Valentin Châtelet is a research associate for security at the Atlantic Council’s Digital Forensic Research Lab based in Belgium.
Châtelet researches disinformation, ethnic movements, and political activism throughout post-Soviet countries, the Baltic states, Russia, and Belarus. As a self-taught programmer, he has worked for the French private sector as a geographic information systems engineer, developing software for geolocation purposes.
He has also worked with the French defense ministry as data-driven analyst on war areas specializing in open-source intelligence and social media. He held a redactor position within the French think-tank Nemrod-Enjeux Contemporains de Défense et de Sécurité with a focus on Russia, terrorism, and cybernetic conflicts.
Châtelet advocates for the development of uralistics, having worked as an interpreter for Russian-speaking refugees. He obtained three bachelor’s degrees, one in geography from the Paris-Sorbonne University and the others in international relations and Estonian language from the French National Institute for Foreign Cultures. He has studied briefly at the Tallinn Summer University where he was twice awarded the Archimedes Language Scholarship and conducted research on the native people of Udmurtia in Izhevsk, Russia while attaining his master’s degree in geopolitics at the French Institute for Geopolitics.