Director & CEO, Weidenfeld-Hoffmann Trust
Humanitas Programme Director
Natalia is Director of the Humanitas Programme, prior to which she was a Programme Associate on the Cultural Bridges and AMEURUS programmes at the Institute for Strategic Dialogue. From 2004 to 2007, she worked for the National Commission for UNESCO in the Russian Ministry for Foreign Affairs, taking part in a variety of projects ranging from securing world heritage site status for various Russian cities, editing the UNESCO bulletin and advising the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Prior to this, she was a freelance journalist for several lifestyle magazines, including the Russian editions of Cosmopolitan and Glamour. Her first degree was in Literature and Languages from Moscow State University, to which she has added a BA in Psychology from the Institute of Psychoanalysis, Moscow and an MBA from the University of Cambridge.
Advisor to the Scholarships Programme
Elizabeth was born in Australia and studied at Sydney and the Australian National universities. She completed her Master's thesis on French symbolist poetry and subsequently published articles based on her thesis in the Australian French Studies Review. After beginning her career as an Australian diplomat (posted to Paris), Elizabeth Roberts was obliged to resign on marriage to a British diplomat. In the UK she worked as a research assistant to the Liberal party Spokesman on Foreign Affairs in the House of Commons. Subsequently she accompanied her husband on a series of postings which included Canberra, Vanuatu, Madrid, Belgrade, Dublin and Rome. Having initially raised a family of three children, she subsequently taught English in Spain and Serbia. Returning from Belgrade, she sought to develop her interest in the history and politics of the Balkans by spending a year as a Recognised Student at Oxford, working on South Eastern European History. From 1999 to 2002 she taught the history and politics of the Western Balkans to undergraduates at University College Dublin and to postgraduates at Trinity College Dublin. She has served as an Expert Witness for the House of Commons Foreign Affairs Committee's Report on the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Wider Region (on Montenegro and Kosovo) and written on the region for Oxford Analytica, The World Today, The Scotsman and The Conflict Studies Research Centre, among other publications. More recently, she has written a history of Montenegro (published by Hurst and Cornell University in 2007) and is currently researching the history of the Sandžak region in the Western Balkans.