In this section you will find a reading list encompassing a wide range of studies, articles and reports relating to the spread of pro-Kremlin disinformation.

Whether you want a general introduction, to learn about the Kremlin’s attempts to influence elections, or investigate how one single false message gets spread via a wide network of websites – this is the place to start.

How we collect the material

The selection of works keeps a balance between academic depth and reputability, but also a breadth of perspectives and interests beyond the academy. We have established quality control measures and the material selection was based on the five issue areas below.

Issue area 1
Threat actors

This area is dedicated to the activities of major threat actors, namely Russia and China and their aims, motives and capacities.

Issue area 2
Methods & Tools

This area captures the methods and tools deployed by threat actors to manipulate information: social media, narratives, emerging tech etc.

Issue area 3
Interference Areas

This area focuses on the socio-political areas targeted by threat actors: social cohesion, political processes, health, security and foreign policy.

Issue area 4

This issue area centres on the effects of FIMI (foreign information manipulations and interference) in terms of outcomes: cognitive impacts, social and political division, soft power projection etc.

Issue area 5

This area classifies the types of responses to FIMI (foreign information manipulations and interference) by a range of stakeholders: regulatory, proactive and self-regulatory, reactive responses and policy recommendations.


Threat Actors:
Methods & Tools:
Interference Areas:
149 results
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2020 | Global Engagement Center (US Department of State) | Report
The Goals and Main Tactics of Russia’s Disinformation
By: NA
View summary

A historical account of Russia’s disinformation aims and methods.

2020 | Information warfare in the age of cyber conflict | Chapter
The Ideological Battlefield: China’s Approach to Political Warfare and Propaganda in an Age of Cyber Conflict
By: Elsa Kania
View summary

An overview of China’s techniques to exploit new technologies to monitor and manipulate public opinion. Mainly a domestic emphasis, but valuable for its insights on Chinese strategy.

2020 | University of Washington | Report
A Russian Federation Information Warfare Primer
By: Connor Cunningham
View summary

A valuable primer on the actors, goals, and methods of Russian information warfare based on data gathered between 2018 and 2020 across 85 countries.

2020 | Political Communication | Article
Disinformation as Political Communication
By: Deen Freelon, Chris Wells
View summary

A brief review of some of the scholarly literature on the sociopollitical factors that enable disinformation to spread.

2020 | Contemporary Politics | Article
‘Propaganda Fights’ and ‘Disinformation Campaigns’: The Discourse on Information Warfare in Russia-West Relations
By: Mario Baumann
View summary

A largely conceptual account of how discourses in the manipulative use of informatino affects the Russia-West relationship.

2020 | RAND Corporation | Report
Understanding Russian Subversion: Patterns, Threats, and Responses
By: Andrew Radin, Alyssa Demus, Krystyna Marcinek
View summary

A review of Russian efforts to subvert and influence the domestic politics of Western nations via information campaigns, with a prescriptive discussion of how to respond.

2020 | Lithuanian Annual Strategic Review | Article
Russia and Information Warfare: a Whole-of-Society Approach
By: Flake Lincoln
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An analysis of Russia’s “whole of society” approach to information operations, which appropriates civil society to the service of state goals.

2020 | European Security | Article
What is at Stake in the Information Sphere? Anxieties about Malign Information Influence among Ordinary Swedes
By: Charlotte Wagnsson
View summary

An article on how ordinary Swedish people perceive foreign information operations, with an emphasis on threats to democracy, societal cohesion, and national security.

2020 | Romanian Journal of European Affairs | Article
Tackling Disinformation: EU Regulation of the Digital Space
By: Flavia Durach, Alina Bârgăoanu, Cătălina Nastasiu
View summary

An overview of current responses to information manipulation campaigns in the EU and beyond, arguiing in favour of the “co-regulation” approach.

2020 | Australian Journal of International Affairs | Article
Political Warfare in the Digital Age: Cyber Subversion, Information Operations and ‘Deep Fakes’
By: Thomas Paterson, Lauren Hanley
View summary

A discussion of the implications of information campaigns in “political warfare” for democratic stability.

2020 | Disinformation, Misinformation, and Fake News in Social Media | Chapter
Characterization and Comparison of Russian and Chinese Disinformation Campaigns
By: David M. Beskow
View summary

A study characterizing malicious bot actors from Russia and China (with comparisons among the two).

2020 | Journal of Information Warfare | Article
Understanding Influence Operations in Social Media: A Cyber Kill Chain Approach
By: Arild Bergh
View summary

An analysis of how influence operations on social media affect individuals and how individuals interact with the influencing groups, applying a “socio-technical” approach”.

2020 | Foreign Policy | Article
The United States Isn’t Doomed to Lose the Information Wars
By: Doowan Lee
View summary

A study of Russian and Chinese information operations in the United States, with a proposal for a more holistic approach in combatting them.

2020 | | Report
Will There Be a Russian Offensive? Analysis of the Kremlin’s Tactics in the Ukrainian Segment of Social Media
By: Ksenia Iliuk
View summary

A report on Russian propaganda shifting responsibility for the escalation of conflict with Ukraine to the West.

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Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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