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National Scientific Communities in the Globalized World: Global ICTs as a Tool of Modernization among the Russian Academic Community

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For more content, please see Journal of Developing Societies.

Continuous growth in the use of modern information and communication technologies (ICTs) in science essentially expands the potentialities of scientists to receive the topical scientific information and to extend the professional communication that are the crucial elements for producing the new scientific knowledge. At the same time, these global technologies after becoming an integral part of the national sciences create and promote the new forms of organizing research corresponding to the globalized world science; that is, modern ICTs per se appear as a tool of globalization and transition to the information society. Both mentioned aspects of ICTs influence give enough motivation to investigate the real processes in those scientific communities that are assimilating this innovation. It is important to note that before our study, the productivity of ICTs within the sciences was not proved, although in principle it was not doubted. This article analyzes the process of ICTs assimilation in the Russian academic community (1994-2004), including dynamics of indicators characterizing not only the level of ICTs use but also their act on professional life and productivity of scientists as well. On the basis of empirical data from Russia obtained during 10 years of sociological monitoring, the research reveals the positive correlation between the level of ICTs use by scientists and their professional success. The new “virtual” types of science organizations, such as virtual laboratories and a grid system, that are considered as offshoots of globalization, are not typical to Russian academic science, which keeps safe a more traditional style. Nonetheless, some issues connected with the long-term prospects of e-science are also discussed.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Sociology, Institute for the History of Sciences and Technology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia;, Email:


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