The effect of enabling factors on social innovation in Russian non-profit organisations
Purpose – This paper explores the factors that are associated with a capacity of non-profits to develop social innovations. The study aims to examine factors in the Russian national context with weak non-profit sector with an ambiguous governmental policy toward the sector.
Design/methodology/approach – The study is based on survey data (n=850 NPOs, 2015, Russia). The paper analyses the likelihood of a non-profit to introduce social innovations due to external framework and organisational factors. Regression analysis was applied in the study.
The study is based on a new sampling approach and examines non-profits as producers of social innovations, but not cases of social innovations per se.
Findings – The results demonstrate that the capacity of an NPO to develop social innovations is explained by the following enabling factors: cross-boundary collaborative relations, volunteer involvement, and diversity of the revenue structure. Composition of innovative sub-sector, opportunities and chances of getting into this group are explicitly determined and regulated by the current governmental policy towards the sector. That is that large and established non-profits are more likely to be innovative in Russia, unlike expected grass-roots.
Originality/value – The paper applies a theoretical framework to analyse the social innovation concept in a non-Western context with weak civil society and an influential government. From this perspective the results present empirical quantitative verification of the determinants of social innovation capacity of NPOs. The paper is among the first to apply a reverse sampling principle and examine social innovations via NPOs as producers. The paper produced, for the first time, an empirical description of the nature of innovative activity by NPOs and an estimation of the extent of this activity in Russia.
The article presents a comparative analysis of the internal structure and principles of the organization of volunteer associations in Russia and France from the perspective of the sociology of organizations. The theoretical framework of the study combines the concepts of the neo-institutionalist approach in economic sociology and the network approach to organizations. Data are drawn from a series of in-depth expert interviews with the leaders of socially-oriented volunteer organizations in France and Russia (14 interviews). The author also conducted analysis of legal documents and communication materials of volunteer associations in each of the countries studied (approximately 40 documents totaling over 200 pages of text). It appears that the Russian and French volunteer sectors differ not only in structure and legal status of voluntary organizations, but also in the conceptual definition of volunteering. Drawing on empirical data, it was found that the French volunteer associations exist in a structured institutional environment, while Russian voluntary associations perform in a poorly structured, constantly changing environment, the main problem of which is the lack of cognitive and socio-political legitimacy. Thus, the French model of volunteering is more similar to the mechanism of institutional organizations, while Russian voluntary associations are more typical of networked organizations. This research suggests a different vision of the nature of voluntary organizations and argues that it is impossible to ignore national characteristics in the development of social policy. Conclusions drawn from this research could be applied to the development of public policy regarding the non-profit sector in Russia.
dance4life is a globally active organization within the fields of HIV, sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and the Millennium Development Goals, specifically aiming to establish a social youth movement consisting of 1 million agents4change by 2014. The central mission of dance4life is to power a movement that creates change at global and community level by taking action to improve young people’s SRHR, and in particular, improving access to sexuality education and youth-friendly services, and to challenge stigma and discrimination and break down taboos that surround sexuality, especially focusing on HIV and AIDS. KIT was invited to partner with dance4life on an impact assessment of dance4life’s work, with a focus on mixed methods and the involvement of the young people themselves. The assessment took place in two countries: Uganda and Russia. A pilot study was undertaken in the Netherlands to test the qualitative research instruments.
This book represents the 8th volume of results obtained from the monitoring of the status of civil society in Russia that is conducted by the Centre for Studies of Civil Society and the Nonprofit Sector (the National Research University “Higher School of Economics”) in conjunction with the leading sociological centres of Russia. The empirical base of this publication is formed from the data of All-Russian survey of population aged 18 years and older, that was based on representative sample and carried out in 83 regions of Russia in 2259 localities within the framework of expert services on the strategy of socio-economic development of Russia till 2020. The data provided characterizes engagement of Russians in volunteering, charitable donations and other social and political practices. The data describes determinants of Russians connected with responsibility for actions taken in their neighborhoods and localities and the country at large and their sense of the opportunity to exert their influence over it. This book will be of use to social and political scientists, economists, teachers and students of the social sciences and anyone, interested in the development of civil society in Russia.
Attraction and management of money (donations and earned), people, plant, technology, and reputation as resources are keys for nonprofit organizations (NPOs), including membership associations (MAs). This chapter reviews resource attraction from a marketing theory perspective. While traditional transaction marketing is often dominant, we argue that relationships and relationship marketing are at the heart of association resource attraction processes, considering what the association can produce or provide and member-beneficiary capacities. Resource attraction and maintenance are challenging, given competition for resources among associations. Engaging various relational stakeholders is key to success. Most attention is given to paid-staff associations, but we also discuss all-volunteer associations. While larger associations are likely to concentrate on financial resource attraction, smaller ones tend to build more successfully on volunteer members as their key resources.
There was described the forms of the existence and terms of dissemination of social innovations in volunteer activities.
S-Theory as a Comprehensive Explanation of Charitable Giving: Testing a Theory of Everyone on Russian National Sample Interview Data
In this exploratory study, we examined several interethnic ideologies held by individuals (assimilation, colorblindness, multiculturalism, and polyculturalism) from a social ecological perspective. We examined moderation effects of neighborhood ethnic density (ED) on relationships between interethnic ideologies and intergroup bias towards various minority ethnic groups in the Russian context. Intergroup bias was assessed as a composite score of bias toward four ethnic groups who have different cultural distances from the Russian mainstream population: Chechens, Belarusians, Uzbeks, and Chinese. We obtained a gender balanced sample of ethnic Russians from the Central Federal District of Russia (N = 359) comprising of 47% women and 53% men. The measures were used in a Russian translation by an adaptation using the back-translation and cognitive interviews. Multiple regression analysis was used to test the relationships. The results showed that high perceived neighborhood non-Russian ED weakened negative relations between intergroup bias and ideologies that purportedly accept cultural diversity (multiculturalism and polyculturalism). On the other hand, for interethnic ideologies those purportedly reject cultural diversity, high perceived neighborhood non-Russian ED weakened the positive relations between intergroup bias and assimilation and strengthened the negative relations between intergroup bias and colorblindness. The pattern of results suggests that the relationship between attitudes and intergroup bias may change based on the perceived ethnic composition of the local area and frequency of contacts. Although our findings are relatively novel they support the emerging view that attitudes and intergroup relations need to be studied from a social ecological context.
The present paper discusses perspectives of Activity Theory (AT) in the context of contemporary globalizing world, describing which we refer to the notion “De-structuralized modernity” (Sorokin & Froumin, 2020). Radical changes in everyday life challenge social sciences and humanities. Approaches are in demand, which have the potential to comprehend the changing human étant and éntre. We argue that Activity Theory has the potential to face these challenges. Leontiev’s AT grounds on the idea of qualitatively new mental features arising to deal with novel environmental challenges, which is much in line with J.M. Baldwin reasoning on evolution. AT also offers a method to prognosis the upcoming neoplasms. In the same time, applying classics of AT to the current reality, “De-structuralized modernity”, entails the need for new theoretical elaborations of the latter, stemming from the radical transformation of the relations between individual and socio-cultural environments. A unique societal context emerges on the global level, which, on the one hand, requires individual to adapt constantly to changing socio-cultural reality, and, on the other hand, dramatically expands his/her potential for proactive actorhood transforming surrounding structures. We argue that the major and novel challenge for the individual is the task of maintaining the integrity and coherence of the a) Self-identity and b) system of links in and with the socio-cultural environment - in their dynamics and unity. The notion of “culture” has particular relevance and importance in this context because it allows grasping simultaneously two dimensions in their dynamic dialectical interrelations. First, the “internal” (“subjective”, “in the minds”) and “external” (“objective”, material and institutional environment) realities. Second, individual (“micro”) and societal (“macro”) scales of human activities. Discussing the ways to understand these dynamics, we dispute the popular “constitutive view” on personality and refer to the concept of the “ontological shift” (Mironenko & Sorokin, 2018). We also highlight how technological advancements change and “expand” human nature making it capable to deal with the outlined new tasks.
The article deals with the ways Russian authorities have constructed the social problem of HIV/AIDS (human immunodeficiency virus/ acquired immune deficiency syndrome) in Russia. The statistical construction of HIV/AIDS includes data indicating the significant rise of HIV prevalence in Russia since 2000. The study focuses on what and how Russian authorities speak about HIV/AIDS, while there are official data on the rapid spread of the virus in the country. The work is based on a discourse analysis of the authorities’ rhetoric about HIV/AIDS. During his first presidential terms, Vladimir Putin constructed HIV/AIDS not as an epidemic in the country, but as a “global problem,” representing Russia as a participant in international efforts to combat AIDS. The president problematized the HIV spread through the rhetoric of endangerment but without its crucial term “epidemic,” while at the same time de-problematized HIV in Russia by the strategy of naturalizing (“this is a problem that all countries face”). The Russian authorities appealed to traditional moral values and spoke about marginal or risk groups, rather than risk practices. After the deterioration of relations with Western countries since 2007, the Russian president excluded HIV/AIDS problem from his public agenda, despite the existence of the data on steep HIV growth in Russia. The Russian president’s traditionalism, de-problematization, and silence concerning HIV/AIDS lead to the absence of the HIV/AIDS issues in media agenda, the agenda of local authorities, and consequently the personal agendas of Russian citizens. The consequences are ignorance, fears, stigmatization of people living with HIV, semi-legal status of needle, and syringe exchange programs for intravenous drug users, low antiretroviral therapy coverage, and the continuing HIV epidemic.