Interpreting Energy Dependence in Eurasia

Thursday, May 9, 2019 - 9:00am to Friday, May 10, 2019 - 12:30pm
Poster for Interpreting Energy Dependence conference

CGIS South Building, 1730 Cambridge Street, Belfer Case Study Room (S020)

Energy dependence is the leitmotif of Eurasian political economy. The concept recurs in official speeches and is often invoked to imply a threat. The higher the level of dependence on hydrocarbon imports, especially oil and natural gas, the higher the energy security risk. This stems usually from political instability in hydrocarbon-producing countries, concerns about price volatility, the fact that some state-owned oil companies are hand-in-glove with authoritarian regimes, or increased carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels, which contribute to global warming. More than anywhere else, member states and associated member states of the International Energy Agency have sought to make sustainable development (including further development of domestic resources) and energy security a top priority. It is perceived as a means towards decreasing dependence. It turns out that the interests of consuming and producing countries are, however, more and more divergent, and finding common ground is challenging, although increasingly important.

Conference Organizers

Rawi Abdelal, Herbert F. Johnson Professor of International Management, Harvard Business School; Director, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies

Aurélie Bros, Postdoctoral Fellow, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies


Preliminary Program

Download the full agenda and speaker bios here.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

9:30–10 a.m. – Registration

10 a.m. – Opening Remarks

Rawi Abdelal, Director, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University; Herbert F. Johnson Professor of International Management, Harvard Business School

10:10–11:10 a.m. – Panel I: Rent-Seeking and the Vicious Circle of Energy Dependence

Margarita Balmaceda, Professor of Diplomacy and International Relations, Seton Hall University
Threat and Temptation in Eurasian Energy Policies: On the Mirror of Belarus

Vitaly Yermakov, National Research University, Higher School of Economics
Russia’s Hydrocarbon Rent: Managing the Resource Curse

Moderator: Rawi Abdelal, Director, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University; Herbert F. Johnson Professor of International Management, Harvard Business School

11:15–11:30 a.m. – Coffee Break

11:30 a.m.–12:45 p.m. – Panel II: Tumultuous Energy Transition in Ukraine

Jonathan Elkind, Fellow and Senior Research Scholar, Center on Global Energy Policy (CGEP), Columbia University/SIPA
Ukraine’s Troubled Path to an Uncertain Energy Future

Johannes Baur, First Counsellor, Head of Sector for Economic Cooperation, Energy, Infrastructure and Environment, EU Delegation to Ukraine
Ukraine's Energy Sector Reforms: Energy Independency, EU Integration and Vested Interests

Moderator: Timothy Colton, Morris and Anna Feldberg Professor of Government and Russian Studies, Harvard University

12:45–1:30 p.m. – Lunch Break

1:30–2:40 p.m. – Panel III: Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan: Finding a Place in the Energy World

Morena Skalamera, Assistant Professor of Russian Studies, Leiden University
Circling the Barrels: The Case of Kazakhstan's Regime Stability in the Wake of the 2014 Oil Bust

Yunis Gubanov, Fellow, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University; Ph.D. Candidate, University of Cologne
The Energy Industry and Tendencies of Azerbaijani Energy Policy After the Breakup of the Soviet Union 

Moderator: Nargis Kassenova, Senior Fellow, Program on Central Asia, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University; Associate Professor, KIMEP University, Almaty

2:45–3 p.m. – Coffee Break

3–4:30 p.m. – Panel IV: Dependence on the International Environment

David Ramin Jalilvand, CEO, Orient Matters
Iran: Managing Energy Dependence Under Sanctions

Juergen Braunstein, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School
Russia-Saudi Energy Alliance and Gas: Preparing for the Next Chapter?

Edward Chow, Senior Associate in the Energy and National Security Program at CSIS
China's Belt and Road Initiative and Energy Security

Moderator: Meghan O'Sullivan, Jeane Kirkpatrick Professor of the Practice of International Affairs, and Director, Geopolitics of Energy Project, Harvard Kennedy School; Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

4:30 p.m. – Concluding Remarks

Aurélie Bros, Postdoctoral Fellow, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University

Friday, May 10, 2019

9:30–10:40 a.m. – Panel V: Clean Energy Transition(s) in Europe and China

Valerie Karplus, Assistant Professor of Global Economics and Management, MIT Sloan School of Management
The Role of Markets in China's Clean Energy Transition

Thierry Bros, Senior Research Fellow, Oxford Institute for Energy Studies; Member, EU-Russia Gas Advisory Council
A New Narrative for Gas in Europe

Moderator: Aurélie Bros, Postdoctoral Fellow, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University

10:45–11:00 a.m. – Coffee Break

11:00 a.m.–12:10 p.m. – Panel VI: Decreasing Dependence for the Sake of the Environment

John Fernández, Director, MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative
Eurasian Urban Energy Independence and the Environment 

Carlo Ratti, Professor of Urban Technologies and Planning, MIT; Director, SENSEable City Lab
Senseable Cities

Moderator: Muriel Rouyer, Adjunct Professor of Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School

12:10 p.m. – Concluding Remarks

Rawi Abdelal, Director, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University; Herbert F. Johnson Professor of International Management, Harvard Business School

Registration

Register for the conference here.

Cosponsored by the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies.

For more information, please call 617-495-4037.