Dr Joanna Szostek

Personal profile

I am a postdoctoral researcher, currently funded by a three-year Marie Skłodowska Curie (MSC) fellowship from the European Commission.

My research interests centre on the role of mass media in relations between states, particularly in the post-Soviet region. My MSC project is designed to assess and explain the reception of rival narratives about international politics among different groups of Ukrainians. It aims thereby to shed light on how influence works (or fails to work) through mass communication in international relations. The project incorporates secondments to Kyiv Mohyla Academy (September 2015 to March 2017) and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (April 2017 to August 2017). Research from the project is published in Perspectives on Politics and The International Journal of Press/Politics. For more details see www.stratnarra.eu or follow @Stratnarra on Twitter.

Before joining Royal Holloway I held a postdoctoral fellowship at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, University College London. During that two-year fellowship I conducted a study of media use and geopolitical imaginations among university students in Moscow. The study used original survey and interview data to demonstrate a clear association between use of state-aligned media and agreement with the Kremlin's 'strategic narrative' about the West (findings are published in New Media & Society, Geopolitics and Europe-Asia Studies).

My doctoral research (at the University of Oxford, 2009-2013) investigated factors which shape news reporting about Russia in Ukraine and Belarus. I looked at the role which 'news exports' play in Russian foreign policy, highlighting obstacles to Moscow's regional 'soft power' ambitions. Work from my thesis is published in Communist and Post-Communist Studies, East European Politics & Societies and Geopolitics.

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