Dr Anna Osypchuk, Department of Sociology, National University Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine – to University of Glasgow: 10 March – 18 May 2014
In the course of my 10-week period at Glasgow on IMRCEES Visiting Scholarship, I was involved into the number of activities which I described in this report.
Teaching. I taucht a course ‘Post-Soviet Ukraine: A Case Study in Socio-Economic, Socio-Cultural and Political Transformation’ as part of the IMRCEES programme. I specifically designed this course for IM students to both reflect my own research interests and to provide opportunities for more general discussions of recent and current politicalm, cultural, and economical events and changed in Ukraine, to give students an understanding of Ukraine’s post-Soviet transformation during the last two decades. In particular, the course aims to contextualise these transformations using current social theory, and to apply this theory to an empirical analysis of concrete social phenomena that have appeared in Ukraine since independence (among them entrepreneurs, new elites, and ‘Orange’ values, new types of identities and identity conflicts, politics and strategies of identity forming).
Research. Mainly, I used my time at Glasgow to work on a book that I have started on the topic of social transformations in post-Soviet Ukraine. In the course of 10-weeks scholarchip I worked on the outlin, general concept and outline of the book, completed 2 chapters.
This work have been focucing mainly on socio-cultural changes and identity transformations and politics in Ukraine during last two decades. Thus it may be characterised as falling within the fields of political sociology and sociology of culture. The research is also heavely inclined toward the development of adequate theoretical and methodological framework for the studies of transformations and adaptations in nowadays societies based mainly on agent-structure synthetic social theories and social network theories.
My major research interests are in the analysis of the constant interplay between individuals and social structures, “people” and “society” as well as their interrelations, mutual influence and reproduction. I believe that only through the conceptualization of the role and mutual influence of individual and social scholars will be able to grasp social changes and transformation processes in the world and in Ukraine in particular.
This research may be seen as an extension of my PhD research (which subject-matter is the problem of the synthesis of structure and agency in contemporary sociological theory, and an onthological and methodological analysis of ongoing structure-agency debates), my interest and work on identity politics and identity-construction, and is directly linked to my recent teaching experience in Ukraine. At the same time, my research objectives are not exclusively theoretical. I have been simultaneously working to develop a methodology for agency-structure analysis, an analytical tool which is be instrumental for better understanding of the agency-structure juxtapositions and unique constellations, and which provides a framework for analysis of social changes and post-Soviet transformations.
It is evident, that the research I was doing had been closely connected to the course I was teaching my IM students there, as well as to the teaching I am routinely involved into in my home University (National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy).
I participated in the CEES Research Seminar Programme by giving a talk ‘Euromaidan: Q&A Session’ (23.04.2014). I also took part in the list of IMRCEES activities, in particular in the workshops on Master dissertation discussions for 1st and 2nd year student.
This scholarship also allowed me to work on strengthening the ties between my home University (NaUKMA) and CEES, University of Glasgow through my research activities, teaching and academic meetings and diccissions, which I see as an important aspect of my visit.
Date: May 26, 2018 9:48 am