The 25th Annual J.B. Rudnyckyj Distinguished Lecture took place on Thursday, March 8, 2018, in the University of Manitoba Archives & Special Collections. The guest lecturer for the event was, Dr. Andreas Umland. Dr. Umland began his talk, titled, Is 'Plural Peace' in Eastern Europe Realistic: Feasibility of a Grand Bargain with Putin's Russia from a Ukrainian View, with providing an overview of the current political situation with Ukraine, Russia and the European Union. One of the 'plural peace' suggested solutions discussed, concerned a German proposal which involved the permanent exclusion of Ukraine from either NATO or the EU. This proposal would involve changing the charters of both organizations, and would not be accepted by the Ukrainian side. Dr. Umland suggested that eventually a solution will be reached, but at some future point when Ukraine would be more secure and stable, and therefore have a greater say on what it would and would not accept in terms of a peace agreement.
Andreas Umland is a political scientist specializing in contemporary Russian and Ukrainian history. He holds an M.A. from Stanford University, M.Phil. from the University of Oxford, and Ph.Ds. from the University of Cambridge and Free University of Berlin. He has held fellow- or lectureships at the Hoover Institution, Harvard University, St. Antony's College, Urals State University, the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, the Catholic University of Eichstaett, and the University of "Kyiv-Mohyla Academy." Since 2014, Dr. Umland has been a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Cooperation in Kyiv, and a member of the Academic Advisory Council of the European Integration Committee of the Parliament of Ukraine. He has authored and edited numerous books and papers on Ukraine and Russia, and is general editor of the book series "Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society" published by ibidem Press at Stuttgart.
The well-received lecture had around the university and external communities in attendance. The talk was sponsored by the U of M Archives & Special Collections, the Slavic Collection (Elizabeth Dafoe Library), and the Department of German and Slavic Studies. Following the lecture, Andreas Umland continued to answer questions at the reception that followed his talk.