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UW-Madison Ukraine experts available

April 20, 2022

Experts from UW–Madison are available to discuss the latest situation in Ukraine with the news media.  


Francine Hirsch is a historian of Russia and the Soviet Union with an expertise in Soviet nationality policy, the Nuremberg Trials, and the history of Russian-American engagement. Hirsch makes the case that Russian leaders and state-held media have shifted rhetoric from the disinformation campaign aligning Ukraine with Naziism and a call for de-Nazification, to “de-Ukranization.” Hirsch says: “These calls for ‘de-Ukrainization’ must be read as incitement to commit genocide.” Contact:


Kathryn Ciancia is an associate professor of History. She is an expert on Poland and eastern Europe, with a focus on nationalism, borderlands, war, citizenship, and migration. She is the author of On Civilization’s Edge: A Polish Borderland in the Interwar World (2020), about the multiethnic region that was part of interwar Poland and is now located in western Ukraine. Contact:


Manuel Teodoro is an associate professor of public affairs and an expert in utilities management. Teodoro is available to discuss the water shortage in several cities in Ukraine due to Russian military action.

“Water is literally essential to human life and foundational to a functioning society,” says Teodoro. “A city under siege cannot long withstand interruption of its water supply or distribution system. The loss of potable water systems in Ukrainian cities is a stark indication of just how dire the situation is.” Contact:


Paul Wilson is a nuclear engineer and chair of the Engineering Physics department. As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues, Wilson is available for interviews to assess the dangers of radiation leaks, should a nuclear facility take damage in the fighting.

“While Russia has committed to IAEA principles that should ensure the safe condition of Ukrainian nuclear facilities, recent actions have caused increased concern.  At this time, Russian aggression has not resulted in radioactive release from any of these sites,” says Wilson. Contact:

More experts can be found on the UW–Madison Experts page.

For more information, contact Veronica Rueckert at


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