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The International Laboratory for Comparative Social Research (LCSR) was established in 2010 in the first wave of a competition for government mega-grants to attract major academics from abroad to Russian universities. The famous American sociologist and political scientist Ronald Inglehart, Founding President of the World Values Survey and professor at the University of Michigan, became the laboratory’s first Academic Supervisor.
Encouraging entrepreneurship, providing social support services and helping people find jobs are all part of a new ‘social contract’ programme introduced across Russia to assist poor families in becoming financially self-sufficient. Using formal contracts to encourage low-income people to engage in economic activity is proving to be more effective than welfare handouts, according to researchers of the HSE Centre for Studies of Income and Living Standards.
The processes of globalization should have contributed to reduced inequality in the world. In reality, however, the situation looks differently, with income inequality in the populations of developing economies growing. To correct this, the level of education of low-skilled workers must be increased, said Eric Maskin, Chief Research Fellow at the HSE International Laboratory of Decision Choice and Analysis and Nobel Laureate in Economics for 2007.
Over the past two decades, the average life expectancy in Russia has increased by 2.3 years for women and 1.4 years for men, according to a recently published paper based on the WHO's Global Burden of Disease (GBD) assessment – a major epidemiological study by a group of international experts, including Vasily Vlassov, Professor of the HSE Department of Health Care Administration and Economy.
Parents of school students in Moscow tend to believe that test assignments in two major final exams—the Basic State Exam (BSE) and the Unified State Exam (USE)—are too complex and teachers fail to properly prepare students for the finals; this negative attitude, which appears to be a widely-held stereotype not necessarily supported by evidence, is formed long before the exams come round. However, according to a study by Alina Pishnyak and Natalia Khalina, once the exams are over, families no longer consider them so hard to pass.
In San Francisco, the 111th annual meeting of the American Political Science Association (APSA) – one of the largest international conferences in the field of political science – recently took place. Scholars from HSE presented their research on forum panels such as ‘Fiscal Politics in Federal Systems’, ‘Social Policy in Non-democracies: Dynamics of Social Policy Debates in Russia’, ‘Incumbents and Elections in Developing Countries’, and ‘Power in 21st Century World Politics’.
The opportunity to find an interesting and well-paid job, a comfortable socio-cultural environment, and friendly and professional contacts in the new location are all essential factors for graduates of universities from Russian regions who are planning to move to another city. Saida Ziganurova , Research Assistant at the HSE Center for Institutional Studies, studied the migration potential among young professionals.
On September 14 2015, Dr Alina Sorgner will give a talk at the annual meeting of the HSE Laboratory for Entrepreneurial Research on 'Does Entrepreneurship Pay? Empirical Analysis of Incomes of Self-employed, as Compared to Wages of Paid Employees'. Ahead of her visit to HSE Moscow, the young academic gave an interview to HSE English News Service about variations in entrepreneurship in post-communist countries and about her cooperation with HSE.