April 1, 2024

Classic Cleavages in a New Light: Chinese Informational Influence in the Baltics

Raimond Klavins/Unsplash

On Wednesday, 10 April 2024, at 11:00-12:30, the International Centre for Defence and Security (ICDS) is organising a presentation of a recently published report Classic Cleavages in a New Light: Chinese Informational Influence in the Baltics at the ICDS seminar hall.

Analysts of the informational policies of the Chinese Communist Party are observing a dramatic increase and expansion in the regime’s efforts to shape and influence the global information space. This trend is followed by a careful and expanding effort to understand the tactics used by the People’s Republic of China, which vary from propaganda and misinformation and the suppression of critical voices to the promotion of digital authoritarianism, utilising aggressive means such as intimidation and diplomatic pressure as well as gaining control over media and information technologies. 

The report was produced by Eastern Europe Studies Centre (Lithuania) in partnership with the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA) and ICDS, with the support from the National Endowment for Democracy (USA). It is based on nationwide surveys conducted in the Baltic states in 2023 and is aimed at assessing the susceptibility and resilience of the societies of the three Baltic states to the Chinese influence in the information domain.

Keynote speaker

Bret Schafer is Senior Fellow – Media and Digital Disinformation for the Alliance for Securing Democracy at the German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) and an expert in computational propaganda, state-backed information operations, and tech regulation. He is the creator and manager of Hamilton 2.0, an online open-source dashboard tracking the outputs of Russian, Chinese, and Iranian state media outlets, diplomats, and government officials. His research has appeared in the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post, and he has been interviewed on NPR, MSNBC, CNN, Al Jazeera, and the BBC. Prior to joining GMF, he spent more than ten years in the television and film industry. He has a BSc in communications with a major in radio/television/film from Northwestern University, and a master’s in public diplomacy from the University of Southern California, where he was the editor-in-chief of Public Diplomacy Magazine. 


Dr Konstantinas Andrijauskas is Associate Professor of Asian Studies and International Politics at the Institute of International Relations and Political Science of Vilnius University and Associate Expert at the Easter Europe Studies Centre (EESC) in Lithuania. He is former Senior Visiting Scholar at China’s Fudan (Shanghai, 2011) and Zhejiang (Hangzhou, 2013) Universities, as well as at Columbia University (New York, USA, 2017, Fulbright Scholar Program). He is author of two books on contemporary Sino-Russian-Indian relations (2016) and on the history of pre-modern non-European civilisations (2018). 

Sintija Broka is Head of the Middle East Research Programme and a researcher at the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA) as well as a guest lecturer and Ph.D. Fellow at Riga Stradins University. Her academic interests include Middle East political and economic sustainability, religion and politics of the Middle East, as well as the foreign policy dynamics of the Gulf region. She has recently worked as a visiting PhD fellow at the University of Ghent and studied Arabic studies at the Middle East Institute in Washington. She holds a BA degree in International Economics from the University of Latvia and an MA degree in International Relations and diplomacy from Riga Stradins University. Currently, she is studying Public International Law and Human Rights at the Riga Graduate School of Law. 

Tomas Jermalavičius is Head of Studies and Research Fellow at the International Centre for Defence and Security. At ICDS, he researches various aspects of defence, disruptive technologies, societal resilience, and energy security. Prior to joining ICDS at the end of 2008, he served at the Baltic Defence College (BALTDEFCOL), first as deputy director of its Institute of Defence Studies and Lithuania’s senior national representative (2001-24) and later as dean of the college (2005-08). In 1998-2001 and 2005, he was with the Defence Policy and Planning Department of the Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence. Since 2017, he has been a visiting professor at the Natolin Campus of the College of Europe in Warsaw. He is also an associated fellow of the Latvian Institute of International Affairs (LIIA). He holds a BA in political science from Vilnius University, an MA in war studies from King’s College London and an MBA degree from the University of Liverpool. 

Please note that the participation at the event is by invitation only.

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