The article explores the social identity conceptual framework of volunteers in the context of broadly understood social activism. The research question is how active volunteers in Russia to understand the differences between the volunteer and protest participation, as argued incompatibility of the two forms of social activity. Upon thematically selected fragments from 60 semi-formalized interviews with active volunteers from various voluntary organizations of Perm kray, collected in the spring and summer of 2011, a conceptual framework of contrasting protest participation against volunteer participation is reconstructed as a four-dimensional semantic space. Each dimension is shaped by two poles: (1) the good and the absence of good, (2) deed and words, (3) privacy and publicity, (4) loyalty and disloyalty.
In the first three dimensions there is guessed a simplified worldview of an actor who does not want to socialize in the complex world of mature civil action, living in an ethically irreproachable private space and avoiding public scenes, where one has to take into account the wills of the others and to seek compromises and common grounds for interactions. Intentional escape from socialization (or keeping oneself naive) allows realizing via volunteer participation a desire for positive freedom, ignoring all the routs that could lead to militant struggle against structural problems of society. Only the fourth dimension reflects a mature citizenship of volunteers ready to look at the world of colliding wills common ground and compromise, to remain loyal to the established order, preferring positive actions to negative ones.
The analysis revealed the lines of reasoning, and corresponding representations of the world the volunteers live in, and how they position themselves in it against political activists.
The article explores social selfidentification of volunteers in the context of the broadly understood social activities (activism). The focus of the study is to describe how active Russian volunteers understand the differences between volunteer and protest participation and how the incompatibility between two forms of social activity can be explained. Based on sixty semi-formalized interviews involving active volunteers from different volunteer associations of the Perm region, the author reconstructs a space depicting volunteer and protest activities. The space has four axes each with two poles: good / absence of good; words / deeds; privacy / publicity; loyalty / disloyalty. The first three axes refer to the simplified view life; the person does not want to socialize in the world of mature civil actions living in an unexceptionable private space and avoiding actions where the opinion of others must be taken into account and compromises are to be found. Such a naivety and avoidance of civic socialization allow volunteers achieving positive freedom not engaging in distracting protest actions against structural problems. Only the fourth axe reflects mature civil position of a volunteer who is ready to search for compromises and common interest in the world of confronting desires to stay loyal toward the existing order and to choose the positive action rather than the negative one. The analysis helped to determine forms of argumentation and different points of view as well as identities of volunteers and political activists.
Russia has been characterized by an early and universal marriage for a long time. After the Soviet Union collapse, the average ages for marriage have been rising, marital unions have becoming rarer while cohabitations have becoming common because of changes in norms and values that citizens of many other countries witnessed several decades before. Many scholars have observed this trend and tried to explain its reasons through the perspective of the Second Demographic Transition and Globalization theories. Current research is another attempt to understand these changes. The aim of this research was to define the nature of cohabitations in Russia, and find out the factors of entrance to non-marital unions. For these purposes, we used Event History Analysis and Sequence Analysis. The key requirement in using these methods is applying longitudinal or retrospective collections of data that have become the gold standard of current quantitative social science. Accordingly, the three-wave panel data of the Russian part of “Generations and Gender Survey” and the retrospective data of “Person, Family, Society” were chosen for this study. The opposite trends of matrimonial behavior were revealed: the younger Russian people are, the higher their probabilities to start the first cohabitation and the lower their risks to have the first marriage. Cohabitation is not a complete alternative to marriage in our country yet, but the proportion of Russians, for whom cohabitation does not grow into a marriage, rises, and young people start to consider a non-marital union appropriate for childbearing. It is a sign that cohabitation is close to become an independent social institution for young non-religious people who get secondary vocational education in big cities.
The paper is based on the results of an empirical study of media communities (public pages and online groups) of Moscow districts. The study aims at describing the community moderators’ practices as well as formal and substantive features of the online publications. Nonstandardized (indepth) interviews and content analysis method are used in the study. One of specific features of Moscow districts’ public pages and communities is that they were created due to the increased demand of a group of city inhabitants for the implementation of social projects and the principle of their «right to the city» and also in the absence of official online activities of the local administration resulted from a low level of adaptability of municipalities to innovative communication practices. In this situation, the representatives of authorities prefer to stay incognito in the established communities; they use intermediaries specializing in modern communication technologies and pretending to be media activists and consider this communicative strategy to be more effective so far. The authors describe the main tasks the online communities’ moderators have to tackle as well as topics and other features of the published content.
The present paper opera tionalizes one of the oldest concepts in the sociological literature about social stratification. Although the concept of life chances is well studied, its opera tionalization for purposes of stratification studies is not a trivial task, which needs a broader and deeper discussion. To fill this gap in the literature, the author con siders life chances in terms of Weber’s idea of positive and negative privileges. The author proposes a bipolar ‘map’ of life chances in key areas of life such as economic conditions, work situation, human capital accumulation, and consumption and leisure activities.
During the last decades, people from the developed countries have been postponing the occurring of the important events marking a transition to adulthood. The age of completion of education and the age of entry into the labor market are important social and economic indicators of such transition. There are some evidences of appearance of the same process in Russia (Dmitriev, Maleva, and Sinyavska, 2009). Under the influence of economic, demographic, political and social changes of the 1990th, life courses of the Russians became more opened and flexible. The integrated studying of this phenomenon is impossible without application of the modern concepts and methods of analysis. The present article aims to introduce the life course concept and its main terms. There are also some empirical examples of the usage of the cutting-edge methods of the life course analysis made on the data of quantitative sociological studies.
Mixed methods research is ‘trendy’ in the Western sociological community. It became popular in recent years; however, this approach has not been conceptualized in the Russian sociological school. The paper is devoted to the activity of the «Mixed Methods» Research and Study Group (RSG) that worked at the National Research Institute Higher School of Economics in 2014—2016 and acted in fact as the first interdisciplinary platform to discuss the opportunities and perspectives of this sociological method. The author touches upon the evolution of the mixed methods strategy, the use of proper terminology, pays attention to ethical issues that the social scientists using this tool face and describes the basic results of the work of the RSG.
The paper describes a recent study aimed at investigating the most efficient data imputation algorithm for several methods of data analysis such as regression modeling, factor analysis, descriptive statistics, and correlation analysis. The lack of recommendations when choosing the data imputation algorithm poses the problem of choice ambiguity in each situation.
The authors consider that the data imputation algorithm should be selected according to the method employed after data improvement. In other words, it is believed that for each data analysis method the efficiency of the same data imputation algorithm is different. The statistical experiment was used to evaluate the efficiency of several data imputation algorithms for each method of data analysis.
The core idea of statistical experiment was to compare the results of each method application used in the etalon data set (without missing values) with the results obtained on a large number of artificial subsamples generated from the original data set where missing values were filed with comparable data imputation algorithms.
Generation of subsamples was carried out via the bootstrap procedure, which allowed to undertake
statistical evaluation and to build confidence intervals for each parameter before and after the data imputation.
Through this experiment the authors managed to evaluate the efficiency of such data imputation algorithms as imputation with the average trend measures, the EM algorithm, the imputation via regression model and Hot Deck algorithm for the mentioned methods of data analysis.
A sea change in the differentiation of moral views happened in the mid-1990s while the differences between the measurements in 1999 and 2008 are far less dramatic. The differentiation of judgements concerning homosexuality and euthanasia proceded consequentially in 1990-2008. Most equally distributed and in Russia and Belarus are the judgements about the abortion and divorce. Only the views on suicide have not changed since 1990. The changes in moral views among the population of Eastern Europe resulted in the individualization of the views on the traditionally disapproved social phenomena. However, substantial differences remain, even between the culturally close countries. A more detailed treatment of this process requires a comparison of the moral values in private life and social life (e.g. tax paying, briberies) and cohort analysis of moral views in Eastern Europe.
The paper considers different approaches to the factor analysis (FA) for ordinal data. In some studies it is necessary to find a latent variable behind the observed indicators measured on an ordinal scale. Classical factor analysis cannot be applied to those indicators as it is built on the Pearson correlation coefficient which is only applicable to interval variables. So the researcher faces a choice: to treat the ordinal variables as the interval ones, to dichotomize ordinal variables or to use special techniques for ordinal indicators such as replacing the correlation matrix or using Categorical principal components analysis (CatPCA). The study is based on a theoretical comparison of assumptions that underpin the algorithms of each applications and a statistical experiment and provides an answer to the question which of the above-mentioned factorization approaches is optimal for indentifying latent variables measured by ordinal indicators on a 3-point, 5-point or 10-point scale.
Abstract. Various Russian monitoring studies record low level of public trust in noncommercial organizations. Simultaneously, how those organizations whose operations directly depend on donations tackle the problem of public trust is lacking attention. This paper presents the results of an empirical study to examine the activities of charitable foundations which depend upon public donations. Through a series of expert interviews three main fundraising strategies were defined. The author highlights that low institutional trust may be compensated by the personal trust in a leader and/or an employee of the foundation as well as by high levels of transparency and raising awareness about foundation`s activities. Each strategy is different in terms of tools to collect donations,levels of interaction with the donors and a basis of trust.