Special Topics REECA: Social Media & Social Change in Russia

JSIS 589
  • Quarters: Spring, Autumn

Through a series of case studies and examination of contemporary social media issues, students will gain an understanding of the evolution of strategies, policies and tactics of use and counter-use of modern information and communication technologies, critical to the development of recent contentious political events in the post-Soviet region. Several cases will be considered in detail including the following: social media as a geopolitical battlefield: information wars against Estonia (2007), Georgia (2008), and Ukraine (2013-); “patriotic hackers” vs. the pro-democracy hacktivists: cases of the civil cyber- and info-warfare in Russia (2011-2012); the role of information and communication technologies in the (attempts of) color revolutions in Belarus (2001-2010), Kyrgyzstan (2005, 2010), Moldova (2009), and Ukraine (2000-2004, 2013-2014). Other topics will include the ongoing evolution of the Russian doctrines of informational security and the role of social media they describe, info-security components of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), and perspectives for social media and information security in the region.