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International Mega-Events as a Component of Russian Soft-Power (Olympic Games, FIFA Etc.)

Student: Kristina Chernova

Supervisor: Dmitry Novikov

Faculty: Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs

Educational Programme: Double degree programme in International Relations of the NRU HSE and the University of London (Bachelor)

Year of Graduation: 2020

In modern society, the world's mega-events such as the FIFA, the Olympics, Eurovision and others have a great influence on shaping the understanding of the country, its politics and culture. Due to participation in mega-events not only positive or negative vision of the country on the opinion of people, but also ability of the country to participate in the political arena increases. It is very important for countries in the modern world to have influence in the world political society. Power is the main lever of influence. For modern man, the concept of power is divided into two types: soft power and strong power. Hard power is usually understood as the military power of countries, its ability to fight back or defend themselves with weapons. The opposite of hard power is soft power, meaning the ability of a country to draw attention to itself through cultural heritage, religion, ideology, and participation in mega-events. If sights and holidays and festivals of a particular country are more local phenomena, then mega-events attract the attention of the whole mankind. Thus, we can say that participation in mega-events is one of the most important factors for strengthening the country's power. Russia also uses soft power to attract tourists: it improves the infrastructure of cities, decorates the streets depending on the season, takes part in mega-events. If we consider Russia to be a country participating in mega-events, as well as a country organizing such world events over the past decades, the public attitude towards it should have improved and the influence on world politics should have increased. But the attitude towards Russia is not the most positive on the world stage. This thesis will be dedicated to the study of Russia's soft power in the form of mega-events, historical analysis and analysis of Russia's today's image in world society.

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