Russia, Norway, and social science / Columns / The Foreigner

Russia, Norway, and social science. Norway and Russia's shared border has led to many shared interests explored by Norwegian scientists. The Research Council of Norway's NORRUSS programme, with support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has focused on social science. Themes have covered the High North and Russian policies, politics, and social developments. Projects have ranged from corporate social responsibility to Arctic geopolitics to governance and corruption. The research process itself brought challenges. Research ethics tend to demand keeping interviewee identities anonymous, but some NGOs interviewed in Russia asked to be named. They want the Russian government to hear their words and to know the source. Meanwhile, many Russian research partners have stringent financial reporting requirements to their government.

research, arctic, science, policies, corruption, politics, governance, diplomacy, paywall



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Russia, Norway, and social science

Published on Tuesday, 30th May, 2017 at 11:20 under the columns category, by Ilan Kelman.

Norway and Russia's shared border has led to many shared interests explored by Norwegian scientists.

NORRUSS researchers meeting in Oslo in May
NORRUSS researchers meeting in Oslo in May
Photo: Ilan Kelman


The Research Council of Norway's NORRUSS programme, with support from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, has focused on social science. Themes have covered the High North and Russian policies, politics, and social developments. Projects have ranged from corporate social responsibility to Arctic geopolitics to governance and corruption.

The research process itself brought challenges. Research ethics tend to demand keeping interviewee identities anonymous, but some NGOs interviewed in Russia asked to be named. They want the Russian government to hear their words and to know the source. Meanwhile, many Russian research partners have stringent financial reporting requirements to their government.

Could the scientific process emerging from Norway create positive change across Russia? Perhaps conducting research could improve Norway-Russia relations and increase openness? Articulating such a goal could create bilateral problems, even where individuals and organisations on both sides of the border desire and seek it.

Active science diplomacy is not a stated goal of NORRUSS. It could nonetheless occur, possibly inadvertently.

Should Norwegian scientists merely research in Russia and collaborate with Russian scientists? Or despite the potential for cultural imperialism, does a wider responsibility exist to bring Norwegian values to other locations through science?

Ilan Kelman is a Reader in Risk, Resilience and Global Health at University College London who was funded by the NORRUSS programme.



Published on Tuesday, 30th May, 2017 at 11:20 under the columns category, by Ilan Kelman.

This post has the following tags: research, arctic, science, policies, corruption, politics, governance, diplomacy, paywall.





  
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