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Sebastian Hoppe


Freie Universität Berlin

Research Group: Peripheral Liberalism

Edwin-Redslob-Str. 29
14195 Berlin

Sebastian is currently completing a PhD at Friedrich Schiller University Jena on the political economy of state strategies and regional development projects in the Russian Far East (2007-2022). Previously, he was a Research Fellow at Freie Universität Berlin (2018-23). In the past, he held positions as Visiting Scholar at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin (2020-23), Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Sussex (2018), and Research Fellow in the Department of International Relations at the University of Leipzig (2016-18). Sebastian is also Senior Curator for Politics for the science and discussion platform te.ma, introducing research and political controversies on Russia's war against Ukraine as well as its effects on European and global affairs to a broader audience. He studied History, Political Science and International Relations in Leipzig and Moscow.

Research Interests

-    Political Economy of (regional) development, especially in post-socialist societies.
-    Historical Sociology of International Politics, especially in Eastern Europe and with regard to Sino-Russian relations
-    Political Economy of (natural resource) rents, rent-seeking, rentierism
-    History and theory of capitalism, especially post-Keynesian and Marxist approaches
-    sovereignism as a political project
-    state and statehood in post-socialist societies
-    populist mobilisations, especially in post-Soviet societies
-    German foreign policy towards Eastern Europe, Russia and China

Current Research at SCRIPTS

At SCRIPTS, Sebastian is working on a book project that builds on his dissertation, placing the regional development strategies of the Russian state in the Russian Far East since the late 2000s in a global comparative framework. In doing so, he sheds light on how supposedly Western development scripts are appropriated, reinterpreted, and implemented in peripheral regions by large states (especially China, USA, Brazil) - with highly divergent outcomes. Sebastian is also working on several publications on the Historical Sociology of Sino-Russian relations, which both trace the genesis of the relationship up to the Russian war of aggression on Ukraine in February 2022 and shed light on the effects of the war on the further course of the partnership.

Articles (peer-reviewed)

  • Rentierism as order. On capitalist breakthroughs and the making of non-transformative development in late Putinism. In: Europe-Asia Studies 75, 2023 (forthcoming).
  • Kategoriale Dissonanzen. Russlands regressiver Weg in den Krieg und die Historische Soziologie imperialistischer Außenpolitiken. In: Zeitschrift für Friedens- und Konfliktforschung (2), 2023. 
  • Internationale Historische Soziologie und historische Sozialwissenschaft in den deutschen und anglo-amerikanischen IB. Zur Relevanz einer Paralleldebatte für die Außenpolitikforschung. In: Zeitschrift für Internationale Beziehungen 28 (1), 2021, S. 35–67.
  • Sovereigntism vs. anti-corruption messianism. A salient post-Soviet cleavage of populist mobilisation. In: Post-Soviet Affairs 38 (4), 2021, S. 251–273.

Articles and book chapters (non-peer-reviewed)

  • Breakthroughs and Breakdowns in the Hinterland. Historical Cycles of 'Special Economic Zones' and Concessions in the Russian Far East. In: The Russian Far East. Regional and Transnational Perspectives, 19th-21st cent, 2024 (forthcoming).
  • Introduction to the Special Issue. Capitalism and Socialism through the Russian Prism. Lineages of Concept Formation and the
  • (Post-)Soviet Experience. In: Europe-Asia Studies 75, 2023 (forthcoming). [with Friedrich Asschenfeldt und Katharina Bluhm]
  • The patronal politics of regional development projects. Exploring Russia's Far Eastern rent management. In: Hannes Warnecke-Berger und Jan Ickler (Eds.): The Political Economy of Extractivism Global Perspectives on the Seduction of Rent. New York: Routledge, 2024.
  • Lobbyismus in Russland. In: Andreas Polk und Karsten Mause (Eds.): Handbuch Lobbyismus. Wiesbaden: Springer, 2022. [with Alexander Libman]
  • Translation: Lobbying in Russia. In: Andreas Polk und Karsten Mause (Eds.): The Political Economy of Lobbying. Channels of Influence and their Regulation. Wiesbaden: Springer, 2023 (forthcoming). [with Alexander Libman]

Analyses & Media Commentary