Jill Dougherty is an expert on Russia and the former Soviet Union. In her three-decade career with CNN she served as Foreign Affairs Correspondent, based in Washington, D.C., where she covered the State Department and provided analysis on international issues.

Dougherty previously served as U.S. Affairs Editor for CNN International; Managing Editor of CNN International Asia/Pacific, based in Hong Kong; and CNN's Moscow Bureau Chief and Correspondent.

From 1991 to 1996 she was CNN White House Correspondent, covering the presidencies of George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

In 2013-14 she was a Fellow at the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, where she pursued research on Russia’s mass media.

Dougherty received her B.A. degree in Slavic Languages and Literature from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and her M.A. from Georgetown University, where she researched Russia’s soft power diplomacy.

Project Summary

In my research at the Wilson Center I will focus on President Vladimir Putin’s efforts to control the Russian media and to use his nation’s soft power – its culture, language and “national idea” – to achieve Russia’s foreign policy objectives.

The increasing centralization and mobilization of Russia’s domestic and international information resources in the hands of the state is providing the Kremlin the means to galvanize public opinion within the country, ignite passions in countries of the former Soviet Union with large populations of Russian-speakers, and forcefully assert Russia’s policies, views and values internationally.

The end of the Soviet Union brought to an end its Communist ideology but, increasingly, Vladimir Putin’s vision of a resurgent Russia appears to be developing into a new ideology that must be better understood, if the United States and other Western countries are to manage relations with Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

Major Publications

Previous Terms

Former Public Policy Scholar, September 2014-May 2015: "Re-defining Russia: Vladimir Putin's Ideology"