Models of Social Policy and New Forms of Solidarity in Russia and Europe (2010)

Models of Social Policy and New Forms of Solidarity in Russia and Europe

Research project funded partly by the CGES, but mainly by the Research Fund of St. Petersburg State University in 2009 and after evaluation probably for the further two years (in total, 2009-2011)

Participants: Dr. Elena Belokurova (CGES), Anastasija Tsygankova (PhD student, St. Petersburg State University), Anastasija Kvadritzius (student, MA SES), Maria Scattone (Kudrjavzeva) (PhD student, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany).

The aim of the project is to analyze the interplay between models of social policy, forms of social exclusion and types of solidarities, reflected in collective actions of leaders and participants of non-government organizations in Russia and Europe. The aim of the research supposes the following objectives: 1) to reveal the models of social policy and their influence on forms of exclusions (structures of possibilities) and forms of solidarities (old and new ones); 2) to define the terms of mobilization the collective efforts (actions); 3) to analyze the influence of collective efforts (actions) on the transformation the social policy in various countries.

The methods used in the research are multiple case-studies of non-government organizations (NGOs) working in social sphere and directing on support and social integration of youth and teen-ages, referring to “special” groups, so-called “risk groups” (orphans, disabled, children from unstable families etc.), and oriented to activating their abilities. The European NGOs working in Europe and Russia are under investigation. In this way, later it will be possible to compare their strategies in the EU and Russia as well as to compare solidarities developed in both cases.

Two cases were especially studies in 2009, both from Germany: NGOs dealing in Germany and Russia. The first case is the NGO “SOS Children’s Villages” helping orphaned children internationally, but in our case in Berlin and in St. Petersburg. The other case include the autonomous NGO Upsala Circus built in St. Petersburg in 2000 and connected to it a volunteer association "Upsala - Interkultureller Zirkusaustausch für Kinder und Jugendliche e.V." founded in 2002 in Berlin. Later, it is supposed to study other European and Russian cases of NGOs working both in Russia and other countries. Thus, a comparative study of the different branches of the UK charity organization “Every Child” in Russia, Ukraine and Moldova was already started in 2009. Some further cases will be analyzed in 2010-2011.

The research should result in a number of publications and presentations.