The Soft Power Technologies in Resolution of Conflicts of the Subjects of Educational Policy of Russia

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1 The Soft Power Technologies in Resolution of Conflicts of the Subjects of Educational Policy of Russia Rezeda G. Galikhuzina, Evgenia V.Khramova,Elena A. Tereshina, Natalya A. Shibanova.* Kazan Federal University, department of conflictology,aud.1601, 35,Kremlevskaya Str., Kazan Abstract Each state chooses its own path in solving problems of educational policy. One of the mechanisms to address the problem of integration of higher education in Europe has become the Bologna process. Today on the agenda of the European educational space are the problems of implementation of the Bologna process. The most acute problem of Russian higher education is that of conflicts of the subjects of educational policy - administrative and academic communities. In solving this problem, they use the «soft power» technologies in order to create and implement an optimal educational policy. The aim of the submitting article is theoretical and methodological basis of studying the formation of educational policy of «soft power» technology in Russian practice. The main methods of study are the analysis of the source base on the problem, the synthesis of the conceptual foundations of neo-institutional theory, the theory of studying the «soft power» technologies and methods of qualitative data analysis. The basic result of the study is a comprehensive analysis of functioning of the «soft power» technology of formation and implementation of educational policy in Russian practice. The main subject to be discussed by the authors is the consistency of classification of the ideological «soft power» technologies in the space of Russian higher education provided by publication. According to the authors, the concept introduced by them can be regarded as an independent for applied study of the process of formation and implementation of modern Russian policy in higher school. Keywords: "soft power" technologies, higher education, educational policy of Russia, policy in education, modern ideology. Page 167

2 Introduction Educational policy of Russia is formed against the background of a profound transformation of public management processes with the ceasing of the existence of such a state as the Soviet Union. Every historical stage of reformation of education was characterized by the internal change of policy of the country. It affected to a greater extent higher school as being the closest to the economic segment of the state, on which has always been made political stake in the development of Russia. A significant period of reform was the participation in the Bologna process. In practice, the process has radically refreshed the system of higher education of the country. The present stage of modernization of higher education in Russia is characterized by a number of historically accumulated contradictions that involve a wider range of actors in educational policy. This article deals with the specificity of studies of conflicts of this nature in Russian practice, its theoretical and methodological foundations of the subject. It should be noted that the contradictions in the formation of educational policy is not only a part of the Russian political reality. Modern Europe is experiencing a crisis in the educational system despite the rise of popularity of European universities among students all over the world. One calls incomplete or partial integration into the Bologna process of some European countries that have unique educational traditions in the capacity of its costs. The students protest background against which the Bologna system in Eastern Europe was implemented is given as a negative factor [1]. In May 2005, the National Union of Students in Europe (ESIB) published The Black Book of the Bologna Process [2] which illustrated the basic problems of the system from the point of view of the student body: the ineffectiveness of the system of credits, the movement from bachelor degree course to masters program is almost unattainable for a large number of students of academic mobility. The shortcomings of the EU educational system are called its being expensive for the state, long-duration and non-competitiveness [3]. According to Samuel Abraham, crisis in education is a sure indication, a kind of engine of its development through structured, systematic and novel reforms. European problems of implementation of the Bologna process are superimposed on the post- Soviet educational space: for example many countries, including France, Spain and Russia, agreed on the problem of rating institutions or underestimation of education in national languages [4]. However, the Russian realities in this segment of services always followed the western time of development with delay and had their own specific features, such as lack of agreement in the communication of entities of forming of educational policy. Therefore, the subject of our investigation, based on the principles of neo-institutional analysis, is becoming increasingly important to resolve these conflicts in Russian political environment of the «soft power» technology. The main results are seen recommendations for applied research Russian practices of application «soft power» technology in the development and implementation of higher education policy, as well as presented the classification of these technologies. Methods According to modern ideas of political theory, the state (national), civil (representing the interests of various social groups) and international institutions are involved in forming public policy. Institutions that adopt decision (administrative structures) and institutions that Page 168

3 render various kinds of services to population, fixed by the legislation, are differentiated as part of the state institutions. Both are the subjects of the formation of public policy. The problems identified by the evolution of the implementation of the Bologna Process in the Russian Federation have formed at the moment the attitude to the system of higher education as the service sector. As a result, today we can speak objectively about the Russian university as a public institution that provides educational services to the population. Its institutionalization is a debatable issue but having a right to exist not only as a theoretical concept, but also as an applied engine, realized under Russian realities. Theoretically, the legitimation of this thesis can be in the scope of neo-institutional theory, in particular within the framework of the political-cultural approach of the American Professor of University of California (Berkeley) Nile Fligstein, who proposed the metaphor of markets as policy. According to Fligstein s theory, there is a close link between the market and the state. Through the metaphor of markets as policy, Neil Fligstein comes close to two planes of analysis in the political-cultural approach of neo-institutionalism: - grouping of markets as an element of state-building, where institution-building, between which there is competition regarded as a political project of the established authorities of actors. - typologization of these political projects into intra- and inter-company (intra and inter-actor) push for power in order to control the markets [5]. Fligstein s approach aims primarily to study political processes more closely than in other institutional theories and looks into the problem of agency relations in terms of dependence of choice of actors on the market structure and set of rules. Concerning the formation of policy of higher education in the Russian Federation neoinstitutional approach allows us to construct its following scheme: - involving public institutions, civic institutions, international institutions take part in forming public policy; - as state, one differentiates administrative structures and institutions that provide services to the public; - concerning educational policy in higher school, we refer public authorities exercising state control in the sphere of higher education to the administrative structures, and the institutions that provide services in the field of education to institutions of higher education; - the administrative (bureaucratic) community and the academic community (rectors and teaching body) are referred to institutional actors of the policy-making process in the field of higher education. According to Neil Fligstein, the market of educational services in this case can be identified with the state policy in the sphere of higher education, and the behavior of actors on it with the participation in the formation and implementation of this policy. Thus, the subjects of policy development and implementation in the sphere of higher education of Russia can involve the actors such as the academic and administrative communities. According to the Russian specifics aforesaid, the methods of participation of these actors (subjects) in the formation of state policy in the sphere of higher education also have a specific technological Page 169

4 character, not characterized by direct powerful influence but by the nature of soft power the «soft power» technologies. Results The technologies of formation and implementation of such policy are the «soft power» technologies, to institutionalization of the concept of which our research is directed. We define them as ideological technologies. We treat ideological technologies as the set of instruments of ideological legitimation of the process and the results of activity of the subjects of management, allowing to construct the perception and evaluations of the actors involved in the process of formation of educational policy in the state. That is, you can define the ideological technologies as technologies of ideological project the technologies of «soft power» category. We distinguish the following types of ideological technologies of «soft power» in the sphere of formation and implementation of the policy of higher education: 1. The technology of infiltration in lawmaking - implementation of the ideology by bringing its elements into the laws, subordinate acts, programs of national projects, short-, mediumand long-term program of activities, the concept of activity, analytical and prognostic documents. 2. The technology of direct formation of discourse or involvement into the communication of all subjects of management. The presented typology of ideological technologies does not pretend to absolute truth and immutability, however, in terms of variability of the classification system of social technologies (depending on the author) there takes place one of the variants to be studied. Summary Thus, the experience of formation of educational discourse of the Russian Federation has a specific character. It is expressed in the character of ideological technologies applied to its formation. In authors judgment, these technologies are possible to attribute to the category of «soft power». They see the main task in resolving conflicts of the subjects of Russian educational policy. The policy in higher education should be spared of the costs of confrontation between its subjects. This thesis is based on understanding of the institutional importance of higher education in the development of modern Russia. Conclusion A recognized American theorist of soft power Professor Joseph S. Nye, Jr defined it as the ability to achieve the desired on the basis of the voluntary participation of allies but not by coercion or handouts [6]. Based on the works by Nye, Jr., a series of modern theories of explanation and applied use of the «soft power» technologies has been developed. So, Ty Solomon says [7] that the majority of authors in their works today neglect the study of the emotional ground, the potential of soft power. His research aims at studying deep-rooted conceptual social and political underpinnings of soft power. It is based on the symbiosis of the theories by J. Nye Jr. and Ernesto Laclos. Solomon believes that the soft power grows out from the emotional and aesthetic dynamics in the process of social formation of the person. Page 170

5 The concept of emotional investments provides a conceptual anchor, to give an overall estimate of the effectiveness of soft power. In studying social aspects of power, Solomon looks for the relationship between the concepts of power and concrete actors on the basis of their interaction as social beings. Solomon assigns a special role in these interactions to the contexts and involvement in social building. Here takes place the identification of the concepts of soft power by Nye Jr. and emotional investments by Laclos. To theorize not studied emotional reinforcements of soft power, in terms of the development of the concept of their attractiveness for emotional investments on the part of the actors, further studies of soft power, according to the author, on the basis of the theoretical framework may be devoted to the development of more specific criteria for assessing the impact and the dynamics of the efforts made in respect of soft power. It is an attempt of finding methods for assessing soft power which the study by Caitlin Byrne concerns [8]. The author notes that at present there is no a uniform approach to the assessment of the level of soft power influence. However, it highlights two principles of its formation in modern literature and practice: quantitative methods that give no results of adequate level and multi-faceted, combining quantitative and qualitative methods. The latter, in Caitlin Byrne s judgment, are appealed to fully appreciate the soft power and provide wider opportunities for further research. They relate to emotional and regulatory aspects of evaluation of soft power. These are the factors that measure the awareness and participation of the actors in the dialogue with the authorities, in cooperation policy through the introduction of cultural components and language - as the strong indicators of assessment. The author believes a more substantial cooperation is achieved through education, science and industry, by extending opportunities to take leading parts in all sectors. Under such conditions of improving an emotional component of soft power, regulatory power would think more about expanding areas of common understanding, about the depth of trust and more productive and substantial cooperation. Laura Roselle proposes to use method of the strategic narrative as one of the tools for qualitative assessment of the effectiveness of soft power [9]. The author argues that the concept of strategic narrative gives us this opportunity by means of the analysis of mass media. Significant changes in international relations, ecology, media require a modern explanation of the concepts of power and influence. The strategic narrative answers the purpose. This approach allows to understand the new forms and relations of power and influence, change of the nature of attention to them and adaptation of social actors. Lejf Moos gives a deeper analysis of the transition from rigid forms of management to soft power in the educational environment of many countries (for example, Denmark) [10]. He conducts research at international, national and school levels. The use of soft management shifts the control center from power decisions to the influence on their adoption of all levels. From this perspective, the author is interested in the analysis of new forms of influence such as discourse and new social technologies. Many decisions take the forms of social technologies which often include: legislative acts, social structures, laws of influence, etc. They have an established procedure, methods, forms of work and tools, social technologies which can be used as the technologies with the purpose or value. They are used to influence the behavior and mental processes of people. They conceal the decisions and influences of their sources and form the basis for decision-taking. Some of the technologies are developing from daily methods, while the others are applied in practice. The first are seen as a natural Page 171

6 way of work, not discussed, secretly invested by power. The second are related to the field of practice of educational policy and are often described as natural or neutral tools for practitioners. In this case, power is hidden and not discussed. Therefore, social technologies are in any case a strong but hidden form of power. As the author notes, in the educational practice social technologies often become an important tool for policy makers. They have a strong impact on political decisions and educational practice. For example, ranking the systems of education has been attributed to the natural instruments. Such approach is correlated with understanding of difficult conditions of interaction of actors in educational system of modern Russia. Modern Russian scientist, doctor of sociology, professor Andrey Tuzikov considers that the soft power technologies are the tools for forming public policy in the mechanism of ideologizing of its institutions and activity of actors [11]. According to the professor, the mechanisms of formation and implementation of policy in the sphere of higher education of the Russian Federation have ideological character, that is, constructed on the basis of clearly defined units by each actor in this policy. Thus, both the administrative community and the academic community have their own interests in it. Often these interests do radically differ. Then we can talk about their collision. But the sphere of educational services disposes to the confrontations of the main actors none the least. That is why certain rules of the game have been laid down between actors. Each of them, driven with their ideological settings using the «soft power» technologies, tries to influence the decisions made by the other party. As a result, the «soft power» technologies appear to be as the tool to resolve the conflicts of the subjects of the policy of Russian higher education. In practice, it is manifested through the interpenetration of ideologies plying between the two elements that constitute the ideology (according to professor Tuzikov): discourse and project. In our case, this project is the policy in the sphere of higher education, discourse - the system of communication, built on this project. On the basis of the approach we have presented the classification of the «soft power» technologies to be used in the process of formation and implementation of the modern Russian policy in the sphere of higher education. The authors assume that the further analysis of the technologies represented in the classification at the level of application allows to develop recommendations for the subjects of educational policy of Russia in order to overcome the contradictions between them in the process of formation and implementation. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The work is performed according to the Russian Government Program of Competitive Growth of Kazan Federal University. Page 172

7 References Rodgero D. Out of the Ruins into the Crisis: about the Main Trends in the Life of Global University // Reserve Stock, 3, URL: The black book of the Bologna Process // ESIB s Bologna Process Committee, Printed in Bergen, Norway, May Abraham S. Education Crisis is Normal // Open Space in Europe. Electronic resource, access mode: free, Expert: criticism of the Bologna process in Russia is not always justified // the REX news agency, Electronic resource, access mode: free, Fligstein N. Markets as Policy: Political-Cultural Approach to Market Institutions // Economic sociology, Volume 4, 1, 2003, P Joseph S. Nye, Jr. Public diplomacy and soft power. Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, March 2008; vol. 616, 1: pp Ty Solomon. The affective underpinnings of soft power, European Journal of International Relations, 2014; Vol. 20(3): pp Caitlin Byrne. Australia s New Colombo Plan: Enhancing regional soft power through student mobility, International Journal 2016, Vol. 71(1) Laura Roselle. Strategic narrative: A new means to understand soft power. Media, War & Conflict 2014, Vol. 7(1) Lejf Moos. Hard and Soft Governance: the journey from transnational agencies to school leadership. European Educational Research Journal,Volume 8 Number , pp Tuzikov A. R. Ideology in the Theoretical Dimension: Between the Past and the Future / Moscow: Social and Humanities Publishing House, p. Page 173

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