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The Zelensky Phenomenon: From Where Did It Come and Where Will It Lead

Adrian Karatnycky (Atlantic Council) will give a talk about Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian comedian-turned-president, and how his electoral triumph was possible.

Volodymyr Zelensky applauding himself after winning the presidential election in Ukraine. Red confetti in the upper left corner. People applauding all around him.
Photo: Stepan Franko/EPA

From comedian to president

Volodymyr Zelensky's rapid ascent from satirist and comedian to president of a strategically important country, Ukraine, is one of the most remarkable developments in the history of post-Soviet Europe. How and why did Zelensky emerge? What were the forces that drew him to the apex of power in war-ravaged Ukraine? And in what direction is he likely to lead a crucial state facing challenges of reform amid external aggression?

Where and when

November 29, 2.15 PM, Store møterom, Georg Sverdrups hus. Tea and coffee will be served. All interested are welcome.

About the speaker

Adrian Karatnycky is a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States, and the former President of Freedom House. He is also the former co-director of the Council on Foreign Relations Task Force on the US and the United Nations. Karatnycky has co-authored and edited over twenty books about the post-Communist countries and their reforms, and writes regularly for Foreign Affairs, the Washington Post, Newsweek and the Wall Street Journal.


Centre for Slavic and Eastern European Studies, in collaboration with Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI) and the Norwegian-Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce (NUCC).

Published Sep. 23, 2019 12:34 PM - Last modified Oct. 14, 2019 5:35 PM