Din04Dec.201819:30Het Pand, Onderbergen 1, Gent
Cerise lecture: Russian Interference in Europe Russian Interference in Europe: The Dilemma Between Addressing Exploitable Societal Vulnerabilities and Scapegoating Russia
Miriam Lexmann, IRI Beacon Project
This lecture seeks to inform the current discourse about what many analysts refer to as a “hybrid” warfare between the Russian Federation/Russia and the West. It will particularly focus on the EU’s security modalities with respect to Russia, and more precisely discuss the threat that stems from disinformation and Russian attempts to exploit existing societal vulnerabilities and democratic deficit for its geopolitical aims.
The lecture will argue that simply blaming and securitizing Russia for exploiting loopholes and gaps in our democratic system is insufficient, and merely exaggerates the challenge facing us. Instead, the answer requires a holistic approach that shifts away from the perception of disinformation as merely requiring technical solutions, such as fact-checking, or simply blaming internal or external actors such as Russia, and moves towards a deeper political debate on both the Member-States and European-level.
Miriam Lexmann is the Director of EU Regional Programmes of the International Republican Institute. Prior to that, she served as the Permanent Representative of the Slovak Parliament to the EU. As a Member of the Advisory Board of the University of Kent COMPASS project, Miriam advises academics and practitioners on research and programmes focusing on better governance and capacity-building in the EU neighborhood. Ms Lexmann regularly publishes on topics relating to international democracy support and Central and Eastern Europe. In her latest publications and lectures, Miriam captures various causes of disinformation and its eroding impact on liberal democracy. Miriam hold a master’s degree in Philosophy. You can follow her on Twitter @MiriamMLex.