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Students of De Haagse Hogeschool organize an event From Russia with love

The Hague, 19 January 2015 –

The 1st year students of European studies of The Hague University of Applied Sciences (Dutch: De Haagse Hogeschool) organized an event “From Russia with love” with the primary focus on Russian media. The event was held in one of the auditoriums of the University and reached the audience of about 50 people, mainly students and also teachers and several entrepreneurs. The topic was presented through business, cultural and political dimensions.

The event was opened by the masters of the ceremony Ruben Monster and Guna Alvika who then gave the floor to the first presenter, Mr. Arjan Heijl of Next Drive company. The software development company has partnership with the Russian company in the city of Tomsk, Siberia, Russia. During a live Skype call between Mr. Heijl and his colleague Mr. Bubnov in Tomsk, the two businessmen told the audience about their successful cooperation. Both Mr. Heijl and Mr. Bubnov said that they do not seem to have intercultural challenges that would obstruct their business objectives – there are not so many cultural differences, according to Mr. Bubnov, especially given a lot of knowledge and expertise in the field of IT that both sides share.

Mr. Bubnov also told a little bit about Tomsk, small town in Russian dimensions (“just” 500 000 people).  This place has strong technical universities and a large number of students (around 15 000). A lot of IT resources and special economic benefits that Tomsk receives being in “Special Economic Zone” are some of the reasons that IT related start-ups blossom in Tomsk.

Mr. Heijl and Mr. Bubnov mentioned that current economic sanctions recently imposed by Russia did not affect their businesses and they both hope that currency fluctuations will not have a negative side effect in the long term future.

This presentation was followed by several workshops where the participants could brush up or extend their knowledge of Russian literature, learn Russian ABC, test their knowledge on Russian media and even learn how to dance Kalinka dance. During the break the guests could enjoy a small buffet with such snacks as the Russian Olivier salad and gingerbread.

The event was then followed by a presentation by Professor Does who told the audience about Russian media and how the degree of governmental censorship has been changing through the times, from the wind of change during M. Gorbachev’s regime up to the present days. Mr. Does pointed out that the most popular media medium in Russia nowadays is television, with radio and newspapers loosing their position and audience. He spoke about the Russian Internet as a source of information for those who have access to the world web and mentioned the new law in Russia that urges bloggers with audience more than 5000 people register themselves as a media agency, perhaps as an attempt to tackle oppositional moods that are present in the blogs. This law presents the bloggers with the dilemma “the more readers the better?” or, vice versa, “the less is more”.

The biggest country in the world has 3 state owned channels and Mr. Does suggested to those interested in Russian governmental viewpoint on events have a look on state owned channel Russia Today, which is basically the voice of Kremlin. He then gave several useful links to the Russian online media who give facts without colouring information, for example Kommersant, Nezavisimaya Gazeta, and popular in Moscow oppositional Novaya Gazeta. He also showed links to Komsomolskya Pravda (having compared it with the Dutch media “De Telegraaf”) and AiF – according to Mr. Does the latter sources give an insight into the society and interests of Russia.

It has also been mentioned during Mr Does presentation that the sad reality of current times is a media war between Russian and western news channels, where both sides may use manipulation of facts to colour the events. Given the current media propaganda every source of information needs to be taken with a pinch of salt and filtered with the critical thinking and  the variety of media sources would be only beneficial for the Russian as well as western readers. hopes that current political situation is only temporarily and will soon be over.


The Hague University of Applied Sciences (Dutch: De Haagse Hogeschool) is a university of applied sciences with its campuses located in and around The Hague, the Netherlands. The city is the Dutch seat of government and home to many major international legal, security and peace institutions.  The university was founded in 1987 and is made up of 14 academies and currently teaches around 23,400 students. Degrees fall into six main fields of interest including technology, innovation and society, public administration, law and security, management and organization, ICT and media, health and sport, economy and finance and welfare and education. was one of the sponsors of the event “From Russia with love” organized by the students of the Hague University of Applied Sciences.


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