Economy is embedded in ongoing concrete social networks, and economic processes are increasingly international in character. Three interrelated processes are crucial for setting the frame of analysis for this book: globalisation, development of post-industrial societies, and transformation of European post-socialist countries. Within this framework the main issues will be as follows: economies in transition - reliable patterns, imitation, local adaptation, cultural embeddedness; multiplicity of markets - commodification of life, new markets in old societies; economic behavior - households, micro-enterprises, local and global influences; and, contemporary polities i.e. states, the European Union and global corporations. The stress will be placed on actors, relations and institutions as the driving forces of the above described processes. The authors of this collection analyze, based on their empirical material, very interesting socio-economic issues. These are: ethical consumption from the perspective of the moral economy and its connection to political institutions in Europe (and particularly in Hungary); the cultural context of consumption, both in the case of social networks in Bangladesh and of counterfeited goods on the Russian market; the new and old, individual and organizational actors in transition economies, for instance in Poland and Croatia; the new approach to corporations as global actors, stressing their social responsibility; the dynamics of managerial practices in the example of Russia; the influence of EU funds and policies on the Polish SMEs market; the cultural embeddedness of economic behavior, in the case of Poles working in the Scottish market and of entrepreneurs in Damascus; the retirement policy in the fast aging societies of Spain and Poland; and, the emergence of the new markets, like that of health services, in Russia and that of the property market in Eastern and Central Europe.
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 results of cross-cultural research of implicit theories of innovativeness among students and teachers, representatives of three ethnocultural groups: Russians, the people of the North Caucasus (Chechens and Ingushs) and Tuvinians (N=804) are presented. Intergroup differences in implicit theories of innovativeness are revealed: the ‘individual’ theories of innovativeness prevail among Russians and among the students, the ‘social’ theories of innovativeness are more expressed among respondents from the North Caucasus, Tuva and among the teachers. Using the structural equations modeling the universal model of values impact on implicit theories of innovativeness and attitudes towards innovations is constructed. Values of the Openness to changes and individual theories of innovativeness promote the positive relation to innovations. Results of research have shown that implicit theories of innovativeness differ in different cultures, and values make different impact on the attitudes towards innovations and innovative experience in different cultures.