Логотип CGES

Scientific Environment 2014

March – December 2014

Faculty of Sociology, St. Petersburg State University

Within the framework of an open interdisciplinary research seminars for junior scholars ‘Scientific Environment’ students, PhD students and junior social scientists from Russia and Europe who are in the beginning of their careers extensively present their theoretical and empirical projects devoted to topical scientific problems. Their presentations are followed by an intensive moderated discussion. A particular emphasis is put on the presentations shedding light on innovative theoretical approaches, as well as on original research of European and Russian empirical material carried out by junior scholars.


The major objectives are:

(1) to develop intellectual networks embracing students, PhD students, beginning researchers and lecturers in St. Petersburg and to intensify their contacts with European social scientists and Russian colleagues;

(2) to increase the interest of students and PhD students educated in the field of social sciences in high-quality professional research activities meeting international standards;

(3) to provide mutual informing of Russian and foreign junior scholars on the most recent studies in the field of social sciences.

The target group includes social scientists from Russia and Europe who are at the beginning of their careers, junior lecturers, PhD students, and other students.

Format: presentation – 30 minutes, discussion – 30-40 minutes.

Number of participants: 20 to 40 at each seminar.

Number of presentations: 1-3 at each seminar.

Schedule: The seminar starts around the fourth week of each semester (correspondingly, autumn and spring sessions are distinguished) and normally takes place every 3 weeks, usually on Wednesdays.

Dissemination: The seminar schedule, as well as news on each upcoming meeting, are posted on the official webpage of the Council of Young Scientists as well as on CGES website, social media pages (VKontakte and Facebook) and distributed through mailing lists of CGES, Council members, members of the Database of Junior Researchers run by the Council and other information resources (such as mailing lists of St. Petersburg Association of Sociologists and Centre of Independent Social Research). Announcements about the seminars are also distributed as hard copies at the Faculty of Sociology. Open calls are announced to gather and select papers for future meetings.

Impact: Videotaping and photography are conducted. Video recordings are then made publicly available in cooperation with the portal Lectorium.tv since March 2013. After each meeting mini-reports with visual support are posted on pages in social networks (Facebook, VKontakte).

The following 10 seminars were run during 2014.


Spring session:

12.03 – Manipulating Meanings and Framing in Virtual and Game Realities

Nadezhda Zinovyeva (St. Petersburg State University) Analysis of Internet Meme Construction

Olga Vorobyeva (European University at St. Petersburg) Switching Frames in Live Action Role Play Games

Video of the presentations: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/23094


02.04 – Strategies of Self-Identification and Lifestyles in Big Cities

Irina Antoshchuk (MA SES, St. Petersburg State University) Serious Leisure of Young People in Petersburg and Berlin: Creative Hobbies as a Biographical Project

Valentina Isayeva (St. Petersburg State University) Religious Conversion as a Strategy of Self-Identification in the Context of Social Transformations of Russian society (by the Example of Karma Kagyu Buddhist Community in St. Petersburg)

Video of the presentations: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23187

Ekaterina Panteleyeva (St. Petersburg State University) Contemporary Joga in a Big City: The Role of the Practice in the Everyday Life of Urbanites

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/23191


16.04 – AIDS Dissidents in Social Network ‘VKontakte’: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches

Petr Meylakhs (National Research University ‘Higher School of Economics’, Centre for Independent Social Research) AIDS Dissidents in Social Network ‘VKontakte’: Conflicts and Power in the Group

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23278

Yuriy Rykov (St. Petersurg State University, National Research University ‘Higher School of Economics’) Online Community of AIDS Dissidents in Social Network ‘VKontakte’: Friendship Networks, Communication Activity and Community Moderators

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23278  

Video of the discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23279



14.05 – Publication of Research Data: Ethic and Institutional Filters

Aleksandra Kasatkina (European University at St. Petersburg) When We Publish Research Interviews... The Experience of Creating the Open Access Database of ‘Obninsk project’

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23415

Ekaterina Guba (National Research University ‘Tomsk State University’, European University at St. Petersburg) Issuing ‘Sotsis’: The Problem of Preserving Legitimacy in Sociology

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23416

Video of the discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23416

28.05 – Moving and Waiting: Transformation of Everyday Mobility Practices in European cities

Sabrina Kopf (University of Vienna) Fragmentations and Boundary-Making among Bike Activists in Belgrade

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23485

Andrey Vozyanov (European University at St. Petersburg) Expecting, Knowing and Believing: Europeans Waiting for Public Transport in the Era of ‘Smart Stations’

Video of the presentations: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/23486

Video of the discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/23487


Autumn session:

08.10 – Mechanism of Urban Social Movements Emergence and Development

Elena Tykanova (St. Petersburg State University, Sociological Institute, Russian Academy of Science) Trajctories of Local Communities Self-Organisation in Urban Space Contestation

Carine Clement (St. Petersburg State University, Andrew Gagarin Centre for Public Opinion Research and Human Rights) The Problem of Community Formation and Solidarization by the Example of Grassroot Civic Initiatives in Modern Russia


29.10 – Professional Communities: Practices, Structures and Dynamics

Yuliya Shesternina (European University at St. Petersburg) Dual Role of Advocates in Criminal Procedure

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25033

Liliya Zemnukhova (European University at St. Petersburg, Sociological Institute, Russian Academy of Science) Russian IT and Coputer Science Professionals in London: Transformation of Professional Community

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25034  

Video of the discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/25035  

12.11 – Values and Violence: Lifestyles of ‘Ordinary People’ in Post-Soviet Far East

Natal'ya Ryzhova (Far Eastern Department of Russian Academy of Science, Blagoveshchensk) Freedoms, State and Security: Closed Frontier Territories in Post-Soviet Far East

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25258

Tat'yana Zhuravskaya (Far Eastern Department of Russian Academy of Science, Blagoveshchensk) Structural Violence, Beliefs and Barriers of Access to Valuable Resources: individual gold mining in Post-Soviet Far East

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25259

Video of the discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/25260

26.11 – Text as a Tool for Constructing Social Reality

Anna Smolyarova (St. Petersburg State University) Journalistic Impartiality: Opportunities and Constraints

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25593   

Taras Pribyshin (Leontyev Centre) Using Contetnt-Analysis for the Research and Classification of Mulicipal Documents of Strategic Planning

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25594

Video of discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/25595          


17.12 – Networks and Creativity

Silvie Jacoby (King’s College, London) Leipzig’s Visual Artists as Actors of Urban Change: Articulating the Intersection between Place Attachment, Professional Development and Urban Pioneering

Alexandra Barmina, Maria Safonova and Tatiana Tretyakova (NRU Higher School of Economics, St. Petersburg) Creative Networks: Opportunities and Limitations of Social Network Analysis in Creative Industries Research

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25668

Artyom Antoniuk (St. Petersburg State University), Anastasia Golovnyova (European University at St. Petersburg) co-authored with Nikita Basov, Aleksandra Nenko and Wouter de Nooy. Networks of Creativity: Recent Developments in Sociosemantic Analysis of Artistic Groups

Video of the presentation: https://www.lektorium.tv/lecture/25669

Video of the discussion: https://www.lektorium.tv/course/25670

Involving Russian and European colleagues, The ‘Scientific Environment’ seminar has simultaneously become both a platform for international scientific dialogue and a space for scientific discussion for young researchers in St. Petersburg on the most vital issues in social sciences. The seminars attract representatives of all major research and education institutions: a number of faculties of St. Petersburg State University; European University at St. Petersburg; NRU Higher School of Economics at St. Petersburg; Centre for Independent Social Research; Sociological Institute; Russian Academy of Science and others.

The development of new CGES international research project ‘Co-evolution of Knowledge and Communication Networks: Structural Dynamics of Creative Collectives in European Cultural Capitals’ (CGES research areas 1 and 2) has particularly benefited from the seminars, which were run in collaboration with the research group ‘Creative City: Reshaping Public Space’ at Higher School of Economics, St. Petersburg and also allowing junior researchers from both Higher School of Economics and St. Petersburg State University to get involved in CGES projects. These seminars also allowed CGES to establish important collaborations with European researchers now supporting and joining CGES research activities in Germany, Austria, and the UK. A number of researchers from the CGES network have benefited from the seminars in dissemination of their research results, including:  Aleksandra Nenko (Higher School of Economics), Anisya Khokhlova (St. Petersburg State University, MA SES), Irina Antoshchuk (MA SES), Ekaterina Panteleeva (MA SES), Elena Tykanova (Institute of Sociology – RAS), Artyom Antoniuk (St. Petersburg State University), Anastasiya Golovneva (European University in St. Petersburg).

The seminars attracted a large number of participants. On average, 20-40 people attended each seminar. In total, over 350 people participated in the CGES Scientific Environment events during 2014.

The seminars often not only had broad resonance in scientific circles, but also attracted attention of business and civic society representatives, political activists, and the mass media, including newspapers, TV channels, journals, internet social media, etc. reporting on the events and often joining in discussion – thus supporting dissemination of scientific knowledge among broader audiences.

Last but not least, the seminar created numerous impulses for the participating students and PhD students to join international scientific communication and even choose scientific careers.

The combination of research orientation, interdisciplinary approach, focus on presentation of projects by junior researchers, current topics, and openness to a wider public audience proved to be in-demand and successful, and ‘Scientific Environment’ will therefore be continued on the already-established conceptual basis.

In general, the successful implementation of the ‘Scientific Environment’ in 2014 will lead to the continuation of this series of events in 2015.