Vol 16, No 4 (2016)

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Theory, Methodology and History of Sociological Research
Social inequalities in post-reform Russia: A sociological diagnosis
Gorshkov M.K.

Abstract

The article considers social inequality as a key feature of the development of the contemporary society and social sciences. On the one hand, it is an objective and progressive process without which successful (creative) development of society and individual is impossible; on the other hand, it may lead to dramatic social stratification, provoke a growth of social tensions, and destabilize society. In the Russian scientific discourse the social inequalities and their consequences are explained with the help of two concepts - social-stratification structure, i.e. a multidimensionally organized social space in which social groups differ in terms of possession of power, property and social status; and social strata , i.e. social-economic groups occupying different and unequal places in the macro-social system. The author uses a wide range of empirical (statistical and sociological) data to present the picture of social model in the contemporary Russian society focusing on the dramatic stratification in terms of wealth and the income gap (the decile ratio) widening to a critical mark; interpreting the Russian data in the international context (the current and optimum decile ratio in different countries); identifying statistical and sociological indicators for measuring different aspects of social inequality (for instance, the differentiation of incomes as the deviation of the actual income distribution from absolutely equal); emphasizing regional differences in social inequalities in Russia; and discussing possible mechanisms and means of mitigating social inequalities. The second part of the article presents the results of the national sociological research conducted by the experts of the Institute of Sociology and underlies some other dimensions of social inequalities as gender relations and an access to modern computer technologies and telecommunications and their correct use. The author concludes that the high level of social-economic and other types of inequalities in Russia undermines the social capital of the society and forms an enduring “culture of inequality” which is marked by a high level of aggression and a low level of cohesion.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):693-718
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Analysis of vignette method data in sociological research
Puzanova Z.V., Tertyshnikova A.G.

Abstract

The article considers the vignette method as a projective technique that can be an alternative for the traditional methods in mass surveys. The authors present an example of the study of the social representations of an intelligent man with the vignette method: identify the meaning of the concept ‘social representations’ suggested by S. Moscovici, a scientist who introduced its conceptualization and empirical interpretation; and describe the structure of social representations which consists of a ‘core’ and a ‘periphery’ according to the theory of J.-C. Abric. The article shows the process of creating vignettes, choosing their number and conditions for the tool application. The main emphasis is made on the analysis of data obtained through the vignette method by calculating indices, discriminant analysis and logistic regression, and the explanation for the application of these three techniques is given. The authors describe the research procedure, the creation of the tool and the sample; compare the results of each method of analysis. Discriminant analysis and logistic regression data confirm each other, which is an important verification of the results of different methods of analysis.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):742-754
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The world’s largest social science infrastructure and academic survey research program: The World Values Survey in the New Independent States
Haerpfer C., Kizilova K.A.

Abstract

The World Values Survey (WVS) is an international research program developed to assess the impact of values stability or change over time on the social, political and economic development of countries and societies. It started in 1981 by Ronald Inglehart and his team, since then has involved more than 100 world societies and turned into the largest non-commercial cross-national empirical time-series investigation of human beliefs and values ever executed on a global scale. The article consists of a few sections differing by the focus. The authors begin with the description of survey methodology and organization management that both ensure cross-national and cross-regional comparative character of the study (the survey is implemented using the same questionnaire, a face-to-face mode of interviews, and the same sample type in every country). The next part of the article presents a short overview of the project history and comparative surveys’ time-series (so called “waves” - periods between two and four years long during which collection of data in several dozens of countries using one same questionnaire is taking place; such waves are conducted every five years). Here the authors describe every wave of the WVS mentioning coordination and management activities that were determined by the extension of the project thematically and geographically. After that the authors identify the key features of the WVS in the New Independent States and mention some of the results of the study conducted in NIS countries in 1990-2014, such as high level of uncertainty in the choice of ideological preferences; rapid growth of declared religiosity; observed gap between the declared values and actual facts of social life, etc. The final section of the article summarizes the findings and key publications of the project for its data is widely used to analyse economic and political development, religious beliefs, gender equality, social capital, subjective well-being and many other issues of social development and values change in the world.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):719-741
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Contemporary society: the urgent issues and prospects for development
The causes of Islamic fundamentalist violent movements in postcolonial Nigeria
Kumsa A., Šubrt J.

Abstract

Nigeria is one of the first African states to be confronted with the violent Islamist fundamentalist group popularly known as Boko Haram. It declared war on the Nigerian secular state in 2009, and implements a program, if successful, to transform the country into an Islamic theocratic state led by sharia (Islamic law), in the country where only half of the population are Muslims. The article starts with clarification of the structure of the Nigerian society from the linguistic perspective, and from the point of view of political cultures of different societies, which were colonized and came under one British colonial rule to 1960. This study analyses the history of Islamist fundamental movements starting from the late 1970s, and focuses on the latest such group - Boko Haram. The authors examine the social, economical, and political causes of the brutal violent conflict in the northeastern Nigeria, which was the heartland of the pre-colonial Kanem Bornu state and the center of Kanuri national culture. Finally, the authors identify social and political causes of the developmental chain of Salafist movements, particularly from 2009 when Boko Haram declared war against the Nigerian state in order to transform it into an Islamic caliphate; thus, there was a catastrophic human rights violation by the Nigerian Army in the name of fighting the Boko Haram terrorists. The authors do not suggest any decisions and do not provide any final conclusions - they admit the uncertainty of the current situation in Nigeria and call for the further research of internal politics tendencies under the new government led by President Buhari, who can either continue to solve the problems of the country by aggressive military means as two previous presidents of Nigeria, or, on the contrary, can prefer peaceful and conciliatory measures.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):755-768
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Traditional values of Russian professionals under the modernization
Aksenova O.V.

Abstract

The paper considers the attitudes of the Russian professionals to the innovations based on the values that developed during three centuries of modernization. The author defines the concept ‘modernity’ as a flexible technological system with the deep labor division and high specialization, formalized social interaction and limited individual agency. The article considers norms and values as external and internal regulators of the professionals’ choices and activities. The external regulation plays the key role in the technological system of the postmodern type, while the Russian and Soviet industrialism gave priority to the regulation through the values. The author shows that the Russian professionals perceive modernization as both the scientific-industrial progress and the comprehensive development of a personality; such a progressivist interpretation of the professional work combines professional and civil values. Modern institutional innovations implemented under the reforms in different branches can be divided into two groups - accepted and rejected by the professionals. The main criteria of these innovations’ estimates is preservation of the human agency in the professional-managerial sphere, and at the same time reflexivity and value-based social actions.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):799-807
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Old markers of social stratification in the consumer society: A new role of education
Mamedov A.K., Korkiya E.D., Malashonok S.G.

Abstract

The article considers the fundamental transformation of the role of education as a value-forming element of the cultural field in the consumer society, provides a historical overview of consumer society theories, and outlines approaches to the study of education as a social-cultural phenomenon within the market economy. The authors apply the cultural sociology approach to identify patterns of educational services consumption that allows to broaden the methodology of social stratification research; consider the theory of social inequality and the principles of social stratification; identify causes of social instability and give estimates of social inequality in consumer society. Based on the works of foreign and Russian experts the authors analyze the institutional environment of social inequality (re)production: according to the results of numerous comparative studies the key such institution is the centralized system of institutional relations in the field of education. The article considers the categories of education and training, globalization and globalism in today’s society; main aspects of the consumer society development in Russia, especially the behavior of Russian consumers in the context of global consumer trends. Thus, the authors emphasize that the consumer society in general is destructive, self-focused, however, this is a vector of global development in the capitalist countries that is impossible to deny; we are to study its trends taking into account the historical aspects of consumerism and take adequate measures to normalize social life.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):777-788
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The voluntary work based village activism in contemporary Finland
Kopoteva I.V.

Abstract

The article considers the voluntary based village activism in contemporary Finland. The author sees the roots of nowadays village activism in the traditional voluntary work: cultivation of common fields called for cooperation, and decision making on common issues required organisation of village meetings to make a collective decision. As a large social movement the village activism started in 1970s in the course of protest actions driven by the diminishing rural population and abandonment of arable lands. A large-scale establishment of village committees was also determined by the reduction of importance of traditional rural productive cooperation and by the changing role of countryside in the era of industrialisation. Nowadays Finland has a well-developed system of village associations, and its structure consists of three levels: village level, regional level and national level. At the local level, there are more than 4200 villages. In 2013, about 3100 villages had a registered village association and about 930 villages had a non-registered village association. Approximately 200 villages in Finland still do not perform any village activities of the considered type. As a rule, village activism generates in response to the specific needs of the village and aims to guarantee its residents’ well-being. At the regional level, there are 19 regional village associations. The most important tasks for the regional rural organisations are to ensure the villages’ interests and to work as a cooperative body for the rural development at the regional level. The top of the system under consideration is the Village Association of Finland. It is an umbrella organisation for the state, regional and local rural actors. The current development of rural movement in Finland could be evaluated in the framework of several theoretical conceptions: social capital and networking, entrepreneurial culture, and institutionalisation.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):789-798
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Indigenous peoples in the context of cultural continuity
Kuropjatnik M.S.

Abstract

The article defines local and global rather as two complementary perspectives for interpreting the modernity than as two levels of social interaction - micro- and macro-. Following Latour’s new ‘anthropological matrix’ the author shows the way to move from local to global, from representations of cultural forms as authentic (premodern) to their modern interpretations. Cultural continuity is understood as a consequence of the implementation of a multiple ‘partial inclusions’, and as an outcome of the combination of multiple transitions from local to global, from inner context to the outer. One of the most important modes of this continuity constitution is the practice of translation. Regarding indigenous peoples we can speak of two collections of translation practices such as translation of oral-discursive experience of culture into the text, and a reverse translation of cultural narratives created in their being non-literate peoples. Practices of reverse translation consist of the transformation of the ideas initially formed in the outside contexts into the context of the indigenous people’s culture. Such cultural forms as ethnographic self-descriptions are important not only to identify the actual cultural references of the indigenous peoples but also in terms of their involvement in the production of new cultural reality.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):769-776
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Surveys, experiments, case studies
Migration policies of Moscow authorities and Muscovites’ public opinion
Gasparishvili A.T., Onosov A.A.

Abstract

The article considers basic directions of the migration policies in the Moscow Region as the main attractive area for international labor migrants in the Russian Federation. Based on the statistical and sociological data (the results of public opinion survey and interviews with experts) the authors describe the current situation with the migration in the city of Moscow and in the Moscow Region in general focusing on the multidimensional characteristics of the Muscovites’ attitudes towards foreign labor migrants. The article shows that it the Muscovites’ perception of migrants there are three relatively independent vectors: cultural, economic, and social-political. The article also considers the Russian population’s assessments of the positive and negative contribution of labor migrants in the social and cultural dynamics of the Moscow Region on specific thematic lines. Within the framework of the existing scientific approaches to the study of labor migration, the authors analyze the current migration processes, identify future trends of their development and indicate positive and negative impacts of these processes on social stability at the regional and national levels. The article highlights perspectives for resolving major problems related to labor migration with the special attention to the issues of adaptation and integration of migrants into the metropolitan society. The authors indicate main vectors and frameworks of the Moscow authorities’ migration policies, and emphasize the need to design the differentiated policy of integration that takes into account peculiar characteristics of different categories of migrants.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):808-815
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The youth of Russia and Serbia: Social trust and key generational problems
Šuvaković U.V., Narbut N.P., Trotsuk I.V.

Abstract

The Sociological Laboratory of the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia has conducted a number of comparative studies using the method of mass surveys on the representative samples of student youth in different countries and different regions within them. The results of these surveys were presented in the articles in both Russian and foreign scientific journals, and we hope to establish a kind of tradition to publish two types of articles based on the comparative research data: in 2015 we focused mainly on methodological and technical issues to identify key problems of the comparative analysis in cross-cultural studies that become evident only if you conduct an empirical research yourself - from the first step of setting the problem and approving it by all the sides involved to the last step of interpreting and comparing the data obtained. From 2016 to the end of the Russian Foundation for Humanities’ support in 2017 we will focus on the results of our comparative studies together with our colleagues that participate in the project and conduct surveys on the student samples in their countries using the same questionnaire (with the inevitable and predictable changes) as we do. The authors present only a small part of the empirical data revealing the perception of the Serbian and Russian student youth of their own situation through the identification of the key problems of the younger generations and the trust to the basic social institutions. This is a deliberate decision of the authors - to leave other topics (and corresponding questions) out in order to address them more thoroughly later in the further analysis and publications. The article considers the results of the empirical studies conducted on the representative samples of students of two Serbian universities - University of Belgrade and University of Pristina with the head-office in Kosovska Mitrovica, and on the representative sample of Moscow students (a part of the sample was recruited in the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia).

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):816-829
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Regional safety as an object of sociological monitoring
Mozgovaya A.V., Shlykova E.V.

Abstract

The starting point for the scientific discussion of the article is the widely accepted fact of the economic and social inequality of different Russian regions’ development including inequality of risks. The article aims to explain the necessity of conducting complex economic and sociological regional monitoring of different communities safety status. The authors emphasize the scientific and practical need in the information on the subjective estimates of risks and ways to overcome them obtained through the representative sociological surveys. Using the retrospective format of the methodological reflection of the empirical studies conducted by the authors and their colleagues in different Russian regions, the authors analyze the methodological grounds for the study of such indicators as social safety, risk perception, estimates of life safety, etc. which are effective for regional monitoring aims. The authors consider such concepts as ‘risk-compensation’ and ‘risk-advantage’, ‘risk-security’, ‘risk-permissibility’ and ;risk-decision’; and prove the prognostic potential of the social acceptability of risk as a complex indicator for social actors’ communication on the security status of regions and local safety.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):830-843
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Sociology of management
The impact of Russian patent law on the development of high technologies: Sociological analysis
Tyurina I.O., Neverov A.V., Chursina A.V.

Abstract

The development and implementation of science intensive, converging and innovative technologies are of key importance for the Russian Federation due to a number of reasons: high international competition, economic instability, complex social and political processes, rapid modernization, etc. To ensure the effective development of technological potential it is necessary to upgrade a number of industries, but the effectiveness of institutional interaction is even more important: by increasing the professional competence of innovations developers, by investing in new technologies, and by improving business environment only one problem is usually solved, but the positive results are often reduced because of the general weakness of institutional cooperation. To solve this problem we should take into account factors affecting the creation and commercialization of technologies. One of the most important but not always taken into account factor is the legal protection of the intellectual property, i.e. the implementation of patent legislation, which influences innovation processes and determines the inventive activity in the country. However, institutional cooperation within the patent law is still largely ignored in the scientific and business literature. Thus, the authors aim to describe the features of intellectual property protection in the form of patent law, and to study the problems and prospects of the institutional interaction between the key stakeholders of the patent law in the Russian Federation with the help of expert interviews. The research allowed the authors to identify the main problems of the patent law and the ways to overcome negative trends in the protection of intellectual property.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):844-858
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Sociological lectures
“Subjective” and “objective’ insincerity in sociological surveys: Nonverbal manifestations
Puzanova Z.V., Larina T.I.

Abstract

Insincerity of respondents in sociological research is a challenge affecting both quality of the sociological tool and the quality of the data obtained, especially features of the psychological interaction. Insincerity is information which respondents distort intentionally. However, there are two types of such insincerity - ‘objective’, i.e. a protective strategy used to deliberately hide some information, and ‘subjective’, when a respondent is forced to provide irrelevant information due to misunderstanding the question or incompetence. Nonverbal manifestations inform of thoughts and sometimes motives of respondents’ answers. In the example given in the article the ‘objective’ insincerity prevails due to the sensitive topic, while in other types of similar surveys the ‘subjective’ insincerity usually takes place too. Insincerity is not an emotion, rather a complex of cognitive attitudes and processes in a form of respond to a stimuli, but insincerity is accompanied by emotions which are the main differentiating signs of types of insincerity. Using the technology for the analysis of respondents’ nonverbal reactions in sociological research, we can identify the type of insincerity. The authors provide examples of certain emotions as reactions to specific provocative questions under the experiment and make a conclusion about the possibilities to identify not only incorrect or ‘threatening’ questions, but also the types of insincerity when answering such questions.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):859-869
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Reviews
Social aspects of Russian geography: A new round of the studies of the space transformations between two Russian capitals: Puteshestvie iz Peterburga v Moskvu: 222 goda spustja. Kn. 1: Dva stoletija rossijskoj istorii mezhdu Moskvoj i Sankt-Peterburgom [Journey from St. Petersburg to Moscow: 222 Years Later. Book 1: Two Centuries of Russian History between Moscow and Saint-Petersburg]. Moscow: Lenand, 2015; Puteshestvie iz Peterburga v Moskvu: 222 goda spustja. Kn. 2: Puteshestvie iz Peterburga v Moskvu v XX veke (po itogam ekspedicii 2013 goda) [Journey from St. Petersburg to Moscow: 222 Years Later. Book 2: Journey from St. Petersburg to Moscow in the 20th Century (Following the Results of 2013 Expedition)]. Moscow: Lenand, 2015
Trotsuk I.V.

Abstract

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):870-881
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Authors
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RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(4):882-884
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