The first BISS director. Graduated from the Belarusian State University (department of Philosophy and Economy, program in Sociology) in 1994. He holds M.A. in Politics (Central European University, Hungary) and Ph.d. in Political Science (Rutgers University). In 1999-2003, he worked as associate professor at the European Humanities Univerisity in Minsk, a position he lost when the university administration took orders from the authorities to punish him for publicly criticizing the government of President Lukashenka. Afterwards he was a Reagan-Fascell Democracy fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy (Washington D.C.) and visiting scholar at the Center on Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law (Stanford University). He authored ‘Postponed Freedom: Post-Communist Authoritarianism in Serbia and Belarus’ (in Belarusian, published at ARCHE magazine in 2002) and Historical Dictionary of Belarus (with Jan Zaprudnik, Scarecrow Press, 2007). He also authored over 100 pubications on the issues of democratization and authoritarianism in the former USSR, electoral revolutions and preemptive authoritarianism, politics of economic reforms, EU relations with Belarus, Belarus-Russia integration, etc. In 2007, he was appointed director of the Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies.
Vitali Silitski untimely passed away on June 11, 2011, at the age of 39.