Journalism and Journalists in Russia Today
Anna Sharogradskaia, Director, Regional Press Institute, St. Petersburg
Friday, April 19, 2019
Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E St NW

Why does Vladimir Pozner, a distinguished Russian journalist, say, “There are journalists in Russia but there is no journalism”? The implications can only be understood by those who are familiar with the opportunities provided for creative professionals in Russia. Freedom of the press is essential for democracy; however in Russia media and the government are one entity under existing law. This results in conformity, self–censorship, and reluctance to admit responsibility or even provide much information about the issue. Under these conditions, most conventional and new schools of journalism openly declare that propaganda has replaced journalism as the most relevant method of informing the media audience.

Anna Sharogradskaia is the director of the Regional Press Institute (RPI) in St. Petersburg (originally the Russian-American Press and Information Center) which recently celebrated its 25th anniversary. Despite multiple attacks and continuous harassment by the Russian authorities, throughout the years the Institute has contributed to the reshaping of the Russian mass media and raising a new generation of dedicated journalists, committed to upholding human rights and challenging injustice. Presently RPI is involved in international and regional projects, including Muckrakers – Russia on investigative journalism, the Independent Press Center and New Schools of Journalism.

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