My name is Kamen Kraev and I am the founder of Vox Orientalis. I am a political science graduate of the Catholic University of Leuven (KUL) in Belgium with a long-standing interest in the field of international relations and European politics. I am particularly fond of following the intricate socio – political processes in the wider Eastern European region and the Balkans. My personal background is Bulgarian and I believe that gives me good perspective through which to understand all these complex regions. Over the years I have built up considerable knowledge of the history, culture, and heritage of the Balkans, the Ottoman Empire, the Russian Empire and its Soviet successor. The insights which I had received led me to the decision to launch Vox Orientalis.
My academic background is diverse. I obtained an advanced Master degree in European Politics and Policies in 2012 from KUL where I focused my elective curriculum as much as possible on Eastern Europe and Eurasia. My master dissertation covered the relationship between the EU and Ukraine prior to the current crisis in the region. Additionally, I also have a master of Business Administration (MBA) from the EHSAL Management School Brussels since 2011. It helped me expand my understanding of the economic studies.
I am currently working as a journalist in the energy field. However, I have never given rest to my curiosity and the need to share some of my insights about the world of the East and that feeling ultimately led to the creation of this project.
I hope you will be able to enjoy this blog while also benefiting from its content.
Andrey Sheremeta is a member of the Management Board of Promote Ukraine (http://www.promoteukraine.org/join.html), a Belgian-based NGO that supports and promotes civil society activities for Ukraine worldwide.
Prior to his current role, Andrey worked in EU-Ukraine Business Council NGO in Brussels, Belgium promoting Ukrainian companies’ agenda in EU institutions. After that he moved to the position of marketing and sales officer of MediaSphere advertising agency, being responsible for Eastern European markets. Before coming back to Ukraine in late 2013, he served as a banking specialist in Euroclear Bank SA/NV, a large international central financial securities depository.
In late 2013 Andrey returned back to Ukraine and took active part in the Euromaidan movement that brought the end to the regime of then the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovich and ultimately caused the outbreak of fighting in Eastern Ukraine. At the time of Euromaidan revolution, Andrey worked for political consultancy group BERTA Communications as public relations officer and project manager. During 2014 Parliamentary elections in Ukraine he was a member of a political technologists team that worked for a group of parliamentary candidates in Eastern Ukraine. Andrey served as the electoral campaign manager’s assistant for one the local majority electoral districts in Dnepropetrovsk region.
Andrey got his Master of Science in Business Administration (MBA) degree from EHSAL Management School Brussels (earlier HUB Brussels), with specialization in International Business Management. His Master thesis describes the history of Foreign Direct Investment in Ukraine since its independence till the collapse of the Yanukovich regime.
His interests include foreign affairs, political economy and political technology, multinational trade and global development. He is particularly interested in the theory and practice of economic development of independent Ukraine and in the peculiarities of the socio-political environment of wider Eastern Europe in general.
Andrey is currently a private entrepreneur. He is the founder and CEO of TAPI Development Group, a multinational trade and development agency.
Tim studied political science and law at the university of Osnabrück (Germany) and the Free University of Brussels (Belgium). He spent one year at Sofia university (Bulgaria) as a research fellow of the German Academic Exchange Service.
He is a member of the German – Bulgarian association (Deutsch – Bulgarische Gesellschaft) and the South – Eastern European association (Südosteuropa – Gesellschaft). Since 2009 Tim publishes research papers and articles about political topics linked with Eastern Europe. He has mainly focused on studies/ articles dealing with Bulgaria and Macedonia.