Austrian Ambassador Talks at MGIMO

Austrian Ambassador Talks at MGIMO

16 April 2019

April 16th, the Ambassador of Austria to Russia, Johannes Aigner, came to MGIMO for a meeting with the leadership of the University and to give a talk to students.

The guest was greeted by the University’s Vice-Rector for Graduate and International Programs Andrey Baykov, the Head of the International Office Egor Andreev, the Dean of the School of International Journalism Yaroslav Skvortsov and the Head of the German Language Department Marina Chigasheva.

During the meeting, the sides discussed the «Russian-Austrian Year of Youth Exchanges 2019» and the different events on the agenda including the holding of a student conference in German, a round table on religion as soft power in international relations and other joint cultural and scientific projects.

Andrey Baykov emphasized the importance of expanding cooperation between MGIMO and the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, and inviting the Academy to actively participate in the Year of Youth Exchanges. The Ambassador suggested holding at MGIMO an exhibition on the 40th anniversary of Vienna International Center, which hosts the UN office.

Johannes Aigner then delivered a lecture to students and faculty members on bilateral relations and Austria’s role in the EU. The speaker related the history of Austria and its relations with Russia, underlining the importance of public diplomacy and contacts between civil societies. The Ambassador noted that as reflected by the Sochi Dialogue Forum of Russian-Austrian Civil Societies; this type of interaction can yield excellent results.

After his speech, the diplomat took questions from the audience and commented on student and youth exchange programs, European issues such as Brexit and migration problems and many other topics. The Ambassador noted the students’ vivid interest in international events and their excellent command of the German language.

— See the MGIMO web-site for russian version