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The Transition of Ukraine’s Energy: from Part of the Soviet Economy Towards a United Europe (with Andrian Prokip)
September 13, 2022 @ 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
Please join us for another lecture in the Ukrainian Energy Studies series! The Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022 has confirmed not only the centrality of energy to the war, but also the importance of Ukraine to global energy policy, with its far-reaching economic, environmental, and cultural consequences. This interdisciplinary series, co-organized by the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia at NYU and the East European, Russian, Caucasian, and Central Asian Faculty Network at the University of Colorado Boulder, will explore the concept of energy as a shaping force in Ukrainian cultural and political history; the aesthetics of particular energy sources (fossil fuels, nuclear energy, renewables) in Ukrainian literature, film, and other media; the Russia-Ukraine energy nexus; Ukrainian energy markets; and environmental effects of energy production, consumption, and catastrophe.
Ukraine’s energy sector was an essential part of the Soviet economy and a kind of a springboard for the USSR’s energy expansion to Europe. The dissolution of the Soviet Union broke this system, but for decades Russia has been trying to save its dominance over Ukraine, including its energy infrastructure. Ukraine, in turn, was taking steps to release Russia’s dominance and become closer to Europe. But the path was not smooth, in part because of the obstacles Russia was creating, and its political agents in Ukraine’s politics. Ukraine’s energy sector transformation was complicated by populism and paternalism, difficulties transitioning from a command economy to a market economy, oligarchs, rent-seeking and corruption. The invasion Russia started on February 24 has broken any illusion that the Kremlin gave up on using its energy weapon. But it was another severe push for the Ukrainian energy sector to break with Russia and deepen its integration with the European Union. The history of Ukrainian energy is a perfect example of the fact that energy is still deeply tied to international competition and geopolitics. This webinar will go through all these developments in the last 30 years of Ukraine’s independence.
Watch the event recording on YouTube here.
Andrian Prokip is the director of the Energy Program at the Ukrainian Institute for the Future (an independent think tank in Kyiv) and serves as a senior associate at the Kennan Institute (Woodrow Wilson Center, Washington DC). He has held fellowships in the USA, received his Ph.D. in 2010, and habilitation in 2019. Dr. Prokip regularly publishes op-eds in US and EU-based publications tracking changes and reforms in the Ukrainian energy sector and general changes in the country as well.