Nikolay Kozhanov

Former Nonresident scholar
Foreign and Security Policy Program
Moscow Center
tel +7 495 935 8904 fax +7 495 935 8906
Kozhanov is a nonresident scholar at the Carnegie Moscow Center and a contributing expert to the Moscow-based Institute of the Middle East.


2010 PhD International Economics and Economic Security, St. Petersburg State University
2011 MA Middle East Studies (graduation with distinction), University of Exeter
2006 MA International Economics, St. Petersburg State University
2006 MA Oriental Studies, St. Petersburg State University
2004 BA Oriental Studies, St. Petersburg State University


Arabic; English; Farsi; Russian

Contact Information


Nikolay Kozhanov is no longer with the Carnegie Moscow Center

Nikolay Kozhanov is a nonresident scholar in the Foreign and Security Policy Program at the Carnegie Moscow Center and a contributing expert to the Moscow-based Institute of the Middle East. His research focuses on international relations and political economy of the Middle East, particularly Iran and the Gulf.

Prior to joining the Carnegie Moscow Center, Kozhanov worked as a visiting lecturer on political economy of the Middle East at the European University in St. Petersburg and a senior lecturer in international economics at the St. Petersburg State University. From July 2006 to November 2009, Kozhanov served as an attaché of the political section of the Russian Embassy in Tehran, where his responsibilities included the analysis of socio-economic and political developments in Iran.

In 2011, Kozhanov published his first monograph that assessed the effectiveness of international sanctions adopted against Iran. In 2012, he was a visiting fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, which sponsored the publication of his second monograph, Russia’s Relations with Iran: Dialogue Without Commitments. In 2015, Kozhanov joined the Russia and Eurasia program of Chatham House as a Robert Bosch visiting fellow to research the evolution of Russian foreign policy in the Middle East in the wake of the crisis in Ukraine.

  • Commentary September 5, 2016 Русский
    Russia’s Foothold in Iran: Why Tehran Changed Its Mind

    Perhaps Iran’s leaders would have suppressed popular indignation and Russian bombers would still be taking off from the Shahid Nojeh airfield now had it not been for Russian media playing up the prospect of establishing a military base in Iran, no matter how limited its resources and capabilities. The idea of handing over any part of its territory to foreigers is unacceptable to the Iranians

  • Op-Ed Cipher Brief April 1, 2016
    Imposing its Own Vision

    By intensifying its current activities in the Middle East, the Kremlin is pursuing three goals: economic, political, and security.

  • Op-Ed Chatham House March 21, 2016
    Russia’s ‘Withdrawal’ from Syria is Nothing of the Kind

    Vladimir Putin’s announcement of Russia’s withdrawal from Syria is another cynical move by the Kremlin to retain control over the situation.

  • Op-Ed TRENDS Research & Advisory March 21, 2016
    Elections in Iran: Should We Wait for Changes?

    The 2016 elections to the Iranian parliament and Assembly of Expert definitely brought, at least, nominal changes in the political landscape of the country. Yet, the potential impact of these changes on the future development of the country will probably be limited.

  • Op-Ed Chatham House February 3, 2016
    The Saudi-Iranian Rift Forces a Difficult Decision on Moscow

    The Saudi-Iranian conflict will compel Moscow to make a hard choice: stand with its Iranian partner or step aside and remain ostensibly neutral.

  • Op-Ed Chatham House November 27, 2015
    The Limits of Russian-Iranian Cooperation

    At the moment, Russia and Iran remain partners in Syria, but their cooperation will be limited.

  • Commentary November 4, 2015 Русский
    Moscow Looks for Phase Two in Syria

    Aware of the perils of a long military operation in Syria, Russia is taking another look at energizing the diplomatic track. But a number of issues will be very difficult to resolve, in particular the fate of President Assad.

  • Op-Ed TRENDS Research & Advisory October 21, 2015
    Moscow Plays Poker in Syria: What’s at Stake?

    The Assad regime is Russia’s main stake which allows the Russians to influence the situation in Syria and demonstrate their importance in the international arena by positioning Moscow as one of those players without whom the crisis cannot be solved.

  • Op-Ed Reuters October 5, 2015
    Vladimir Putin’s Secret Weapon for a Syrian End Game? Diplomacy

    Moscow is likely to come to grips with the idea that a political solution for the Syrian conflict would include a post-Assad Syria. But the real question may be whether outside players can join diplomatic forces with Moscow to finally end the crisis.

  • Damage and destruction in Qusayr, Syria
    Op-Ed Newsweek October 1, 2015
    Russia’s Military Intervention in Syria Makes It a Key Regional Player

    Any attempts to browbeat Moscow into stopping its military activity in Syria, not to mention changing its longstanding stance on the conflict, are a waste of time.

  • ABC’s Saturday Extra September 26, 2015
    Putin Power in Syria

    The increase of Russian supplies and presence in support of the Bashar al-Assad’s regime is part of the Russian plan to start negotiations on the ground to resolve the Syrian crisis.

  • CNN’s Amanpour September 15, 2015
    Russia’s Game in Syria

    To the Kremlin, Assad is not the source of the problem in Syria—he is actually the way to solve it.


Areas of Expertise

Carnegie Moscow Center
16/2 Tverskaya Moscow, 125009 Russia
Phone: +7 495 935-8904 Fax: +7 495 935-8906
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