The Paulsen Programme

Funded by the Dr. Frederik Paulsen Foundation

The Paulsen Programme at LSE, funded by the Dr. Frederik Paulsen Foundation, has been set up to allow historians in Russia to realise their full potential in their research and to enable them to make a powerful impact within the worldwide community of historians. Though excellent scholarship is being undertaken by young and mid-career Russian historians, they often lack the opportunity to travel outside Russia to consult archives and libraries and to participate in scholarly discussions at a formal and informal level on an ‘international stage’. This also means that non-Russian historians often do not have access to their research. In addition, historians who work in the Russian provinces often lack the means to conduct research in the archives and libraries of Saint Petersburg and Moscow, thereby dooming themselves to inferior research and publications, and damaging their careers. The basic aim of the Paulsen Programme is to address these problems.

The fellowships and conference grants it offers are open to all historians in Russia who are working on the period from the mid seventeenth century down to 1918. In other words it includes both historians of Russia and of other regions of the world.

The Programme will also organise two international research seminars and a final international conference devoted to the history of imperial Russia (c1650 - 1917). The seminars will be held in Saint Petersburg in collaboration with the Higher School of Economics. The final international conference will take place in Latvia in 2023 or 2024. The seminars and conference aim to bring together leading historians of imperial Russia of all generations and from across the world. Major publications are planned which will bring the best current thinking and research on imperial Russia to the attention of both English and Russian-speaking historians. The fruits of this collaboration should be of interest well beyond the world of academic historians of imperial Russia. Russian imperial history deserves a more significant place in European, imperial and global history than it currently enjoys. Moreover it is not possible to understand contemporary Russia and the roles it plays in the world without a realistic grasp of the dynamics of Russian history.