International Relations Research News

The Webster Vienna Private University International Relations department is excited to host visiting researchers, Dr. Aliya Tskhay and Dr. Elena Zhirukhina, for a series of international relations workshops this summer.

As participants in the Erasmus+ program, Dr. Tskhay and Dr. Zhirukhina will be visiting WVPU from the Academy of Public Administration under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan to each offer a four-part lecture workshop regarding their respective research fields. By partaking in the Erasmus+ program, Webster Vienna not only enhances its internationalization strategy, but visiting scholars will have the chance to meet and discuss possible research projects with IR faculty.

Dr. Aliya Tskhay
Dr. Tskhay’s areas of specialization are energy policies in the Caspian region and identity politics in Central Asia. Currently, Dr. Tskhay is involved in policy-related and consultancy work for international organizations and national governments on issues related to Central Asian region and security in wider Europe.

Dr. Tskhay’s workshop, titled “Comparative Regionalism: Ideas, identities and institutions”, investigate the interplay of regional cooperation, institutions, identities and processes. Special attention is given into the details of how regional institutions are established and managed, how the construction of regional identities helps to sustain regional integration processes, and the decision-making process to participate in multiple regional projects.

Dr. Elena Zhirukhina
Dr. Elena Zhirukhina holds a lecture position at the Institute of Diplomacy at the Academy of Public Administration under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan and a research affiliation with the University of St Andrews. Previously, Elena investigated state practices of countering irregular threats as Marie Curie Fellow at the School of International Relations of the University of St Andrews and worked for a research institution under the umbrella of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Zhirukhina’s workshop, titled “Regulating irregular conflicts: (inter-)national frameworks and mechanisms”, explores countering irregular adversaries including global, regional and national frameworks through engaging with debate on pressing security issues of fighting financing of terrorism, dealing with foreign fighters and lone actors terrorism, application of ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ state practices. The workshop consists of three thematic sessions focused on (1) theories and methods, (2) global and regional frameworks, (3) national frameworks.

Workshop info:
Dr. Tskhay’s “Comparative Regionalism: Ideas, identities and institutions”
June 28th and 29th, July 3rd and 4th from 9:30 – 13:30 / Room 3.01

Dr. Zhirukhina’s “Regulating irregular conflicts: (inter-)national frameworks and mechanisms”
June 26th and 27th, July 5th and 6th from 9:30 – 13:30 / Room 3.01

If you would like to attend, please RSVP by June 22, 2018, via email to