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"Russia's North Pacific Between Imperialism and Globalization. Institutions and Spaces": Workshop with Andreas Renner, Julia Herzberg and Helena Holzberger


"Russia's North Pacific between Imperialism and Globalization. Institutions and Spaces" was the title of a workshop organized by Prof. Dr. Andreas Renner, Principal Investigator of the Graduate School, at the German Historical Institute in Moscow. Principal Investigator Prof. Dr. Julia Herzberg participated too as well as doctoral student Helena Holzberger of the Graduate School.

For many researchers Russia's North Pacific is a terra incognita. So far, most scholars of Eastern Europe and Russia have focused on European and, to some lesser extent, Caucasian or Central Asian areas of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union or the Russian Federation. The aim of this workshop - organized by the German Historical Institute Moscow and the Ludwig Maximilians University of Munich as the first outcome from their new joint research project on "Russia's North Pacific" - was to broaden and develop these existing perspectives on Russia by highlighting transnational political, economic, social and ecologic processes, discourses and interactions between Russian actors and subjects of other countries neighbouring the North Pacific.

Prof. Dr. Andreas Renner led a panel that focused on the role of international and regional actors between cooperation and conflict. He clarified the importance and necessity of trust for economic, political and cultural developments for the whole North Pacific area.

Prof. Dr. Julia Herzberg led a panel that approached the Russian North Pacific from an environmental historical perspective. Her commentary and the ensuing discussion elucidated the importance of specific positions and decisions on the part of actors on various levels (local, national, and international), the relevance of taking various national perspectives into account as well as both the fruitfulness and some limits of environmental historical approaches.

Helena Holzberger, who's doctoral project is about "Photography & Russia's Orient. Colonial and local worlds of pictures in the discourse of modernity (1870-1941)", led a panel that panel extended the historical perspective to the aspects of migration and transfer.