Photo: Sviatoslav Vakarchuk (с) 2019

22 January 2019 :
Real changes in Ukraine – a must for a successful future

Event announcement

Dear Members and Friends

Happy new year! We hope you and yours had a wonderful holiday break.

We are delighted to confirm that the next speech in our lecture series will be given by Sviatoslav Vakarchuk, lead singer and founder of Okean Elzy, social activist and philanthropist, on 22 January 2019 at 7pm in the Attlee Suite, Portcullis House, Bridge Street, Westminster SW1A 2LW.

His talk is entitled, ‘Real changes in Ukraine – a must for a successful future‘ during which he will discuss the necessity of new leaders and a new political culture in Ukraine, the rule of law and justice.

We hope you will be able to join us, and please feel free to invite your friends and colleagues to this event.

If you would like to attend, please RSVP to at your earliest convenience. Due to tight security and the potential for queues, we would advise you to allow at least 30 minutes to enter Portcullis House; further instructions and a map will be sent in due course to those who RSVP.

Keep up with news and events by liking our Facebook page ( and consider becoming a sponsor of the BUS to help our activities continue and expand.


Speaker Profile:

Sviatoslav Vakarchuk
Singer of Okean Elzy and thought leader in Ukraine

Sviatoslav (Slava) Vakarchuk is a co-founder of the Centre for Economic Strategy (CES) in Ukraine, a co-founder and member of the initiative task force of the Ukrainian Leadership Academy, a social activist, thought leader and founder of the rock band Okean Elzy. He holds a PhD in theoretical physics.

Okean Elzy (Elsa’s Ocean) is the most successful and popular Ukrainian rock band. The group has released 9 studio albums since 1994. They have conducted numerous concert tours in Ukraine and Eastern Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and Western Europe. In 2016 they set the attendance record for any Ukrainian band – over 85 thousand (at Kyiv Olimpisky stadium in summer 2016).

Mr Vakarchuk was a member of the Ukrainian Parliament in 2005-08, during which time he a member of the Parliamentary Committee on Freedom of Expression and Information.

In 2015 Sviatoslav Vakarchuk, together with Tomas Fiala, the CEO of Dragon Capital, and Ivan Miklos, former deputy prime minister and minister of finance of the Slovak Republic and currently economic advisor to the Ukrainian government, founded the Centre for Economic Strategy (CES), an independent policy think tank aimed at supporting reforms in Ukraine in order to achieve sustainable economic growth.

In 2015 Sviatoslav Vakarchuk became the third Yale World Fellow from Ukraine since the programme was launched in 2002. The programme is designed for mid-career professionals with a significant record of achievements. During 2015-2016 Slava gave several lectures and presentations at UC Berkeley, Fordham, Columbia and Harvard.

In 2017 Stanford’s Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law (CDDRL) invited Vakarchuk as a visiting scholar for the fall quarter. Vakarchuk interacted with the Ukrainian Emerging Leaders Program during his residency at CDDRL. Launched in 2016, the programme seeks to provide Ukrainian leaders with opportunities for professional growth and development, as well as the chance to work on a project over the course of a 10-month residency at Stanford.

Slava is also known for his social and cultural projects. Together with the members of Okean Elzy he actively supported the preventive campaign by the International Organization for Migration and MTV Europe’s “People Are Not For Sale.”

In 2003 Sviatoslav had become an Honorary Ambassador of Culture in Ukraine.

In 2005 he became a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Programme.

In 2015 Sviatoslav Vakarchuk was declared the most active Ukrainian philanthropist.

Slava Vakarchuk is also the founder of “Lyudi Maybutnyogo” (People of the Future) Charity Foundation. The Foundation has purchased equipment for Ukrainian hospitals and medicines for the Anti-Terrorist Operation Zone/United Forces Operation in Ukraine.


Our partner