• A
  • A
  • A
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
Regular version of the site

Partnership with the Oldest European University

Last year was designated the year of Russia in Italy and Italy in Russia. Nina Belyaeva, Head of the HSE Department of Public Policy, told us about the HSE’s cooperation with one of its key Italian partners – the University of Bologna, as well as about new academic mobility opportunities for HSE undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Last year was designated the year of Russia in Italy and Italy in Russia. Nina Belyaeva, Head of the HSE Department of Public Policy, told us about the HSE’s cooperation with one of its key Italian partners – the University of Bologna, as well as about new academic mobility opportunities for HSE undergraduate and postgraduate students.

― Dr. Belyaeva, how would you evaluate the practical results of cooperation between the HSE and the University of Bologna?

― Our cooperation with the University of Bologna has been developing dynamically. In 2009 our Department initiated an official agreement between the HSE and the University of Bologna. At the same time, the first Italian student came to study a master’s course at the HSE. The next year we had two students from Italy, and then four students from the University of Bologna came to study on out master’s course. Incidentally, only two of them came to the HSE through a University of Bologna scholarship, the other two are paying for their own study in Moscow. This is a remarkable fact which demonstrates our programmes can be internationally competitive. In addition to this, we provide each student with a place in a hostel, which considerably reduces their living costs for such a long visit to Russia.

― Who covers the price of education in the partner university?

― We agreed with the University of Bologna that students wouldn’t pay for the exchange programmes between our universities. It is important that this exchange is fair. Of course, if three students from Bologna come to us, we won’t be able to send 20 of our students to Italy. Up to now, we have managed to maintain this balance. While four University of Bologna students came to the HSE in 2010/2011, five HSE students went to Bologna. By the way, two of them – Katya Tereshchenko and Olga Rutkovskaya – have produced a ‘How to Survive in Bologna’ guide for their classmates. Of course, there are services within the University of Bologna which help students find accommodation and solve other everyday issues, but this guide gives invaluable practical advice for visiting students.

― How do the students of the University of Bologna get information about the HSE?

― In October the HSE was added to the list of ‘recommended’ universities on the University of Bologna website as part of their Study Abroad Program. For us this was an important achievement, as it means that the University of Bologna acknowledges the HSE as equal in terms of the level, quality, course content, availability of courses taught in English and social environment for the students. One of the requirements is that at least three departments of the partner university comply with all these criteria. We collected information about seven HSE faculties which teach in English – and all these courses became part of the ‘advertisement’ on the University of Bologna website. And if an Italian student is ready to study HSE’s programmes in Russian, he can choose from any of our courses.

― What are the criteria for the HSE master’s students who would like to go to study in Bologna?

― The general criteria for students are a knowledge of English and a recommendation from their academic supervisor. I would like to explain that, since these are master’s programmes, and our students study at the University of Bologna for at least one semester, it will not be possible to come during the vacations and attend some separate courses; students need to choose a course which will be included as part of his master’s course credit. And it doesn’t matter which department of the University of Bologna provides the relevant courses: we actively cooperate with all the departments of the University of Bologna, not only those connected with social sciences.

― Do you collect any feedback about the HSE from the Italian students who have studied on our master’s courses? What do they say?

― I’d like to illustrate this with a specific example. Last year Mattia Romano studied our master’s programme in Public Policy. He left us with credits which were recognized at the University of Bologna. And this Autumn he came back to the HSE to write a thesis about democratic movements which can change political regimes. Today he is attending protests and conducting interviews there, and all of this will be part of his research. Foreign students (particularly those interested in public policy) come here when something interesting is taking place here. Stagnation attracts no one. That’s why today the demand for our programmes is huge.

Mattia Romano’s return here is also an example that cooperation between the HSE and the University of Bologna should not be limited only to master’s students. It’s also open to doctoral students, and they can work in a partner university on their thesis. This year we welcomed not only Mattia, but also Irene Di Giorgio. She learnt about our programmes thanks to Baltic Practice – this is just one of the advantages the summer schools bring! She is writing a thesis on the penitentiary system under the supervision of Anita Soboleva and is visiting prisons here as part of her research.

― But in Russia the PhD programmes are not equivalent to aspirantura programmes. How will you solve this problem?

― The aspirantura and PhD students of our universities will have an opportunity to get a double degree – Candidate of Science and PhD. They will defend their thesis at the HSE according to our Russian regulations, and in Bologna according to the Bologna ones. This way a student will have two academic supervisors, but only one area of research. The thesis should be interdisciplinary, in Bologna it is based on the EU Law Institute and at the HSE the Department of Public Policy.

To get a double degree, our aspirantura students should carry out their research for at least six months at the University of Bologna (the total period of aspirantura and PhD programmes is the same, three years). But this is not all. They will have to present a project progress report to a commission in Bologna consisting of ten professors. Italian students who come to our postgraduate programme will also have to defend a similar interim report. And the final viva voce process will consist of two stages: a Candidate of Science degree should be approved in the Russian Higher Attestation Commission, and about at around the same time, the paper should be defended in English at the University of Bologna. We have agreed with our Bologna colleagues that we will exchange three postgraduate students during the first year of this project.

Oleg Seregin, HSE News Service

See also:

HSE Becomes Member of International Council for Open and Distance Education

The Higher School of Economics has become a member of the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE). It is a key partner of UNESCO and the oldest global association that aims to provide quality and affordable online education to students around the world. Today HSE is the only representative of Russia in ICDE.

HSE and the Ruhr-University Bochum Sign Cooperation Agreement

The agreement establishes a student- and academic-exchange programme and the opportunity for joint educational and research project development. The agreement was signed on April 8 with the participation of representatives of the government of North Rhine-Westphalia.

HSE Hosts International University Consortium for the First Time

From February 25 to March 2, HSE’s Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs hosted an academic module of the University Consortium, an inter-regional training programme for outstanding students that aims to promote mutual understanding, balanced analysis, and genuine dialogue among the US, EU, and Russia.

HSE Gears up for Staff and Student Conference: A Look Back at the University’s International Activities

On March 20, a conference of HSE staff and students will take place at HSE. It will consider the university’s development programme and elect the new Academic Council. The previous conference took place five years ago, in 2014, and the university has changed a lot since then. HSE News Service talked to some of the university leaders about what has changed in their area of responsibility over this period.

‘If You Want to Be Strong, You Have to Open Your Doors’: Swiss Ambassador Yves Rossier Visits HSE

At the invitation of Professor Vladimir Kantor, Head of the International Laboratory for the Study of Russian and European Intellectual Dialogue, Swiss Ambassador Yves Rossier visited HSE on Wednesday, 13 February, to give a lecture and meet with faculty and students. In addition to Professor Kantor and students of his International Laboratory, Vice Rector Ivan Prostakov and faculty and students of the School of Philosophy and the HSE Lyceum were in attendance. Vice Rector Prostakov delivered the opening remarks.

Studying Grief in the Phenomenology of Darkness: An International Artistic Research Project

Sound artist Robert Elias Stokowy of Berlin and Yulia Chernenko,lecturer at the HSE Faculty of Communications, Media, and Design, have initiated a joint German-Russian artistic research project entitled, ‘Phenomenology of Darkness’.

Chinese University of Hong Kong Becomes First Asian Partner of HSE Faculty of Computer Science

The two universities have signed a student exchange agreement. Now HSE students will be able to spend a semester in Shenzhen, while Chinese students get to spend a semester at HSE.

There Is No Way Back from Globalization, So We Must Learn to Trust Each Other

On January 14, 2019, Professor Giovanni Tria spoke at HSE on contemporary globalization, including its consequences and problems. Below are the key highlights of his talk.

HSE St Petersburg and the State Hermitage Museum Sign a Cooperation Agreement

On December 18, Sergey Kadochnikov, Director of HSE University – St Petersburg, and Georgy Vilinbakhov, Deputy General Director of the State Hermitage Museum, signed an agreement on cooperation between the university and the museum in the education and research.

Documentary Produced by HSE Graduate School of Urbanism Premieres Online

‘Maison d'Être’ is an exploratory documentary about people's emotional place attachment in highly dynamic Greater Paris undergoing large-scale urban renewal campaigns. GSU documentary about Paris is now available online.