Ukraine at 30.
From independence to interdependence
What unites Ukrainians and what divides Ukrainians after 30 years of independence
This August marks 30 years since Ukraine gained independence. Turning 30 is an important moment, as we remain young enough to achieve anything, yet we are also old enough to look back on our experiences and to learn from them.
Now is the time to reflect on Ukraine’s journey so far, and to find ways to guide the country towards an even more successful future. 
What do people all across Ukraine think of the key events of the last thirty years?
Which values, passions, and behaviours unite?
And which only divide?
What makes Ukrainians proud and what do Ukrainians aspire to?
What, ultimately, does independence mean to Ukrainians?
These are the kinds of questions we have been asking in more than 20 focus groups carried out over the last six months, with participants from a range of ages, demographics, and regions. 
“We” are a group of Ukrainian and British social researchers, journalists, historians, and political scientists.
The constraints of the pandemic have meant that our focus groups have had to shift online, and recruitment in the temporarily occupied territories is particularly challenging.
Four of these focus groups involved participants in the temporarily occupied territories. This requires some sensitivity, and we adapted our questions accordingly, focusing less on recent politics and more on history, values, and aspirations. 
We have been both surprised and inspired by what we have learnt, with clear patterns in people’s attitudes emerging alongside viable means of strengthening Ukraine’s resilience, democraсу, and cohesion.
Ukraine at 30:
From independence to interdependence
Results of this research will be of particular interest to those actors who play a role in Ukraine’s public discourse: the media, political communicators, ad agencies, civil society groups, and anyone with a social media account that cares about this country.
Research team
Дослідження було представлене програмою «Аrena» за підтримки Агентства США з міжнародного розвитку (USAID).

Фокус-групи проводив Харківський інститут соціальних досліджень.
Peter Pomerantsev, Director, Arena
Jaroslava Barbieri, Doctoral Researcher, University of Birmingham
Oksana Lemishka, Associate at the Centre for Sustainable Peace and Democratic Development; Freelance consultant
Maria Montague, Projects Manager and Researcher, Arena
Denys Kobzin, Director, Kharkiv Institute for Social Research
Volodymyr Yermolenko, Analytics Director at Internews Ukraine; Chief Editor at
Vitalii Rybak, Analyst, Internews Ukraine
Nataliya Gumenyuk, Co-Founder, Public Interest Journalism Lab
Angelina Kariakina, Co-Founder, Public Interest Journalism Lab
The study was made possible thanks to the sincere support of the American people, provided through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The product content is solely the responsibility of the Arena programme and does not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the US Government. Reproduction and use of any part of this product in any format, including graphic, electronic, copying or use in any other way without the corresponding reference to the original source, shall be prohibited.