Episode 27

Russia’s war against Ukraine has shocked the world. Currently millions of Ukrainians have fled the country, while millions more are trapped under horrific circumstances. Thousands of civilians and soldiers have been killed and the scale of the humanitarian crisis continues to grow.   

On Thursday 17th March, our colleagues in the University’s School of Social and Political Sciences’ Central and Eastern European Studies and International Relations hosted a Q&A webinar on the subject of Russia’s war on Ukraine.  On this special episode of Spotlight, we bring you the recording of this webinar.

Among the topics discussed were the causes of the war; Russian brutality and the fight for freedom and democracy by Ukraine; Russia’s political system and relations with Russia; and are governments around the world doing enough?  



Dr Huseyn Aliyev, Lecturer in Central and East European Studies. Huseyn grew up in Russia but has deep personal and scholarly links with Ukraine- including family in the Chernihiv region. Before Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, he spent time embedded with paramilitary groups in Ukraine, and was examining military mobilisation in the country.  

Yelizaveta Rekhtman, PhD Student (Central and East European Studies). Liza is from Khmelnytskyi, Ukraine. Her PhD research focuses on the role of civil society in the transitional justice process in Ukraine. Before coming to Glasgow, Liza worked for a civil society NGO, trying to reach across the contact line in the Donbas region for productive dialogue.  

Dr Joanna Szostek, Lecturer in Political Communication (Politics). Joanna has extensive experience of studying mass media in Ukraine and Russia. Her research explores how Ukrainians respond to competing political narratives. She previously lived in Kyiv for 18 months, and in Russia for six years.  


Dr Ammon Cheskin, Senior Lecturer in Nationalism and Identity. Ammon’s research focuses primarily on Russian-speaking (non)identities outside Russia. He has previously published research on Russian soft power in Ukraine. He also teaches on Russian foreign policy.