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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

1 Sep 2021
For the Ukrainians, especially in the wake of the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, they want a clear statement of support from the United States. VOA

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
28 Jul 2021
Ukraine doesn’t have a lot of equal relationships. This is the danger of being a weaker country in the international system. RFE/RL

Olga Oliker

Program Director, Europe and Central Asia
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

Latest Updates

Podcast / Technology and War

Big Data and Global Security

In the first episode of the new season of War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk with entrepreneur Jim Balsillie about technology, governance and security, and explore the complex threats emerging as economies are increasingly driven by big data.

Commentary / Asia

With the Taliban Back in Kabul, Regional Powers Watch and Wait

The Taliban’s return to power raises questions not only about how the movement will use its newfound authority but also about what Afghanistan’s neighbours will do in response. Crisis Group experts offer a 360-degree view of these countries’ initial reactions and what is behind them.

Defusing Tensions in the Eastern Mediterranean

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker and Hugh Pope talk with Crisis Group’s Nigar Göksel about the nationalist tensions fuelling a maritime standoff between Turkey and Greece, and how coordinated efforts by regional powers can help de-escalate their dispute over the eastern Mediterranean.

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.

War & Peace: 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.