Peter Pomerantsev

Senior Fellow, SNF Agora Institute

Peter Pomerantsev is an author, TV producer, and SNF Agora Senior Fellow. He specializes in propaganda and media development, and has testified on the challenges of information war to the US House Foreign Affairs Committee, US Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the UK Parliament Defense Select Committee.

He writes for publications including the Financial Times, London Review of Books, Politico, Atlantic and many others. His book on Russian propaganda, Nothing is True and Everything is Possible, won the 2016 Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize, was nominated for the Samuel Johnson, Guardian First Book, Pushkin House and Gordon Burns Prizes. It is translated into over a dozen languages. In the book Pomerantsev provides insight into how the Russian state apparatus uses “black PR” to manipulate truth, while the Russian public — accustomed to the lies of the Soviet regime — remain cynical and assume that all of “Kremlin’s reality is scripted”.

Pomerantsev attended Westminster School in London and the European School in Munich. He studied English Literature and German at the University of Edinburgh, and attended the Higher Courses for Script Writers and Film Directors in Moscow. After university, he moved to Russia in 2001. He “jumped jobs” between think tanks and was a consultant on European Union projects until he went to film school.

Pomerantsev lived largely in Moscow between 2001 and 2010, working in TV. Between 2006 and 2010, following a stint in London, he worked on programs broadcast on Russian entertainment channel TNT. His credits included Creative Producer on ‘Привет Пока’, the Russian version of the Sony format ‘Hello-Goodbye’.

Pomerantsev was project chair for the Information Warfare Initiative of the Center for European Policy Analysis. He also led the Beyond Propaganda programme within the Legatum Institute’s Transitions Forum, where he was a Senior Fellow. Pomerantsev has been at the fellow of the Institute for Human Sciences, Vienna.