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Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
Brussels

Crisis Group Role

As Crisis Group’s Program Director for Europe and Central Asia, Olga Oliker leads the organisation’s research, analysis, policy prescription and advocacy in and about Russia, Europe, Turkey, the Caucasus, and Central Asia. Oliker’s own research interests center on the foreign and security policies of Russia, Ukraine, and the Central Asian and Caucasian successor states to the Soviet Union, domestic politics in these countries, U.S. policy towards the region, and nuclear weapon strategy and arms control.

Professional Background

Prior to joining Crisis Group, Oliker directed the Russia and Eurasia Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and held various research and management roles at the RAND Corporation, including as Director of the Center for Russia and Eurasia. Early in her career, she served at the U.S. Department of Defense. Oliker holds a Ph.D. in political science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, an M.P.P. from the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government, and a B.A. from Emory University.

Languages

  • Russian
  • English

Select Publications

Oliker is the author of numerous articles, monographs, and reports, with recent publications in Foreign Affairs, Survival, and other journals. She has also published commentary in print and online with The New York Times, The Hill, The Chicago Tribune, War on the Rocks, CNN, U.S. News and World Report, and The National Interest, among others.

In The News

13 Apr 2021
If you want to say you’re going to defend Ukraine, say you’re going to defend Ukraine, [NATO] membership or no membership. Foreign Policy

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
2 Oct 2020
Sanctions send a signal to Belarus and the international community of EU states’ frustration with a fraudulent election. Bloomberg

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
27 Jul 2020
At some point there are things that require somebody to set a leadership agenda. [OSCE] can’t do all of that without somebody in charge. Financial Times

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
16 Jun 2020
The confusion and contradictions in Russia’s document on Basic Principles of Nuclear Deterrence reflect policy debates in Moscow. IVM Podcasts

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
24 Sep 2019
Ukraine is really dependent on [U.S.] aid and support, and that makes it an easy country to influence, because of that, at least on paper. Vice

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
4 Aug 2019
A corto plazo, [la retirada del INF] apenas ofrece a Washington nuevas posibilidades en el plano militar. El País

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia

Latest Updates

Understanding the Russian-origin Muslim Diaspora

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk to University of Ottawa professor Jean-François Ratelle about the diverse Russian-origin Muslim diaspora across Europe, the various challenges faced in transit and host countries, and how to adapt migration policies accordingly.

Podcast / Global

The Under-loved Logic of Nuclear-free Zones

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk with Mexican diplomat to the UN María Antonieta Jáquez about the global movement for nuclear disarmament, the reality of non-proliferation agreements, and how to reframe the narrative around nuclear-weapon-free zones. 

Venezuela’s Multifaceted Crisis and Europe

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Mariano de Alba talk to Venezuelan activist Roberto Patiño about the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela, the opportunities for change and what role the European Union and the U.S. could play in a possible transition. 

Podcast / Global

Peacemaking in Cyberspace

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk to conflict mediator Adam Cooper, of the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, about the hidden world of peace diplomacy, cyber mediation and the pros and cons of social media during peace processes.

Has the Spread of Nuclear Weapons Added to Global Stability?

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk to researcher Petr Topychkanov about the balance of nuclear power between India and Pakistan, deterrence and nuclear transparency.