The first NetGloW conference subtitled ‘Structural Transformations in Europe, the US, and Russia’ took place on June 22-24, 2012 and brought together about 150 participants from Belarus, China, France, Germany, Iran, Italy, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Poland, Republic of South Africa, Russia, Serbia, Sweden, Turkey, the UK, Ukraine, the US and other countries responding to the challenges of societal transformations catalyzed by the growing importance of networks in the present-day world.
The conference featured three plenary sessions as well as panel sessions and round tables devoted to networks in the virtual space and network society, communities and culture.
The key sessions of the conference were:
- Inter-Firm Relations in Europe, the US, and Russia;
- Academic Communities: Network Approaches to Research;
- Knowledge Networks and Innovations in the Global World;
- Networks in the Virtual Space;
- Network Society, Network Communities, and Network Culture.
Participants made 78 oral presentations and 36 oral reports and joined plenary speeches by leading network scientists, including:
- ‘Globalization and Social Networks: Recent Trends’ by Martin Everett, University of Manchester;
- ‘Political Evolution and Revolution: A Network Assessment of Sudan and Arab Spring Power Transformations’ by Kathleen M. Carley, Carnegie Mellon University;
- ‘We're Still Dancing': How Global Financial Networks Took the World Economy to the Brink, and Could Yet Push It Over by David Knoke, University of Minnesota;
- ‘Global Production Networks – Organizing Global Work with International Framework Agreements?’ by Jörg Sydow, Free University of Berlin;
- ‘Traditional and New Security between State-Centrism and Networked Politics’ by Andreas Vasilache, University of Bielefeld;
- ‘Complex Innovation Networks to Organize Technological Transformation’ by Andreas Pyka, University of Hohenheim;
- ‘Do Interfirm Network Ties Contaminate Competition? The Case of the Russian Retail Market’ by Vadim Radaev, National Research University – Higher School of Economics;
- ‘The Forms of Network Integration between Science, Education, and Business in the Global World’ by Vera Minina, St Petersburg University;
- ‘Complex Networks in Public Policy: Political Mobilization and Liminality of State Power’ by Leonid Smorgunov, St Petersburg University.
The range of questions discussed at the conference was broad. It covered different aspects of network interaction: from network topology and classifications, stages of network development and filling with social capital to network intelligence, leadership, and competition within and between networks. All these aspects were united by a common basis: considering networks not just as structurally heterogeneous objects but also as agents capable of transforming the existing structures and creating new relations in economics, politics, science, and everyday life.
Selected papers of conference participants were published as a Thematic Issue ‘Networks in the Global World’ in the Journal of Sociology and Social Anthropology.