Now in its fifth year, the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize rewards the very best non-fiction writing in English that promotes public understanding and intelligent debate about the Russian-speaking world. A new judging panel of five people is selected each year for the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize. The judges for the 2017 Prize are Simon Franklin (Chair); Anne Applebaum; Petr Aven; Charlotte Hobson; and Dominic Lieven.

Simon Franklin (chair). Professor of Slavonic Studies at Cambridge University, fellow of Clare College and former chairman of Pushkin House. A specialist on Russian history, literature and culture, his books include 'Writing, Society and Culture in Early Rus'.





Anne Applebaum is a columnist for the Washington Post and an adjunct fellow of the Centre for European Policy Analysis. Her award-winning books include 'Iron Curtain', 'Gulag', 'From a Polish Country House Kitchen' and 'Between East and West'.




Petr Aven is member of the supervisory board of Alfa Group Consortium, a director of the Russian Economic School and the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts. He was Russia’s Minister of Foreign Economic Relations, and is a leading art collector and author of 'Gaidar’s Revolution'.





Charlotte Hobson is an author, journalist and translator. She is author of 'Black Earth City', based on her experiences studying Russian in Voronezh, which won a Somerset Maugham Award. Her debut novel, 'The Vanishing Futurist', was published in 2016.





Dominic Lieven Professor emeritus at LSE and senior research fellow at Trinity College, Cambridge. He is a specialist on Imperial Russian history, the history of empires, the Napoleonic era, the First World War and monarchy. His many books include 'Towards the Flame', winner of the 2016 Pushkin House Russian book prize. 





The Prize is supported by generous donations from Douglas Smith and Stephanie Ellis-Smith, and The Polonsky Foundation.

Prof Franklin said: “At a time when many of us struggle to find our bearings in the fog of rhetoric and polemic, it is particularly important to encourage and recognise high-quality writing and research that can help to broaden our understanding of Russia. The Pushkin House Prize has fine track record of honouring the authors of books that are both enlightening and engaging. I very much look forward to the search for this year’s winner.”

Douglas Smith, author and winner of the inaugural Pushkin House Russian book prize award in 2013, said: “Stephanie and I are delighted to help support the prize. Intelligent, informed, and engaging writing on Russia that speaks to as wide an audience as possible is as important now as ever.”

Marc Polonsky, trustee of the Polonsky Foundation, said: “We are pleased to support Pushkin House in its good work of presenting Russian culture. The Pushkin House Prize has done much to further understanding of the Russian-speaking world and of the complex realities of Russia's past and present.”

Andrew Jack, head of the prize advisory committee, said: “We thank our sponsors for their support, and are delighted to have such an experienced and varied group of experts and authors as judges in such an important year for Russia. We look forward to some very strong submissions.”

The winner will be announced in early summer 2017.