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Regular version of the site

Article

Seeing the Forest and the Trees: Western Forestry Systems and Soviet Engineers, 1955-1964

Technology and Culture. 2016. Vol. 57. No. 3. P. 586-611.

This paper examines technology transfer to Soviet industry during the period of technological modernization between 1953 and 1964. It focuses on forestry sector which was among emphases of modernization and key arenas of transfer of foreign techniques and expertise. The aim of the paper is to investigate the role of trips made by Soviet specialists to foreign (primarily Finnish) enterprises in order to illustrate non-technological influences while transferring technologies cross the Cold War border.  To do that the article is split into two parts: the first one presents a general analysis of transfer from a micro level perspective while the second one investigates cultural influences behind technological transfer. This study contends that although the Soviet government expected Soviet specialists to bring in foreign advanced technical experience, they brought not only technologies and expertise needed for modernizing the industry, but also a new view of Soviet work management and everyday practices.