Internet Policy Observatory Scholarships

The Internet Policy Observatory (IPO) is offering funding to both the Annenberg-Oxford Media Policy Summer Institute (June 29-July 10) and the Annenberg and Central European University Summer Program (June 29-July 4). Full scholarships are available for two outstanding applicants who demonstrate through their applications a devotion to internet policy issues in their research or in their work.Priority will be given to applicants from the Global South.  For questions about the programs or the IPO scholarships, please email

To learn more about the Annenberg-Oxford Media Policy Summer Institute click here. To Learn more about the CEU Summer Program click here.

Click here to apply for the scholarship.


Questions? Please visit the Annenberg-Oxford FAQ.



Between Institutional Dungeons and the Dragons of Public Opinion: Russian Internet Regulation

//Gregory Asmolov, a PhD researcher at the LSE, argues that new data from Russia suggest revisiting policies for mitigation of radical Internet regulation, based on his recent paper that explores why Russian public opinion is generally in favour of regulation. This article was originally published on the London School of Economics Media Policy Project blog and can be viewed here

The Russian Internet, also known as Runet, has played an important political role since the turn of the century. According to mapping of the Russian blogosphere that was conducted by the Berkman Center in 2010, while traditional media, particularly TV, have been controlled by the government, Runet allowed an alternative political agenda to emerge and much more criticism of Russian authorities. The political importance of Runet may have reached its peak around the time of the parliamentary and presidential elections in winter 2011-2012, when online technologies were actively used by citizens in order to expose fraud and organize protests.

Since then, however…

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An Interview on Russian Internet Control with Olga Kamenchuk

//In this interview, Director on International and Public Affairs, VCIOM (Russian Public Opinion Research Center) and former Annenberg Public Policy Center visiting scholar Olga Kamenchuk discusses the results of a survey on Russia attitudes toward the internet.

What’s the most exciting thing about working in the field of public opinion?

As a historian and a political scientist I admire the field of public opinion for its ability to understand the logic of the country’s development that it gives a researcher. “A nation is worth its leaders” – goes an old saying. What is there in the country’s population at a certain point in its history that it has the leader it has? Why did Germans elect Adolf Hitler in 1930s? What helped Americans overcome the Great Depression? What can make people protest against their governments? Why would they support their leader regardless of what the rest of the world thinks about him?

Opinion research helps to draw the portrait of the nation and to build a forecast for its future development.


What can survey results tell us about the interplay between media consumption and freedom of expression?

Mass media (as well as the Orthodox Church and the army) is the most…

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Demand for Internet Freedom? An Interview with Erik Nisbet

Dr. Erik Nisbet, associate professor of communication, political science, and environmental policy at Ohio State University, responds to questions drawn from the recently released report “Benchmarking Public Demand: Russia’s Appetite for Internet Control,” which seeks to assess the public’s demand for internet freedom in Russia. 

What was the most surprising part of the dataset?

The findings from the survey analysis that surprised me the most were Russian attitudes about the use of the Internet by foreign countries and the censorship of foreign media. There is a robust sentiment among Russians (roughly half of non- and light users of the Internet and about one-third of heavy Internet users) that foreign countries are actively using the Internet against Russia and that foreign news media websites should be censored by the Russian government.  These attitudes are reflective of the political messaging by the Russian government, but I was surprised that they had found such wide-spread acceptance among the population.  Building support among the public to censor foreign mass media and websites is an important part of a much larger information control strategy by the Russian government, as is also the recent legislation limiting foreign ownership of mass media in Russia, to isolate the Russian public from outside information that may be inconsistent with the government’s dominance of news and information dissemination within Russia.


How do Russian attitudes towards internet governance differ from some other places where you’ve done work?

Unfortunately, the demand for democratic governance in Russia is very…


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