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August 06, 2013

EUSP Fellowships - Russian Computer Scientists at Home and Abroad

The complete application package should be sent to STS@eu.spb.ru no later than August 16th 2013.

The STS Center at the European University in St. Petersburg (EUSP) is inviting graduate students in anthropology, history, political sciences, sociology, STS and related disciplines to apply for a fellowship for the academic year 2013-14. Interested students do not need to be currently enrolled at EUSP. These fellowships are part of a Mega Grant funded by the Russian Ministry of Education. The project is designed as a 28-month study of the population of Russian computer scientists (RCS henceforth) in Russia and abroad. We plan extensive ethnographic fieldwork and/or oral history in Moscow, Novosibirsk, St. Petersburg, Tomsk as well as England, India, Israel, France, Germany, and the USA (Boston/NYC and San Francisco areas). The definition of RCS is broad, ranging from PhDs holding academic posts or research positions in private sector institutions to software entrepreneurs.

Master and PhD students as well as post doctorates interested in the project and ready to conduct a fieldwork in one of the target regions are encouraged to apply. The stipend is up to 15,000 rubbles (USD 500) per month for master's students and 30,000 rubbles (USD 1000) for PhD students and post doctorates. Because the project’s funding extends to December 2015, we expect students' application projects to aim beyond a single year of research. Students from other universities who wish to be associated with the project will be offered access to the courses delivered at EUSP as part of the RCS. They may also be helped financially if they contribute to the research. The working language of the project is English.

The project aims at describing the population of RCS, both in Russia and abroad. The main interest of the study is to understand how professionals communicate across national and professional boundaries in the dual context of an intrinsically portable form of knowledge – relatively not-sticky forms of innovations – and a politically tense status quo where emigrates are both praised for their entrepreneurship and blamed for bringing the competition within or for siphoning the brightest brains off the Russian Federation. A series of questions animate this description:

- What forms of knowledge transfer occur between domestic and foreign communities?
- What are the patterns of work-motivated emigration in the CS industry?
- What role do RCS play abroad in the local CS cultures when they emigrate massively?
- In the Russian context of relative limited porosity between academia and industry, how do academic Russian Computer scientists convert their skills when they move to the private sector?
- What are the business plan strategies of RCS?
- What are the Intellectual Property strategies of RCS?

The ambition of the research project is also to investigate the two opposite imperatives of the CS community – privacy and sharing – and to design a platform which would be both a mean for them to recognize each other (who does what in which field) and an example of conducting social sciences in a way inviting the subjects to contribute to the forms of representation that we offer of them.

The target regions mentioned above should not limit students creativity. We are open to suggestions of other sites – whether corporate studies of Russian startups or NGOs. We are primarily looking for well-prepared and highly motivated individuals who are open to adopt both quantitative and qualitative research methods.

RCS Team
The RCS project is headed by Mario Biagioli (UC Davis) and Vincent Antonin Lepinay (Sciences Po and EUSP). Its Executive Director is Zinaida Vasilyeva (EUSP).
The other RCS research associates are Martin Giraudeau (LSE), Andrei Mogoutov (Exvisu), and Olga Sezneva (University of Amsterdam). All team members will be offering courses during the academic year.

All students accepting a stipend from the STS Center will have to:
- attend a 3 hours weekly research/reading seminar run jointly by
Zinaida Vasilyeva and the RCS scholars
- enroll in the writing workshop led by Vincent Antonin Lepinay
- attend the monthly seminars and the biannual conferences organized
by the STS Center
- conduct fieldwork/interviews in one of the target regions
- write-up reports, book reviews, articles and book sections as parts
of the collective research.

The complete application package should be sent to STS@eu.spb.ru no later than August 16th 2013.
Please, submit your applications in English and enclose the following documents:
- project proposal (5 pages max. excluding biblio)
- CV
- writing sample in English (If none is available, please, provide with a proof of proficiency in English and a Russian writing sample)
If you apply simultaneously to PhD or Master's program at EUSP, please confer with the relevant departments for the specific deadlines and other department requirements. If you have any further queries, please do not hesitate to contact STS@eu.spb.ru

Posted by bkohlerk at August 6, 2013 04:28 PM