Highlights from 4 th LCSR Summer School
The 4th Summer School of the Laboratory for Comparative Social Research (LCSR) was centered around Categorical Data Analysis and saw the participation of more than 40 junior academics from universities and research centres of Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Italy, Germany, Poland, Romania, Israel and the U.S.
Participants of the School spent two weeks in Zelenogorsk, a resort town not far from St. Petersburg on the Gulf of Finland, developing their skills in various methods of working with categorical data. They worked under the supervision of Jacques Hagenaars (Tilburg University, the Netherlands) and his assistantZsuzsa Bakk (a Ph.D. student at the Tilburg University). The School’s curriculum also included additional electives given by Ronald Inglehart (University of Michigan, LCSR HSE), Hans-Dieter Klingemann (Social Science Research Centre (WZB), Berlin), and Kirill Zhirkov (LCSR NRU HSE).
During the school, participants successfully mastered complicated statistical techniques, and several of them presented their mini-research projects, which were carried out during hands-on exercises in Hagenaars’s course. The models that participants built were evaluated highly by the professor, who applauded students for their hard work and dedication in mastering the new analytical methods.
The Summer School also included the latest meeting of LCSR’s International Research Network, at which network participants described the latest results of their academic projects. The School’s demanding programme also included social activities. School participants made volleyball matches a regular activity at the School.
Participant feedback about the School:
Anna Kulkova, Research Intern, Laboratory for Political Research (HSE)
I study the relationship between religiosity and political activism. Both of these variables are latent, that is, they cannot be directly measured, as they represent complex characteristics. And latent-class analysis, the details of which we carefully studied over the two weeks, is of course crucial for me in order to produce interesting results. For example, a latent class of “grandmothers” has suddenly manifested itself within Russian society. This is a group of middle-aged women who regularly vote in elections, and attend church relatively regularly.
Dmytro Khutkyy, Researcher, Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (Ukraine)
This school is part of a unique system the LCSRhas spent several years implementing for leading scientists in the field of sociological research methodology to coach junior researchers. This is a second school for me. I was able to apply a lot of the advice and recommendations I received at the school concerning methods of analysis in the Mplus package in my own project on proactive orientation and individual activism. I presented the results of the project a few days ago at the XVIII World Congress of Sociology in Yokohama.
Chia Liu, Ph.D. Student, Center of Demographic Studies (Barcelona)
‘My Ph.D. research is on a new trend in Latin American families when women are the heads of household. We have already collected a significant amount of data by surveying several thousand people in three Latin American countries. Most of the questions in our surveys relate to nominal categories, and I plan to try some of the techniques we studied in Professor Hagenaar’s classroom on them in the near future.’
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