Putin hate it so much?

Norman M. Naimark
Fox News Opinion , 2017

Sergei Magnitsky was a thirty-seven year old Russian lawyer and auditor who worked for Hermitage Capital Management, a firm founded in 1996 by Bill Browder, the grandson of the famous leader of the American Communist Party, Earl Browder (1891-1973). Hermitage made tens of millions of dollars in the rush to buy up and sell state assets in the chaotic economic circumstances of Boris Yeltsin’s Russia.

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Book

Uneasy Partnerships: China’s Engagement with Japan, the Koreas, and Russia in the Era of Reform

Thomas Fingar
Stanford University Press , 2017

Uneasy Partnerships presents the analysis and insights of practitioners and scholars who have shaped and examined China's interactions with key Northeast Asian partners. Using the same empirical approach employed in the companion volume, The New Great Game (Stanford University Press, 2016), this new text analyzes the perceptions, priorities, and policies of China and its partners to explain why dyadic relationships evolved as they have during China's "rise."

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Journal Article

When Science Brought Americans and Russians Together

Siegfried S. Hecker
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists , 2017

Siegfried Hecker describes the scientific collaboration that took place between Russian and American nuclear weapons laboratories following the end of the Cold War. Their shared pursuit of fundamental scientific discoveries built trust between the nuclear weapons scientists and resulted in important scientific progress.

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Commentary

The real winner of the House Intelligence Committee hearing on Russia

Michael A. McFaul
The Washington Post , 2017

After the vote results came in last November, many Russians close to the Kremlin celebrated. “Our Trump” — or #TrumpNash, as they tweeted — had been elected president of the United States... Of course, many factors combined to produce Trump’s victory, but Putin’s intervention most certainly played a contributing role.

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Book

The Russian Empire 1450-1801

Nancy Kollmann
Oxford University Press , 2017

Modern Russian identity and historical experience has been largely shaped by Russia's imperial past: an empire that was founded in the early modern era and endures in large part today. The Russian Empire 1450-1801 surveys how the areas that made up the empire were conquered and how they were governed.

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Journal Article

A visit to Russia's secret nuclear labs

Siegfried S. Hecker
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists , 2017

In this essay, Siegfried Hecker describes a 1992 visit to nuclear facilities in the former Soviet Union.

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Journal Article

How Trump Can Play Nice With Russia, Without Selling Out America

Michael A. McFaul
Foreign Policy , 2017

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump was a whirlwind of vagaries and contradictions when it came to foreign policy, making it difficult to predict how his new administration will approach dozens of international issues. On Russia, however, he was clear and consistent.

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Journal Article

Representing Legitimacy in Early Modern Russia

Nancy Kollmann
The Russian Review , 2017

The article explores the ways in which the sixteenth-century Illuminated Chronicle (Litsevoi letopisnyi svod) demonstrates the ideology of state legitimacy through its illustrations. Analyzing images of judicial punishment, it explores how artists worked within iconographic conventions to demonstrate a consistent image of legitimate, and illegitimate, uses of coercive power, using such devices as gesture, pose, regalia, and composition. As one of the few sources of somewhat secular art in Muscovy, these images provide a valuable source for political ideology.

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Commentary

US-Russia rift threatens science ties that keep us safe

Siegfried S. Hecker, Siegfried S. Hecker
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists , 2016

Siegfried Hecker describes Russia's systematic termination of nuclear cooperation with the United States and the harmful consequences that this could have for both countries.

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Journal Article

Jewish Argument Style among Russian Revolutionaries

Gabriella Safran
Journal of Jewish Languages , 2016

Jewish speech was heard in Russian revolutionary contexts as characterized by emphatic tones, rhetorical questions, an argumentative stance, and sarcasm, all performative elements of Jewish English (JE) as well. I examine depictions of Jewish Russian (JR) in the world of the non-Jewish Socialist Revolutionary (SR) leader Victor Chernov. This article first introduces Chernov, then analyzes his depictions of JR, and finally looks at transcripts of speeches by SR leaders for evidence of Jewish speech style.

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Journal Article

Developing Instruments to Assess and Compare the Quality of Engineering Education: The Case of China and Russia

Elena Kardanova, Prashant Loyalka, Igor Chirikov, Lydia Liu, Guirong Li, Huan Wang, Ekaterina Enchikova, Henry Shi, Natalie Johnson
Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education , 2016
Relatively little is known about differences in the quality of engineering education within and across countries because of the lack of valid instruments that allow for the assessment and comparison of engineering students’ skill gains. The purpose of our study is to develop and validate instruments that can be used to compare student skill gains in mathematics and physics courses in undergraduate engineering programmes across countries. The approach includes procedures to establish construct validity and other necessary psychometric properties. Drawing on data collected from over 24 engineering experts and 3600 engineering students across Russia and China, we establish that it is possible to develop valid, equitable and cross-nationally comparable instruments that can assess and compare skill gains.
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