This article reveals that, despite Russian regions being very different from each other when it comes to a great many socio-economic and socio-cultural properties (population income level and living standards, various features of the socio-cultural environment, social optimism, degree of religiosity and so on), those who live in regions far removed from the capital cities, given their lower level of personal income, tend to be more satisfied with their lives and demonstrate a higher level of social wellbeing, according to data from various sociological surveys. Based on empirical data, the authors argue that material aspects are not the only factors which affect subjective wellbeing in any given region. The goal of the study is to analyze the differentiation in the level of subjective wellbeing of the population of various Russian regions, which implies identifying and comparatively analyzing those factors which help interpret these differences. The primary research method is regression analysis of data from sociological surveys conducted in 2012 using the World Values Survey method in nine regions and towns of federal significance: Moscow, SaintPetersburg, Leningrad Province, Tambov, Tatarstan Republic, Chuvashia Republic, the Altai Krai, Kabardino-Balkaria Republic, Bashkortostan Republic. The analysis showed that there is indeed a connection between one’s personal income level and their subjective wellbeing, while there is no such connection between one’s subjective wellbeing and how wealthy their region is. This could be explained by the fact that people are more concerned with their personal income level than their region’s income. Aside from income level, there are other factors which determine subjective wellbeing in any given region. Moscow is considered to be the wealthiest region, however, it also has the highest level of income inequality. Both individual income and income level in comparison to the reference group considerably affect respondents’ subjective wellbeing, regardless of their region of residence. However, individual income has a stronger influence. That said it is in Moscow where subjective evaluation of one’s income level and satisfaction with one’s material status affect subjective wellbeing to the greatest extent, which is due to the fact that in Moscow both living standards and one’s sense of subjective inequality are somewhat higher. The influence of other socio-demographic factors also varies from region to region. For the most part this study confirms Ronald Inglehart’s concept of material factors playing a significant role in subjective wellbeing
his article1 examines shifts when it comes to employment among Russians during the financial-economic crisis years of 2014–2016, as well as during the years 2017–2018, which Russian scientists have already named the “period of negative post-crisis stabilization”. This article for the most part confirms said thesis. Despite obvious success in certain aspects (for example, unemployment around Russia has been kept at an unusually low level, while the wage gap between various regions has somewhat smoothened out in 2018 due to a decrease in income among those who live in the capital cities), several critical employment indicators show that our country has not yet recovered from the crisis. Alienation of villages is what’s the most disturbing circumstance, manifesting in the form of not only unusually high unemployment rates (over five times higher than that of the capital cities), but also villagers having to deal with injustice when it comes to their labor – delayed payment en masse, “grey” salaries and authoritarian local management. There’s also the matter of large-scale employment instability, and the enduring high risk of unemployment among younger people, especially those who perform simple physical labor. Yet another indicator would be an increase in settlement inequalities when it comes to distributing individual income within professional groups. When it comes to the capital cities, mainly managers have been negatively affected by the crisis (as a result of optimizing funding for administrations); as for regional and district center cities, mostly professionals are facing trouble due to the crisis (since there is a limited amount of “worthwhile” job offers out there). Additionally there are certain fundamental differences in types of employment and job opportunities between the capital cities and the regions, with said differences not necessarily being a consequence of the crisis itself. For example, this article concludes that a gradual transformation of Russian regional center cities into a “transfer periphery” is occurring, due to the fact that, since the early 2000’s, the amount of economically inactive people (mostly unemployed elderly folk) within them has increased twofold. The empirical basis for this study consists of sample statistics data, collected from “waves” of a national monitoring study conducted in 2014–2018 by the Federal Center for Sociological Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
The paper uses the data of the Russian Longitudinal Monitoring Study to analyze the change in the state of health of the Russian population in the post-Soviet period. Age is regarded as a factor with a potential to influence incidence of chronic disease, disability and self-preservation behavior. The authors stress the importance of such factors of health deterioration as smoking and alcohol consumption.
The article explores the procedural aspect of constructing structural and logical typologies with the aim of creating the innovation index - workers attitudes guiding innovation and innovation -related behavior at workplace.
Mass-media discourse is a “mirror” of sorts, which reflects general opinions and allows for understanding society’s mindset concerning migration issues. This article is devoted to analyzing the images created by Spanish mass-media regarding Latin American immigrants residing in Spain. Such a vision ultimately led to the emergence of an enduring perception of said immigrants by Spanish society from two main points of view – fear and pity. Columbians and Ecuadorians served as the prototypes for all Latin Americans who illegally entered Spain. The author reveals the reasons for the “divide” in Spanish mass-media’s perception of Columbia and Columbians, who became synonymous with danger, as well as Ecuador and Ecuadorian immigrants, who are primarily associated with Испанские СМИ о латиноамериканских мигрантах: между страхом и жалостью 110 № 4, Том 10, 2019 compassion and pity. This article examines the main stages of Latin American migration to Spain at the end of the 20th century and at the beginning of the 21st century, which were primarily comprised in succession by immigrants from Columbia, Argentina, Venezuela and Cuba. The author characterizes the most numerous of Spain’s Latin American Diasporas. It is revealed that immigration is a collectively constructed social phenomenon. In turn the host society attributes certain characteristics to visitors (“others”) which they in fact do not possess. Such artificially assigned qualities are the result of a so-called “symbolic structure”, attributed to each “imaginary migrant”. Latin American migration to Spain is a result of a multitude of factors lying on various levels. However, it is very uncommon for the news to carefully examine the regional and global aspects of this process. This article reveals the specific image of Latin American migrants which developed in Spain towards the beginning of the 21st century. The author attempts to define the hidden ideology supporting the vast majority of those negative Latin American migrant stereotypes broadcast by national mass-media.
The authors of this article proceed from the fact that, as a result of the intensive development of digital technologies, a digital society has formed an understanding of life, in which many habitual social practices have been transformed into digital ones. In particular, digital technologies have contributed to the fact that communication on personal, social and commercial issues has moved to a different, virtual level. However, in a number of areas, digital communication causes problems and communication disruptions. For example, previous studies have highlighted high levels of consumer dissatisfaction with companies using digital communication tools. Especially a lot of criticism is caused by answerphones, recently widely popular and used increasingly by public and commercial institutions. The article examines the new ways companies use to deliver their message to an existing or potential customer, as well as the quality and customer ratings of some of these solutions. In addition, the authors tried to identify factors that influence consumer satisfaction w hen communicating with companies in the digital environment. The main research methods are analysis of previous projects results, interviews and online survey. The article is based on the results of the research conducted in the city of Nizhny Novgorod. The city residents expectations for the automated communication system used in the modern world between the user and the service provider in case when com- munication is initiated by the consumer to solve his problems were studied on the example of telecommunications companies. These expectations were divided into six groups, and a comparative quantitative assessment of con - sumer expectations and the actual quality of communication was made. A low level of satisfaction with new ways of communication between companies and consumers was detected, and factors influencing consumer attitudes were identified. In general, the study showed that the formed factors determine the priority directions of transfor - mation of the communication practices of companies and are the basis for the balance of technologies and human resources at the enterprise.
What makes this article relevant is the fact that, given the current context of multiculturalism, the communication process is fundamental for many aspects and functions of the business environment. Ever accelerating processes of integration in the field of economics and business, the population becoming more active in terms of migration, academic mobility – this calls for mastering intercultural communication (ICC) skills, which are gradually gaining more relevance and importance. People are beginning to realize that possessing a certain level of knowledge and skill in the realm of ICC is becoming a necessary component for success in any professional field. The main goal of the presented study is to determine how well-prepared today’s students, who in the future are slated to become experts in their respective fields, are for living and functioning in a context of multiculturalism. A precondition for developing multicultural competencies would be the awareness of cultural and national differences, which needs to be based on intercultural sensitivity. This particular aspect was analyzed by the authors with the help of a questionnaire titled “scale of intercultural sensitivity”, developed by G. Chen and J. Starosta. This questionnaire consists of 24 statements and covers 5 factors which its authors attribute to the concept of intercultural sensitivity: involvement in interaction, respect for cultural differences, degree of confidence when communicating, pleasure from interaction, an analytical approach towards conversing. The study was conducted among bachelor and masters degree students at the Nizhny Novgorod campus of the Higher School of Economics in 2017–2019. The following aspects were subject to analysis: attitudes towards cultural traits and people from other nations, self-evaluation of the perception of one’s own and foreign cultures, predicting behavioral reactions when finding oneself in an international environment. In the process of analysis, the dependence was considered between the level of intercultural sensitivity and the respondents’ gender, grade points, experience of interacting with people from foreign cultures. Openness, willingness to communicate and respect towards one’s partner in communication, and conversely suspicion and even prejudice towards people of foreign cultures were all identified within the sample. The results of this study will allow for finding a more efficient approach towards resolving issues associated with enhancing intercultural competencies as part of the education process.
According to the ideas of sociologist R. Inglehart, the key factors in the formation of values are as follows: the level of economic development of one’s country of residence, and the dominant culture in those conditions where a person’s socialization occurred while they were growing up. Various countries form “cultural zones”, due to the historical connection between cultural, religious and ideological viewpoints. Shifts in values are strongly dependent on these views, while the effects of economic development fade into the background. Culture as a social institute allows us to differentiate people who represent varying ethnicities: it is engrained in one’s mentality and forces a certain way of thinking upon a person. Depending on cultural tradition, certain nations are religious, while others are not. Some nations consider divorce and abortions to be acceptable, while others condemn both. Vital values are the cultural imprint which determines people’s perception of the world. Using a comparative study of the influence which Russian and Uzbek cultures have on the vital values of students at the Northern (Arctic) Federal University, the author demonstrates the importance of traditions and practices typical to any given culture. After defining the differences between Russian and Uzbek cultures, which are expressed in language, religion, norms and traditions, further analysis is dedicated to examining key vital values. Attention is directed towards three groups of respondents: Uzbeks from Uzbekistan, Russians from Uzbekistan and Russians from Russia. Among the main vital values considered are “family, matrimony”, “education”, “love”, “friends”, “material well-being”, “religion”, “leisure time”, “health”, “patriotism”, “participation in political activities” and “working activity”. Cited is a ranked list in order of the importance of each value for all three groups. Conducted is an analysis of the content of said values, which allows for determining the similarities and differences between these groups, as well as how cultural components affect each one of them. This study resulted in revealing those values which are mainly dependent on cultural traditions, as well as those which have no effect on them.
The paper highlights the agenda of the modernization of the Russian health care and related problems. The author concentrates on the main directions of modernization, draws attention to its public interpretation, reveals mechanisms of social and cultural innovations employed in its implementation.
his article examines the specifics of the income inequality structure in modern Russian society, as well as the tendencies for its change during the country’s post-Soviet period of development. It is shown that, compared to other countries, the traditional economic indexes which measure income inequality (decile ratio, Gini coefficient) position the Russian Federation as a country with a high degree of inequality within the mass layers of the population, especially when compared to Europe, albeit the level of inequality is slightly lower compared to BRICS member states. When using equivalence scales, which adjust the people’s income after factoring in economies of scale in consumption, Russia’s inequality figures improve even more. Based on quintile income distribution and the concentration of income within the highest quintile, Russia also occupies an intermediate position, surpassing most European countries, though not BRICS member states. However, the highest quintile is characterized by a high degree of differentiation. When transitioning from the wealthiest 20% of the population to the 1–5%, Russia’s place among other countries of the world changes significantly: when it comes to the gap between the “upper crust” and the masses, Russia can be considered one of the leading countries in the world.
It has also been revealed that on the other end of the income distribution spectrum, at the population’s lower strata, there has been a noticeable “rise” of low-income groups in the last few years, with them somewhat approaching the middle. It was manifested in a more rapid increase in prosperity among the lower 40% of the population when compared to the population in general, as well as in a noticeable decrease in poverty levels during the 2000’s. Those citizens who were left in the lower strata of income distribution created a clearer image of poverty, which differs from the “average Russian” and emphasizes the importance of gauging not only low income level, but also an array of non-monetary inequality dimensions. Such a process of “homogenization” has lead to an increase in the size of groups with median and average income, with them being the most numerous groups in the current structure of Russian society. However, the increase in the number of people in said groups was not only caused by their shifts from low-income groups of the population, but also because of some members from the more prosperous strata experiencing an “averaging” of their level of income as well.
This article focuses on analyzing the public discourse concerning Moscow’s renovation program. Articles in Russian media outlets were used as an empirical base for this study. In the year 2017 the word “renovation” was mentioned in 9935 articles (according to “Integrum”). Articles in federal media outlets involved with “Integrum” were used as a basis for analysis. All the work was carried out during the period from March and until August 2017. The theoretical-methodological basis for this study is represented by the key concepts of T. Dridze’s dialogical model of social communication, i.e. “semantic scissors” and “quasi-communication”, the latter considering the reasons why “semantic scissors” came about in the first place. The analysis allowed for identifying the participants of the renovation process: politicians, residents of buildings, urban development organizations, construction companies. Based on analyzing media publications, it can be concluded that a contradiction of semantic “focal points” occurred between politicians and residents, while the “public agreement” was being reevaluated. This contradiction was resolved by politicians thanks to them making a few corrections to the informational campaign on the renovation program, as well as creating platforms which allowed for negotiating with residents.
The aim of the study presented in this article is to determine the characteristics of Russian mothers seeking care and education services for their children. This work examines the transformation of the traditional family function of raising, socializing and educating children. Currently we are witnessing an increase in the number of parents who resort to paid family services. Therefore it is important to understand the evolution of this market segment, what defines consumers’ choice of services and which types of services are the most popular, while also assessing costumer satisfaction with the services they acquired. Analysis is conducted based on a series of semi-structured interviews with Russian women who have children of preschool or school age. Respondents included both working (be it on hire or self-employed) and unemployed women. Research was conducted within Nizhniy Novgorod city limits.
While conducting the interviews, it was discovered that the basic selection of paid services which parents acquire includes services offered by children’s development centers, paid additional lessons at kindergarten or school, sports clubs, dance, art and foreign language lessons; children’s parties – renting dedicated facilities, hiring clowns, purchasing thematic programs and holiday treats; hiring babysitters (either on a regular basis or on demand), psychologists and parenting coaches. The authors reached the conclusion that modern urban families tend to split their responsibility (delegate authority) for raising, caring for and educating their children with those who have expertise in this field. Consumption of services by urban families starts earlier and continues for a longer period of time – in line with their children maturing – there’s not too much diversity, but consumption does depend on such important motives as the desire to satisfy today’s requirements for raising and developing children, parents freeing up spare time for their own needs, taking care of the child’s future.
The article discusses the features of political trust in post-Soviet Russia, one of the key factors in the political process, which plays an important role in ensuring political stability and sustainable development of society. Data from sociological research from the Institute of Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences is used as a basis. Analysis has shown that political trust is directly related to the implementation of the basic ideas and principles of democracy, essential for expansion and deepening of democratic processes, and for creation of a full-fledged civil society in modern Russia. The data reveals the existence of a direct link between the degree and prevalence of political trust and the results of market and democratic reforms of the 1990s and 2000s. At the same time, analysis reveals a huge gap in the level of trust in certain political leaders and the main government institutions, which persists despite the significant increase in the level of confidence in individual political entities noted in recent years. Such imbalance and incoherence is one of the reasons for the current contradictions of mass social and political consciousness. In view of these important circumstances, an attempt is made to raise and discuss the issue of optimum limits of confidence in political leaders, institutions of public authorities and political parties. The authors consider the impact of extreme levels of trust and distrust in politics. They trace the dependence of institutional trust from interpersonal trust in the political sphere. Considerable attention is paid to the analysis of the main reasons for people's distrust in political and social institutions, and socio-political organizations, results of which can highlight ways of neutralizing or overcoming problems revealed.
Due to large scale transformations in modern society, serious changes have occurred in the lifestyle of Russian people. Said changes have affected both the material and the moral value side of modern life. This article examines the recently established trend towards following expert opinion when making choices and decisions, both when it comes to the consumer and the professional aspect of the life of young and middle aged Russians. An increased amount of information and a fast pace of living have increased professional and personal requirements when it comes to employment or joining a social group – including a family – which leads to an increased demand for expert opinion and consulting services. Additionally, this article examines styles and means of personal development as new social practices in modern society. The understanding of development as being a natural and spontaneous process gives way to a new approach towards personality formation as being a process of orderly and systematic development, it being a result of intentional adherence to expert opinion and attending various training seminars aimed at personal and professional growth. This article gives a short analysis of websites which offer consulting services in various fields of personal and professional life, while also evaluating premises and means of creating motivation for resorting to paid expert services in the field of personal growth, as well as the effectiveness of the services being offered. The author comes to the conclusion that there is relatively high demand for those consulting services offered by personal growth coaches, bloggers who cover the subject, personal trainers at gyms, leading YouTube channels, and opinion leaders on social media. Despite there not being a way to verify the results of these services, they still remain quite popular. Personal mentorship, having a personal trainer, coach, mentor, therapist or spiritual father is regarded by a certain group of the population to be an essential part of their lives, and is even elevated to being something of prestige.