Open World Leadership Center

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The Open World Leadership Center describes itself as follows: "The Open World Program enables emerging Russian leaders to experience U.S. democracy and free enterprise in action in communities across the United States. During 10-day trips, Open World participants learn about the roles and interrelationships of the three different branches and levels of the U.S. government. They also examine how the U.S. private and nonprofit sectors help meet social and civic needs." [1]

However, the program has now been expanded to other former Communist bloc countries. In August 2004, a press release from Open World reported that: "Forty Ukrainian political, civic and media leaders travel to the United States today to take part in the Open World Program. Among the participants are top journalists, municipal officials, representatives of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), community leaders, and academics. They will be organized into nine delegations, each focusing on one of the following themes: electoral processes (two delegations), independent media (three delegations), and NGO development (five delegations). The focus on electoral processes is particularly timely with Ukraine preparing to hold presidential elections this fall. Through Open World, which is administered by the Open World Leadership Center, Ukrainian participants will observe American democracy and free enterprise in action in different host communities." [2]

The press release was put out by The PBN Company, which also happens to be the PR agency working for Victor Yushchenko, the western-leaning candidate in the disputed 2004 Presidential elections in Ukraine [3]. Indeed, PBN appears to be responsible for all press releases put out by Open World. The "Media hotline" contact listed on its Press Releases index page is Paul Nathanson of PBN [4].

Contact information

The Library of Congress
101 Independence Ave., SE
Room LM 611
Washington, DC 20540-1026 USA
Tel: (202) 707-8943
Fax: (202) 252-3464
E-mail: rlp AT

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