Center for Independent Social Research

Saint Petersburg, Russia

Center for Independent Social Research

Saint Petersburg, Russia
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Friedman S.R.,New Drug Development Research Center Inc. | Sandoval M.,New Drug Development Research Center Inc. | Mateu-Gelabert P.,New Drug Development Research Center Inc. | Meylakhs P.,Center for Independent Social Research | And 2 more authors.
Substance Use and Misuse | Year: 2011

A positive-deviance control-case life history study of injection drug users (IDUs) in New York City who had injected drugs for 8-15 years compared 21 IDUs who were antibody negative for both HIV and hepatitis C with 3 infected with both viruses and 11 infected with hepatitis C virus but not HIV. Eligible subjects were referred from other research studies and from community organizations that conduct testing for HIV and hepatitis C virus. Data were collected during 2005-2008 and were analyzed using life history and grounded theory approaches. They support grounded hypotheses that IDUs who are able to attain symbiotic goals like avoiding withdrawal and maintaining social support are assisted thereby in remaining uninfected with HIV or hepatitis C. These hypotheses should be tested using cohort studies and prevention trials to see if helping IDUs attain symbiotic goals reduces infection risk. The study's limitations are noted. © 2011 Informa Healthcare USA, Inc.

Tysiachniouk M.,Wageningen University | Tysiachniouk M.,Center for Independent Social Research | Henry L.A.,Bowdoin College
International Journal of Sustainable Development and World Ecology | Year: 2015

In this study, we examine the political implications of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification and its requirements for participatory governance by focusing on three case studies in Russia and drawing upon qualitative research data from 2002 to 2014. We argue that one of the unintended by-products of forest certification is the advancement of a specific type of citizenship-what we refer to as managed citizenship. In managed citizenship, local communities are empowered by new rights endowed to them by a global governance generating network (GGN), such as the FSC. Through the GGN, local stakeholders may become involved in long-term initiatives that provide new opportunities to participate in democratic governance. However, citizens involvement is cultivated, directed, and circumscribed by actors from outside the communities, such as environmental and certification experts who educate local residents about their stakeholder status. We also find that the persistent weakness of social interests, as opposed to environmental, within the FSC and the effects of economic instability and weak democracy domestically contribute to the challenges of engaging local communities. © 2015 Taylor and Francis.

Tysiachniouk M.,Center for Independent Social Research
Forest Policy and Economics | Year: 2013

This paper examines the role played by different units in the supply chain that ensure consumer confidence in the process of production. Analysis of interviews with the managers of various units in the chain of custody showed that, as we move from the buyer to the production units, the building-up of trust by managers is becoming increasingly technical. Thus, end consumers include the intangible value of the product in their understanding of trust regarding Russian wood. The lower the unit is in the chain of custody and the closer it is situated to the logging sites, the more restricted is the construction of trust by managers, undergoing minimization and, ultimately, reduction in the bid to ensure a "normal" business or purely technical approach. The differences observed in the constructions of trust in various units of the chain can be explained in light of two factors: firstly, the challenges faced by each individual unit, and secondly, the value system of the managers at every level. © 2012 Elsevier B.V.

Kulyasova A.,Center for Independent Social Research
Forest Policy and Economics | Year: 2013

This paper consists of an analysis of the interaction of three logging companies with each other and with local stakeholders. The main context of this case is that all of these companies are daughter companies of large international forest holdings and they have been certified by an international voluntary forest certification system. The author pays attention to the role played by experts from NGOs in building up trust as a communicational strategy used by companies. The analysis focuses on the factors and barriers of trust relations between companies, and on the mechanisms involved in the construction of trust between companies and local stakeholders, including strategies of corporate social responsibility and constructive dialog with local stakeholders. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Tysiachniouk M.,Wageningen University | Tysiachniouk M.,Center for Independent Social Research | McDermott C.L.,University of Oxford
Forest Policy and Economics | Year: 2016

This paper applies theories of equity and transnational "governance generating networks" to assess how forest certification is enacted in Russia. Drawing on eight years of field research, we compare the engagement of shifting networks of Russian private sector, NGO, governmental and local community actors in implementing select social and environmental standards and how this impacts the effectiveness of the FSC in tackling local community and environmental concerns.Our case study suggests that much of the parameter-setting for what is addressed in certification's "sites of implementation" happens outside of formal standards-setting processes. In regard to environmental standards, strong and stable transnational environmental networks have been relatively successful in protecting "high conservation value forests". However equivalent multi-level networks are lacking for key social standards. While a national social NGO has had some success in promoting procedural equity through community participation, we find no evidence that certification was addressing local community concerns for distributive equity. In particular, certification had failed to address the loss of small and medium forest enterprises, loss of local access to sawnwood and rising costs of fuelwood. This highlights the power dynamics of global standards implementation and the need for multi-scale advocacy coalitions to ensure their effective implementation. © 2015 Elsevier B.V.

Meylakhs P.,Center for Independent Social Research
Health, Risk and Society | Year: 2011

The paper is devoted to analysis of the debates on sex education in the Russian press. 'Risk narrative structure' of media articles on sex education was determined. This structure represents a system of mutually constituting elements, which include object of risk, risks themselves, solutions to their prevention, solutions opponents, and type of society these solutions presuppose. It is argued that analysis of risks with the aid of 'risk narrative structures' can be a useful development of sociocultural theory of risk, as competing risk narratives can be fully grasped only when considered not as discrete claims about different 'risks' but as coherent systems of interrelated meanings. On the basis of this structure, competent risk media narratives of proponents and opponents of sex education were reconstructed. In these narratives different definitions of 'children' as objects of risk were constructed, and so were types of risks, and types of society. It would be oversimplifying to consider debates on sex education as a battle of 'enlightened rationality' against 'dark irrationality.' In each risk narrative the solution (introduction or ban of sex education) is a logically following element in the respective risk narrative. While sex education advocates were concerned about negative consequences of children's sexual behaviour and defence of the 'civilised society's moral boundaries, the opposite side was concerned about retaining children's moral purity and defence of 'traditional' moral boundaries. ©2011 Taylor & Francis.

Mateu-Gelabert P.,National Development Research Institutes Inc. | Sandoval M.,National Development Research Institutes Inc. | Meylakhs P.,Center for Independent Social Research | Wendel T.,National Development Research Institutes Inc. | Friedman S.R.,National Development Research Institutes Inc.
International Journal of Drug Policy | Year: 2010

Background: Research on heroin withdrawal has primarily been done clinically, thus focussing on symptom severity, physiological manifestations, and how withdrawal impairs normal functioning. However, there is little scientific knowledge on how heroin withdrawal affects injection behaviour. This paper explores how withdrawal episodes heighten unsafe injection practices and how some long-term injectors manage such risks. Methods: We interviewed 32 injection drug users in New York City who had been injecting drugs for 8-15 years (21 HIV and HCV uninfected; 3 HIV and HCV infected; and 8 singly infected with HCV). We used in-depth life history interviews to inquire about IDUs' life history, injection practices and drug use behaviour over time. Analysis used grounded theory techniques. Results: Withdrawal can enhance risk by undermining IDUs' willingness to inject safely; increasing the likelihood of attending risky settings; raising the number of injection partners; and seeking ad hoc partners for drug or needle sharing. Some IDUs have developed practices to cope with withdrawal and avoid risky practices (examples include carrying clean needles to shooting galleries and sniffing rather than injecting). Strategies to avoid withdrawal include back up methods, resorting to credit, collaborating with others, regimenting drug intake, balancing drug intake with money available, and/or resorting to treatment. Conclusion: Withdrawal periods can heighten risky injection practices. Some IDUs have applied strategies to avoid withdrawal or used practices to cope without engaging in risky practices. These behaviours might in turn help IDUs prevent an infection with hepatitis C or HIV. © 2009 Elsevier B.V.

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