Call for Papers. Finding a way forward in Ukraine: reform vs inertia in democratizing government and society

Online Conference Of the Research Initiative on Democratic Reforms in Ukraine  (RIDRU) Project

WHEN: November 15-16, 2017

08:30 to 16:00 (MST, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada)

WHERE: You may participate in this conference online from a location of your choice or join in discussions at Videoconference centres at the University of Alberta (Edmonton, Canada), MacEwan University (Edmonton, Canada), NAUKMA (Kyiv). Ukrainian Catholic University (Lviv) … and other locations (TBA).  Speakers are also invited to participate in face-to-face discussions at the University of Alberta, if desired.  (Unfortunately, no funding is available for travel to Edmonton or elsewhere.)

 WHO: scholars and graduate students whose research is closely related to the topics outlined below

 WHAT: We invite individual proposals on the following themes:

  • Democracy and the rule of law: reforms in the rule of law; reforms in student government; reforms of the national police, policing and law enforcement; reforms of the Office of Human Rights; controlling corruption; financing of political parties; electoral system reform; reform of the judiciary and courts; civil service reform; trust in government and legitimacy as revealed in public opinion surveys.
  • Language and culture in post-2014 Ukraine and its diaspora: multilingual Ukraine; linguistic and language transformations; language practices, attitudes, and beliefs; the language in the media and by the media; language and identity; literary and cultural movements; reforms in the cultural sphere; language shifts; language policies; language planning
  • Higher Education: reforms in higher education; effects of the 2014 Law on Higher Education; university autonomy; quality control; ranking systems; language in education; democratizing movements in education; inclusive education
  • Ukrainian national identity and its transformations after Euromaidan 2014 and issues of ethnic and territorial nationalism, patriotism and separatism in the context of nationalities, culture and language policies
  • Comparative studies between Ukraine and other nation states, especially in the Eastern Block and post-Soviet nations are welcome in all of the above areas.


  • Finding a way forward in Ukraine: reform vs inertia in democratizing government and society” aims to bring together researchers exploring change in Ukraine taking place since the 2014 Euromaidan Revolution.
  • Researchers in the following fields are invited to share ideas and views on the current issues in Ukraine: Ukrainian linguistics, social, cultural and literary transformations; higher education; student government; support for students with disabilities; politics and the rule of law.
  • Interdisciplinary connections and comparative studies are welcome.
  • Papers from this online polylogue may be revised and submitted for peer review to several peer-reviewed journals (titles to follow).
  • Final reports of the conference will be distributed to decision-makers in Ukraine.


  • All individual presentation proposals should be submitted for a peer review process to by July 9, 2017.
  • Successful applicants will be advised by August 15, 2017.

Proposal submissions should include:

  1. Name, affiliation and contact information of presenter(s)
  2. Title of the presentation
  3. 300-word abstract, including the language of presentation (English or Ukrainian)
  4. Theme to which the presentation is related
  5. Brief academic biography of the speaker (in a paragraph format of no more than 50 words)
  6. City/centre from which the presentation will be delivered

Note: Presenters will have 20 minutes maximum to present and will be expected to prepare a power point to accompany their talk for the online audience (details to follow).  Discussion will take place during talks via social media tools.


– For further information please direct queries to Dr. Olenka Bilash, the program committee chair at


  • There is no registration procedure and no registration fees for this online conference and all sessions will be archived for public access within two months of the conference.
  • Facebook and twitter will be active during the conference for commentary from participants around the world.

Important Dates:

Deadline for submissions: July 9, 2017

Notifications about proposals acceptance sent out: August 15, 2017

Conference: November 15-16, 2017

ABOUT RIDRU: RIDRU is supported by the Kule Institute of Advanced Studies (KIAS), Canada Ukraine Foundation(CUF), Alberta Foundation for Ukrainian Education Society (AFUES) , Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies (CIUS) and various international partners and explores three dimensions of the ongoing democratic reform of the government of Ukraine: good governance and the rule of law, post-secondary education reform and nationalities, culture and language policies (see details at: ).

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