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Dr Sean Roberts is Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations. Sean holds a BA in Politics from the University of Bath (UK) and an MA and PhD in Politics from the Centre for Russian, European and Eurasian Studies (CREES), University of Birmingham (UK). Prior to joining the Politics and Society team at the University of Winchester in Sept. 2018, Sean worked as Senior Lecturer at the University of Portsmouth, and held research and teaching posts at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), the Aleksanteri Institute (University of Helsinki) and the OSCE Academy in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Sean was Senior Research Fellow on the EU’s Eastern Neighbourhood Programme at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (FIIA), 2012-2014.

Higher Education Teaching Qualification: Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

Areas of expertise

  • Russian foreign and security policy
  • Russian domestic politics
  • Authoritarian regime dynamics
  • Regional integration in the post-Soviet space



Roberts, S. (2012) Putin’s United Russia Party. Routledge (ISBN-10: 0415669022, reprinted in paperback in October 2013) 

Edited volumes

Ziemer, U. & Roberts, S. (eds) (2012) East European Diasporas, Migration and Cosmopolitanism, Routledge (ISBN-10: 0415517028)

Articles in peer-reviewed journals

Roberts, S. & Ziemer U. (2018) Explaining the pattern of Russian authoritarian diffusion in Armenia. East European Politics 

Roberts, S. (2017) The Eurasian Economic Union: the geopolitics of authoritarian cooperation Eurasian Geography and Economics, 58(4), 418-441

Roberts, S. & Moshes, A. (2016) The Eurasian Economic Union: A case of reproductive integration? Post-Soviet Affairs, 32(6), 542-565 

Roberts, S. (2015) Converging party systems in Russia and Central Asia: A case of authoritarian norm diffusion? Communist and Post-Communist Studies, 48(2-3), 147-157  

Roberts, S. (2015) Online campaigning in Russia: Evidence from the 2011 State Duma election, Europe-Asia Studies, 67(8), 1228-1250

Roberts, S. (2013) Research in challenging environments: the case of Russia’s ‘managed democracy’, Qualitative Research, 13(3) 335-349 

Roberts, S. (2012) United Russia and the dominant-party framework: Understanding the Russian party of power in comparative perspective, East European Politics, 28(3) 225-240 

Book reviews

Roberts, S. (2013) Double book review: ‘Churchill and Finland: A Study in Anti-Communism and Geopolitics’ and ‘The Foreign Office and Finland 1938-1940: Diplomatic Sideshow’, Journal of Cold War Studies, 5(4) 371-373 

Refereed expert papers (in chronological order)

Roberts, S. (2017) For the Russian authorities, the threat of Navalny lies in the message not the man, London School of Economics EUROPP (15 February)

Roberts, S. (2016) Panama Papers: it’s the drip-drip effect Vladimir Putin will be worrying about, The Conversation (6 April) 

Roberts, S., Marin, A., Moshes, A., Pynnöniemi, K. (2014) The Eurasian Customs Union: Breaking the Pattern of Post-Soviet integration? FIIA Analysis 3, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs

Roberts, S. (2013) Party-System Reform in Russia, Baltic Rim Economies, 6(19) 1178, University of Turku, Finland 

Roberts, S. (2013) Putin’s reactive reforms, Briefing Paper, 146 December, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs 

Roberts, S. (2013) A hollow victory for the Putin administration? Russia’s regional elections look set to deliver gains, but fresh problems too, Comment Paper, 8/19 August, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs 

Roberts, S. (June 2013) Russia’s Old-New Foreign Policy, The Finnish Journal of Foreign Affairs (Ulkopolitiikka-lehti), issue 2/2013.

Roberts, S. (2013) Russia as an international actor: The view from Europe and the US, Occasional Report, (37/18 June), commissioned by the Finnish Foreign Ministry 

Roberts, S. (2013) Efforts to isolate the opposition in Russia have left Vladimir Putin’s regime with little margin for error, London School of Economics EUROPP (5 February

Roberts, S. (2013) The Russian adoption ban fits the Putin agenda: The logic of the Dima Yakovlev law is inevitable but short-sighted, Comment Paper, 1/18 January, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs 

Roberts, S. (2012) The first 100 days of Putin’s presidency see a tightening of the screws, Comment Paper, 7/9 August, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs 

Roberts, S. (2012) Russia’s pressure politics, Briefing Paper, 118/3 December, The Finnish Institute of International Affairs 

Selected conference presentations, seminars and round tables

Putin’s Agenda: Looking beyond the headlines. CEISR research talk, University of Portsmouth, 11.02.2015, Portsmouth, UK

The Eurasian Economic Union: will it fly? Talk given at the Finnish Embassy in Brussels to selected EU representatives, 08.10.2014, Brussels, Belgium

Have Putin’s reforms fixed the problem? Seminar: Russian politics and society: Two years after the protests, 9.12.2013, FIIA, Helsinki, Finland

Trends in Russian domestic politics and foreign policy. Presentation to journalists at FIIA, 08.08.2013, Helsinki, Finland

Towards a converging view? How European and US analysts see Russia. Closed expert meeting organised by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, 23.04.2013, The Brookings Institution, Washington DC, USA

A policy of fear? Putin 3.0 and political repression. Conference: Putin 3.0 One Year on: What has changed in Russia? 15.04.2013, Finnish Parliament Annex, Helsinki, Finland

Towards a converging view? How European analysts see Russia. Closed expert meeting organised by the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, 17.01.2013, Mustio, Finland

Another election victory: but how much longer will United Russia remain a dominant force? Russian Elections Parties, Parliament and Power, NUPI Annual Conference, 23.11.2011, Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, Oslo

Elite and expert interviewing: How political context complicates the textbook research ideal. CERES network Roots of Research Seminar, 28.10.2011, Stockholm, Sweden

Old dogs, new tricks? Assessing the effectiveness of party leaders on the political internet. Virtual Russia: digital space and post-Soviet political culture, Future of Russia Project, 20.10.2011, St. Petersburg, Russia

Russian regime stability in 2011. Presentation to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA), 01.06.2011 Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, Oslo, Norway

Verticals and horizontals: The role of United Russia as a ‘management tool’ in the emerging post-Yeltsin regime. BASEES Annual Conference, 29.03.2010, Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, UK

The Influence of research context on the process of research. CEELBAS workshop on ethics, 23.09.2009, School of Slavonic & East European Studies, London, UK

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