Austen Dowell

Austen Dowell will be pursuing a master's degree at Columbia University's Harriman Institute this fall. He has previously served as a Boren Scholar (2016, Kyrgyzstan) and a Peace Corps volunteer (2018-20, Ukraine), while also spending time studying in Russia and Azerbaijan.
Social Contacts

Can Zelensky Win Ukraine’s War on Corruption?

While the Ukrainian military continues to fight Russian-backed separatists in the east, it was the country’s bitter war on corruption that has exploded back into the spotlight last week. The decision by Ukraine’s constitutional court to strike down elements of anti-corruption legislation has brought protesters to the streets of Kyiv, with President Volodymyr Zelensky calling for an immediate... Continue Reading

Fair Observer

It’s Time the West Moved Past Its Misconceptions About Ukraine

My service as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ukraine between 2018 and 2020 allowed me to witness truly historic moments as they happened, whether it was the country’s biggest-ever Pride parade or the landslide election of a comedian to the office of president. Ukraine was host to the largest Peace Corps contingent in the world prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, a reality that attests to a mutual... Continue Reading

Fair Observer

Can the US Help Central Asia Reclaim the Silk Road?

Everyone likes a snappy pop-cultural title with which to approach international politics and strategy because it makes relatable what is often viewed as an opaque process of the elites. Rudyard Kipling’s “Great Game” was a chessboard and originally referred to the various schemes and posturing of the British and Russian empires throughout Central Asia, with both parties trying to keep... Continue Reading

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