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Article
Publication date: 7 April 2015

Huseyn Aliyev

The purpose of this paper is to suggest that informal practices and institutions of post-Soviet countries differ from informality in other post-socialist regions and…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to suggest that informal practices and institutions of post-Soviet countries differ from informality in other post-socialist regions and, therefore, proposes categorizing it as “post-Soviet informality” – a composite definition that extends beyond the concept of “informal economy” and encompasses, along with economic activities, social and political spheres.

Design/methodology/approach

The arguments of the paper are based on a comprehensive analysis of secondary sources.

Findings

This paper shows that, owing to the effects of antecedent regime’s legacies and the problems of post-communist transition, for the proper analysis of informality in post-Soviet countries it needs to be based on an own concept.

Originality/value

This study, in contrast to the existing literature on informality in post-communist spaces, specifically focuses on the informal sphere of post-Soviet countries, suggesting that the informal institutions and practices thriving across the vast post-Soviet space not only differ from the informal spheres elsewhere in the world, but also from informality in other post-communist regions.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 35 no. 3/4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 14 January 2021

Iryna Kushnir

This chapter reviews the theoretical literature about Europeanisation and argues the need for further analysis of post-Soviet Europeanisation. This chapter also connects…

Abstract

This chapter reviews the theoretical literature about Europeanisation and argues the need for further analysis of post-Soviet Europeanisation. This chapter also connects post-Soviet Europeanisation to the notion of policy learning, which is introduced as a theoretical perspective. The chapter discusses the challenges around the definition of policy learning in relation to other policy processes such as transfer, translation and diffusion. Policy layering does not presuppose mutual exclusion between path-dependence and change, but rather the fruitful mutual development of both. It implies a gradual change of certain policy aspects and the retaining of others. The development of the links between path-dependence and change in layering is a highly messy process. Multiple actors participate in learning, and they create policy as they learn. There are no distinct stages of learning, and the line between policy-makers and practitioners is often blurred.

The difference between policy-making on the European level and the post-Soviet domestic context is significant. The literature about post-Soviet countries recognises the presence of a struggle between Europeanisation and post-Soviet legacies there. Europeanisation in this literature is presented as change; while the influence of the post-Soviet legacies is seen as an obstacle that hinders it. The policy learning concept is key here to frame Europeanisation in the post-Soviet context as an area of enquiry which may develop according to the logic of layering.

Details

The Bologna Reform in Ukraine
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-114-1

Book part
Publication date: 14 January 2021

Iryna Kushnir

This chapter draws together the findings about both the Bologna actors and instruments to explain the mechanism of the Bologna reform in Ukraine until 2014 and its place…

Abstract

This chapter draws together the findings about both the Bologna actors and instruments to explain the mechanism of the Bologna reform in Ukraine until 2014 and its place in Europeanisation in the post-Soviet context.

This research demonstrates that continuity was mainly perpetuated by the Ministry of Education and Science, and change was facilitated by civil organisations. There was a lot of fluidity in the interaction of old practices and policy innovation in Bologna in Ukraine. The interaction between the path dependency and change was primarily a gradual chaotic, yet creative, and shared build-up of minor innovations by different higher education actors. These innovations in the development of the Bologna instruments may be seen as leading to more substantial transformations over time.

The research findings may also serve as a first step towards a reconceptualisation of the Europeanisation process particularly in the post-Soviet context in the first couple of decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Bologna in Ukraine can be seen as an illustration of the ways in which Europeanisation may not always necessitate the elimination of past conventions and practices – indeed, in a policy field such as education, abandoning history and tradition would have been a futile endeavour. Policy continuity in the post-Soviet context may be a foundation in the Europeanisation process during which minor innovations are slowly yet continuously being accumulated. This foundation shapes the nature of changes. Therefore, perhaps, the debate regarding a slow pace of Europeanisation in the post-Soviet space might be erroneous, since it carries a hidden assumption – that it is slow in relation to a much faster Europeanisation and resulting transformations in the EU. Such a comparison should be revisited in light of a potential difference in the nature of Europeanisation in the two spaces and the acknowledgement of growing overlaps between the two spaces as well.

Details

The Bologna Reform in Ukraine
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-114-1

Book part
Publication date: 14 January 2021

Iryna Kushnir

This is the final chapter of the book. It summarises the story in the book and explains the contribution it makes. This book contributes, first and foremost, to the body…

Abstract

This is the final chapter of the book. It summarises the story in the book and explains the contribution it makes. This book contributes, first and foremost, to the body of literature that investigates Bologna specifically in Ukraine, as well as Bologna in the national contexts of the post-Soviet region more broadly. Crucially, the analysis of the reform process in Ukraine also gives some insight into the literature about wider Europeanisation processes in the post-Soviet context, particularly in the area of higher education and other policy fields. The Ukrainian case has demonstrated that Europeanisation is associated with change as much as it is associated with policy continuity. The pace of post-Soviet change might be related to the interplay of different groups of policy actors who have different motivations – following the past conventions or moving away from them. Change often existed only in discourse because of strongly rooted Soviet legacies of centralisation and established policies. Europeanisation then often served as an object of appropriation by central governing bodies for demonstrating in discourse to the public that change is underway.

The Bologna Process seems to have been widening the borders of Europe further to the east more than any other previous European policy initiative (e.g., the European Union, the European Neighbourhood Policy). Bologna might also be emerging as a source of a new joint image of Europeanisation in the EHEA. Unlike most of the previous initiatives that were focused around Europeanisation in the EU or around the EU, Bologna might become a tool for assimilating different spaces (such as the EU and the post-Soviet area) in their aims for Europeanisation in the future, while at present we may speculate that Europeanisation in the post-Soviet space may be a distinct phenomenon.

Details

The Bologna Reform in Ukraine
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-114-1

Book part
Publication date: 22 September 2022

Pavel Sorokin, Isak Froumin and Svetlana Chernenko

The universal “promise of entrepreneurship” has gone far beyond the borders of countries where it emerged. Education systems might play an important role in this process…

Abstract

The universal “promise of entrepreneurship” has gone far beyond the borders of countries where it emerged. Education systems might play an important role in this process by legitimizing entrepreneurship related myths, principles, and social hierarchies. Surprisingly, against the literature on the role of education in producing and allocating human capital, entrepreneurship education development on organizational, national, and global scale is only emerging as a theme of mainstream academic discussions. This paper applies multi-level approach to get insights on what role might higher education have in promoting global “entrepreneurial culture,” with a focus on post-Soviet countries. We analyze supra-national initiatives, national policies, leading universities’ practices, and the actual characteristics of entrepreneurship education programs in these universities. Our results suggest that drivers of entrepreneurship education development in national higher education systems of post-Soviet countries are not only the “concrete” and “technical” institutional factors on the national level, but also the broader cultural environment. Though institutional environment in post-Soviet countries does not always objectively meet high international standards we found many cases when official policy documents state goals related to teaching entrepreneurship in higher education and there are concrete programs devoted to entrepreneurship education sharing largely similar “entrepreneurial” worldviews. We also found that the actual perceptions and strategies of the actors directly involved in entrepreneurship education practices demonstrate much higher similarity than formally declared education policies in the related countries.

Details

Entrepreneurialism and Society: Consequences and Meanings
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80382-662-2

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 14 January 2021

Iryna Kushnir

This is the introductory chapter of the book. This chapter explains the background and relevance of the topic of the book – the process of a national higher education…

Abstract

This is the introductory chapter of the book. This chapter explains the background and relevance of the topic of the book – the process of a national higher education reform in the post-Soviet space such as Ukraine until passing the Law about Higher Education in 2014, and the ways in which this story can inform our understanding of some aspects of the Europeanisation in the post-Soviet context. The Bologna reform is, arguably, one of the expressions of Europeanisation in post-Soviet countries that belong to the European Higher Education Area (EHEA). The Bologna Process is an international policy project for the standardisation of higher education structures in the European Higher Education Area. It comprised 29 European countries at the start of the Bologna Process in 1999, and it started incorporating more states later, a lot of which were not part of the EU. Beside the overarching goal to create the EHEA, a number of concrete objectives, called the action lines, were identified, such as the adoption of a common system of credits and cycles of study process, the development of an easily readable diploma supplement issued to graduates, the promotion of student and faculty mobility and the assurance of higher education quality.

This chapter also presents methodological considerations associated with designing the research presented in this book, such as conducting interviews and identifying policy documents – and how thematic analysis was applied to these two types of data. The case of Ukraine is characterised as instrumental because, beside the contribution it makes to how we see the Bologna reform in Ukraine itself, this case study is important for understanding wider Europeanisation issues.

Details

The Bologna Reform in Ukraine
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-114-1

Article
Publication date: 3 December 2020

Marek Gnusowski

This paper aims to improve the service discipline’s understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities that services marketers encounter in Central, Eastern and…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to improve the service discipline’s understanding of the unique challenges and opportunities that services marketers encounter in Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe (CESEE) and Post-Soviet states. This paper also serves as an introduction to the special section about services marketing perspectives in this region.

Design/methodology/approach

Considering the Post-Soviet reality, the paper is a viewpoint regarding the specific development potential of services marketing in the CESEE region. In addition, the three papers included in the special section use a variety of research methods, participants and service settings.

Findings

First, this paper outlines the positive and negative consequences of the radical changes in the services markets over the past 30 years. Next, all three papers included in the special section explore the distinctive customer perspective of services marketing. Finally, this paper discusses the specific relationship building environment of the Post-Soviet reality and how its unique do-it-yourself background contributes to the existing discussion on consumers’ involvement in the co-creation of value.

Research limitations/implications

The findings from this special section have valuable implications for future research on services marketing in the CESEE markets, although these may not always be generalizable beyond the unique context of the research detailed in each of these papers.

Practical implications

This research, along with the three papers, presents some useful directions for services marketing managers cooperating with the CESEE markets, such as understanding and managing the expectations of their customers or employees.

Originality/value

This paper is one of the first attempts to understand the uniqueness of the under-researched area of services marketing in the CESEE and Post-Soviet States, both from a theoretical and empirical point of view. This also provides previously under-represented authors from the region the opportunity to present their perspective to an international service community.

Article
Publication date: 2 September 2014

Colin C. Williams and Olga Onoshchenko

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the extent to which the practice of using personal networks to obtain goods and services or to circumvent formal procedures, known…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to evaluate the extent to which the practice of using personal networks to obtain goods and services or to circumvent formal procedures, known as blat in the Soviet era, persists in post-Soviet societies and whether its character has altered.

Design/methodology/approach

To do this, the prevalence and nature of blat in the education sector in the city of Mykolayiv in Ukraine is analysed using 200 face-to-face structured interviews with a spatially stratified sample of Mykolayiv residents and 30 follow-up semi-structured in-depth interviews.

Findings

The finding is that blat is widely used to gain places in kindergarten, schools and universities. However, unlike Soviet era blat which took the form of non-monetised friendly help in the market-oriented society of post-Soviet Ukraine, both possessing control over access to assets such as education, as well as possessing personal connections to those with control over access to these assets, is increasingly viewed as a commodity to be bought and sold, and illicit informal monetary payments are now commonplace. The result is that nepotism, cronyism, bribery and corruption hinder meritocratic processes.

Research limitations/implications

This paper examines the prevalence and nature of blat in just one sector in one post-Soviet country. An analysis across a wider range of sectors in various post-Soviet societies is now required to develop a more context-bound and nuanced understanding of blat in post-Soviet societies.

Originality/value

This is the first in-depth empirical evaluation of the prevalence and nature of blat in contemporary post-Soviet societies.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 41 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

Keywords

Book part
Publication date: 4 March 2015

Matei Alexianu

The post-Soviet space, consisting of the countries of the former USSR and the Warsaw Pact, is a good testing ground for the dynamics of growth. Motivated by the mixed…

Abstract

The post-Soviet space, consisting of the countries of the former USSR and the Warsaw Pact, is a good testing ground for the dynamics of growth. Motivated by the mixed evidence on economic convergence in the region, this paper explores why countries have performed differently, focusing on institutional strength and its determinants. It proposes the hypothesis that, in the region, Russian influence plays a negative role in institutional development, both through opaque business practices that come with it, and through the isolation from European Union influence it entails. The paper uses recent panel data to test this hypothesis, concluding that there is some evidence supporting a negative effect of Russian influence on post-Soviet states’ institutions, but that more rigorous analysis is needed to confirm this link.

Book part
Publication date: 14 January 2021

Iryna Kushnir

This chapter maps the landscape of previous research into the Bologna Process on the international and national scales. This literature shows that Bologna has…

Abstract

This chapter maps the landscape of previous research into the Bologna Process on the international and national scales. This literature shows that Bologna has internationalised higher education in post-Soviet countries, and the Bologna developments have been acknowledged in the literature to be a case of Europeanisation.

This chapter also points out a few major gaps in that research. One of them is the interconnected development of higher education actors and instruments from the perspective of the idea of layering that brings path-dependence and change in a dialogue. The research about Bologna in the national contexts focuses mainly on a more normative, evaluative side of the debate. Prior research on Bologna in post-Soviet countries and specifically in Ukraine also looks primarily at positive and negative effects of the reform on the country's higher education. There have been difficulties ‘fitting’ Bologna ideas into the established conventions in Ukraine. There have been also challenges with interpreting some action lines, such as the student-centred learning or quality assurance. These studies have mainly investigated the change of higher education policies, overlooking the exploration of the change in the system of higher education actors and their roles in the countries. The studies seem not to have placed enough emphasis on the process of the development of higher education actors and their relationships in Bologna. Neither have they looked in detail into the contribution of these actors to the development of the Bologna instruments.

The Bologna reform in the post-Soviet context, just like Europeanisation there, tends to be seen as the implementation of change which is hindered by some past conventions. In contrast, this study about Bologna in Ukraine rests on the idea of layering that brings path-dependence and change into a dialogue.

Details

The Bologna Reform in Ukraine
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83982-114-1

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