Alexey Malashenko

Scholar in Residence
Religion, Society, and Security Program
Moscow Center
Malashenko is the chair of the Carnegie Moscow Center’s Religion, Society, and Security Program. He also taught at the Higher School of Economics from 2007 to 2008 and was a professor at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations from 2000 to 2006.


PhD, History, Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences


Arabic; English; French; Russian


Alexey Malashenko is the chair of the Carnegie Moscow Center’s Religion, Society, and Security Program.

Malashenko also taught at the Higher School of Economics from 2007 to 2008 and was a professor at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations from 2000 to 2006. From 1976 to 1982 and again from 1986 to 2001, Malashenko worked at the Institute of Oriental Studies at the Russian Academy of Sciences as a research fellow, head of the Islamic Department, and finally as senior associate. In 1990, he was also a visiting professor at Colgate University in New York. From 1982 to 1986, he was editor of the journal Problems of Peace and Socialism.

Malashenko is a professor of political science as well as a member of the RIA Novosti advisory council. He serves on the editorial boards of the journals Central Asia and the Caucasus and Acta Eurasica and the newsletter Russia and the Muslim World and is a board member of the International Federation for Peace and Conciliation.

Malashenko is the author and editor of about twenty books in Russian, English, French, and Arabic, including: Islam in Central Asia (Garnet Publishing, 1994), Russia’s Restless Frontier (with Dmitri Trenin; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 2004), The Islamic Alternative and the Islamist Project (Carnegie Moscow Center and Ves Mir, 2006), Russia and Islam (Carnegie Moscow Center and ROSSPEN, 2007), and My Islam (ROSSPEN, 2010).

  • Commentary November 20, 2015 Русский
    Divisions and Defiance Among Russia’s Muslims

    Russia’s official Muslim establishment blames the West for the rise of the self-proclaimed Islamic State and refuses to admit that radical Islam has a real social base, ignoring the radicalization of many ordinary Muslims in Russia and Central Asia.

  • Commentary November 16, 2015 Русский
    Exorcising Chechnya: Kadyrov and the Islamic State

    Despite his harsh rhetoric, Kadyrov now takes a pragmatic view of the Islamic State’s influence on the situation in Chechnya and is committing himself to “exorcise” would-be recruits or returnees from the Middle East rather than merely destroying them.

  • Paper September 30, 2015 Русский
    The Rise of Nontraditional Islam in the Urals

    As Islam expands in the Ural Federal District, religious and political life there is evolving. Much of this expansion is due to the arrival of Muslim migrants from Central Asia and the Caucasus, and some migrants bring with them religious radicalism—a challenge that requires a more effective official response.

  • Commentary September 10, 2015 Русский
    Trouble in Tajikistan

    An army mutiny is the only latest of many new threats to Tajikistan's veteran president. Russia is the only country he can rely on to support him and it will take advantage of his predicament.

  • Commentary September 7, 2015 Русский
    Downfall in Dagestan

    A life sentence handed down to Said Amirov, once the most powerful man in the largest republic in the North Caucasus, shows that almost no one in present-day Russia is untouchable

  • Op-Ed Russian International Affairs Council August 11, 2015 Русский
    Where Will the New Taliban Leader Lead His People?

    The appointment of Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour as leader of the Taliban in Afghanistan can be viewed in two ways: as a victory for Pakistan (which clearly supports Mansour) or as the strengthening of radical tendencies within the Taliban.

  • Op-Ed Russia Direct June 15, 2015
    Russia Faces Tough Choices on What to Do With Syria and ISIS

    Not only Russia, but also the entire world might face a dilemma: Choosing between a very sinister authoritarian regime and the Islamic State.

  • American Enterprise Institute May 13, 2015
    Islamic Challenges to Russia, From the Caucasus to the Volga and the Urals

    In the first decade of the 21st century, the situation in the Volga River basin and in some other Russian regions where Muslims live began to change: radical views gained currency, and radical groups and study circles became active.

  • Op-Ed Russian International Affairs Council April 24, 2015 Русский
    The Early Presidential Elections in Kazakhstan: Before and After

    There is no doubt that Nursultan Nazarbayev will win Kazakhstan’s early presidential elections. He will stay in power for an indefinite number of years to come, and the country will implement its planned reforms under his patronage.

  • Commentary April 3, 2015
    Crimea as Part of Russia: First Conclusions

    Russia’s problems with Crimea and Crimea’s problems with Russia will only continue to grow.

  • December 10, 2013
    The Fight for Influence: Russia in Central Asia

    It is time for Moscow to rethink its approach to Central Asia.

  • Moscow: Carnegie Moscow Center July 5, 2011 Русский
    20 Years Without the Berlin Wall: A Breakthrough to Freedom

    Enormous societal and political shifts 20 years ago opened prospects for a new, united Europe. Despite Russia’s role in this peaceful departure from totalitarianism, the country’s course in the subsequent two decades was not so straightforward. While the demolition of the Berlin Wall is no guarantee of success, democratic transformations are a necessary precondition.

  • Moscow: Carnegie Moscow Center October 14, 2009 Русский
    Twenty Years of Religious Freedom in Russia

    Post-Soviet Russia has witnessed an expansion of religious freedom and a change in the relationship between religious entities and the state. Religious movements that had all but disappeared under the Soviet regime have been experiencing a revival.

  • Moscow: Carnegie Moscow Center July 1, 2009 Русский
    Religion and Globalization Across Eurasia

    Each of seven major religions in Eurasia—Buddhism, Catholicism, Hinduism, Islam, Protestantism, Russian Orthodoxy, and paganism—has been forced to develop under the modern pressures of globalization.

  • Washington October 29, 2003 Washington, D.C.
    Russia's Restless Frontier: The Chechnya Factor in Post-Soviet Russia

    Trenin and Malashenko examine the implications of the war with Chechnya for Russia's post-Soviet evolution. Considering Chechnya's impact on Russia's military, domestic politics, foreign policy, and ethnic relations, the authors contend that the Chechen factor must be addressed before Russia can continue its development.

  • Boston
    NPR's Tell Me More April 22, 2013
    After Boston Bombing, A New Focus On Chechnya

    The current situation in Dagestan may have more bearing on the actions of the Boston bombers than the situation in Chechnya.

  • Voice of Russia June 7, 2012
    Turkey: A Bridge Between Two Worlds

    Turkey is attempting to position itself as a more than a regional power, with activity in all its neighboring regions. It remains to be seen, however, whether Turkey has enough forces to be present in so many places.

  • Alexey Malashenko
    CSIS June 28, 2011
    Implications of the Arab Spring for Central Asia

    The Arab Spring is likely to have little to no impact on the political situation in the countries of Central Asia and may even serve the governments there as a cautionary warning to their citizens against social upheaval and turmoil.

  • Alexey Malashenko
    Voice of Russia June 27, 2011
    Living in Limbo in Nagorno-Karabakh

    While Azerbaijan is unlikely to ever recognize the independence of Nagorno-Karabakh or sign a treaty with Armenia concerning the contested territory, it is also unlikely that a war will break out over the territory’s status.

  • RIA Novosti's Russian Angle June 14, 2011
    What Is the Role of Russia in the Middle East Today?

    Russia plays an extremely important role as mediator in the current Libyan conflict. If Moscow can succeed in this role, there would be a clear positive benefit to Libya and its neighbors.

  • Radio France Internationale August 17, 2009
    Violence in Ingushetia

    Ingushetia’s corrupt officials and extreme Islamists may be behind a suicide bomb explosion at a police station in the capital of Nazran.

  • September 21, 2015 Moscow
    Sectarianism and Conflict in the Middle East

    Shia-Sunni sectarianism is one of the factors that drive instability in the Middle East.

  • October 16, 2014 Moscow Русский
    Exploring the Prospects for Russian-Turkish Cooperation

    Russia and Turkey share many important interests, providing them with opportunities for valuable collaboration and cooperation in their common neighborhood, which stretches from the South Caucasus and the Levant to Central Asia and Afghanistan.

  • April 17, 2014 Moscow
    Syria Transition Roadmap

    As the conflict in Syria continues, opposition groups have put together a plan named the “Syria Transition Roadmap” that they hope will lead the country into the future.

  • May 14, 2013 Washington, DC
    North Caucasus Under the Spotlight

    Since the Boston Marathon bombings, Russia’s relationship with its Muslim minorities has become the focus of intense scrutiny in the West.

  • April 12, 2013 Beirut
    The Russia-Middle East Connection: The Arab Spring and its Impact on Russia’s Muslims

    Since the Arab Spring first broke out in December 2011, Russian policymakers have viewed regional developments with unease. They now wonder what rising Islamist parties in the Middle East will mean for Russia's relationship with its own Muslim minority.

  • Rafik Mukhametshin and Alexey Malashenko
    October 4, 2012 Moscow Русский
    The Religious Situation in Tatarstan

    Radicalization is taking place inside Tatarstan’s Muslim community, and internal divisions are among the reasons for the July 2012 terrorist attacks on Ildus Faizov and Valiulla Yakupov.

  • March 14, 2012 Moscow, Kyiv Русский
    Russia’s 2012 Presidential Elections: Prospects for Russia and the Region

    After the presidential election, which Vladimir Putin won, a significant portion of the population doubts the legitimacy of the election results. These doubts will contribute to the rise of social and political movements in Russia.

  • February 22, 2012 Washington, D.C.
    Trends in Islam in the Wider Caucasus

    Islam is increasingly an important factor in the politics of the wider Caucasus region.

  • February 22, 2012 Washington, D.C.
    Political Islam in the Caucasus

    Islam is increasingly becoming a factor in the politics of the wider Caucasus region, as Azerbaijan experiences a growth of religion in politics and Turkey and Iran compete for Islamic influence on their neighbors.

  • January 26, 2012 Washington, D.C.
    Russia's Strategy in the Middle East

    Russia’s approach to the Middle East is at a turning point, as the changes associated with the Arab Spring continue to destabilize regimes and alliances and Iran appears to be moving ahead with its nuclear program in defiance of Russia and the West.

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