The Nanovic Institute is pleased to announce the publication of “Belarus: Media Dissidences in the Face of Authoritarianism.” During the 2021-22 winter break, eight students—seven undergraduates and one Master of Global Affairs student—at the University of Notre Dame undertook this project, funded by the Nanovic Institute. This report is the result of that collaborative research and writing, conducted under the guidance of Bruna Celic, research program coordinator, and Anna Dolezal, student programs assistant manager. The writing process also benefited from the insights and guidance of Dr. Katherine Younger, research director, Ukraine in European Dialogue at the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM).
“Belarus: Media Dissidences in the Face of Authoritarianism” surveys defining points in Belarusian history, from the Belarussian Socialist Republic up to the fall of the USSR. It also oulines and analyzes the environment and tactics that allowed President Alexander Lukashenko to rise to legitimate power, and subsequently transition to autocracy. The report then asks questions about how the media influenced resistance to Lukashenko's autocratic rule, arguing that alternative forms of media on the internet offer a space for opposition that the state-run media would otherwise censor. Finally, the report explores how the U.S. and EU governments should respond and seeks to provide policy recommendations to develop a more democratic Belarus. The Nanovic Institute congratulates all of those involved in this project.
The students will also present their findings at a poster session on Thursday, February 10 at 12 p.m. in 1050 Jenkins Nanovic Halls.