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How Azerbaijan is losing its brains

Educated young people in Azerbaijan see few prospects for work at home – and even fewer if they’re critically-minded.

openDemocracy.net - free thinking for the world

How Azerbaijan is losing its brains

Educated young people in Azerbaijan see few prospects for work at home – and even fewer if they’re critically-minded.

openDemocracy.net - free thinking for the world

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Reflections of an (older) Pioneer

Remembering what didn’t exist – on the anniversary of the Soviet young pioneers’ organisation. Русский

Eight months in prison for allegedly attacking a Russian police officer

After recent anti-corruption protests rocked Russia, the authorities are making four men stand trial to stem the tide of politicisation. The first was sentenced this week. Русский

How Azerbaijan is losing its brains

Educated young people in Azerbaijan see few prospects for work at home  and even fewer if they’re critically-minded.

Long live the Azerbaijani diaspora!

Baku is going to great lengths to mobilise, or even create, an international Azerbaijani diaspora. To what end? Русский

On shaky ground: Russia’s FSB vs migrant radicalisation

Scrambling to address the growing threat of Islamist terrorism from Central Asia, Russia’s security apparatus is forced to depend on questionable foreign intelligence services.

Putting Russia’s homophobic violence on the map

From what little data we have, it’s clear that homophobic violence in Russia is on the rise. Russia’s LGBT people are victims of ignorance and intolerance — yet the state won’t lift a finger. Russian

Natural birth in Russia: the costs of “keeping it real”

Natural femininity, natural birth, natural products – Russians are increasingly drawn to the concept of “naturalness” in their daily lives. But not many can afford to live by the laws of nature, rather than the laws of the state. Русский

Changing the rules of the game in Moldova

In Moldova, changes to the electoral system are afoot  but the motivations seem far from democratic.

 

A day watching Turkmen television

In Turkmenistan, people will do anything to avoid watching their tightly-controlled state media. This journalist spent a day glued to the screen to find out why.

Chechens alienated amidst gay persecutions

News of mass arrests, detentions and murders of LGBT people in Chechnya has spread around the globe. The outrage prompts this Chechen journalist to reflect on his people’s place in the world.

“Brothers, be careful. Don’t meet up in Grozny”

After fleeing Chechnya, four gay men spoke to me about bribery, secret meetings and their plans to return home when the region’s brutal anti-LGBT campaign comes to an end. Русский

"I don't falsify elections and I don't spread propaganda. But I'm still a teacher, I exist"

As Russian law enforcement turns its steely eye to the country's classrooms, three schoolteachers share their experiences of politics and propaganda. Русский

After the bomb: crisis management in Petersburg

After last month's metro attack, residents of St Petersburg remain defiant, if unruly. Русский

საქართველოს ახალი კონსტიტუცია აკავებს ნამდვილ ცვლილებას

საქართველოს კონსტიტუციაში ლიბერტარიანული პრინციპების განმტკიცებით, მმართველ პარტიას სურს შეინარჩუნოს მცირე მთავრობა და კიდევ უფრო მცირე სივრცე თანასწორობის პოლიტიკისთვის. English

How does Russian TV propaganda really work?

New research shows that Russian state media’s influence is by no means total. Most people are capable of watching television news critically — provided they’re given the opportunity to do so. Русский

Georgia’s new constitution keeps real change in check

FullSizeRender.jpgBy reinforcing libertarian principles in Georgia’s constitution, the ruling party aims to keep government small — and the space for egalitarian politics even smaller. ქართული

#We’veHadEnough: anti-Putin protesters face pressure on the street and at school

After last week’s country-wide protest, people involved are facing physical attacks, informal pressure from security services and inside educational institutions. Русский

Russia’s eco-activists: not out of the woods yet

It’s Russia’s Year of Ecology. But as these activists tell us, campaigning on environmental and urban issues is far from a walk in the park. Русский

The rearguard battle against Eurasia’s incredible spin-men

In their chase for traffic and prestige, western editors are often all too ready to let autocrats and their lobbyists onto the comment pages of the international press.

 

How can we explain radicalisation among Central Asia’s migrants?

Central Asia isn’t to blame for “exporting terrorism”, but the stigmatising experience of migration could be. Русский, Ўзбекча

Russian authorities ramp up repression against anti-corruption protesters

The Russian authorities are pressuring protesters and protest organisers ahead of further anti-corruption protests. Русский

“It’s a deeply personal matter”: An interview with Vadim Prokhorov, Boris Nemtsov’s lawyer

For Vadim Prokhorov, lawyer for murdered Russian opposition figure Boris Nemtsov, finding justice is more than a matter of professionalism. Русский

Our city, our space: Ekaterinburg residents come out against plans to construct a new church

In Ekaterinburg, city residents are speaking out against proposals to construct a new church in the centre of the city — proposals entirely out of sync with their interests. Русский

Behind the Russian mirror

For Russia’s media, social inequality has never been a hot topic. Meet the people behind a new media organisation trying put injustice on Russia’s political agenda. Русский

​Destroy your house with your own hands

Meet the residents of Kuznetsk, Russia, who are defending their homes from the world's largest pipeline company. Русский

Education in Belarus: between the Bologna process and the USSR

Over the last few decades, Belarus’s higher education system has pursued modernisation. At its heart, however, it remains Soviet, with strong centralising tendencies and a significant ideological component. Русский

Is the anti-corruption agenda all that it’s cracked up to be?

The fight against corruption is often sold as the pill to end all postsocialist ills. Activists and researchers in Poland, Russia and Ukraine give their views on why we need to challenge it. 

The Russian authorities’ clampdown on activism and freedom of assembly continues

Use of force against a police officer, insulting religious believers' feelings, taking a selfie with an Easter egg — these are just some of the pretexts used against active citizens in Russia. Русский

Зеленый протест. Как борьба за лес может стать борьбой против коррупции

Почему в России почти любая форма гражданской активности рано или поздно упирается в проблему коррупции. English

Fighting back, in the back of beyond

Across Russia, active citizens are fighting for their neighbourhoods, livelihoods and against systemic corruption. The moment when these agendas meet will be an important one.

Bolotnaya 2.0?

In Russia, fresh criminal investigations into anti-corruption protests are designed to intimidate activists and protesters from taking further action. Русский

Russifying revolutionary art at the Royal Academy

This year, many institutions are marking 100 years of the Russian Revolution. A recent exhibition about Russia's revolutionary art reminds us of the academy's cultural blindspots.  

Dagestan's long-distance truckers are fighting for their rights

Hundreds of truck drivers in Dagestan have joined Russia’s countrywide strike against additional taxation. I spoke to them to find out their demands. Русский

“Young people in Russia today don’t have it easy”

After young people and students took to the streets, education is firmly on the agenda in Russia. An interview with Mikhail Sokolov on the threats to academic freedom and whether one of Russia's leading universities will survive. Русский

Putin's nation-building project offers reconciliation without truth

The Kremlin has resorted to obfuscating the past in the name of national reconciliation.

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