How Post-Soviet Russian Academia Struggles with the Past
Dynamics of the age structure of the professoriate in Kazan, St. Petersburg, Moscow, and Dorpat universities is analysed from their origins through 1884. The study is based on a prosopographical database containing records on the principal events of university professors' lives and careers compiled by the authors. New methods of data retrieval and visualisation based on scripts written in R programming language allow to analyse the temporal dynamics of the age structure in finest details. From the perspective of the temporal dynamics of the age structure, the history of university can be subdivided into periods of gradual concerted aging of a nearly stable population and much shorter periods of rather dramatic rejuvenation. The latter are usually (un)intended by-procucts of active interventions by Educational district Curators or the Ministry of Education in the routine process of hiring and firing the university professors. The analysis reveals a peculiar pattern of the aging / rejuvenation periods in Kazan university that differs significantly from more or less concerted dynamics of the remaining three universities under study. All remarkable rearrangements in the body of professors of Kazan University as well as their effects on the age structure are discussed in detail. A number of factors contributing to the unique character of aging / rejuvenation patterns in Kazan university (shortages of the early period of Kazan university history, constant deficiency of qualified candidates to fill the vacant positions, and active interventions by Educational district Curators) are discussed.
Students' internet usage attracts the attention of many researchers in different countries. Differences in internet penetration in diverse countries lead us to ask about the interaction of medium and culture in this process. In this paper we present an analysis based on a sample of 825 students from 18 Russian universities and discuss findings on particularities of students' ICT usage. On the background of the findings of the study, based on data collected in 2008-2009 year during a project "A сross-cultural study of the new learning culture formation in Germany and Russia", we discuss the problem of plagiarism in Russia, the availability of ICT features in Russian universities and an evaluation of the attractiveness of different categories of ICT usage and gender specifics in the use of ICT.
The paper examines the structure, governance, and balance sheets of state-controlled banks in Russia, which accounted for over 55 percent of the total assets in the country's banking system in early 2012. The author offers a credible estimate of the size of the country's state banking sector by including banks that are indirectly owned by public organizations. Contrary to some predictions based on the theoretical literature on economic transition, he explains the relatively high profitability and efficiency of Russian state-controlled banks by pointing to their competitive position in such functions as acquisition and disposal of assets on behalf of the government. Also suggested in the paper is a different way of looking at market concentration in Russia (by consolidating the market shares of core state-controlled banks), which produces a picture of a more concentrated market than officially reported. Lastly, one of the author's interesting conclusions is that China provides a better benchmark than the formerly centrally planned economies of Central and Eastern Europe by which to assess the viability of state ownership of banks in Russia and to evaluate the country's banking sector.
The paper examines the principles for the supervision of financial conglomerates proposed by BCBS in the consultative document published in December 2011. Moreover, the article proposes a number of suggestions worked out by the authors within the HSE research team.