Our Commitment to an Open Society in Russia
By Chris Stone
In recent days, several voices in Russia have called for the Open Society Foundations to be banned from work in Russia as a so-called undesirable organization, but as of this writing, the Russian authorities have not done so, and we are continuing to support many Russian organizations that seek our assistance to participate actively as part of their society. We are determined to continue to support those who seek our assistance in accordance with our mission and within the limits of the law.
It is more than a quarter-century since the Open Society Foundations began work in Russia to support the aspirations of the Russian people. We have helped to finance a network of internet centers in 33 universities around the country; helped Russian scholars to travel and study abroad; developed curricula for early childhood education; and created a network of contemporary art centers which are still in operation. This short video explains these efforts and more, and why we persist today.
For all of us at the Open Society Foundations, it has been a privilege since the 1990s to have worked alongside pioneering citizens, educators, and civil society organizations that embody Russian creativity, commitment, and hope, and we are honored to continue this work.
Until December 2017, Chris Stone was president of the Open Society Foundations.