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Center for Science and Technology Studies (STS Center)

Contract number
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Head of the laboratory

As of 30.01.2020

Number of staff members
scientific publications
General information
Name of the project:  Sociology of entrepreneurship in science and technology

Strategy for Scientific and Technological Development Priority Level: ж

Goals and objectives

Project objective:

Study of professionals in IT working in Russia and dynamics of their mobility. In a wider sense:

- Study of global «brain circulations» and particular aspects of formation of local Russian-speaking expat communities in technologically developed countries

The practical value of the study

  • We have provided the institutional basis for a research and education laboratory aimed a social studies in science and technology. It will become the first laboratory of this kind in Russia. We have found a young, steadily developing team that is well integrated into the network of Russian and international science.
  • We have completed the «Russian IT professionals in Russia and abroad» project in which we analyzed over 200 interviews with Russian IT professionals in Russia and abroad (the research has been conducted in various regions of Russia – Vladivostok, Kazan, Moscow, Novosibirsk, St. Petersburg, and Tomsk, as well as in other countries – UK, Israel, USA, Finland, France, Estonia).
  • Our researchers attempted to answer the questions: Why do members of one of the most in-demand and successful professional groups steadily emigrate? Which specific features of this community aid and/or prevent mobility? In what way are migration projects are caused by social and cultural values, lifestyle, professional skills? What are the forms of communication and social contacts after emigration?
  • Our researchers have determined «generations» of academic migrations. Schemes have been compiled for diasporal interactions between scientists and the Russian diaspora typical for every «generation»
  • We have analyzed the mechanism of migration of «pathfinders» as a complex process consisting of two stages — short-term and long-term migration — that depends on three key types of resources: institutional, social network, and individual
  • International project «Living infrastructures of a high-tech city»: we have determined problems, prepared theoretical and practical substantiation of importance of the topic, introduction to the context of prior research in this field, a methodology for the project.

Implemented results of research:

The website of the «Russian IT professionals in Russia and abroad» project has been launched (http://rcs.eu.spb.ru/). The site features articles and results of each of the cases of the project, as well as a database of interviews that can be accessed after signing up at the site. The results can be used when drafting recommendations for migration policies, developing innovative regional incubators and organizations, in particular, in institutions of higher education.

Education and career development:

  • We have completed the Digital Traces: «Meta-Morphologies of St. Petersburg» summer school. Under supervision of Lev Manovich (City University of New York) and Damiano Cerrone (SPIN Unit) its participants mastered digital cartography and analysis of open geoinformation systams and social networks.
  • We regularly conducted open research seminars that features keynotes of Russian and foreign scientists
  • We have developed a bachelor program for studies of science and tecnology
  • Our staff have developed 10 international courses for masters intersted in interactions of technology and society: «Anthropology of cybord» (as a part of the «Anthropology and ethnology» course track), «Science and Technology Studies (STS) and studies of innovations: ecologies of startups and relations between academia and industry», «Intellectual property and technical sciences: introduction to the problem», «Sociology of networking», «Sociology of urban innovations», «Science and Technology Studies: theories and methods», «Technoparks and business incubators: spaces of organized innovation», «Strategies of data vizualization», «Social history of trust in organizations», «Technological policies and education» (as a part of the «Sociology» course track)
  • A number of masters theses in sociology completed on the basis of the STS Center have been successfully defended
  • We have released our textbook: Bychkova O., Smart policies: How to prevent non-necessary rules and regulations, 2018

Organizational and structural changes:

A new research center for analysis of Russian innovation sector has been created


  • Center for social research and Research Center for Energy Policy od the European University at St Petersburg (Russia): help in obtaining a Presidential grant to complete the «Interactive educational platform of Russian Arctic: Peole and Infrastructure». The project is designed to attract attention to human capital and infrastructure of the Arctic zone of Russia and popularize the Arctic as a space for life.
  • Saint Petersburg State University and Northwestern Management Institute of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Russia): conducting the strategic session «Social and cultural competences for the National Technological Initiative (NTI)» (on the grounds of the NTI-2035 barcamp)
  • Saint Petersburg National Research University of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics - ITMO (Russia): support in discussing modern tendencies of development of informational society and key challenges connected with global digital transformations of society and state. We conducted: the Digital Transformation & Global Society conference (DTGS-2016), scientific school and case study for young scientists and professionals «Technology of high performance computations and computer modeling: computational technologies for decision-making» (2016), «Erasing Disciplinary Boundaries in Urban Studies: Social Science and Computation» conference (2015)
  • Sociological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Institute of Natural Sciences and Technology of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Russia): participation of Center STS in international events, including Kugel International School for Sociology in Science and Technology
  • Saint Petersburg Sociologists Association (Russia): conducting the «Law-governed society: what does sociology speak about» conference. The conference united representatives of various institutes, organizations, centers as well as independent researchers working in academia or enterprise. Participants discussed uncertaincies arising from economical crises, strengthening of social inequality, growing technophobia etc.
  • Venice International University CNR, Università Ca’ Foscari Venezia, Università degli Studi Tor Vergata di Roma (Italy) and Duke University (USA): conducting the Venice International University PhD Academy (2016) – school for PhD students from different countries devoted to importance of interdisciplinary cooperation to solve problems of society
  • IUAV University of Architecture in Venice (Italy) and Venice International University (Italy): exchange programs with the framework of the Erasmus+ program for undergraduate and postgraduate students in urban studes (2016)
  • «Open City» Foundation (Russia): organizing the Open Data Hackathon (2015) to create interdisciplinary projects and cross-professional teams.. The event provided new opportunities to create civic applications and services designed to improve life quality of citizens
  • Center for Technology in Scciety (MCTS) of TU München (Germany), Centre for Research on Architecture, Society & the Built Environment (ETH – CASE) of ETH Zürich (Switzerland): conducting the «Urban STS: Assembling New Perspectives» conference (2015), creating a ground for discussion between sociology researchers from various countries devoted to scientific potential of STS for urban spaces research
  • «Context» Foundation (Russia): a series of public lectures in the «Context» laboratory (2015–2016) devoted to knowledge economics, technological entrepreneurship, and the «smart city» conceppy (in collaboration with the Urban Transformation School of the ITMO Saint Petersburg National Research University of Information Technologies, Mechanics and Optics), financial innovations, intellectual property
  • Graduate School of Urbanism of the Higher School of Economics abd «Sreda» Urbanism Institute (2015): a series of events devoted to the «adaptable city» concept - steady development of a city in the light of modern economical circumstances and needs of citizens with their rapidly changing consumption, communication and transportation models

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Mario Biagioli and Vincent Lepinay (eds.). Duke University Press, 2019.
From Russia with Codes: Programming Migrations in Post-Soviet Times.
Земнухова Л.
Социальные исследования технологий: эволюция и взаимодействие подходов // Экономическая социология. 2018. Т. 19. № 5. 113- 129.
Земнухова Л, Сивков Д.
Работать (в)месте: локализация технонауки в офисах ИТ-индустрии // Этнографическое обозрение, №6, 2017. С. 44-58.
Антощук И.
Анализ механизма миграции русскоязычных ученых в области компьютерных наук в Великобританию // Мониторинг общественного мнения: Экономические и социальные перемены. 2017. № 1. С. 140-155.
Bychkova O.
Innovation by coercion: Emerging institutionalization of university-industry collaborations in Russia. Social Studies of Science. 2016. Vol. 46. No. 4, рp. 511–535.
Симонова А. В.
Анализ культуры стартап-предпринимателей в России: кейс-стади Московского хакерспейса // Laboratorium. 2018. № 10(1). С. 51 – 78.
Земнухова Л. В.
«Русские» ИТ-специалисты и их профессиональная мобильность за рубежом // ИНТЕР. 2017. № 14. С. 5–15.
Земнухова Л. В.
ИТ-специалисты на мировом рынке: стратегии миграции и использование языка (на примере русских в Лондоне) // Социология науки и технологий. Т. 6. 2015. № 4. С. 154–163.
Контарева А.
Как госзаказ влияет на инновационные системы российских регионов (случай Республики Татарстан) // Социология науки и технологий, том 6, №4, 2015
Контарева А.
"Как собрать «экспериментальную систему»: коммуникация и организация современной российской научной лаборатории" // Социология науки и технологий, том 6, №2, 2015
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