Baltic Ways

Baltic Ways is a podcast bringing listeners insights and interviews from the world of Baltic Studies, hosted by Dr. Indra Ekmanis, Editor of FPRI’s Baltic Bulletin. In interviews with experts, the podcast explores the past, present and future of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania — and the many ways these three countries on the Baltic Sea impact the politics, history, and culture of the region and beyond.    

Baltic Ways is brought to you by the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies, produced in partnership with the Baltic Initiative at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of AABS or FPRI.

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About the Hosts:

Dr. Indra Ekmanis is the editor of FPRI’s Baltic Bulletin, and a Baltic Sea Fellow in the Eurasia Program. She was previously an editor for public radio’s The World through the ACLS/Mellon Public Fellows Program, where she focused on worldwide migration and European issues. Dr. Ekmanis recently completed a fellowship as a Kennan Institute Title VIII Research Scholar at The Wilson Center. She has a PhD in International Studies from the University of Washington. Her academic research looks at social integration, minority rights, nationalism, civil society and democratic transition, with an area specialization in the Baltic Sea Region and post-Soviet space. She is currently working on an interdisciplinary edited volume on disinformation in the Baltic region.



Ben Gardner-Gill is the Assistant Director for Outreach and Engagement for the Association for the Advancement of Baltic Studies. In this role, Ben oversees AABS’s donor relations and fundraising efforts, social media channels, grant and award advertisements, and quarterly newsletter. He has been serving as the guest host of Baltic Ways since January 2023. Ben earned his BA in History from Stanford University with a concentration in Modern Europe and a focus on historical memory. He studied abroad through Stanford’s center in Berlin, and conducted field research in Central Europe.




Explore Episodes 

Women’s Work: History of Women in Academia at the University of Tartu

Dr. Janet Laidla shares her work on charting the roles and contributions of women at the University of Tartu from the early days of the Estonian Republic, and what it means today. Transcript available.  Baltic Ways is a podcast...

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Dark Heritage: Exploring Memory Building in Estonia

How do we remember tragedies? How do populations construct memories and memory institutions around these events? How can contemporary researchers begin to make sense of these complex landscapes? Dr. Margaret Comer of University College London joins us to discuss...

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Latvian-Lithuanian Connections from Morta to Modernity

How have Latvian and Lithuanian histories intertwined over the last millennium? Who was Queen Morta, a Latvian princess by birth who became the wife of Lithuania’s first and only king, Mindaugas? How close did we come to a Latvian-Lithuanian...

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The School of Democracy in Interwar Estonia

  How did Estonian democracy erode in the 1930s? How did liberal dissidents express their discontent under a more oppressive regime? Why is political rhetoric important, both now and then? Dr. Liisi Veski, fellow at the Skytte Institute, University...

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The Baltic States as NATO Heavyweights

How have the Baltic States adopted new leadership roles in NATO? Why have they been so forward leaning, even in an alliance with many friends of Ukraine? Why are other countries listening to the Baltic States now? Will this...

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Unparalleled Uncertainty? Soviet Collapse and Modern Reverberations

How did the dissolution of the Soviet Union really unfold? How has the agency of the Baltic states been undervalued in studying this period, and how have those misperceptions persisted in the intervening decades? Dr. Una Bergmane unpacks the complex...

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China’s Ambitions and the Baltic Response

Do Russia and China really have a “friendship without limits?” How are the Baltic states positioning themselves in the shifting sands of global security? What sort of role could they have as multilateral coalitions seek to address China as both a...

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The Future of European Energy: An interview with Dr. Agnia Grigas

How has Russia’s invasion of Ukraine affected Europe’s energy mix? How are European states balancing the move towards a green future with their present needs? How are the Baltic states positioning themselves in these European debates? Dr. Agnia Grigas,...

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From Medieval Livonia to Multiplanetary History

How has cultural memory shaped Estonia as a nation? What does it mean to gamify medieval Livonia? And should historians rethink their concept of historical time? Dr. Marek Tamm, professor of cultural history and head of the Centre of...

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What’s Happening With Russian Speakers in Latvia?

How have things changed politically and socially for Russian speakers in Latvia since the war in Ukraine — and over the last few decades? Dr. Martiņš Kaprāns, senior researcher at University of Latvia’s Institute of Philosophy and Sociology and recent...

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