International Summit On Municipal Infrastructure

This resource looks at Russian news broadcasts and presents each with rhetorical and contextual analysis as well as a brief vocabulary list aimed at intermediate-level Russian students. We hope that these will be of interest to anyone hoping to build Russian language skills or to better understand policy, policy implementation, and policy spin in Russia.

According to a 2016 poll by the independent Levada Center, 80% of Russians view television as their primary source of news. The same Levada poll, however, shows that only 41% trust the news as an objective source of information. The broadcasts sampled here are from Russia’s most-watched channels: First Channel and Russia Channel.

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First Channel looked at the Leaders of Urban Transport Summit, which took place in Moscow. The report covered road building and public transport efforts, but focused mostly on the Moscow Metro, which has been expanded greatly over recent years. The report stated that “foreign participants” learned that the Moscow metro is now “far ahead its foreign counterparts in length, beauty and comfort” also adding that “public transport is now fashionable.” To drive home the point, a representative from New York was later shown saying that “If you’ve seen the New York Metro, you wouldn’t ask me for advice.”

According to First Channel, all big cities in the world are trying to solve the issue of traffic jams by convincing motorists to give up their private cars. Moscow is having success in this with the launch of a large circular above-ground metro line to carry more passengers on an already successful network. Additional lines and a third circular line are now being built as well.

Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin was given extensive screen time. He was shown saying that the city government, in parallel to developing public transport, adopted a giant program of road infrastructure development. For the eight recent years, the city government built and reconstructed over 815 kilometers of roads and 14 major traffic intersections. Many new roads are currently under construction or are planned.

Other policy efforts currently being also include the rapid development of car sharing, pedestrian streets, city bikes, and scooter rentals.

Phrases to watch for:

далеко впереди – far ahead
отказаться от личных автомобилей – to give up private cars
развитие общественного транспорта – development of public transport
приняли гигантскую программу – adopted giant program
возвели и реконструировали – was built and reconstructed
транспортные развязки – traffic junctions
дороги будут проложены – roads will be paved

About the Author

Josh Wilson

Josh Wilson is the Assistant Director for The School of Russian and Asian Studies (SRAS) and Communications Director for Alinga Consulting Group. In those capacities, he has been managing publications and informative websites covering geopolitics, history, business, economy, and politics in Eurasia since 2003. He is based in Moscow, Russia. For SRAS, he also assists in program development and leads the Home and Abroad and Challenge Grant scholarship writing programs.

Andrei Nesterov

Andrei Nesterov has reported on political and social issues for the Russian press as well as American outlets such as Russian Life, Worldpress.org, and Triangle Free Press. He has travelled Russia extensively and penned many stories on the "real Russia" which lies beyond the capital and major cities. Andrei graduated from Ural State University (journalism) and Irkutsk State Linguistic University (English). He studied public policy and journalism at Duke University on a Muskie Fellowship and went on to study TESOL and teach Russian at West Virginia University. He is currently working on an MA from St. Petersburg State in International Relations. Andrei contributes news, feature stories, and language resources to the SRAS site, and is an overall linguistics and research resource. He additionally helps coordinate activities for our students in Moscow.