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Research career development in Russia: the role of international mobility

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  • Institute for the History of Science and Technology

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The chapter presents the Russian institutional context of the academic career, analyses how the scientific space is structured in Russia. It studies the role played by international scientific mobility in the intellectual biography of Russian scholars and their academic careers. The findings of an empirical study of Russian scientists' international mobility and the Chinese experience of science policy encouraging mobility are provided. The conclusion highlights that mobility is of great importance in boosting academic careers and can solve some problems of science organization. The 'international mobility' of scholars proves to be a significant new instrument for reproducing the scientific elite.
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Research career development in Russia:
the role of international mobility1
Nadia Asheulova and Svetlana Dushina
e chapter presents the Russian institutional context of the academic career,
analyses how the scienti c space is structured in Russia. It studies the role
played by international scienti c mobility in the intellectual biography of Rus-
sian scholars and their academic careers.  e ndings of an empirical study
of Russian scientists’ international mobility and the Chinese experience of sci-
ence policy encouraging mobility are provided.  e conclusion highlights that
mobility is of great importance in boosting academic careers and can solve
some problems of science organization.  e ‘international mobility’ of scholars
proves to be a signi cant new instrument for reproducing the scienti c elite.
1. Introduction
e issue of an academic career goes hand in hand with constructing
ones life: which ‘points in the corridor’ must one pass in order to achieve
a certain status in the scienti c community? Which targets must be set in
ones professional activity and where should ones e orts be directed to later
gain symbolic/economic capital?
An academic career includes practices produced by social agents as well as
institutionally determined activities, caused by subjective choices and personal
aspirations, at the same time structured by the layout of one’s academic  eld(s).
A scientist’s professional progress has its own speci c features in national aca-
demic markets, which changes together with broader systemic transformations.
e free movement of scholars is an essential feature for ones profes-
sional career. Working in advanced, well-equipped research centres is a com-
mon desire of each person choosing an academic path. International mobil-
ity has always played a prominent role in Russian science and in shaping
of the scienti c elite. Since the fall of the ‘iron curtain, Russian scholars
in circumstances of social transformation had an option which they did
1 e paper is prepared within the framework of the Programme of Fundamental Research of the
Presidium of RAS ‘Traditions and innovations in the history and culture’ and the project ‘International
mobility of Russian scientists’ (on the basis of science-studies researches).
Nadia Asheulova, Svetlana Dushina
Research career development in Russia
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
172
not have before: the freedom to establish international professional contacts
and to travel abroad. In this connection, it is important to understand the
role played by international scienti c mobility in the intellectual biography
of Russian scholars and their academic careers.
is chapter presents the Russian institutional context of an academic
career, analyses how scienti c space is structured in Russia. It studies the mo-
tives of researchers for the international mobility and e ects that have on
future career progression.
We use the  ndings of an empirical study of Russian scientists’ interna-
tional mobility and also provide data on the Chinese experience of science
policy, which encourages mobility. Our conclusions highlight that mobility
plays a very important role in boosting individual academic careers and that
it can help to solve some of the problems of scienti c institutional organiza-
tion. A study of the ‘international mobility’ of scholars has proven to be a sig-
ni cant new theme in understanding the scienti c elite that various nations
are producing. In this chapter, we focus on the post-Soviet Russian example,
but our conclusions reach beyond the limits of any single country.
2. Academic careers in Russia: institutional context
To explore the organization of academic science, Pierre Bourdieus concept
of the ‘ eld’; will be used as a relatively autonomous space where knowledge is
produced with speci c rules, but which is indirectly connected with society. It is
not that science is isolated from external impositions and prescriptions, but that
external constraints are translated into a scienti c language that is integrated into
developmental logic. Scientists are connected to society through many links: or-
ders from various organizations, including government, set the priority directions
de ned by ‘expert’ circles. Such outside in uence are translated into the language
and codes of scienti c knowledge, redistributed and transformed into e ective
research and development. Bourdieu calls this ability of a  eld to resist refraction:
the more autonomous the  eld, the higher the level of refraction. Heteronomous
elds are expressed as being not very competent — from the point of view of a  eld’s
speci c norms — people are able to interfere in it acting on behalf of heteronomous
principles instead of being immediately disquali ed (Bourdieu, 1997).
e eld structure is formed by distributing academic capital between
various agents (individuals, institutions). Bourdieu clari es that academ-
ic capital is a speci c type of symbolic capital, and that it is a recognition
(or trust) which is granted by a group of peer-rivals within the academic  eld.
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
173
Authority (the recognition of merits) in the scienti c community depends
on the ‘size’ of symbolic capital and its owners take part in de ning the ‘rules
of the game’; they become experts in their disciplines, forming judgments of
validity regarding what should be published in prestigious journals and what
should not, about who can be recruited for academic positions and whose
applications should be turned down. In other words, scholar agents establish
an appropriate  eld structure in proportion to ‘weight’ that depends on other
agents. At the same time, each ‘academic capitalist’ is subjected to structural
pressures whose strength shows an inverse proportion to the relative ‘weight
of academic capital, which denotes the status of scholarship that has conside-
rable symbolic capital and which can be converted into economic capital.
Academic careers are thus advanced by the aspirations of social agents
(individual scholars and collectives) to occupy a strategic position in scien-
ti c space that is made up of academic merits: advantageous topics, research
grants, academic degrees, publications in journals with high impact factors,
participation in conferences and seminars, etc.
e more autonomous the academic  eld and transparent the rules (set
and shared by the scienti c community) of the game are, the clearer it is how
one should build a career and where one’s talent should be invested in order
to achieve a certain recognition. It is evident that there are no perfect aca-
demic systems, though there are systems where academic merits are closely
connected with academic progress, with the holding of an in uential disposi-
tion in the academic  eld. In the process, these merits are determined,  rst
of all, by relevant circumstances, but there are systems where these links are
weak, and the rules of the game are vague. It is from this perspective that we
will look at the Russian case of an academic career.
e organization of Russian science is connected to the Soviet way
of doing science. Under the circumstances of party-and-government control
of science, the issue of an academic  eld’s autonomy should be addressed
di erentially: it exists in some disciplines, for example, in physics and mathe-
matics. But in the social sciences and humanities, the principle functioning
of autonomous thought was slight.
A postgraduate course was the best way of training young talent for fu-
ture scienti c work. Young people studied at the postgraduate school of the
USSR Academy of Sciences, worked in the same sector during their stud-
ies, obtained a PhD and moved up the scienti c career ladder.  e promo-
tion mechanism involved the status of leading specialists and the heads of
research units (section, laboratory or department). A erwards, he or she be-
came famous, received distinctions and was elected as a member of the USSR
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
174
Academy of Sciences as a corresponding member or academician, which was
accompanied by high scienti c status.  at was the way the Academy system
of generating continuity worked.
A scientist’s career presumed a passage through points in the ‘academic
corridor’ as a leading specialist, head of an organizational unit (sector or labo-
ratory, up to an institution’s directorship) and/or membership in the USSR
Academy of Sciences. Not infrequently, the scholar’s professional life began
and ended inside a single academic/research establishment; a long, uninter-
rupted service at one and the same institution was an advantage and conside-
red a great academic merit. Working in elite institutes that obtained orders
from the military-industrial complex was especially prestigious, because they
concentrated signi cant resources in conducting R&D and they provided
good opportunities for achieving one’s personal goals.
One structural feature of Soviet science organization should thus be
highlighted: the low occupational mobility that it promoted due to its closed
character.  is drawback has remained in post-Soviet Russian science.
e transformations of the macro-system have ultimately had an e ect
on the academic  eld, whatever degree of autonomy scientists possessed.
As Bauman put it, the period of ‘interregnum’ came, a situation of insecu-
rity and uncertainty, when the old rights were no longer binding and when
there were no new ones (Bauman, 2011). Russian science was subjected to
pressure from political and economic circumstances and academic capi-
talists, enticed by economic interest and material advantage, lowering the
refraction of the academic space. A devaluation of the academic symbols
that once constituted academic capital took place; an institutional erosion
began which had di erent manifestations: from election to the Presidium
of the Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS) to simple turnkey defences of
scholar dissertations (one form of corruption is ‘giving out’ scienti c quali ca-
tions) (Yurevich, 2010: 161).
Now, we will outline the key positions that characterize the acade mic
eld today and its social agents. Higher education in Russia nowadays is
characterized by mass enrolment.  e number of postgraduates grows each
year, but approximately one-third of all those who have completed the course
are able to defend a dissertation (Table 1).
Today’s postgraduates regard obtaining a degree as an ‘entrance ticket’ to
the academic  eld; a postgraduate course is a ‘point in the corridor’ that one
must pass. Each year, however, we see the number of researchers dropping.
is is determined by a number of factors: inadequate funding for research
and academic institutions by the government, a mass exodus of scientists
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
175
abroad in the 1990s, or movement to other types of work due to low pay and
the lower social prestige of academic professions.  is suggests that Russia’s
science and education has become uncompetitive compared with business
and  nance. It is as professor Rafael Yusupov (2012: 133) said in an interview:
ese days it is more prestigious for a young man [sic] to say ‘I work for Google’
than ‘I work for the RAS’.
Another feature of Russias national academic market can be singled out,
namely the overall ageing of scientists in charge of science and education, es-
pecially in the RAS institutions, which hinders the in ow of young specialists
into science (Figure 1).
Figure 1.  e dynamics of sta in institutions of the St. Petersburg Centre
of the Russian Academy of Sciences (by year and age group)
From 2000 (7 %) to 2011 (19 %), the number of researchers in academic
institutions over 70 years old almost tripled.  is was due to a decrease of
scientists aged 40 to 49 years. At the same time, the proportion of young
scientist-managers in St. Petersburg has been negligible (Figure 2).
Table 1. Postgraduate courses (person) in Russia
Year 2007 2008 2009 2010
Enrolment (total) 147719 147674 154470 157437
Entrants 51633 49638 55540 54558
Graduates 35747 33670 34235 33763
Graduates with defended
dissertations
10940 8831 10740 9611
Source: Table 1.2. Postgraduate and doctoral courses // Science, Technology and Innovation in Russia: brief data
book, 2007–2011 (2012) Ed. Mindeli, L., Moscow: ISS RAS.
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
176
Figure 2. Proportion of laboratory leaders in research institutions
of the St. Petersburg Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences by age
It is possible that this is not peculiar to Russia: We are told that younger
scientists are being denied research opportunities, as an increasing number of
prestigious research grants are going to older scientists.  is trend is alleged to
foreshadow doom for the future of science. Today’s young scientists will be retir-
ing before their careers have really begun (Arbesman & Wray, 2013: 282).
Administrative positions in Russian academic  elds are powerful enough:
the administration controls material resources, makes decisions regarding em-
ployment and prolonging contracts (legally, there is no permanent salary; all
employees, including those on the sta , are subjected each year to competi-
tion).  e administrations work, however, is not transparent; the ‘rules of the
game’ are vague for agents in the  eld and it is not always clear which criteria
are decisive in the recruitment process, in assigning bonuses, or in decisions as
to whether to pay money to sta for business trips or not.  e heteronomous
(in relation to the academic  eld) factors are not rejected as irrelevant, but can
sometimes become priorities, which indicates a ‘low moral density’ in the sci-
enti c community as well as weak autonomy in the  eld.
ese facts highlight another issue of a career progress in Russia: equa-
lity/inequality of opportunities.  e term ‘equality’ has many meanings, as
Alfred Schütz noted, and to avoid a semantic confusion, he links it to the con-
cept of ‘relevance’. All objects (facts, features, persons) assigned to one and
the same type or  eld of relevance are called ‘homogenous’ (Schütz, 1957).
e parts related to various areas he called ‘heterogeneous’. Equality and in-
equality in this sense are correlated with di erent degrees of perfection and
achievements that belong to one relevant area.  e secondary and principal
merits accumulate symbolic capital (earning an academic degree, working
on a research project, the status of a Skolkovo resident, an administrative job,
taking part in a trainee programme abroad, etc.) and it is agents in the  eld
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
177
who make the decisions.  ey also structure the ranking of achievements and
advantages. To put it di erently, the status of homo academicus must be de-
termined only on the basis of academic merits related to homogeneity in the
academic  eld. Schütz points out in this connection that it is only within each
of these relevance zones that the degrees of merits and excellence can be iden-
ti ed; what can be correlated in the system of one area cannot be correlated in
other systems, such that applying criteria unrelated to one and the same zone
of relevance leads to logical and axiological (moral) contradictions.
Building up scienti c space on phenomena such as friend/foe, nepo-
tism, conspiracy, and pursuit of one’s own  nancial interests is so common
in administrative circles. Being heterogeneous to the academic  eld, all these
facts do not add to the attractiveness of Russias academic market.
It now happens that young talented researchers are unable to  nd jobs
at Russian institutions. Academician Georgy Georgiev gives an example of
this at the Institute of Gene Biology of the RAS, where all departments con-
duct research at the world level and are more or less supported with grants.
Upon receiving their PhD, young, gi ed scientists seek to go on working at
the institute and to not leave the country. However, there are not enough
vacancies for young people (Georgiev, 2009). According to the statistical data
of the Department of Post-graduate Courses of the St. Petersburg Scienti c
Centre, only 63.2 % of PhD students recruited at research institutes from the
St. Petersburg Scienti c Centre in 2010, such that 36.8 % of students  nishing
post-graduate studies are forced to seek employment elsewhere (Figure 3).
Figure 3. Recruitment of graduates of research institutes at the St. Petersburg
Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences (2000–10) (in numbers)
Source: Statistical data of Department of Post-graduate Courses of St. Petersburg
Scienti c Centre, Russian Academy of Sciences, 2010 (Fokichev Yu.)
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
178
Particular features of the Russian academic market, with its opaque
rules of the game and the scienti c community’s general lack of consensus
on signi cant academic symbols (academic degree, discoveries, grants, ad-
ministrative position, recognition abroad), hamper the strategic planning of
professional biographies, which are ‘modelled’ on academic life and form a
rather situational approach (Frantsouz, 2004: 44). Choosing a  eld and place
for ones professional self-realization depends on a combination of incen-
tives: cognitive, social and economic. When considering social and economic
determinants, a young specialist has few arguments in favour of choosing
a teacher’s or researchers job in Russia.  e prestige of teaching or doing
research in Russian higher education is not high, and the pay is much lower
than the average in the domestic economy.
3. Mobility of Russian scholars in the past
Russia is a country whose history has seen all types of international
mobility: free movement of scientists in the 18th to 19th centuries, forced
emigration in the 1920s, limited mobility in Soviet times, mass emigration in
the post-Soviet years, and a return to brain circulation and the use of interna-
tional mobility as a mechanism of integrating Russia into the global scienti c
community in the 21st century.
Russian science emerged and has bene ted greatly from the interna-
tional movement of scientists.  e RAS was established thanks to a famous
fact: a number of talented young scientists came to Russia, resulting in the
creation of the Academy and the foundation of science itself. Both emigra-
tion and immigration have been common in the world scienti c community.
e European Enlightenment saw a sort of competition between monarchs
to attract famous scientists. Catherine II managed to attract Leonhard Euler
to St. Petersburg, one of the leading mathematicians of the time, a member of
the Berlin Academy of Sciences, and under the sponsorship of Friedrich the
Great (Kolchinsky, 2003).
It is also well-known that during the 18th and early 19th centuries,
many German scientists came to Russia and that a lot of them became
professors and adjuncts in the St. Petersburg Academy of Sciences and
in Russian universities. To be educated in a leading European — espe-
cially German — university or higher technical school meant a lot for the
successful professional career of Russian scientists in the 19th and early
20th centuries.
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
179
In the Soviet era, and in contrast to the Russian Empire, international sci-
enti c exchanges were of course limited. But even a cursory ‘retrospective view’
does not provide a uniform picture. Emigration and the tragic expulsion of
Russian intellectuals abroad in 1922 led to the impoverishment of culture and
the various  elds of the humanities. However, at this time the new government
created a new scienti c infrastructure. In 1918, there were only 22 research
institutes but by 1933 their number had increased to 658.  us, in September
1918, the State Institute of X-ray and Radiology (GRRI), with the Physical-
Technical Department, was organized, headed by Abram Io e, which became
an independent institute in 1921. e Io e Physical and Technical Institute is
one of Russias largest institutions for research in physics and technology, with a
wide variety of operating projects. So, it is quite natural that the Institute bears
the name of this outstanding scholar and science organizer. Until 1950, Io e
remained the Director of the Institute — the ‘cradle of Soviet physics’.
In 1918, the State Optical Institute was founded on initiative of Dmitry
Rozhdestvensky. Between 1917 and 1922, the Radium Institute was created at
the initiative and under the direction of the academician Vladimir Vernads-
kiy, which consolidated all of the radiological institutions available in Petro-
grad at that time. New research institutions and laboratories were formed in
Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod and Tver, and we can therefore suggest that dur-
ing this period a network of research institutions was built.
In the 1920s, albeit brie y, Soviet scientists established contacts with the
international scienti c community. A er the revolution (i.e., the Bolshevik
seizure of power), the academic community repeatedly appealed to the new
government, demanding the restoral of international contacts with Russian sci-
entists.  us, in July 1918, the Permanent Secretary of the Academy of Scien ces
Sergey Oldenburg, wrote a letter to the People's Commissariat for Education2,
indicating the need to develop Russian scienti c institutes abroad, especially in
Paris. He observed: e Academy stands with the same point of view about the
need and vital importance of international relations between scienti c people in
institutions of all countries (Ostrovitjanov, 1968: 369–370).
On November 22, 1920, the Academy of Sciences addressed the Coun-
cil of People's Commissars3 and demanded the restoration of scienti c
2 People's Commissariat for Education (commonly called Narkompros) was the Soviet agency
founded by the State Commission on Education and charged with the administration of public education
and most of other issues related to culture.
3 e Council of People's Commissars of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (RSFSR)
was government cabinet of the RSFSR from 1917 through 1946, when it was renamed the Council of
Ministers of the RSFSR
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
180
communication between Russia and the West through systematic and not
random, as currently, trips by Russian scientists abroad. Scientists also de-
manded the restoration of the delivery of scienti c books and materials from
abroad and from Russia abroad. ey wrote: Without these measures, the work
of Russian scientists is to a large extent meaningless because, when working
on their research, they do not know what has already been done abroad.  ey
cannot see the connection between the research results of di erent scholars. But
due to the internationality of science, this connection is crucial. Additionally,
Russian scientists are unable to receive serious and thorough criticism of their
work from foreign experts (Ostrovitjanov, 1968: 376).
In August 1919, the Scienti c and Technical Department of the Supreme
Soviet of the National Economy was created, which was the key state institu-
tion for managing the economy of the RSFSR and later of the Soviet Union.
ere were two institutions with this name, at di erent times (1917–1932 and
1963–1965), which were entrusted to promote contact between Russian and
foreign scienti c and technical institutions. In 1921, on the orders of Lenin,
a Committee for Foreign Literature was organized.  e state scienti c policy
of the Soviet government in the  eld of international scienti c cooperation
was highly centralized and contacts were limited. Nominations for foreign
scienti c visits were essentially determined by the government, which sanc-
tioned trips and the visits of foreign scientists in the RSFSR.
In a memorandum to the State Institute of X-ray and Radiology in the
research department of the People's Commissariat, justi cation for the trip
abroad by Mikhail Nemenov and Abram Io e was given. Of particular in-
terest is the following argument: Further work without direct communication
with Western Europe, without  rst obtaining the latest instruments and appa-
ratus, and without foreign literature and magazines is almost unthinkable (Os-
trovitjanov, 1968: 372).  is note completed a request to equip scientists with
a su cient amount of foreign currency for the purchase of instruments, appara-
tus, reagents and literature.  e Scienti c and Technical Department o ered
to send abroad two persons from each branch of science and technology (one
with a bias towards pure science and the other for practical applications).  e
priority missions were invited to take place depending on their importance
to the national economy at the time or another branch of scienti c discipline.
Of course, mass mobility was impossible, but in these circumstances the state
supported outstanding scientists and sometimes good managers for foreign
trips, which saw positive results for both Russian science and career scien-
tists. Mikhail Nemenov, in a letter from Berlin on October 15, 1920, reported:
It is particularly interesting to note that the Germans now give us an example,
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
181
the fact that the government provides the universities very little money. Many
provincial universities must sell their radium and platinum to maintain their
existence (Ostrovitjanov, 1968: 375).
Io e recalls receiving orders from Lenin in 1921. Along with Rozhdest-
vensky and Krylov, he went abroad to re-establish scienti c communication.
Of great assistance in this case was Ehrenfest, who at the time headed the de-
partment of theoretical physics at the University of Leiden and had extensive
contacts among scientists, especially physicists (he invited to his seminars
Einstein, Bohr, Pauli and Dirac).  anks to Ehrenfest, many Soviet scientists
worked in the Leiden laboratories: Obreimov, Shubnikov,and others(Io e,
1962: 42). In 1926, Shubnikov was sent to the Leiden laboratory — on the
recommendation of Io e — to Wander Johannes de Haas. On his return
from Leiden in 1931, Shubnikov headed a cryogenics lab in the newly cre-
ated Physico-Technical Institute in Kharkov. As early as 1931, liquid hydro-
gen was created in that cryogenics lab; in 1933, liquid helium. In 1934, the
Physico-Technical Institute created another cryogenic centre, which was the
fourth largest in the world.  is success was made possible thanks to the help
of managers from Leidens laboratory — de Haas and Willem Keesom — who
transferred to Kharkov the necessary materials and equipment (which did
not exist in the USSR).
In 1926 and 1927, Io e was invited by the Department of Physics at
Mas sachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston, to visit the US. Io e worked
as a consultant in the electro-technical laboratory in Boston and received a
lot of money. In the summer of 1928, he arranged for 20 young Soviet physi-
cists to visit leading foreign research centres (Io e, 1962: 42). On the purpose
of his trip to the US Io e (1962: 42) wrote: [I was] familiarizing [myself] with
scienti c and technical laboratories and ways of introducing scienti c and tech-
nical results. Famous physicists Ehrenfest, Langevin and Dirac had repeatedly
visited the USSR, meeting with Soviet scientists and working in the physics
centres of Moscow, Leningrad and Kharkov.
International mobility in a closed state with strong centralization  lled
with outstanding scientists, unfortunately, could not be scaled-up, and trips
abroad were rare. Oldenburg repeatedly raised the issue with the new gover-
nment regarding the inadequacy of this situation. In particular, on June 17,
1929, he wrote from France: in our absence from a large part of scienti c
books, overseas trips for Soviet scientists were the only way to keep up with sci-
ence. Trips abroad should be given exclusive attention, because without them
we will fall behind everyone.  erefore, what is needed is to send our graduates
to universities abroad to get acquainted with the local execution of work and
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
182
to develop quali ed specialists. We could also invite several young foreigners to
work with our outstanding specialists (Bolshakov, 1974: 384).
At the same time, since the mid–1930s, foreign cooperation was li mited.
During the post-war years, international contacts were extremely limited.
However, it should be born in mind that Soviet science cooperated with Ger-
man experts who were exported from Germany in 1945. During Khrushchev's
thaw, if someone was to be sent on a scienti c mission to a capitalist country,
it was usually the scientists themselves, or the heads of academic groups or
institutions. is exchange of information was much more intense (intelligence
work), yet did not coincide with the higher mobility of scienti c personnel.
In the USSR, scienti c and educational cooperation was associated primarily
with other socialist countries (East Germany, Poland, Czechoslovakia, etc.), in
large universities, with students from ‘friendly countries’, such that for a few
decades international mobility in Soviet science did not play a signi cant role.
4. Empirical study of Russian scientists’ international mobility
is chapter presents some results from an empirical sociological study
on the international mobility of Russian scientists funded by the programme
of Fundamental Research of the RAS Presidium ‘Traditions and innovations
in culture and history’.  e research was conducted by the Centre for Sociolo-
gy of Science and Science Studies, St. Petersburg Branch of the S.I. Vavilov
Institute for the History of Science and Technology, RAS in 2011–2013.
4.1. Research methodology and respondents pro le
e main research topics of our study are listed below:
General working conditions of researchers;
Motives for international mobility;
Major barriers in scienti c  elds;
International mobility rates, destinations, periods and frequency;
Forms and e ects of international mobility;
Main e ects of international mobility.
In order to obtain reliable data about the problems considered above
as a base for further analyses, as well as conclusions and recommendations
for future actions, we conducted a sociological survey. A questionnaire was
prepared, directed to a speci ed target group — respondents who had expe-
rienced international mobility, namely: for study or an internship; for a joint
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
183
project/programme or an international conference, seminar or di erent sci-
enti c event; for a postdoctoral research programme; to deliver a lecture or
engage in scienti c work with an international organization.
In the study, both quantitative and qualitative approaches were used.  e
inquiry was based on purposive sampling and consisted of various open-ended
questions, focused on selecting information-rich cases to yield insights and an
in-depth understanding of the selected problems, rather than collecting empiri-
cal generalizations. With a purposive sample, the opinions of the target respon-
dents could be gathered and examined.  e purposive sampling technique was
used such that the questionnaires were directed only to relevant respondents.
e questionnaires were disseminated among researchers in paper form or else
electronically. In total, 133 researchers responded to our survey, out of which
only 53 respondents had experienced international mobility.
e statistical results show that the majority of the survey respondents
(out of 53) were 22 to 30 years old (73 %), 20 % were within the range of
31–35 years old, while the remaining 7 % were above 35 years old. Regarding
gender, 63 % were male and 37 % were female.  e study indicates that most
of the respondents (70 %) have a PhD degree.  e share of PhD students tak-
ing part in the survey was 30 %. Regarding their scienti c  eld, about 38 %
of the respondents were in the area of the natural sciences, followed by re-
searchers in the  eld ‘engineering and technology’ (23 %). Other  elds (social
sciences, medical sciences, humanities, etc.) were represented by 39 % of all
respondents. About 60 % of the respondents were married and 40 % were not
married, and 49 % had children.
e primary sociological data gathered were processed statistically ob-
taining percentage distributions, ratings, etc. For the purposes of the analy-
ses, some additional research methods were applied: generalizing, classifying,
data comparison, etc.
4.2. Results
Based on the characteristics of the institutional academic environment,
we formulated the hypothesis:
Young researchers intend to work abroad;
e main motive for mobility is improving their standard of living;
International mobility contributes to professional development (access
to new equipment, development of new methods, etc.);
International mobility promotes scienti c visibility (growth in publica-
tion activity: joint international publications, citation index increases).
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
184
Our hypotheses rest on the classical push/pull theory. Typically, there is
a combination of ‘pull’ and ‘push’ factors regarding the international mobility
of researchers (Ciumaasu, 2010).
Considering the importance of the research environment for Russian
researchers, several questions were posed concerning this  eld in the ques-
tionnaire.  us, the respondents were asked to assess the problems of na-
tional science (Table 2).
Table 2. Which problems of domestic science you consider the most important?
Various Answers Respondents %
Level of pay for scienti c work 50 94.3
Level of material-technical conditions for scienti c activities 43 81.1
Quality of scienti c research and development 41 77.4
Lack of use-value for domestic consumers 37 69.8
Prestige of scienti c career in Russia 36 67.9
Professional level of scienti c colleagues 30 56.6
Underdeveloped system of Russian research funding 27 50.9
Emigration out ow of scienti c colleagues 26 49.1
Low publication activity of Russian scientists abroad 24 45.3
Insigni cant participation of Russian scholars in international
projects, conferences, etc. 21 39.6
Age structure of scienti c personnel 20 37.7
Legislation in the  eld of intellectual property rights 15 28.3
Weak participation of PhDs and Doctors in training scienti c
personnel 11 20.8
Other 5 9.4
Total >100 %, because it was possible to answer several categories
In summary, Russian researchers are not satis ed with the conditions of
funding and/or salaries (94.3 % of respondents). We found out about the low
level of material-technical conditions for scienti c activities (81.1 % of respon-
dents). At the same time, 69.8 % of respondents noted that Russian business is
not active in supporting science, that the quality of R&D is low (77.4 %), and
that the prestige of scienti c careers has declined in Russia (67.9 %).
According to the poll’s data, Russian youth goes into scienti c elds, rst
of all, in response to their cognitive needs, to have intimate knowledge. At the
same time, academic professions in Russia do not provide the assurance of
nancial stability.  e study identi ed factors that are attractive for the aca-
demic profession: a creative team environment, an ability for self-realization,
a convenient working schedule (Table 3).
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
185
Table 3. What does the most hold you in the position
at the scienti c institute?
Various answers Respondents %
Possibility of self-realization 28 58.3
Interesting creative environment 28 58.3
Convenient schedule 27 56.3
Prospect of creating a private research group 15 31.3
Possibility of career growth 14 29.2
Possibility of additional earnings 10 20.8
Di culties in nding other jobs 9 18.8
Con dence that soon the situation in science
(in my institute) will change for the better 8 16.7
Work prestige 7 14.6
Reluctance to change 6 12.5
Decent salary 5 10.4
Other 5 10.4
Trips abroad/internships 3 6.3
Nothing maintains me 1 2.1
e most distracting factors: the impossibility of leasing and purchasing
a  at/house and searching for research funding (Figure 4).
Figure 4. What is it that most distracts you from scienti c work?
Total >100 %, because it was possible to answer several categories
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
186
It is interesting to clarify the motives of Russian scholars for living
abroad (Table 4).
Table 4. What preferences do you have for the country of your scienti c career?
Various answers Respondents %
Work with contemporary (modern) equipment 18 72
Number of funds and grants that can be obtained 11 44
Transparency of academic career 10 40
Possibility of publishing in highly-ranked journals 10 40
Possibilities for career development 9 36
Possibilities of periodic changes in scienti c organization,
centre and quality of work circumstances
728
Academic freedom 4 16
Diversity of professional contacts 4 16
High standard and quality of life 4 16
Entry into world-class research 4 16
Possibilities for business and commerce 3 12
Other 1 4
Total >100 %, because it was possible to answer several categories
An interesting  nding, con rming the suggestion made in the analytical
framework section, is that a small number of the respondents paid signi cant
attention to the higher standard of living abroad. Business or commerciali-
zation opportunities were not among the strongest motives for the interna-
tional mobility of researchers.
It should also be noted that in the surveys of previous years, conducted
by our Centre, the situation was the opposite.  e key motive for internation-
al mobility was improving the standard of living. In more developed coun-
tries, the main motives for occupational mobility are the reputation of host
organizations, future career development and better working conditions in
host organizations.
A question was posed about the forms of international mobility used
by respondents.  e survey results reveal that the researchers participated in
international conferences, seminars and other scienti c events abroad (90 %),
studying and fellowship programmes (30 %), publications in foreign journals
(25 %), participation in joint projects and programmes (15), and working at
a foreign scienti c centre (10 %).
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
187
Table 5. What kinds of international cooperation have you participated
in during the past  ve years?
Various answers Respondents %
Participation at international conference, seminar,
or di erent scienti c event 36 90.0
Travel abroad for study or internship 12 30.0
Publication in international work 10 25.0
Participation in joint project or program 6 15.0
Scienti c work with international organization 4 10.0
Postdoctoral research program 2 5.0
Travel abroad to deliver a lecture 1 2.5
Other 1 2.5
Total >100 %, because it was possible to answer several categories
e study showed the most signi cant e ects of international mobility
(Table 6).
Table 6. How did the international cooperation increase your career possibilities?
Various answers Respondents %
Gaining experience and skills, professional quali cations 18 40.9
Acquiring and maintaining contacts with foreign scholars 16 36.4
Access to new scienti c literature, information databases and
archives 15 34.1
Joint publications 13 29.5
Access to contemporary (modern) scienti c equipment 10 22.7
Boosting academic career 9 20.5
Publishing results of research in leading scienti c works 7 15.9
Di cult to answer 6 13.6
Wage increase 5 11.4
Position promotion 3 6.8
No e ect 3 6.8
Possibility to prepare/defend dissertation 2 4.5
Other 1 2.3
Total >100 %, because it was possible to answer several categories
e majority of respondents in our study would like to have the experien-
ce of working abroad in the future: short-term visits of up to two years were
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
188
preferred by 63 % of respondents, and emigration by 2 %. However, a signi -
cant number of researchers expressed the desire to work exclusively in Russia
(30.6 %) while 4.4 % did not know (Figure 5).
Figure 5. Do you consider the possibility of working abroad
with the goal of a professional career in science and higher education?
ese results suggest that not all of the hypotheses were con rmed. One
of the main hypotheses, regarding the main motive for mobility being the
search for higher living standards, was not justi ed despite the fact that the
vast majority of respondents are concerned about the low wages and poor
living conditions (a lack of housing, in particular) in Russia. As seen from
the respondents' answers, the most important reasons were strictly related to
professional activities, access to equipment and recent literature, etc. e sur-
vey results con rmed the  rst hypothesis. Many of the respondents pointed
to a direct link between work or internships abroad and increasing publica-
tion activity; thus, the one of the hypothesis (about scienti c visibility) was
also empirically veri ed. In general, it is important to note that this study
showed that the mobility of scientists is determined solely by cognitive fac-
tors arising from research activities.
e cognitive incentives of work are related to realizing ones own cogni-
tive abilities and the conditions of academic work that would enable solving re-
search problems: well-equipped laboratories, cohesive teams and access to the
latest achievements. Russia has recently seen its government take an interest
in science, which is supported through funding and new labs being founded in
national research universities, as well as foundations that facilitate commercial
development. However, these measures are obviously not enough to change
the current situation.  is leads to the idea that transmigration to world-class
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
189
scienti c centres could be a necessary episode in the intellectual biography of
scholars aiming for higher scienti c productivity.  e new generation of Rus-
sian scientists perceives recognition in the global scienti c community, along
with ‘network capital’, as an important academic merit and as a means to help
attract extra  nancial and other resources in solving research tasks.
In Soviet Russia, the functioning of science, the formation of the scienti c
community and the reproduction of scienti c elites were inseparable from the
important element of self-organization in the scienti c community ofscien-
ti c schools’. Scienti c schools played a very signi cant role in Soviet science.
Yet this idea has been devalued in the eyes of the new generation of scientists
(including middle-aged, forty-year-old researchers).  eir professional de-
velopment declined in the 1990s with institutional instability and the intense
out ow of highly-quali ed specialists who represented some of the established
scienti c schools. In the circumstances, the ‘personal characteristics’ of a young
scientist, including his or her ability and talent, not only for research work but
also for management, became the dominant factor in reproducing the intel-
lectual elite in Russia. Young scientists had to become accustomed to the new
rules of the game: nowadays their professional viability depends not so much
on government support as on the ability to obtain the means of implementing
research and development with the help of additional sources.
At this point, Russian scientists’ connections with the international
scien ti c community — which were minimized during Soviet times — have
acquired a new quality. We are speaking about programmes for the interna-
tional mobi lity of scientists, research grants given by international foundations,
internships, academic exchanges between di erent institutes, etc. For local
resear chers, these represent new ways of entering into international research
networks which are actually transnational and open. It seems that today the
international scienti c network plays an important role in the process of scien-
ti c functioning and reproducing the scienti c community; its signi cance is
comparable to the role played by Russian research schools in the past.
Nowadays, mobility (both virtual, i.e., using information and com-
munication technologies, and real) is a way of shaping a ‘new generation’ of
scholars, who will constantly have to prove their worth to their colleagues, to
experts when applying for grants, to managers and, ultimately, to a public that
wants to know how tax money is being spent and what the practical bene ts
of research and development are.  is is why modern scientists are public
gu res: they must be able to present themselves, to expound clearly on their
achievements, to be actively involved in scienti c networks and, of course,
they should be mobile.
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
190
5. Mobility as a measure for boosting academic careers: the
experience of Сhina
It is clear that Russian researchers have an idealized perception of other
national academic systems. However, there is no doubt that mobility is en-
couraged in the European, Chinese and American academic markets. From
this point of view, the experience of other vigorously developing transition
economy countries — especially China — seems interesting.
‘ e case of China’ should be considered for two reasons:  rst, the Chi-
nese science of the 1950s was created on the Soviet model and, secondly, a er
the Chinese Cultural Revolution, the scienti c research organization has relied
on mobility. Unlike in Russia, the Chinese governments science policy in the
eld of mobility was  exible and varied. e mobility of Chinese scholars and
students is currently rather high: for example, according to 2009 data, since at
least 2002 Chinese scientists have constituted a majority of doctoral students
studying in Germany (2,019 people). With these numbers, China has le other
countries (India — 1,037 people, and Russia — 789) far behind (DAAD, HIS,
2012). In 2009, 47 % of students, studying natural sciences and engineering in
the US were from China and India (National Science Foundation, 2011).
According to the data of the National Bureau of Statistics of the Chinese
Ministry of Science and Technology, the number of students and postgradu-
ates studying abroad was 229,300 in 2009, and the number returning in the
same year was 108,300.  e ow of student migration is steadily increasing
(Figure 6).
Science policy in China is designed to attract expatriates for research
work in their motherland, which seems to be extremely e ective. China does
not begrudge money for science: its annual outlay for research work has in-
creased by 18 % per year.  ere are many repatriates in Chinese research and
education centres:4 as a rule, they have undergone extensive training in the
US, Germany and elsewhere. More than half the heads of Chinese research
institutions have already worked abroad.
4 e UNESCO Science Report (2010) has noted that despite the large amount of materials on
migration it is almost impossible to make a systematic quantitative picture of long-term migration of
highly-skilled specialists all over the world.  e case of China is not so di erent.  e number of repatri-
ates in China is assessed very di erently: it varies between 100 people (which seems to be incorrect and
understated) and 200,000 people (which is probably an overestimation). It is well-known that 81 % of
those who have studied and worked abroad have returned to the Chinese Academy of Sciences; it will be
54 % for the Chinese Academy of Engineering. In 2009, the Chinese government approved a programme
aimed at attracting about 1,500 leading scientists to China over the course of  ve years who had achieved
remarkable progress in various  elds of science (Astvatsaturyan, 2009).
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
191
Two models for modernizing academic science in China have appeared:
the Shanghai Institute of Life Sciences is an example of the  rst kind. It com-
bines several academic institutions and research centres. One of these insti-
tutions is headed by Gang Pei, a young scientist who returned from the US.
Favourable conditions are o ered to scientists who decide to return to China.
e ‘guest’ laboratories established on the grounds of mutually bene cial in-
ternational cooperation can be considered an example of the second model.
For example, the guest laboratory of the German Max Planck Society works
as a part of the Chinese Institute of Cell Biology.  e Chinese Academy of
Sciences pays the salaries and overhead expenses of the scientists, while the
Max Planck Society provides the laboratory with all the necessary scienti c
equipment.
On the basis of this model, a 100 Talents Programme was developed, which
seeks to invite the most productive expatriate scientists that have worked in the
USA, Japan and Australia.  ese scientists have to organize research labora-
tories, to recover losses or to create new scienti c schools for training young
specialists. From 1998 to 2004, 778 specialists under the age of 45 went through
this programme (Sterligov, 2008). It is important to note that this programme
assumes the possibility of scientists maintaining their position in foreign scien-
ti c institutions. Repatriates’ salaries are twice as much as the average salary
Figure 6. Number of Postgraduates and Students Studying Abroad
Source: Table 20–10. Number of Postgraduates and Students Studying Abroad // Chinese statistical
yearbook on science and technology 2010 [Electronic resource] //National Bureau of Statistics of the
Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology. China Statistics Press, 2010 URL: http://www.stats.gov.cn/
tjsj/ndsj/2010/indexeh.htm
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
192
of Australian scientists and almost equal to that of American scientists. In ad-
dition, signi cant extra fees are paid to stimulate the publication of articles
in scienti c journals or to elaborate lecture courses. Apropos the duration of
contracts, foreign scientists (or expatriates) have been contracted for various
periods of time, from two to three weeks to three to  ve years. In this respect,
conditions of cooperation have been quite  exible.
Currently, China funds research and educational work not only at home
but also abroad.  e country partially pays the salaries of those foreign scien-
tists who participate in Chinese projects (i.e., teaching Chinese students).
From 2007, students studying abroad at the expense of the state are required,
following their internship, to work at home for at least two years; only a er-
wards can they continue their studies as postgraduates, otherwise they would
have to pay a considerable penalty. Such a restrictive measure seems rigorous
but e ective: the vast majority of students prefer to return home. It is obvious
that the Chinese experience of work with expatriates should be considered
in Russia.
In Russia, mobility programmes focused  rst on cooperating with ex-
patriate scientists of Russian origin and training young specialists. In 2010,
in accordance with the Government Decree ‘Measures to Attract Leading
Scien tists to Russian Educational Institutions’, the Ministry of Education and
Scien ce announced a competition for mega-grants which would support in-
vitations for leading scientists living abroad to Russian educational institu-
tions; scientists of all nationalities and countries of residence were eligible to
apply. A visiting scholar should spend at least four months working in a Rus-
sian educational institution while having direct control over conducting re-
search. Among the specialists who won the competition were representatives
of the Russian diaspora: prominent scientists who have earned international
recognition.  ese programmes still continue in 2013.
In projects under the guidance of scientist-colleagues, they have moti-
vated the youth resulting in research results that are very quickly incorpora-
ted into training courses, extending the geography of scienti c communica-
tions, including those online.  e heads of scienti c research emphasize the
need to develop new areas of cooperation with the dominance of pedagogi-
cal components, whereby visiting scholars would take responsibility for
lectu ring, training and postgraduate students writing dissertations and
monographs. In Moscow (March 4–15, 2011) under the direction of the
Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation, a confe-
rence was held The Experience and Results of Research Conducted under
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
193
the Guidance of Visiting Scientist-Colleagues, where all aspects of interna-
tional cooperation and academic mobility were discussed.5
It is noteworthy that the scienti c potential and symbolic capital of univer-
sities and research centres has grown in Russia, and that this has had a positive
e ect on the training of young specialists — these laboratories have become
important research platforms for young Russian scientists.
6. Conclusion
It is impossible to stop (i.e., to close the doors to) the  ow of academic
migration from developing countries into countries that are scienti cally
and technologically advanced.  ere are numerous bilateral and multilateral
agreements between universities and laboratories encouraging the interna-
tional mobility of scholars. Many developed countries are actively using vari-
ous programmes to attract foreign students and scientists, and they provide
subsidies for education and research. A number of non-English-speaking
countries o er special programmes in English. Many programmes in Den-
mark, Finland, the Netherlands and Sweden are adapted in this way, to enable
to attracting of foreign students, postgraduates and young researchers. More
and more countries, such as the USA, Canada, Switzerland, France, Japan,
Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Germany, and so on, provide foreign gradu-
ates with jobs upon graduation and issue work visas a er their student visas
have expired.
Following the establishment of the RAS and the inviting of foreign aca-
demics to the Empires capital, many decades passed before a generation of top
Russian scientists was formed.  e fact is that the free movement of scientists
cannot easily be eliminated from Imperial science. Soviet science has o en been
called ‘closed’, but this is an over-simpli cation.  e new state science policy of
Soviet power in the 1920s and 1930s in the area of mobility was aimed at small
groups of leading scientists. Travelling abroad, these scholars received  nancial
support from the state and in return used their international experiences in the
newly created research institutes in Russia. Such a public science policy in the
absence of a civil society and free movement led to a de nite result: new labora-
tories were opened that trained young researchers.  e situation of social trans-
formation in post-Soviet Russia created an enormous brain drain that depleted
5 The transcript of the plenary session is available on the website of Russian Scientific In-
stitute of Economy, Policy and Law (http://diaspora.riep.ru/stenogramma.php#stenogramma_001),
April 18th, 2011.
NADIA ASHEULOVA, SVETLANA DUSHINA
194
entire laboratories.  is o en meant the termination of research in particular
scienti c topics or even the end of an entire scienti c eld.
In recent years, Russian government science policy has worked with the
scienti c diaspora and sought to intensify collaborative intellectual exchanges.
International mobility plays an important role in boosting academic or schol-
arly careers. Participation in joint projects and international scienti c events,
the publication of research  ndings in prestigious journals, internships at fa-
mous scienti c centres and the receipt of grants from foreign foundations lead
to wider experience and higher status for young specialists, opening up new
opportunities for them in their own country. International mobility integrated
into scienti c organization can facilitate the exchange of ideas, the develop-
ment of networks with other researchers, supplement research careers, improve
language competencies and increase scienti c outputs.
International exchanges of researchers are based on such mechanisms as
scholarships, internships and grants.  ese exchanges are particularly useful
for young researchers carrying out experimental work elsewhere if relevant
equipment (such as large research facilities) is unavailable at the home institu-
tion. Foreign work experience o en has a positive correlation with publication
output a er returning and increasing the number of international co-publica-
tions (Jonkers, 2010). International mobility thus enhances the citation index
ranking and helps scholars receive international grants and awards.
e article ‘Are mobile researchers more productive and cited than non-
mobile researchers? A large-scale study of Norwegian scientists, written by
NIFU researchers (Aksnes et al., 2013) examines whether researchers who
are mobile do better than non-mobile researchers in terms of publication
rates and citation frequency.
e survey is based on more than 11,000 Norwegian university research-
ers.  e results show that, internationally, mobile researchers have higher
publication and citation levels than other, less mobile, researchers. e most
signi cant outcomes of international mobility are the increase and diversi-
cation of research knowledge and experience, and the growth of scienti c
productivity indicators.
According to our sociological survey results, there are many challenges
in the sphere of research policy and the practical arrangements concerning the
careers and mobility of researchers in Russia.  is requires dynamic e orts and
e cient measures at all levels in order for a variety of problems to be resolved.
A signi cant  nding of the analysis was that researchers from Russia have a
strong willingness and professional motivation to participate in international
mobility programmes.  e hypothesis, based on surveys from previous years,
RESEARCH CAREER DEVELOPMENT IN RUSSIA
195
that the key motive for international mobility is improving the standard of liv-
ing was not corroborated.  e major motives for researchers in working abroad
are working with modern equipment, attracting bigger funds — which they can
receive — transparency in their academic career and the possibilities of pub-
lishing in highly ranked journals.  e possibility of career growth is another
substantial reason for international mobility. Moreover, most respondents ac-
knowledge international mobility as an important factor for future career de-
velopment in research. Another  nding of our study is that short-term mobility
programmes and schemes are preferable for respondents: most of them only
have experience of such forms of international mobility.
We believe that, at present, international mobility is an important new
tool that enables scholars to maintain their status in the scienti c commu-
nity and reproduce the scienti c elite. Additionally, international mobility
has become one of the most important means to integrate Russian science
into the global scienti c community.  e participation of Russian scientists
in the international division of labour allows us to solve a number of di cult
problems within post-Soviet science, including the problem of a signi cant
generational shi .
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(Re)searching
Scientific Careers
Edited by
Katarina Prpić,
Inge van der Weijden,
and
Nadia Asheulova
Institute for the History of Science and Technology,
St. Petersburg Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences
Publishing House “Nestor-Historia
Sociology of Science and Technology Network of the European Sociological Association
St. Petersburg, 2014
Published by
Institute for the History of Science and Technology (IHST),
St Petersburg Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS)
Publishing House “Nestor-Historia
Sociology of Science and Technology Network (SSTNET)
of the European Sociological Association (ESA)
For the publishers
Eduard Kolchinsky
Katarina Prpić
Book funding
Russian Science Foundation for Humanities (12 – 03 – 14150)
Centre for Science and Technology Studies (CWTS)
of Leiden University
Copyright © 2014 by Institute for the History of Science and Technology (IHST),
St. Petersburg Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences (RAS)
Sociology of Science and Technology Network of ESA
Publishing House “Nestor-Historia”
ISBN 978-5 4469-0250-7
iii
Contents
List of  gures ...............................................................vi
List of tables ............................................................... vii
Foreword .................................................................. 1
Katarina Prpić
Prolegomenon: widening scienti c career studies ............................ 3
1. Scienti c career studies and science and technology studies (STS) ......... 3
2.  e concept and composition of the book ............................... 6
3. What can be tentatively concluded about academic/scienti c
careers?
............................................................ 10
Part I. Academic career development
Pleun van Arensbergen, Inge van der Weijden and Peter van den Besselaar
Academic talent selection in grant review panels ........................... 25
1. Introduction ........................................................ 25
2.  eoretical background .............................................. 26
2.1. Peer review .......................................................... 27
2.2. Past performance .................................................... 28
3. Data, research questions and methods ................................. 30
3.1.  e case ............................................................ 30
3.2. Research questions ................................................... 33
3.3. Methods ............................................................ 34
4. Results .............................................................. 34
4.1.  e evidence of talent ................................................ 34
4.2. E ects of the procedure .............................................. 39
4.3.  e dimensions of talent ............................................. 43
4.4. Predictors for talent selection ......................................... 46
4.5. Is talent gendered? ................................................... 47
5. Conclusions and discussion ........................................... 49
iv
Laura Cruz-Castro and Luis Sanz-Menéndez
(with the collaboration of Kenedy Alva)
e dynamics of academic promotion in Spanish universities ............... 55
1. Introduction ........................................................ 55
2. How long does it take to receive tenure and why? ...................... 58
3. Methodology ........................................................ 61
4. Time-to-tenure in Spanish universities ................................ 65
5. Conclusion .......................................................... 80
Felizitas Sagebiel
Academic women leaders’ career and their potential
as gendered organizational change agents .................................. 85
1. Introduction ........................................................ 85
2. Some selected theoretical and research references ....................... 88
3. Qualitative methodology ............................................. 90
4. Results .............................................................. 92
4.1. Leadership style and gender stereotypes ............................... 92
4.2. Output orientation, commitment and availability ...................... 96
4.3.  e role of networking and networks ................................. 99
4.4. Understanding technology........................................... 105
5. Summary of results and conclusions .................................. 107
Part II. Research career context and preconditions
Teresa Carvalho, Sónia Cardoso and So a Branco Sousa
Changes in the institutional context and academic profession —
a case from Portugal ...................................................... 117
1. Introduction ....................................................... 117
2. Current challenges to the academic profession ........................ 118
3.  e Portuguese context .............................................. 120
4. Method ........................................................... 124
5. Findings
........................................................... 126
5.1. Contract duration
.................................................. 126
5.2. Time regime ....................................................... 134
6. Conclusions ........................................................ 140
v
Izabela Wagner
Work and career aspects of ‘ghetto laboratories’ ........................... 145
1. Introduction ....................................................... 145
1.1. Mobility of scientists — internationalization in the world
of research activity .................................................. 145
1.2. Literature on multicultural laboratories — an ignored issue? ............ 147
1.3. Concepts (theory and  eld) — objective and subjective perceptions .... 148
2. Methodology ....................................................... 149
2.1. Ethnography and research questions .................................. 149
2.2.  e world of laboratories: between multi-culture teams
and the ghetto laboratory ............................................ 150
3. Data analysis
....................................................... 151
3.1. Language: beyond pidgin laboratory English .......................... 151
3.2. Culture: between tolerance and stereotypes ........................... 156
4. Conclusions: the ghetto lab — a miracle solution ...................... 163
Nadia Asheulova and Svetlana Dushina
Research career development in Russia: the role of international mobility .... 171
1. Introduction ....................................................... 171
2. Academic careers in Russia: institutional context ...................... 172
3. Mobility of Russian scholars in the past ............................... 178
4. Empirical study of Russian scientists’ international mobility ............ 182
4.1. Research methodology and respondents pro le ....................... 182
4.2. Results ............................................................ 183
5. Mobility as a measure for boosting academic careers:
the experience of Сhina ............................................. 190
6. Conclusion ........................................................ 193
Blanka Groboljšek, Franc Mali, Anuška Ferligoj and Luka Kronegger
Career aspects of Slovenian researchers’ collaboration practices ............ 197
1. Introduction ....................................................... 197
2.  e importance of scienti c collaboration to ensure more successful
professional careers for scientists ..................................... 199
3. Some advantages and disadvantages of scienti c collaboration .......... 204
4.  e case of Slovenia ................................................. 208
vi
4.1. Methods ........................................................... 210
4.2. Results ............................................................. 212
5. Discussion and conclusion ........................................... 219
Marija Brajdić Vuković
e mentoring of young researchers in the natural
and social sciences in Croatia ............................................. 225
1. Introduction ....................................................... 225
2. Research questions .................................................. 230
3. Methods ........................................................... 230
3.1. In-depth interview .................................................. 230
3.2. Sample ............................................................. 231
3.3. Ethics .............................................................. 232
3.4. Procedures and analysis ............................................. 232
4. Results ............................................................ 232
4.1. Socialization outcomes and the responsibility of formal supervisors ..... 233
4.2. High-quality mentoring practices .................................... 235
4.3. Challenges and obstacles to achieving high-quality mentorship ......... 240
5. Discussion and conclusions .......................................... 243
List of contributors ........................................................ 251
Subject index ............................................................. 256
Name index .............................................................. 261
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... In order to have a comparative perspective, we will also contrast the aforementioned epistemic hierarchies in two analysed time periods: in 1997 and in 2017 in order to provide both a cross-sectional and a longitudinal analysis. The paper embraces the last two decades only, because it is the time period when both the global internalisation projects (Aksnes et al. 2013;Asheulova and Dushina 2014;Bauder 2015) and the publish or perish paradigms (Erren, Shaw, and Morfeld 2016;Zdenek 2018) have emerged. ...
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Chapter
Full-text available
In this chapter, Demeter presents a great volume of empirical data on the science output of different world regions. Analysis shows that while different disciplines have a different distribution of academic capital, the center/periphery structure of the field of knowledge production is rather similar in the case of all disciplines with the absolute hegemon position of the US, the UK and other developed countries of Western Europe. Demeter also argues that the exclusion of the periphery and the excessive brain drain and reeducation practices maintain global North hegemony to a great extent, while potentially causing even the most successful peripheral authors to lose their authentic voices. As counterexamples, the author presents the more adaptive, state-funded tactics of some BRICS countries.
Chapter
In this chapter, Demeter introduces the main theoretical frameworks of the book, namely the Bourdieusian frame theory and the Wallersteinian world-system theory. Moreover, the author offers a much-needed complex model whereby geopolitical and societal inequalities as well as hegemonies could be properly analyzed in the world-system of global knowledge production. This unique model shows how international scholars collect and accumulate transnational academic capital by acquiring central degrees, credentials, research grants and power positions at the global academy. This chapter also shows that the hegemon structure of global knowledge production is a very complex one in which geopolitical hegemony (in the form of the rule of elite central institutions) is tightly interwoven with societal (class-based) stratification.
Chapter
This chapter presents the most important considerations behind the gatekeeper activities of central agents, namely editorial policies. This chapter concentrates on the so-called invisible motives of editorial boards, and the author argues that, since editors have to maintain or, preferably, raise the global rank of their journals, they consciously deal with issues concerning the Matthew effect, topical and thematic biases, preferential attachment or the “rich get richer” effect. Demeter argues, that, as a consequence of the structural features of the world-system of knowledge production, gatekeepers of knowledge impede the emergence of the periphery: journal rankings, publishing practices and standards, epistemic and methodological requirements, language issues and even topical preferences work against peripheral scholars and serve their central peers.
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Full-text available
This chapter deals with the dynamics behind the problem of inequality through a discussion of economic, epistemic, moral and institutional problems, including those directly linked to the global academy. The author introduces the main processes that have historically led to a core-periphery structure in international science. This chapter also discusses the network-based operation of the elite academic institutions which they use to systematically overvalue one another’s academic capital of each other and to constitute an excluding elitism that the author calls (paraphrasing Bourdieu’s state nobility) the development of a Global Nobility. Finally, Demeter presents the main economic, moral and epistemic problems of Western elitism that not only totally exclude the periphery, but also lead to serious fallback in global knowledge production.
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This article argues that, given the difficulties of reversing brain drain and of creating brain circulation, small developing countries should instead put efforts into brain networking, which is the systematic development of an ICT-based form of links between scientific diasporas and resident scientists. The study suggests that brain networking is the most realistic institutional platform for tackling developing countries' problems related to the loss of talent. Reviewing the strengths and weaknesses of existing diaspora initiatives in different countries, and based on an original survey of 133 Romanian scientific diaspora members, this article identifies a series of policy preferences and implications.
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Many have suggested that young scientists are having a more difficult time getting research grants, citing the fact that the average age of recipients of prestigious grants is getting higher. We present a population model that suggests that the reason the average age of grant recipients is now higher is because the growth rate of science has slowed down in the last four decades.
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