Monterey Summer Symposium on Russia 2021

REES students Marguerite ChapmanSophie Jaeger, Nadya Kamenkovich and Tina Maglakelidze (MSc 2020-21) joined a cohort of fellows on the Monterey Summer Symposium on Russia this summer. From practicing TV interview skills with Matthew Rojansky and Jill Dougherty to analyzing the history of empires with Dominic Lieven of Cambridge University and practicing diplomatic writing with former U.S. ambassadors to Russia, this year’s fellows engaged enthusiastically with the MSSR curriculum, completing over 140 hours of coursework in Russian and English.


MSSR 2021 fellows explored the geopolitical implications of climate change with Gov. Jerry Brown and Anatol Lieven and discussed nuclear strategy and foreign policy with Rose GottemoellerAlexei ArbatovDmitri Trenin, and Ambassador John Beyrle. They participated in high-stakes negotiation simulations with the Negotiation Task Force (NTF) at Harvard University’s Davis Center and conversed with Novaya Gazeta journalist Elena Kostyuchenko about the front lines of the conflict in Ukraine. From the opening panel featuring Dr. Richard Haass, this year's cohort excelled in the Symposium’s central mission to generate a nuanced understanding of Russia and to develop a pragmatic Russia-related discourse. 


The REES students who attended will join a far-reaching alumni network and remain in conversation with the experts they encountered. This summer, MSSR alumna Hanna Notte (2017) presented on Russian interests and strategies in the Middle East, and alumna Taylor Valley (2017) led the Harvard NTF workshops with Dr. Arvid Bell. The MSSR network will be there to support the 2021 fellows well beyond the Symposium’s close.


In addition to bringing the leading experts from Russia, Eurasia, Europe, and the United States to share their work at MSSR, selecting exceptional fellows, like the 2021 fellows from REES, from a pool of qualified applicants enables the Monterey Symposium to continue forging the connections that will determine the future direction of discourse and policy on Russia.


You can access all available videos of MSSR 2021 lectures through their YouTube channel here.


sophie jaeger

“MSSR 2021 was a truly unforgettable experience for me. Over the course of several weeks, the symposium brought together a large number of experts and practitioners from different disciplinary backgrounds which enabled the fellows to immerse themselves deeply in the multifaceted field of Russian studies.” Sophie, REES MPhil.







marguerite chapman


“The resources, connections and deep area-studies knowledge that I acquired throughout the symposium make it nothing short of an eye-opening experience. Diverse opportunities such as the diplomatic writing workshop, the Harvard Negotiation Bootcamp, and the chance to mediate lively discussions with leading scholars and practitioners, have proved invaluable to my professional development. Seldom do you learn so much about the world- and yourself- in such a short amount of time.” Marguerite, REES MPhil