Founder of Equal Opportunities Platform (EOP)
Dr. Maryna Shevtsova is the founder of Equal Opportunities Platform (EOP), a Ukrainian regional NGO that works to promote equal opportunities, inclusion, and non-discrimination for all underrepresented groups in the Ukrainian society with the focus on decision-making systems in social, political, and economic processes.
For more than 9 years Maryna has been directly involved in research and civil society activism in Ukraine and Central Eastern European region in the area of gender equality, LGBTQ people's and other minorities' rights. Maryna has a diverse international work and study experience, having upgraded her academic background in economics towards DEIJ questions and protection of vulnerable groups in the CEE region.
Prior to founding EOP, in 2016-2020 Maryna carried out independent research projects at Humboldt University (Humboldt University Fellowship) in Germany, Florida University (Fulbright Fellowship) in the USA, Lund University (Swedish Institute Fellowship) in Sweden and at the Middle East Technical University (Erasmus+) in Turkey. In 2017-2019 she worked as a returning expert of GIZ (German Agency for International Cooperation) in Ukraine, coordinating projects on LGBTQ rights advocacy. She was a Program coordinator for Parents' Initiative TERGO, Ukraine-based LGBTI rights NGO promoting a safe and healthy school environment in Ukraine. Maryna also has extensive work experience with NGOs in Ukraine, Poland, Turkey, and Georgia as a consultant on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion questions, fundraising, project monitoring and evaluation. She developed multiple training programs and educational materials including textbooks and online video courses as well as coordinated international academic events, conferences, and symposia of different scales. She was among the leadership team of Berlin Summer School of Social Sciences (funded by DAAD and Volkswagen Foundation), a two-week academic event bringing together more than 60 professors and young career scholars from more than 50 countries. Apart from research, in 2004-2012 Maryna also gained substantial teaching experience, having worked as an Associate Professor (Dotsent) at the Dnipro National University, where for eight years she taught courses as International Relations, International Migration, and EU politics.
Maryna researched, edited and authored numerous books and articles on the topics of democratization and human right norm diffusion, LGBTQ and women's rights, right-wing populism, and anti-gender movements Eastern European region. Her most recent publications include edited volumes LGBTQ+ Activism in Central and Eastern Europe. Resistance, Representation, and Identity (with Radzhana Buyantueva) published by Palgrave Macmillan and LGBTI Asylum Seekers and Refugees from a Legal and Political Perspective: Persecution, Asylum, and Integration (with Arzu Guler and Deniz Venturi) published by Springer. Her book LGBTI politics and value change in Ukraine and Turkey: Exporting Europe? is scheduled for print in April 2021 with the Routledge Studies in Gender, Sexuality, and Politics.
Maryna has a Master in International Economic Relations from Dnipro National University in Ukraine, MA in Gender Studies from Central European University, Hungary, PhD in Economics from Dnipro National University in Ukraine and PhD in Political Science from Humboldt University, Germany. She also was a recipient of Open Society Foundations Young Professional Think Tank's fellowship. Maryna presented her work at numerous international conferences and was a guest speaker at Oxford School of Global and Area Studies, UK, Centre for Eastern European and Baltic Studies, Södertörn University, Sweden, and American University of Central Asia, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.