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How does peripherality challenge methodology and theory-making? This book examines how the peripheral can be incorporated into ethnographic research, and reflects on what it means to be on the periphery—ontologically and epistemologically. Starting from the premise that clarity and fixity as ideals of modernity prevent us from approaching that which cannot be easily captured and framed into scientific boundaries, the book argues for remaining on the boundary between the known and the unknown in order to surpass this ethnographic limit. Its ethnographic case studies engage with a series of empirical and theoretical issues, including: What is at the centre and what is at the periphery of what we do? How can we represent what lies beneath the threshold of verbal reasoning, or does not respond to the criteria for widely recognised forms of knowledge? Does learning entail unlearning? Peripheral Methodologies shows that peripherality is not only to be seen as a marginal condition, but rather as a form of theory-making and practice that incorporates reflexivity and experimentation.
Purpose – The growing trend towards closing the political space for civil society in authoritarian regimes has
primarily targeted NGOs focused on rights-based advocacy. Drawing on a study of disability NGOs in Russia,
this paper seeks to contribute to a better understanding of the advocacy options that nonprofit organizations
have even in repressive political contexts. The authors first review the extant literature to identify common
actors, types and tactics and then trace what types of advocacy Russian NGOs are engaged in and what tactics
they are able to utilize.
Design/methodology/approach – The empirical part of this paper is based on 20 interviews conducted
among active participants in disability NGOs in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Perm and Nizhniy Novgorod. Despite
not being a representative sample of organizations, the selection of cities and organizations was intended to
reflect spatial and structural factors of the field.
Findings – The authors find that NGOs are able to pursue a broad range of advocacy activities despite a
generally restrictive legal environment for civil society.
Research limitations/implications – Research on advocacy in authoritarian countries is often focused on
NGOs that are primarily engaged in these activities. This has overshadowed the considerable leeway that
nonprofit service providers have to engage in advocacy.
Practical implications – Service-providing NGOs should not forsake advocacy activities, even in
authoritarian contexts, but can find access points in the political system and should seek to utilize their voice on
behalf of their clients.
Social implications – Despite general restrictions, NGOs can still find ways to successfully secure social
rights, justice and solidarity, provided they accept the supremacy of the state in social policy and appeal to the
state’s responsibility for the welfare of its citizens without directly questioning the overall status quo too
Originality/value – We develop a broad framework for various advocacy forms and activities and apply it to
nonprofit service providers.
This article examines agenda-setting theory. I compare the results of Levada Center
surveys on the most memorable issues of the month with the number of publications on
those issues in the Russian press from 2014 to 2016. In total, 884 issues are analyzed in
the article. The results of the study confirm the impact of discussions in the media on
people’s attention to an issue. The results also show that the discussions in the media one
week before the date of polling are more important than the issues covered over the entire
month. People better remember those issues that took place shortly before the polling, as
well as those issues with intensifying discussions during the period. It is also important to
note the role of regional publications in the sensitization of the public to various issues.
Issues covered by national newspapers and news agencies but ignored by the regional
press are significantly less remembered by the population.
This book constitutes the proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Analysis of Images, Social Networks and Texts, AIST 2019, held in Kazan, Russia, in July 2019.
The 24 full papers and 10 short papers were carefully reviewed and selected from 134 submissions (of which 21 papers were rejected without being reviewed). The papers are organized in topical sections on general topics of data analysis; natural language processing; social network analysis; analysis of images and video; optimization problems on graphs and network structures; analysis of dynamic behaviour through event data.
This volume contains the refereed proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Analysis of Images, Social Networks, and Texts (AIST 2019). The previous conferences during 2012–2018 attracted a significant number of data scientists – students, researchers, academics, and engineers working on interdisciplinary data analysis of images, texts, and social networks.
This article examines how Russian NPOs in the field of domestic violence operate in a legal climate characterised by both state restriction and support. I conceptualise anti-violence NPOs that belonged to a network as an “epistemic community”. I demonstrate that these NPOs faced challenges to the recognition of their expertise by state representatives and to the promotion of their vision of policy change. Yet, the NPOs continued to invest their resources into educational events for state specialists. I propose to theorise these educational events as a means of developing a knowledge-based network that can support survivors despite lacking formal mechanisms for inter-agency collaboration.
The Rohingya are one of the most persecuted religious ethnic
minorities of the contemporary world. They have been persecuted
in Myanmar since the post-coup military regime came to power in
1962. What explains this brutal pursuit of violence against a
minority? In answering this question, I trace the genealogy and
the ethnogenesis of the Rohingya in Myanmar in a longue durée
through an analysis of extant data, both historical and
contemporary, and I supplement it with an ethnographic study I
conducted in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. I argue that the emergence
of the Rohingya identity is constitutively related with the stateformation,
war conquest, and power shifts in Myanmar during
precolonial, colonial, and postcolonial times. I demonstrate how
the post-coup state of Myanmar – in association with the religious
civil society, led by a section of the majoritarian Theravada
Buddhist Bamars – provoked religious and exclusivist nationalism
and constructed the ‘Rohingya Muslims’ as the enemy ‘Other’. I
demonstrate also how the democratization of Myanmar ironically
exacerbated the problem. The Rohingya themselves – once
alienated and un-imagined from the national space – embraced
this identity of victimhood to design their resilient and
oppositional disposition against an exclusivist state, which further
politicized and reified the identity.
Some features of epistolary genre as a form of communication, its evolution and its role in history are analyzed in this article. A comparison with the other forms of communication is carried out. The author considers the significance of the personal correspondence for the study of the history of sociological thought. He illustrates these general statements by a comparative analysis of the correspondences of Marx, on the one hand, and of Durkheim, on the other hand, as well as of their respective role in the work of these classics.
In this paper we provide the methodology for evaluating ef- fectiveness of international sanctions using Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA), which we use for generating the network matrix for further anal- ysis. DEA is a non-parametric technique used to compare performance of similar units, such as departments or organizations. DEA has wide applications in all industries, and has been successfully used to compare performance of hospitals, banks, universities, etc. The most important advantage of this technique is that it can handle multiple input and out- put variables, even those not generally comparable to each other. We use the ”Threat and Imposition of Sanctions (TIES)” Data 4.0 for analysis. This database contains the largest number of cases of international sanctions (1412 from the years 1945-2005) imposed by some countries on others, takes into account simultaneous sanction imposition, and also estimates the cost of all sanctions - both for those who receive and those who impose them. As input variables for DEA model we use the impact of sender commitment, anticipated target and sender economic costs, and actual target and sender economic costs. As the output variable, we use the outcome of sanctions for senders. We describe how to use DEA cross-efficiency outputs to build the network of sanction episodes. Our proposed combination of DEA and network methodology allows us to cluster sanction episodes depending on their outcomes, and provides explanations of higher efficiency of one group of sanction episodes over the others.
This paper focuses on the analysis of contemporary theories of culture and cognition in cultural sociology. It identifies two major research traditions within cognitivist cultural sociology, based on micro-individualist and collectivist modes of sociological explanation respectively. Two prominent theoretical frameworks within the "micro-individualist" tradition are then critically examined: Stephen Vaisey's dual-process models of culture in action and Omar Lizardo's typology of cultural kinds. It is argued that both frameworks, although well-defined and theoretically insightful, are prone to unwarranted microfoundationalist reductionism. The paper then proceeds to evaluate the presuppositions of the explicitly "collectivist" Zeru-bavelian paradigm of cultural sociology, as well as a series of recent contributions to the field by scholars representing the neo-Durkheimian "strong program". Both are argued to contain problematic assumptions about the location and means of transmission of cultural content. It is concluded that neither "micro-individualist" nor "collectivist" theories of culture and cognition can provide an adequate account of how culture and cognition interrelate since both frameworks are based on explicitly reductionist social ontologies. The article then calls for the adoption of Tuukka Kaidesoja's "naturalized critical realist" social ontology that seeks to overcome these philosophical biases. The paper examines two major sources of Kaidesoja's ontological doctrine, namely Mario Bunge's systemic materialist ontology and the "distributed cognition" perspective. The article then seeks to outline a preliminary sketch of an alternative account of culture that involves the generation, transmission, and transformation of representational states across different media within distributed cognitive systems
In this paper we describe the Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) research design and its applications for effectiveness evaluation of company marketing strategies. We argue that DEA is an efficient instrument for use in academia and industry to compare a company’s business performance with its competitors’. This comparison provides the company with information on the closest competitors, including evaluating strategies with similar costs, but more efficient outcomes (sales). Furthermore, DEA provides suggestions on the optimal marketing mix to achieve superior performance.
An innovative development based on the use of modern media and communication technologies requires a certain level of competence in how to use such technologies. These competencies are united by the concept of “information literacy”, proposed by Paul Gilster in 1997. The tradition of studying digital literacy in Russia is the subject of the following chapter. The different approaches to understanding digital literacy are as follows: ICT, psychological and pedagogical, media and information and industrial approaches.
Special attention is paid to the four-component digital literacy model, proposed in the framework of the project by ROCIT and the Higher School of Economics. This model is based on two substantial oppositions: firstly, the opposition “technical-technological/socio-humanitarian” and, secondly, the opposition “opportunities/threats”. It was used to construct the Index of Digital Literacy in the Russian Regions, measured since 2015.
The results of a series of media literacy measuring surveys by the ZIRCON Group from 2009–2016 are also presented.
This article examines the role of the monetary world inclusion in the world of children’s
games in the late Soviet period by opening a previously unknown page of board
games’ social history in the USSR and describes the practices of playing Do It Yourself
(DIY) Monopoly by Soviet children in the 1980s. Soviet teenagers used friendly relationships
to exchange tacit knowledge about the basic rules of the board business game.
They made playing fields and developed the rules of the game, using school knowledge
about the principles of the capitalist economy. The article shows the game rules’
evolution of the DIY Soviet Monopoly versions and shows the creativity of the Soviet
teenagers in the re-invention of the rules of the board business game. DIY Monopoly
versions were a form of adaptation of western goods to socialist conditions, which
were common practice in the Soviet Union since its inception.