RJEX project update: Researchers discussed resilience, resistance and compliance at the Aleksanteri Conference

by Anniina Sonerva and Katja Lehtisaari

On 27 October, researchers of the project “Russian independent journalism in exile: in search of relevance and resilience” participated Aleksanteri Conference at the University of Helsinki with a panel “Resilience/Resistance/Compliance: Russian Journalistic and Activist Communities in Exile and in the Country”. Katja Lehtisaari chaired this panel on Russian journalistic and activist communities, with Elena Rodina and Olga Dovbysh presenting preliminary findings from the project on Russian independent journalism in exile.

The preliminary findings of the study highlight the struggle between immobility and forced mobility. Over 1000 journalists have left Russia since the invasion of Ukraine and despite relative stability, the journalists face several challenges, like uncertain futures and difficulty making long-term plans. “Professional identity serves as a vital resource for the journalists in exile, helping them maintain significance and agency”, Dovbysh said in the presentation.

Other panelists covered the subject matters from multiple perspectives: Françoise Daucé (EHESS/CERCEC, France) presented findings on the environment of distributed oppression and fragmented media, Ekaterina Kalinina (Stockholm University) reported results on the transformation of urban activism in Russia and rapidly evolving attitudes of activists and Jarmo Koponen (University of Helsinki) reported on the division of Russian-language media into Western and Russian versions.

The panelists presented previously unreleased research findings on Russian journalistic and activist communities, allowing the researchers to share their insights and foster informed dialogue on these subjects.

Read more project updates here.

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