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Regular version of the site

Programme Faculty

Leading university professors, lecturers and research associates as well as visiting faculty take a part in teaching our programme. Professionally they are all engaged in applied history and make use of interdisciplinary approaches to history in varying degrees; they all have a very good working knowledge of English, are actively involved in international academic life and have been published in foreign journals.

Head of the programme:

Julia Lajus

Candidate of Science in History, Associate Professor, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Department of History, research interests in environmental and technological history, history of science, polar history, contemporary history, studies of cultural – natural heritage, urban history, digital history


Julia Lajus has a good experience of doing research and teaching abroad. She is a member of the editorial board of two international journals and serves as vice-president of the European Society of Environmental History (ESEH). During the last 10 years she participated in several global research projects funded by international foundations, including the European Science Foundation. In 2009-2010 she worked as a Marie Curie Research Fellow at the University of Birmingham, UK (funded by the mobility programme of the European Commission). She presented her research not only at many conferences but gave invited seminar talks and lectures for students at numerous foreign universities including the University of New Hampshire and Florida State University (USA); Wilfrid Laurier University (Canada); the University of Birmingham, Cambridge University, Royal Holloway, the University of London and University of Glasgow (UK); University of Arhus (Denmark); Royal Institute of Technology and Sodertorn University (Sweden); the University of Klagenfurt (Austria). Her research interests include environmental history, especially the history of biological resources in marine and polar areas, and the history of field sciences such as marine biology, fisheries, oceanography or geophysic, and finally the history of the Russian Arctic in comparative and transnational perspective. Julia Lajus published seven papers in international journals and more than ten chapters in monographs with leading international publishers (with a total number of publications above 60). She has further organized and co-organized 5 international conferences and 2 international summer schools. For the MA programme Julia Lajus prepared several courses in English, one of them - “Technology, Environment and Science in the Soviet Union” – which she has previously taught at the European University at St. Petersburg. For more information about Julia visit the webpage


Faculty members:

Adrian Selin

Professor, Doctor of Science in History, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History


Adrian Selin is interested in transnational history of the Baltic region, border studies in history, practices of management of archaeological and cultural heritage. Adrian Selin has extensive experience not only in historical but also in archaeological research. For many years he organized and conducted archaeological excavations and scientific research in Staraya Ladoga and is a member of the Research Center “Petroscandica”. He is involved in intensive international cooperation with European, especially Scandinavian, historians and archaeologists and has been awarded several scholarships within the Visby Programme for conducting research in Sweden. For the Program Adrian Selin is developing courses on politics of historical and archaeological heritage, on spatial and cross-border history in the Baltic region and others. For more information about Adrian visit the webpage

Alexander Semyonov

Professor, PhD, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History


Alexander M. Semyonov, Ph.D. in history, Professor of History, Chair, History department, National Research University-Higher School of Economics in St. Petersburg. Co-founder and co-editor of the international scholarly journal: Ab Imperio: Studies of New Imperial History and Nationalism in the Post Soviet Space and member of the editorial board of the book series "New Boundaries" with "New Publishing House", Moscow. Semyonov was a Visiting Scholar at the W. Averell Harriman Institute, Columbia University (USA), Research Fellow at the Center for European Studies, Rutgers University (USA), Research Fellow at Johannes Gutenberg University (Mainz, Germany). He taught Russian imperial history as associate visiting professor at the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, USA) and University of Chicago (USA), where he also was appointed a Mellon Foundation European Scholar Fellow. He is the chair of the research seminar “The Boundaries of History” in St. Petersburg. He currently is an editorial board member of the international research project Russia’s Great War and Revolution and co-directs with Ronald Suny the international research project “Comparative Historical Studies of Empire and Nationalism”.

Semyonov’s research interests include modern history of the Russian Empire, comparative history of imperial liberalisms, global, comparative, and transnational history of empires and colonialisms, theory of nationalism and empire, history writing and production of social knowledge in the context of politics of diversity. He edited and authored: New Imperial History of thePost-Soviet Space (Kazan: Center for the Study of Empire and Nationalism, 2004) Empire Speaks Out: Languages of Rationalization and Self-Description in the Russian Empire (Leiden, Boston: Brill, 2009), in English; Myths and Misconceptions in Studies of Nationalism and Empire (Moscow: Novoe Izdatel’stvo, 2010), in Russian. Recent publications include: “Russian Liberalism in Imperial Context,” Matthew Fitzpatrick, ed., Liberal Imperialism (Palgrave Macmillan, 2012); (coauthored with Ilya Gerasimov and Marina Mogilner) “Russian Sociology in Imperial Context,” George Steinmetz, ed., Sociology and Empire (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2013), in English. For more information about Alexander visit the webpage.

Ronald Suny

PhD, University of Michigan, USA, Head of the international project of the Center for Historical Research HSE St. Petersburg


Professor Suny is a world-renowned historian with an admirable breadth of interests across the Eurasian field in both spatial and temporal terms. Professor Suny’s intellectual interests have centered on the non-Russian nationalities of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, particularly those of the South Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia). Professor Suny is particularly noted for his studies of the social history of the 1917 revolution, the history of the Caucasus in the Russian Empire, Soviet Union and post-Soviet period. This research resulted in the following monographs: The Baku Commune, 1917-1918 (Princeton University Press, 1972); The Making of the Georgian Nation (Indiana University Press, 1988, 1994); Looking Toward Ararat: Armenia in Modern History (Indiana University Press, 1993); The Revenge of the Past (Stanford University Press, 1993); The Soviet Experiment (Oxford University Press, 1998). His historical research on nationalism and empire in Russian and Soviet history and in comparative perspective resulted in the following mostly noted by scholars books: A State of Nations: Empire and Nation-making in the Age of Lenin and Stalin (Oxford University Press, 2001), A Question of Genocide: Armenians and Turks at the End of the Ottoman Empire (Oxford University Press, 2011) and recently published "They Can Live in the Desert but Nowhere Else": A History of the Armenian Genocide (Princeton University Press, 2015).

Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov

Associate Professor, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History, PhD (Stanford University, USA)


Dr. Nikolai Ssorin-Chaikov joined the HSE after teaching social anthropology at Cambridge in 2001-2015. He graduated in History/Ethnography from Moscow State University (1987), and received MA (1991) and PhD (1998) in Anthropology from Stanford University. He specializes in Siberia and Russia, but also has carried out research in Britain and the United States. Research interests include anthropology and history of the state and governance, exchange theory, time, anthropology of aesthetics, and history of anthropology. Publications include The Topography of happiness: ethnographic contours of modernity (in Russian: Topografia schastia: etnograficheskie karty moderna) Moscow: New Literary Observer Publishers 2013; Gifts to Soviet leaders. Exhibition Catalogue. Moscow: Pinakotheke 2006, and The Social Life of the State in Subarctic Siberia Stanford: Stanford University Press 2003. 

Nathan Marcus

Associate Professor, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History, PhD (New York University, USA)


Dr. Nathan Marcus joined HSE-SPb in 2014. He received his Ph.D. in Modern European History from New York University in 2011 after completing his dissertation, ‘Credibility, Confidence and Capital: Austrian reconstruction and the collapse of global finance 1921–1931’. He holds a B.A. in History and Economics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Nathan Marcus is interested in economic and financial history. At New York University he held recitations for undergraduate courses in Modern European History, the History of the Middle East, India and the British Empire. Apart from Financial History, his research interests lie in the field of History of Sports and Nationalism.
For more information about Nathan visit the webpage

Christopher Gerry

PhD (University of Essex, United Kingdom), Professor of Health Economics, Academic Director of the School of Social Sciences and Humanities, Chair of the Internationalization Steering Group, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg




Professor Chris J. Gerry joined HSE-SPb after 12 years at the University College London (UCL) School of Slavonic and East European Studies (London, UK), where he was Senior Lecturer in Health Economics, Deputy Director of the Department and Director of the IMESS International Masters Consortium.

Professor Gerry’s research focuses on health and well-being in Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia, a field in which he has produced significant publications in leading international outlets. His areas of interest include Health Behaviours, Public Health Policy, Health Economics, Health Care Management, Labour Economics, Health Systems, Applied Econometrics, Economics and Political Economy. He is author of 31 publications. At HSE he teaches the following courses: "Public Choice & Public Policy", "Applied Health Economics", "Social Problems & Contemporary Society: Health".

Aleksandra Bekasova

Associate Professor, Candidate of Science in History, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History


Aleksandra Bekasova is interested in mobility studies, technological history, urban history. For more information about Alexandra visit the webpage.

Tatiana Borisova

Associate Professor, Candidate of Science in History, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History


Tatiana Borisova is Associate Professor at National Research University Higher School of Economics, SPB.  In 2015/16 she is a Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, where she is co-convenor (with Jane Burbank) of the ambitious research project “Russia: Rule of Law in Question”. The project studies long-term continuities and breaks in development of the Russian legal tradition. She studied history and law in St-Petersburg, Tampere and Leiden, and wrote her doctoral thesis in History on  political struggle on law-making and codification in Russia, 1905-1917 (Institute of History Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, 2005). Her scholarly interests include political, legal, and social history of imperial and Soviet Russia, and comparative legal history of the 19th- and 20th-century. She has published articles on development of Russian legal tradition, elitist concepts of legality, and transformation of the language of law in revolutionary period of 1905-1918. In light of her interest in ‘contemporary legal history’ she was a participant of international practice-oriented research projects (“Flexibility in Contracts,” “Research School in Law'). She was also involved in studies of the Cold-war jurisprudence and co-edited  a volume entitled The Legal Dimension in Cold-War Interactions: Some Notes from the Field (Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Boston, Leiden,  2012)(with William B. Simons).

Currently she is working on a monograph provisionally entitled: The Taming of Law in the Autocratic Empire: Legal Techniques and the People in 19th and early 20th Century Russia. Her second book project is Guns and Regulations: Social History of Russian Law. Dr. Borisova has been a Fellow at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, the Centre for Socio-Legal Research, Oxford University, Berg Institute of Legal History, Tel Aviv University, New York University Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia. For more information about Tatiana visit the webpage

Marina Loskutova

Associate Professor, PhD, Higher School of Economics, Saint-Petersburg, Faculty of History


Marina Loskutova studied history at the Saint-Petersburg State University and the University of Essex, received her Ph.D. from the Central European University, Budepast, and was a Jean-Monnet Postdoctoral Fellow at the European University-Institute, Florence. Marina Loskutova is interested in history of science, environmental history, oral history. She authored and editered a number of books and articles in Russian, English and Italian on oral history, social history of education and history of science. The Institute for the History of Science and Technology at the Russian Academy of Sciences awarded her with a badge of honour "For a Contribution to the History of Science and Technology". For more information about Marina visit the webpage.

Ivan Sablin

Senior Lecturer, PhD


Ivan Sablin is interested in transnational and global history, digital history. For more information about Ivan visit the webpage.



Evgeny Khvalkov

PhD (European Unoversity Institute, Florence), Senior Lecturer


Dr. Evgeny Khvalkov joined HSE-SPb in 2015. He received Ph.D. in History and Civilisation from European University Institute, Florence after completing his dissertation, ‘The colonies of Genoa in the Black Sea region: evolution and transformation’. He holds his undergraduate degree in History from the Lomonosov Moscow State University and his M.A. degree in Medieval Studies from the Central European University (Budapest).
Dr. Evgeny Khvalkov's research interests include medieval and early modern history, Mediterranean Studies, Renaissance Studies, Classical and Byzantine Studies. Evgeny Khvalkov is interested in history of the overseas colonies of the Republic of Genoa, as well as in a broader range of subjects linked to the Medieval Studies.

Elena Alekseevna Kochetkova

Senior Lecturer, Junior Research Fellow


Elena Kochetkova is a senior lecturer of the department of history and a fellow of the Center for Historical Research. Currently, she is a doctoral candidate of the University of Helsinki and a member of the Doctoral Program in Russian, Eurasian and East European History at the Aleksanteri Institute (Finland). Elena was a recipient of an international award in technological history given by Karen Johnson Freeze Foundation and a fellow of Germany Historical Institute in Moscow. She is also a member of the management committee of the international network of the history of technology "Tensions of Europe".

Her research interests include technological and environmental history of XX century, Soviet history, Cold War, and international cooperation in science, technology, and culture. Among her recent publications are "The Soviet-Finnish Forestry Cooperation in the Soviet Near-Border Area and Technology Transfer between 1953-1964" In Culture, Languages, History: Integration and Border Crossing. Studia Humaniora et paedogogica collegii narovensis ed. by Nina Raud and Olga Burdakova, Narva, 2014, pp. 37-48 and "Seeing the Forest and the Trees: Western Technology Transfer and Soviet Engineers, 1955-1964," In Technology and Culture (will be published in July 2016). For more information about Elena visit the webpage