“Russia set to escalate fight against Ukrainian Orthodox independence in 2020” is the title of a new UkraineAlert publication by Khrystyna Karelska and Andreas Umland for the Atlantic Council.
A panel with many participants from the ARDU project will be present at the EURA2020 conference “Contradictions Shaping Urban Futures” at OsloMet in Oslo 15-17 June 2020.
The panel will examine how social cohesion in Ukrainian cities and towns is affected by reforms that have been introduced in the aftermath of Euromaidan. Ukrainian decentralisation reform involves, among others, amalgamation of smaller territorial units into larger territorial communities. Thus, previously rather homogeneous towns could be merged with neighbouring towns and villages with a different population make-up. What is the effect of this on the local social cohesion? One controversial aspect of the new education reform is that Ukrainian gradually will become the sole language of instruction in Ukrainian public schools. How do parents and teachers living in linguistically mixed urban environments and being used to classes with instruction given in languages commonly used locally assess these reforms, and what are the consequences?
The Kharkiv team and NIBR researchers have conducted field work in Kharkiv and Chernivtsi oblasts in October 2019. We conducted interviews with experts, politicians, civil society organisations, local administration, school principals and others. Focus group discussions were organised with parents. Now the Kharkiv team is busy transcribing the interviews. Here is a photo of ARDU researchers from the University in Chernivtsi.
Together with Valentyna Romanova, Andreas Umland has several new publications:
Ukraine’s Decentralization Reforms Since 2014 Initial Achievements and Future Challenges, published with the Chatham House.
Achievements and Prospects of Ukraine’s Decentralization Reforms Since 2014, published with Voxukraine.org
Ukrainian Local Governance Prior to Euromaidan: The Pre-History of Ukraine’s Decentralization Reform, published with the Kennan Institute
ARDU researchers will attend a conference at V. N. Kharkiv Karazin National University 10-11 October 2019 devoted to Fridtjof Nansen’s Activity in Ukraine. Aadne Aasland will be one of the keynote speakers.
10 members of the ARDU team will conduct field work in the Kharkiv and Chernivtsi oblasts in the period 12 – 25 October 2019.
Together with Valentyna Romanova, Andreas Umland just published the article Decentralising Ukraine: Geopolitical Implications in the journal Survival.
ARDU examines how ethnicity, language and regional-local identity interact within the context of political reform in Ukraine. The project’s main aim is to find out to what extent, and how, current Ukrainian decentralisation, education and language policies affect social cohesion among ethnocultural groups in two very different border regions. Kharkiv in the east and bordering Russia, has a sizable Russian ethnocultural population, while the western region of Chernivtsi borders Romania and comprises a substantial Romanian minority.