2019/07/23 Decoding Russia: Defining Russia – Russian Trauma

23 July 2019, 12:00 – 12:30 (GMT +3 Moscow time)

Often when I write something positive about Russia I receive negative reactions from Russians. “You guest of Russia with your exalted views, you don’t know what it is really like to live in Russia”. I understand this reaction. It is annoying when foreigners express their views on your country. Especially if these views seem one-sided. My views may seem one-sided because I try to look at the positive sides of Russia, even though in the last 25 years of living and working in Russia I have personally experienced many of Russia’s negative sides. I have had to defend my interests in court too often, I have seen the inside of holding cells at police stations and I have been cheated out of more assets than I like to remember; just to name a few negative things of the top of my mind. Nevertheless, when I become angry at anything that goes wrong in Russia I remind myself of a wise saying, the origin of which I do not know. “Don’t judge, you never know what storm someone has been through”. When I look at Russia’s history of the 21st and the 20th centuries, and when I look at the individual histories of my Russian friends then the “storms” that define these histories are unimaginable to someone who was born and raised in the comfort, stability and safety of The Netherlands.

In this webinar we will discuss the “storms” that raged in Russia’s and Russians’ history and we will think what these storms should mean for the judgement foreigners and Russians alike pass on Russia.

2019/06/13 Decoding Russia: Defining Russia – Contradictions

13 June 2019 12:00 – 12:30 (GMT +3 Moscow time)

“Whatever you say about Russia, the opposite is always true as well”

In Russia one is always wrong and always right and the key to successfully thriving in Russia is to know exactly what is the right or the wrong way to act at any given moment. This may seem like an easy task at first, but in a country that is defined by opposites and contradictions, most foreigners, and many Russians as well, struggle to deal with the daily contradictory Russian reality.

2019/05/22 Decoding Russia: Defining Russia – The Russian Soul

22 May 2019 12:00 – 12:20 (GMT +3 Moscow time)

The easy part of defining Russia consists of understanding its history, culture, politics, economy, ethnicity, religion. The hard part of defining Russia is understanding everything else. The “Decoding Russia” webinar series helps you to understand this “everything else”. The 4th webinar “Defining Russia – The Russian Soul” will shed a light on the mysterious Russian Soul.

2019/04/23 Decoding Russia: What do we know about Russia?

Tuesday 23rd of April 2019
12:00 – 12:15 (Moscow time GMT+3)

About the webinar

Vodka, freezing cold, mafia, grey streets, grim faces and wild bears. This is the predominant view foreigners have of Russia. Although there is part truth in this view, Russia also has a bright, beautiful and positive side. During this webinar Jeroen will shine a light on Russia from different angles. Showing the positive and the negative and explaining how we can stop assuming and start knowing about Russia.


2019/04/05 Decoding Russia: What makes Russia difficult?​

Friday 5th of April 2019

About the webinar

In the webinar Jeroen Ketting discusses the following topics:

  1. Objectively considered Russia is a difficult place to live and work.
  2. But whether it all becomes gloomy depends on how well you understand Russia’s challenges and how well you are able to deal with them.
  3. There are two types of challenges – specific and generic challenges.
  4. So, what to do? One of the answers Jeroen gave is to learn to effectively apply the Serenity prayer by Reinhold Niehbur:
  • God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
  • Courage to change the things I can,
  • And wisdom to know the difference.