Russia Today 2012 - Speakers

Russia Today: Economy, Technology, and People

Friday, March 23 - Sunday, March 25, 2012

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Harley Balzer, Government and International Affairs, Georgetown University
Harley Balzer is Associate Professor in the Department of Government and School of Foreign Service, and an Associated Faculty member of the History Department at Georgetown University. Prior to coming to Georgetown he taught at Grinnell College and Boston University, and held post‑doctoral fellowships at Harvard's Russian Research Center and the MIT Program in Science, Technology and Society. In 1982-83 he spent a year as a Congressional Fellow in the office of Congressman Lee Hamilton.

In 1992-93 he served as Executive Director and Chairman of the Board of the International Science Foundation, George Soros's largest program to aid the former Soviet Union. From 1998 to 2009, he was a member of the Governing Council of the Basic Research and Higher Education (BRHE) Program, funded by the MacArthur Foundation, Carnegie Corporation and Russian Ministry of Education. BRHE Established 16 Research and Education Centers at Russian Universities. Dr. Balzer is a member of the Board of Trustees of the European University at St. Petersburg.

Dr. Balzer's research interests include comparative authoritarianism, focusing on Russia and China; science and technology; education; and social history. His publications include /Soviet Science on the Edge of Reform/ (1989); /Five Years That Shook the World: Gorbachev's Unfinished Revolution/ (1991), which was named a CHOICE outstanding academic book; and /Russia's Missing Middle Class: The Professions in Russian History/ (1996). Current writing projects include a comparative study of Russian and Chinese interaction with the global economy; a book on current Russian politics; a monograph on Russian higher education over the past century; and a study of the middle class after communism.

Alfred Evans
Alfred B. Evans, Jr. is Professor Emeritus of Political Science at California State University, Fresno.  He is the author of Soviet Marxism-Leninism: The Decline of an Ideology (Praeger, 1993), and an editor of thee books, including Change and Continuity in Russian Civil Society: A Critical Assessment (with Laura Henry and Lisa McIntosh Sundstrom; M. E. Sharpe, 2006).  He has published many book chapters and articles in scholarly journals.  His current research focuses on civil society in Russia, with particular emphasis on organizations that engage in public protests.

Jonathan Harris, Political Science, University of Pittsburgh
Professor Jonathan Harris has taught courses in international relations, comparative politics, and on Soviet and Russian foreign and domestic policies at the University of Pittsburgh since the mid 1960s. He has also served as the editor of the Russian and East European Series for the Universityof Pittsburgh Press since the mid 1980s. His most recent books are Subverting the System: Gorbachev's reform of the Party's Apparat, 1986-1991 and The Split in Stalin's Secretariat, 1939-1948. He has recently begun research on decision making during the reign of N.S. Khrushchev. Professor Harris is a regular speaker for the World Affairs Council in Pittsburgh and has often commented on Russian affairs for KDKA-TTV, KQV NewsRadio and KPFA in San Francisco. Professor has travelled widely in the USSR and the Russian Federation and worked briefly for the Eurasian Foundation as an observer of Russian local politics. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University and received a Certificate from the Russian Institute, MIAfrom the School of International Affairs and a PhD in political science from Columbia University.

Andrew Konitzer
Andrew Konitzer is Associate Director of the Center for Russian and East European Studies and Adjunct Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Pittsburgh. He specializes in electoral institutions, party politics, voting behavior, European Union enlargement and issues of democratic decentralization and federalism within post-communist states. His publications include the book Voting for Russia’s Governors: Regional Elections and Accountability under Yeltsin and Putin (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2006) and articles in such journals as Europe-Asia Studies, Post-Soviet Affairs, Publius: The Journal of Federalism, East European Politics and Societies and Electoral Studies.

Svitlana Maksymenko
Svitlana Maksymenko is a Lecturer at the Department of Economis, University of Pittsburgh. She received a Ph.D. in Economics from Temple University in 2006. Dr. Maksymenko has been Edmund Muskie Academic Fellow in 2001-2006. Her research interests  include developing economies and economies of Central and Eastern Europe.

William O'Rourke
Bill O'Rourke retired from Alcoa in September, 2011. He serves on the Board of the Alcoa Foundation and teaches "Values" at the Alcoa Exective Development Programs. He joined Alcoa as a Patent Attorney in 1975 and held a number of leadership positions including Vice President, Environment, Health & Safety and Sustainability, Vice President of Global Business Services, Chief Information Officer, Vice President of Procurement, Corporate Auditor, Assistant General Counsel and Corporate Patent Counsel. From 2005 to 2008 Bill was the President of Alcoa-Russia.
Bill is now the Director of Ethics at the Beard Institute in the Palumbo-Donahue School of Business at Duquesne University. He is also a Fellow of the Wheatley Institution in the Marriott School of Business at Brigham Young University. He is the Board Chair of Sustainable Pittsburgh, and serves on a number of other civic, charitable and religious organizations.

Konstantin Simonov

Judy Twigg, Government and Public Affairs, Virginia Commonwealth University
Judy Twigg is a professor at the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). She is also a senior associate (non-resident) with the Russia and Eurasia Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), where she directs the Eurasia Health Project; consultant to the World Bank and U.S. federal government; and adjunct associate professor at the Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.  Her work focuses on issues of health, demographic change, and health systems reform in Russia, as well as evaluations of health reform and communicable disease control projects across the former Soviet Union, sub-Saharan Africa, and other parts of the world. She co-chaired the Public Health Working Group of the Civil Society Summits that took place during the Obama-Medvedev presidential summits in 2009 and 2010, and is currently the co-chair of both the Public Health Working Group and the overall Steering Committee for the follow-on US-Russia Civil Society Partnership Program. She is also serving as a member of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s Public-Private Task Force to support the Health Working Group of the US-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission.  She has testified as an expert witness before the U.S. Congress and has been a member of several congressional and other U.S. government advisory groups on Russian affairs. She was one of 12 recipients of the 2005 State Council on Higher Education in Virginia’s Distinguished Faculty Award.  Judy is the faculty liaison for VCU’s ongoing partnerships with Moscow State University and St. Petersburg State University in Russia.  She holds a B.S. in physics from Carnegie Mellon University, an M.A. in political science and Soviet studies from the University of Pittsburgh, and a Ph.D. in political science and security studies from MIT.

Sponsored by:
University of Pittsburgh: Global Studies Center, Center for Russian and East European StudiesKatz Graduate School of Business, the Swanson School of Engineering, International Business Center,
Carnegie Mellon University: H. John Heinz III CollegeOffice of the ProvostDivision of Student Affairs