Five Russian Universities are Awarded Centers for Advanced Study and Education

SECOND ROUND OF RIGOROUS COMPETITION PRODUCES FIVE REGIONAL WINNERS OF EXTRAORDINARY ACADEMIC PARTNERSHIP BETWEEN AMERICAN FOUNDATIONS AND RUSSIAN MINISTRY OF EDUCATION

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 Five Russian regional universities have been chosen to become sites for a Center For Advanced Study and Education (CASE) in the competition's second round. This will enable the universities to create academic hubs for scholars in the social sciences and the humanities and become vibrant intellectual communities for established and emerging scholars. Carnegie Corporation of New York and The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation joined forces with the Russian Ministry of Education in 1999 to create centers of excellence to enhance opportunities for research, education and scholarship in Russia.

In this second round of competition in late 2001, Far Eastern State University, Irkutsk State University, Kaliningrad State University, Novgorod State University and Saratov State University have been recognized for their vision for a CASE, and for their academic strength and intellectual leadership. These universities were chosen by a governing board, which includes members of the program's principal sponsors and organizers, as well as academic advisors from inside and outside Russia.

“A strong system of higher education coupled with healthy respect for scholarly and scientific research is central to the task of rejuvenating Russia and other post-Soviet states from within,” says Vartan Gregorian, president of Carnegie Corporation of New York. “We believe an investment in Russia’s intellectual and academic resources will contribute to its capacity to rebuild societies and reduce the region’s isolation.”

"Higher education is a fundamental building block in today's global society," says Blair Ruble, director of the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Study. "These Centers for Advanced Study and Education will offer scholars as well as the communities in which they reside a facility custom-built to foster rich intellectual exchange.”

The Corporation began developing the CASEs program in 1999 with a grant of $2.4 million to the Kennan Institute of the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington D.C. for two years. In addition to Carnegie Corporation, the CASEs program is now supported by the Russian Ministry of Education, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Open Society Institute.

"We will build on the strengths that each university possesses and emphasize certain intellectual themes at the CASEs," says Andrei Kortunov, director of the CASEs program. “In this rigorous competition, creativity and entrepreneurial spirit has begun to emerge in these universities, which will lead them to become incubators for new ideas and learning.”

The CASEs will become hubs for academic scholars who will both teach and undertake research through the auspices of the center. Fellowships will permit regional scholars from the university itself or from institutions in the region to pursue their work within Russia or at scholarly meetings outside the country. The mission of this multi-year commitment to establish and support CASEs in Russia is to strengthen universities, restore academic communities, foster a new generation of social scientists and integrate scholars from Russia into the West.
The five CASEs named after the second round of competition were chosen from among forty-four applicants. Criteria and information about the competition is available through the CASEs program website at http://www.monf.ru/mion.

THE CASES AND THEIR THEMES ARE:

Far Eastern State University—Russia and the Asia-Pacific Region: Security, Conflict and Cooperation 
Irkutsk State University—Siberia: Challenges to Development 
Kaliningrad State University—Russia and Europe
Novgorod State University—Russian State, Society and Identity Saratov State University—Power in Russia: State, Society and Individuals

Carnegie Corporation of New York was created by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to promote "the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding." As a grantmaking foundation,the Corporation seeks to carry out Carnegie's vision of philanthropy, which he said should aim "to do real and permanent good in the world." The Corporation's capital fund, originally donated at a value of about $135 million, had a market value of $1.7 billion on September 30, 2001. The Corporation awards grants totaling approximately $75 million a year in the areas of education, international peace and security, international development and strengthening U.S. democracy.