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Although conflict representation in media has been widely studied, few attempts have been made to perform large-scale comparisons of agendas in the media of conflicting parties, especially for armed country-level confrontations. In this paper, we introduce quantitative evidence of agenda divergence between the media of conflicting parties in the course of the Ukrainian crisis 2013–2014. Using 45,000 messages from the online newsfeeds of a Russian and a Ukrainian TV channels, we perform topic modeling coupled with qualitative analysis to reveal crisis-related topics, assess their salience and map evolution of attention of both channels to each of those topics. We find that the two channels produce fundamentally different agenda sequences. Based on the Ukrainian case, we offer a typology of conflict media coverage stages.
This chapter examines an emerging regional security system in the Arctic. There was a significant shift in the Arctic powers’ threat perceptions and security policies in the High North. In contrast with the Cold War era when the Arctic was a zone for the global confrontation between the USSR and the U.S./NATO, now this region is seen by international players as a platform for international cooperation.The Arctic countries now believe that there are no serious hard security threats to them and that the soft security agenda is much more important. The military power now has new functions, such as ascertaining coastal states’ sovereignty over their exclusive economic zones and continental shelves in the region; protecting the Arctic countries’ economic interests in the North, and performing some symbolic functions. The Arctic states believe that the regional cooperative agenda could include climate change mitigation, environmental protection, maritime safety, Arctic research, indigenous peoples, cross- and trans-border cooperative projects, culture, etc.
In this paper, drawing on empirical evidence from Russian society, the authors seek to analyze the ways in which ordinary people can overcome a perceived gap between “high” politics and their everyday experiences. We argue that the concept of everyday politics is not enough to prepare the ground for politicization in everyday life, at least in highly dismantled society. In examining ethnographic case studies of people who consider themselves apolitical, the paper introduces the concept of “pragmatic politics,” which is defined as an activity of inscribing the broader world within the sensitive everyday experience. The examined case studies speak to four different modes of everyday politics that reveal various modalities of pragmatic politics.
This paper investigates to what extent activity of a social movement on a social networking site is related to participation in offline collective action. Through this research, we seek to contribute to a broader theory of effective communicative structures of social movements. We use the data of roughly 12,000 individuals from 17 online groups representing the branches of the ‘Observers for Fair Elections’ movement in 17 districts of St. Petersburg, Russia, and compare their online properties to real offline participation of movement members in elections in the role of electoral observers. We find that while prediction of individual offline participation with this online data is of limited power, association between district participation rates and online group features is very strong. Large, more inclusive and evenly connected networks, where people are engaged in high-threshold online activities, produce more offline participants; weak individual-level prediction, combined with strong group-level prediction, suggests either the presence of the ‘network effect’ or of third factors – such as prior contentious experience or the effect of leaders.
In the framework of this paper we apply multifractal formalism to the analysis of
statistical behaviour of topic models under variation of the number of topics. Fractal analysis
of topic models allows to show that self-similar fractal clusters exist in large textual collections.
We provide numerical results for 3 topic models (PLSA, ARTM, LDA Gibbs sampling) on
2 datasets, namely, on an English-language dataset and on a Russian-language dataset. We
demonstrate that forming of clusters occurs precisely in the transition regions. Linear regions
do not lead to changes in fractals, therefore, it is sufficient to find transition regions for the
study of textual collections. Accordingly, the problem of the analysing the evolution of topic
models can be reduced to the problem of searching transition regions in topic models.
This paper considers the efforts of local activists to participatein public discussions on contested territories in St. Petersburg, Russia, and influence political decision-making on their (re)development and change. It also questions to what degree such grassroots efforts become political and analyzes different contexts for, and barriers to, politicization. Complementing sociological theorization on civic engagement and civic participation with French pragmatism, we examine how these activists constantly shift between informal, context-specific forms of protest and more institutionalized and politicized ones. Using a case-study approach, we describe and compare two recent conflicts in St. Petersburg where local residents resisted (re)development projects imposed by political and economic elites: the defence of the Yurgens House in the historic center of the city against its expected demolition, and the protest against renovation in Alexandrino, a park area on the city’s periphery. The analysis is based on semi-structured interviews with local activists, participant and non-participant observation at public rallies and other gatherings, and qualitative analysis of protesters’ communication practices on social networks. We demonstrate that external political and social constraints encourage activists to be flexiblein their forms of engagement, using a wide repertoire of tools of contestation, using local knowledge tactically, operating rationally within legal frameworks, and addressing broad audiences in search for public justification and support. We conclude that, whether theselocal activists remain at the level of informal place-based initiatives or opt for more institutionalized and professionalized forms of civic participation, they insistently reject the political rationale of their efforts.
The Handbook of Research on International Collaboration, Economic Development, and Sustainability in the Arctic discusses the perspectives and major challenges of the investment collaboration and development and commercial use of trade routes in the Arctic. Featuring research on topics such as agricultural production, environmental resources, and investment collaboration, this book is ideally designed for policymakers, business leaders, and environmental researchers seeking coverage on new practices and solutions in the sphere of achieving sustainability in economic exploration of the Artic region
In the context of the spreading HIV epidemic in Russia and the lack of government's effectiveness in addressing this problem, the role and importance of HIV activism in protecting the rights and improving the quality of life of HIV positive people has been increasing. This article focuses on the development of the HIV community in St. Petersburg, one of the largest and the most problematic, in terms of the HIV epidemic, cities in Russia. The research was conducted within the qualitative methodology, using ethnographic case-study methods and biographical interviews. The authors use the analysis of field observations and 19 interviews with men and women involved in HIV activism in St. Petersburg to show how collective actions of NGOs and action groups form the city HIV community through working with different groups and the development of participants' agency
The chapter examines the Arctic region, which suffers from a lot of potential conflicts because of its abundant natural resources that are the subject of competition between the Arctic and non-Arctic powers. The authors argue that after the Cold War various regimes regulating the Arctic spread to the vast and complex network to form a new regional legal order, unlike the period when military force was the main instrument of coercion in global politico-ideological confrontation between the Soviet Union and the United states. According to the authors, the only effective way to the prevention of a potentially new type of global conflict in the Arctic is the enhancement of international legal instruments in the following areas: “delimitation of maritime spaces and definition of the limits of the continental shelf in the Arctic, the legal status of the Arctic maritime routes, improvement and proper implementation of various regulations varying from the maritime safety rules (the Polar Code) to the international environmental law in the Far North
This introduction article is divided into three parts that together provide an overview of concepts which guide this special issues overarching vision. First, we interrogate the idea of the “Cold War” as a discrete historical period and narrative frame for understanding religion's histories and politics. When doing this, we point to asymmetries in experiencing the Cold War legacies in different “worlds.” Second, we introduce “religion” as an empirical object of analysis, considering various methods for approaching the rhetorical, ritual and political-theological aspects of everyday religious life. Third, we consider how the post-WWII era of decolonization shaped the border and territorial politics of the Cold War, and consequently, examine various concepts of the “border.”
The article focused on the experience of studying youth cultural practices and group identities in Russia in the post-soviet era. The attention to 25 years period of the youth cultural space transformation could be explained not only with scientific interest and an attempt to understand the changes that have occurred in this historical period, but with the fact, that during these years the theoretical and practical findings and work of the Scientific Centre “Region”, Ulyanovsk State University (founded in 1995) and Centre for Youth Studies, Higher School of Economics, St. Petersburg (founded in 2009) were developed. The task to include in the frame of one article all our results is ambitious and perhaps could not be complete. That is why we will focus the main attention on the key directions of the transformation of youth cultural practices, on the crucial plots of the direct and mediated influence of global trends as well as local discourses. It is important to understand: did these changes follow the global tendencies (Europe, North America, and Australia) described in the key works of researchers of youth cultures and practices? Or is the Russian case an exception fallen out the ‘classical’ picture? The basis for the analysis is the data from key research projects of our Centers, as well as new theoretical and methodological approaches to the analysis of changing youth sociality in the frame of political and cultural transformations of Russian society.
The contemporary youth studies are developing as mostly metrocentric. As a result, rural youth often find themselves out of the focus of attention of researchers, and they are marginalised in comparison with urban youth, whose experience and lifestyle are perceived as the normative model for all areas. In these conditions, rural space is labelled as illegitimate and structurally depriving for youth. This approach is criticised by researchers working in the tradition of cultural geographies of childhood and youth, who take into account the multiple, complex, often contradictory, but still unique and autonomous experiences of today's young people living in rural areas. The article is based on 59 biographical interviews and describes how Russian rural youth comprehend belonging to places in three rural localities. The authors single out three types of prerequisites defining the place attachment and local identities among young people: rational choice, biographical rootedness, and community rootedness.
The paper provides a summary of Hannah Arendt's thinking on political reciprocity based on the analysis of her general view of politics and its historical fate in the European tradition. According to Arendt, political reciprocity is profoundly different in nature from the types of reciprocity which are proper for other spheres of human life (family, domestic, religious, communitarian, economic). Its specificity is due to the specificity of the field of politics and to the nature of the link that connects men in a community that can be referred to as political. Political community is not the same thing as a large family, an ethnic or religious community or a market society. Politics (in the strict sense of the term) is based on the pluralities of men who form together a shared public world, and the question of political reciprocity is not raised from the problem of man, his nature and his goodness, but from the problem of the world and its reality.
This paper studies the patterns of learning behaviour in connection with educational achievement in multi-year undergraduate data science minor specialisation for non-STEM students. In particular, this work focuses on analysing the predictors of academic achievement in blended-learning setting factors related to initial mathematics knowledge, specific traits of educational programs, online and offline learning engagement, and connections with peers. Robust linear regression and non-parametric statistical tests reveal a significant gap in the achievement of students from different educational programs and on the connection between their class attendance and achievement. The results indicate that achievement is not related to the communication on the Q&A forum while peers do affect academic success.
The paper explores the state of academic dialogue between the Russian and Western scholarly communities studying the European Union (EU)–Russia relations in Justice and Home Affairs (JHA). By analyzing the citation patterns of the academic articles on the EU–Russia cooperation in this area, we arrive at the conclusion that the Russian scholarship mostly does not engage in a transnational academic dialogue with the Western counterparts. In other words, it has turned into a sealed ‘indigenous’ scholarly community. And what is more, it is also disintegrated within itself since the Russian scholars do not refer to the research produced by their compatriots either. To qualitatively substantiate our findings, in the last section of the paper, we review the universe of all articles written on the topic in Russian to distinguish five trends typical of the research published in Russian academic journals. We believe that these features are the result of the lack of engagement with the Western scholarship and simultaneously the cause which prevents the communication between the two scholarly communities. This, in turn, undermines the accumulation of the transnational multifaceted policy-relevant expertise essential for normalizing the relations between Brussels and Moscow in general and in JHA in particular.
This chapter analyzes Russian policies to international peace, security and institutions through the lens of various theoretical trends and schools that also emerged only in the post-Soviet space. The neorealist school (dominant in Russia) is skeptical regarding international institutions and global governance. For Russian neoliberals, international organizations and nonstate actors are important entities in world politics. The globalists believe that to establish a long-lasting peace not only institutions, but also the structure of the international system should be changed. And postpositivist trends are critical of all these positions, despite sharing neoliberalist and globalist views on the erosion of the nation-state and national sovereignty. Following the influences of the Russian theoretical schools of IR, the chapter analyzes Russia’s policies in the UN, its active participation in peacekeeping and peacebuilding, on the one hand, and past (“frozen”) and current conflicts in Syria, Ukraine, etc., on the other.
The main research objective of this chapter is to examine sustainable development strategies (SDSs) of urban centers of the Arctic Zone of Russia (AZRF). There are three specific purposes for this analysis: first, to evaluate the scope and focus of such strategies; second, to find out whether these strategies are efficient or not and whether they improve the situation in the particular city or not; third, to understand whether these policies are of short-term/single-issue character or they represent forward-looking/comprehensive strategies. The Arctic municipalities view building SDSs as an important policy priority for themselves. They have tried to create proper legal and institutional settings for the development and implementation of such strategies. They have made great strides in implementing some sustainabilityrelated projects over the last 10 to 15 years. There was a clear shift from survival/reactive to capacity-building/proactive SDSs. Despite some residual problems and shortcomings, AZRF cities’ SDSs evolve in a rather dynamic and positive way.
This paper uses representative student data from St. Petersburg, Russia to
analyze school segregation by parental socioeconomic status and student
academic performance. The proposed systematic segregation indices
account for ordinal variables and take expected segregation into
account. We decompose segregation by school type, school, and classes
and compare the results to results obtained from PISA for urban areas in
Russia and six European countries. Segregation by socioeconomic status
is moderate in St. Petersburg and Russia, as compared to other
European countries. Segregation between schools and school types
reflects parental choice, whereas within-school segregation along the
lines of student performance reflects school policies.