Elena Nemirovskaya

2006 Hiroshima Prize to Elena Nemirovskaya

Press release from the Hiroshima Foundation on 14 November 2005

The 2006 Edita and Ira Morris Hiroshima Prize for Peace and Culture will be awarded to Ms Elena Nemirovskaya, founder and director of the Moscow School for Political Studies, in recognition of her pioneering contribution to the development of civic culture, political dialogue, deliberative democracy and the respect for human rights in Russia and other post-Soviet countries.
– The Moscow School for Political Studies is a unique independent centre for political education and discussion. Assembling opinion leaders from all parts of Russia and from a wide spectrum of political persuasions, it seeks to deepen the understanding of democratic principles and political processes, says Daniel Tarschys, chairman of the Hiroshima Foundation. The School was set up by Elena Nemirovskaya in 1992. She is an art historian with degrees in architecture and art. In the late 1980s her kitchen became a ”salon” for intellectuals concerned about the future development of Russia. Living near the White House in Moscow she helped feed the human shield outside the building during the coup against Mikhail Gorbachev in August of 1991. Thereafter she determined to devote herself to promoting the values of democracy and human rights through educational activities aimed at participants in the emerging pluralist public sphere. The Council of Europe provided her with its first grant and the School began with a first group of 25 participants. Today its seminars take place right across Russia with over 600 attending annually. Support has also been provided by the European Commission and by numerous foundations and governments, including that of Sweden (through SIDA). The 2006 Hiroshima Prize, amounting to US $ 100.000, will be awarded on Sunday 2 April at a ceremony to be held at 13.00 at Södra Teatern in Stockholm. For further information about the Laureate and her School see http://eng.msps.su/nemirovskaya.html and http://eng.msps.su/?=page1.