Welcome to my personal website, which contains my blog and portfolios from different activities: journalism, translation, research, and policy evaluation.
- Selected articles for Lithuanian and international media are posted in this portfolio; new updates on my journalistic activities are posted here.
- Key information about my research activities is on this page, and all updates from my research activities are posted under the category ‘Academic‘.
- Key facts and highlights from my career in policy evaluation and consulting are provided here.
The first occupation I ever tried out was that of a graphic novelist – before it was cool. Before I learned to write, I used to draw illustrated stories with all letters I knew in speech bubbles. Whenever anybody showed enough interest, I would narrate the story. Growing up, I wanted to be a forester, a translator, a physicist and an heir to a famous TV host, who would sit with a cup of tea and explain the world every week. So I chose Political Science as my first degree.
I have gone back to many things after a period of time. After craving to escape my hometown Kaunas for a bigger city, I returned to live there in 2014. I did not follow my teacher’s advice to choose Scandinavian studies as my major, but I went to Sweden for Erasmus and learned Swedish anyway. I gave in to social pressure not to choose journalism as my major, but less than two years later I got a dream job at a local newspaper, Atgimimas. Finally, briefly in 2008, and then more earnestly in 2013 I resumed drawing and painting studies, a passion that I dropped at the age of 11, and eventually sharing posting illustrations on the web.
My teenage dream was to learn Japanese and live in Japan. With some determination, I reached out to the only Japanese teacher at the time and he was kind to allow me to join his class. Already a student, I was selected to represent Lithuania in one of two European youth groups invited to a Study Tour for European Youth in Japan. In spring 2009 I received another opportunity, this time as a visiting research fellow at the University of Tokyo. The experience resulted in two academic publications and a series of articles for the newspaper I was working for at the time. Soon after I got a scholarship to spend an academic year in Tel Aviv, Israel, where I was a research student at Tel Aviv University and volunteered for the African Refugee Development Center. I learned Hebrew quickly and later used the experience for very interesting tour guiding gigs with Travel Planet.
In search for a good place to live and start an international career, I planted myself in Luxembourg (as a translation and communication trainee at the European Parliament, DG Translation) and Malta (first as a migration and hate speech researcher at an NGO, then as a freelance researcher and writer). I have been published in The Financial Times, The Guardian, Politico and elsewhere, but I am still happy to cooperate with small Lithuanian publications or budding blogs if we share the same vision. My multiple careers and personal interests allowed me to visit 40 countries on four continents (including all EU countries) and learn to speak in six foreign languages. I continue searching for opportunities to be able to spend most of my time working in my areas of interest.