Marco Siddi

Main interests:

  • Memory politics in twentieth century Europe
  • Central and Eastern European history of the twentieth century
  • Russian foreign and security policy
  • Frozen conflicts in the post-Soviet space
  • Common Foreign, Security and Defence Policy of the European Union
  • EU-Russia energy relations

Please contact me at:


I am a researcher and Ph.D. candidate at the universities of Edinburgh and Cologne. My main focus is on historical and current perceptions of Russia in EU member states and how these affect European foreign policy towards Russia. During my stays at the Trans European Policy Studies Association (Brussels) and at the Hungarian Academy of Science (Budapest) I researched EU-Russia energy relations, the frozen conflicts in the post-Soviet space and the issue of ballistic missile defence in Europe. I also wrote studies for the Institut für Europäische Politik (Berlin) and Affarinternazionali (Rome). Furthermore, I am a regular contributor to the Italian online journals Meridiani Affari Internazionali and Instoria.

Prior to joining the EXACT Ph.D. programme, I graduated from the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna with a Master's degree in International Studies (2008-2010). I also have a Bachelor degree in Modern History and German Language and Literature from Oxford University (2004-2008). In addition, I attended study programs at the Diplomatic Academy of Moscow, the universities of Trier and Bremen and the United World College of the Adriatic, where I obtained the International Baccalaureate. In 2009-2010 I was President of the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna's Student Initiative, focusing on student welfare, the organization of a conference on nuclear non-proliferation, the Academy's 2010 charity ball and several sport activities.

Furthermore, I worked as an intern at the Action against Terrorism Unit of the Organization for Security and Co-Operation in Europe and at the Vienna-based public affairs consultancy Human Dynamics.

EXACT stages
October 2010 – February 2011 University of Cologne
March 2011 – October 2011 Trans European Policy Studies Association (TEPSA), Brussels
November 2011 – March 2012 Institute for World Economics (IWE), Budapest
April 2012 – September 2013 University of Edinburgh
From October 2013 DAAD Fellow, Institute of European Politics (IEP), Berlin
PhD research project

Title of research project: Divided history, divisive foreign policy? Policy makers' discourses on Russia in EU member states

Supervisor: Dr. Luke March (University of Edinburgh), Professor John Peterson (University of Edinburgh) and Professor Wolfgang Wessels (University of Cologne)

My dissertation investigates the relationship between national identity and policy-makers' discourses on Russia in EU Member States. Based on an interpretative constructivist theoretical framework, the dissertation argues that national identity constitutes an essential social structure to understand policy-makers' discourses on Russia. The analysis focuses on national identity construction and Russia's role therein in Germany, Poland and Finland. The three selected countries have a long history of troubled relations with Russia, which influenced profoundly the construction of their national identity.

The empirical part of the dissertation analyses policy-makers' discourses on Russia during international events in which the Kremlin played a key role between 1999 and 2009. These include the Second Chechnya War, the energy crises between Russia and Ukraine and the August 2008 war between Russia and Georgia. The main focus is on discourses of key foreign policy makers, namely heads of states and governments, foreign and defence ministers. Furthermore, the dissertation compares national discourses in the selected countries and examines the prospects for the emergence of shared or reconcilable European discourses on Russia.

Discourse-historical analysis is the methodology applied to deconstruct discourses on Russia and investigate their relationship with national identity.

Publications & Conference Contributions

Academic publications:

  • 'The Russian "other". The impact of national identity construction on EU-Russia relations', in: Ratka, Edmund / Spaiser, Olga (eds.), Understanding European Neighbourhood Policies: Concepts, Actors, PerceptionsMünchner Beiträge zur Europäischen Einigung, Volume 22, Nomos Publishers, 2012
  • 'Italy-Russia relations: politics, energy and other business', in: Zsuzsa, Ludvig (ed.), East European Studies No. 4. Eurasian challenges: Partnerships with Russia and other issues in the post-Soviet area, Institute of World Economics, Research Centre for Economic and Regional Studies of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, 2012, pp. 74-92
  • 'L'assedio di Leningrado', Quaderni di Instoria, no. 16 (2011)


Policy papers and think tank studies:

  • Final report for the annual expert seminar of the German-Nordic-Baltic Forum, organized by the Institut für Europäische Politik and the Finnish Institute of International Affairs (Helsinki, 27-28 September 2012)
  • Final report for the workshop 'Nagorno Karabakh: Security Situation', European Parliament, Directorate-General for External Policies of the Union, Subcommittee on Security and Defence, 20 June 2012


Conference and seminar contributions:

  • Norms or economics? EU discourses about post-electoral mass demonstrations in Russia in 2011-2012, International Relations research group, University of Edinburgh (22 October 2013)
  • An issue of identity? Poland's foreign policy toward Russia, paper presented at the congress of the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies (BASEES) / International Council for Central and East European Studies (ICCEES), Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge University (5-8 April 2013)
  • Russia and the forging of memory and identity in Europe, paper presented at Genealogies of Memory annual conference on 'Regions of memory. A comparative perspective on Eastern Europe' (Warsaw, 26-28 November 2012: programme), at the 2012 ECPR Graduate Conference (Jacobs University Bremen 4-6 July 2012) and at the International Relations research group of the University of Edinburgh (22 October 2012)


Online articles:


Teaching Activities and Trainings
  • Tutor and lecturer for the course 'The European Union in International Affairs', Winter Semester 2014
  • Main organiser and chair of the EXACT PhD seminar at the University of Cagliari, 14-15 June 2013 (full programme available here)
  • Teaching of seminar External Action of the European Union: Russia, the Eastern Neighbourhood and Central Asia (together with Vanessa Boas and Dana Depo), University of Cologne, April-July 2013
  • ECPR Young Scholars School on European Identity: Concepts, Research Methods, Evidence. University of Jena (17-23 March 2013). Sessions on: concepts of collective identity, theory and methods of European identity research, quantitative and qualitative research methods, roundtable on 'does the EU need a European identity?' (click here for the full programme)
  • EXACT Network Seminar on Academic Skills, University of Cologne (15-28 September 2012) Supervisors: Prof. Geoffrey Edwards (University of Cambridge) and Robert Kissack (Institut Barcelona d'Estudis Internacionals). Sessions on: theoretical and methodological approaches to research, teaching, presentation skills, publishing, research funding
  • EXACT Network Seminar on Professional Skills, Trans European Policy Studies Association, Brussels (6-19 October 2011). Supervisor: Hanna Ojanen (Finnish Institute of International Affairs). Sessions on: media training, research funding, project management, writing policy briefs, op-eds and press releases, press conference simulation, interviewing and networking skills, working with social media.
  • Teaching of seminar External Relations of the European Union (together with Simon Stross), University of Cologne, April-July 2011 
  • Guest lecture at the International Business School of Budapest on the topic "What is the future of the European Union's Common Foreign and Security Policy?" (16 December 2011)
  • Member of Discourse Analysis Research Group and International Relations Research Group at Edinburgh University
©  EXACT - Marie Curie ITN on EU External Action
Technische(r) Ansprechpartner(in):
Aline Bartenstein
Wulf Reiners
geändert: 28. November 2013
erstellt:  5. November 2010