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Research Interests

In recent years I have focused on two research topics. First is research into the sociology of elites, power and social inequality, and, second, comparative research into media and journalism in post-communist Europe. 

Rich Russians

My book Rich Russians: From Oligarchs to Bourgeoisie (Oxford University Press 2018) looks at the top 0.1 percent in Putin's Russia. It is built around stories, picked from a sample of 80 interviews which I conducted with multimillionaires and billionaires, their spouses and their children. The chapters discuss their family histories, biographies, lifestyles, how they see their role and position on top of Russian society – as entrepreneurs, philanthropists, wives, heirs, etc. – and how they relate to the West. 

Reviews appeared, for example, in the Financial Times and in The Guardian

In a follow-up project, a Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship, I compared the practices of British and Russian philanthropists. Findings from this research have been published in a special journal issue on the super-rich (2019) and a book chapter of a volume which I co-edited (2019). 

I discussed gender-related question in more detail in a 2018 book I co-edited.

Post-communist journalism and self-censorship 

The second strand of my research deals with post-communist journalism, which I carry out together with Ilya Yablokov from the University of Leeds. This research started in Russia and then expanded to Eastern Europe. We have just completed a special issue for the European Journal of Communication on self-censorship and professional ethics in the former Eastern Bloc. It includes our article on self-censorship in Hungary and Latvia, the research for which was funded through a small research grant from the British Academy. 

An updated version of our first co-authored article was republished in a volume on Mass Media in the Post-Soviet World (2018). 

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, University of Manchester

Award Date: 6 Jun 2012


  • HM Sociology
  • elites
  • social inequality
  • Russia
  • philanthropy
  • wealth
  • media
  • journalism
  • self-censorship
  • bourgeoisie
  • billionaires
  • DK Russia. Soviet Union. Former Soviet Republics
  • elites
  • intelligentsia
  • PG Slavic, Baltic, Albanian languages and literature
  • Russian


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