SAINT-PETERSBURG BRANCH
OF THE RUSSIAN INSTITUTE FOR CULTURAL RESEARCH

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NEWSHOMEDEPARTMENTSEVENTSCONTACT USUNESCO Chair

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PROJECTS



International Journal of Cultural Research


Biennale
UNESCO Chair in Comparative Studies of Spiritual Traditions, their Specific Cultures and Interreligious Dialogue, acting upon the basis of the St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies within the framework of the International Network of Chairs of the UNESCO/UNITWIN on Interreligious Dialogue for Intercultural Understanding in cooperation with the St.Petersburg Scientific Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences and International Association ‘Russian Culture’ with the organizational and financial support of the UNESCO Cluster Office in Moscow for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, the Republic of Moldova, and the Russian Federation, and the UNESCO Cluster Office in Almaty for Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan organized International Expert Meeting in the framework of the Project on conducting interdisciplinary studies and publication of the collective international monograph “World Religions in the Context of Contemporary Culture: New Perspectives of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding”, 26 – 27 April 2011, St. Petersburg, Russian Federation
International Working meeting of experts of UNESCO chairs in St.Petersburg, Russia is dedicated to discussing, supplementing, and correcting intermediary results of the international research project ‘Christianity and Islam in the Context of Contemporary Culture: New Prospects of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding in the Russian Federation and Eastern Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus’, which forms an integral part of a more long-term and far-reaching project entitles ‘World Religions in the Context of the Contemporary Culture: New Perspectives of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding’. Both have been initiated and elaborated by the St.Petersburg UNESCO Chair in Comparative Studies of Spiritual Traditions, their Specific Cultures and Interreligious Dialogue with support of the International Association ‘Russian Culture’ within the general framework of International Network of UNESCO/UNITWIN Chairs on Interfaith Dialogue for Intercultural Understanding, and being implemented with the consultative and financial support of the UNESCO Moscow Office for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, the Republic of Moldova and the Russian Federation, and the UNESCO Almaty Office for Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.
Present stage of the International research project 'World Religions in the Context of the Contemporary Culture: New Perspectives of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding', conducted in the course of the first half of the year 2011, has consisted in conducting research dedicated to basic regularities, challenges, and perspectives in interfaith dialogue between the adherents of Christianity and Islam. Russian Federation was chosen as a focal point for the study, represented by both regions of the traditional flourishing of Christianity and Islam, and present-day urban agglomerations, where new modes of 'meeting of cultures' are being created. Other focal regions included Eastern Europe, primarily Belarus and Moldova, countries of the Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan), as well as the Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia).
In the course of conducting this stage of the project, experts in both basic problems of interfaith dialogue, as well as different religious and cultural traditions, have conducted detailed research of problems and prospects, critical points and points of growth, actual tactics and strategies, basing on data of their respective regions, and presented them in the form of short texts. After that, a Working meeting was organized in the city of St.Petersburg, Russia, on the historical premises of the St.petersburg Scientific Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, in order to elaborate and supplement their texts, basing on the results of intensive two-day discussions. Finally, the editorial board has elaborated the definitive version of the international collective monograph 'World Religions in the Context of the Contemporary Culture: New Perspectives of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding. Christianity and Islam in the Context of Contemporary Culture: New Prospects of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding in the Russian Federation and Eastern Europe, in Central Asia and the Caucasus' in Russian and English, as well as in French (about 300 pages all-in-all), which is now being prepared for publication by one of the publishing houses of St.Petersburg.

PARTICIPANTS OF THE INTERNATIONAL EXPERT MEETING

  • Ms. Meruert Abusseitova, Director of the R.B. Suleimenov Institute of Oriental Studies, Committee of Science, Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Dr.Hab. (History), professor, Almaty, Republic of Kazakhstan
  • Mr. Muzafar Artikov, Associate Professor, National University of Uzbekistan, and of the Tashkent Islamic University, Tashkent, Republic of Uzbekistan
  • Ms. Munzifa Babajanova, Chair, UNESCO Chair ‘Intercultural Dialogue in Modern World’ at the Russian-Tajik (Slavonic) University, Ph.D. (History), associate Professor of the Chair of Cultural Studies, Pedagogy, Psychology at the Russian-Tajik (Slavonic) University, Dushanbe, Republic of Tajikistan
  • Mr. Dimitri K. Burlaka, Rector of Private educational establishment of higher professional education ‘Russian Christian Academy for Humanities’, Dr.Hab. (Philosophy), professor, St.Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Nino Chikovani, Director of the Institute of Cultural Studies, Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University; Head of the UNESCO Chair in Intercultural Dialogue, Dr.Hab. (History), Professor, Tbilisi, Republic of Georgia
  • Mr. Emil Dragnev, Chair, UNESCO Chair of South East European Studies; employee of the Department of Universal History, State University of Moldova, Ph.D. (History), Associate Professor, Chişinǎu, Republic of Moldova
  • Ms. Gunay Efendiyeva, First Secretary of the National Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, Counselor of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Baku, Republic of Azerbaijan
  • Mr. Sergei S. Horuzhy, Director of Institute of Synergetic Anthropology; Principal Research Fellow, Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences; Dr.Hab. (Physics, Mathematics), Professor, Moscow, Russia
  • Mr. Hovhannes Hovhannisyan, Associate Professor, Chair of History of Armenian Church and Ecclessiology at Yerevan State University; Associate Professor, Yerevan State Linguistic University, Ph.D. (History), Yerevan, Republic of Armenia
  • Ms. Natalia A. Kanaeva, Seniour research fellow of the Center for Oriental Philosophies’ Studies at the Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences, Ph.D. (philosophy), Associate Professor, Moscow, Russia (observer)
  • Mr. Igor Y. Kotin, Senior Research Fellow, Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Kunstkamera), Dr. Phil. (Oxon, 2001), Dr.Hab. (History), St. Petersburg, Russia.
  • Ms. Natalia Kutuzova, Member of the Expert Council under the Commissioner for Religions and Nationalities, Council of Ministers of the Republic of Belarus, Professor of Institute of Parliamentarism and Enterpreneurship, Senior Research Fellow at Institute of Philosophy of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus, Ph.D. (History), Associate Professor, Minsk, Republic of Belarus
  • Mr. Efim A. Rezvan, Deputy Director, Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Kunstkamera), Dr.Hab. (History), Professor, St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Goulchokhra N. Seidova, Head, Department of the Humanities, Derbent Branch of the Daghestan State University, Ph.D. (Philosophy), Derbent, Russia
  • Ms. Munira Shahidi, director of the Z.Shahidi Republican Museum of Musical Culture, Chairman of the Z.Shahidi International Foundation for Cultures, Ph.D.(Cultural Studies), Dushanbe, Republic of Tajikistan
  • Mr. Dimitri L. Spivak, Chair, UNESCO Chair in Comparative Studies of Spiritual Traditions, their Specific Cultures and Interreligious Dialogue, acting upon the basis of the St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies; Director, St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies, Dr.Hab. (Philology), St.Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Adash Toktosunova, former Secretary General of the National Commission of the Kyrgyz Republic for UNESCO; Founder and Head, Public Foundation “Dialogue of Cultures and Civilizations”, Dr.Hab. (Political Science), Bishkek, Republic of Kyrgyzstan
  • Mr. Eduard A. Tropp, Principal Academic Secretary, Presidium of the St.Petersburg Scientific Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Dr.Hab. (Physics, Mathematics), Professor, St.Petersburg, Russia

MEMBERS OF THE COORDINATION COMMITTE

  • Mr. Dimitri L. Spivak, Chair, UNESCO Chair in Comparative Studies of Spiritual Traditions, their Specific Cultures and Interreligious Dialogue, acting upon the basis of the St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies; Director, St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies, Dr.Hab. (Philology), St.Petersburg, Russia – Co-Chairman
  • Mr. Steven Shankman, Coordinator of International Network of UNESCO/UNITWIN Chairs on Interfaith dialogue for Intercultural Understanding, professor of the University of Oregon, Eugene, USA – Co-Chairman
  • Ms. Liubava M. Moreva, Programme Specialist for Culture, UNESCO Moscow Office for Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, the Republic of Moldova and the Russian Federation – Coordinator of the Project
  • Ms. Skye Burn, Associate Member of the UNESCO Chair in Comparative Studies of Spiritual Traditions, their Specific Cultures and Interreligious Dialogue in St.Petersburg, Russia; Executive Director, The Flow Project, Bellingham, USA
  • Ms. Alina V. Venkova, Deputy Director, St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies, Ph.D. (Cultural Studies), Associate Professor, St.Petersburg, Russia – Deputy Chairperson
  • Ms. Valentina M. Dianova, Professor of Chair of Cultural Studies of the Faculty of Philosophy, St.Petersburg State Univerity, Dr.Hab. (Philosophy), St.Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Elena A. Ivanova, Academic Secretary, United Scientific Council for Humanities and Social Sciences of the St.Petersburg Scientific Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Ph.D. (History), St. Petersburg, Russia.
  • Mr. Dimitri A. Ivashentsov, Chairman of International Association ‘Russian Culture’, senior research fellow, Sector of historical and comparative cultural studies, St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies, Dr.Hab (Technologies), Professor, Honorary Scientist of the Russian Federation, St.Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Anna V. Koneva, Head, Sector of fundamental issues in cultural studies, St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies, Ph.D. (Philosophy), Associate Professor, St.Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Anna V. Liashko, Senior research fellow, Sector of historical and comparative cultural studies, St.Petersburg Branch of the Russian Institute for Cultural Studies, Ph.D. (Cultural Studies), Associate Professor, St.Petersburg, Russia
  • Mr. Nikolay L. Mouskhelishvili, Rector of the Scientific and educational establishment of higher professional education ‘St.Thomas Institute of Philosophy, Theology, and History’, Dr.Hab. (Psychology), Professor, Moscow, Russia
  • Mr. Efim A. Rezvan, Deputy Director, Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences (Kunstkamera), Dr.Hab. (History), Professor, St. Petersburg, Russia
  • Ms. Marietta T. Stepanyants, Head of the Center for Oriental Philosophies’ Studies at the Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences; Chairholder, UNESCO Chair in “Philosophy in the Dialogue of Cultures”, Dr. Hab. (Philosophy), Professor, Moscow, Russia
  • Mr. Eduard A. Tropp, Principal Academic Secretary, Presidium of the St.Petersburg Scientific Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Dr.Hab. (Physics, Mathematics), Professor, St.Petersburg, Russia

PROJECT OBJECTIVE

  • Conducting in-depth analysis of the fundamental principles of responsible and constructive intercivilizational, intercultural, interfaith dialogue, with due consideration of different spiritual and religious traditions in the contemporary world, especially those rooted in the age-old traditions of world religions,
  • studying its main challenges and problems, the most actual strategies and prospects, characteristic of the present-day stage of the ‘dialogue of cultures’, in the framework of both the growing global civilization, as well as regions defined as focal for the present stage of the project (Russian Federation and Eastern Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus)
  • collecting and evaluating best practices and constructive tactics that have appeared in this realm, detecting actual ways of ensuring communication and socialization in its framework, elaborating practical recommendations, directed at enhancement and optimization of the ‘dialogue of cultures’, primarily taking place either in the framework of the leading world religions, or under their influence,
  • applied primarily to the outlooks and expectations of students, as well as the academic community, as well as ad usum of the academic community in general terms,
  • and also for such target groups as women, migrants and the 'new poor', primarily, in the conditions of modern urban agglomerations,
  • basing upon fundamental notions and strategies of the cultural strategy of UNESCO.

OBJECTIVES OF THE MONOGRAPH

Objective of the international collective monograph, planned to be published before June 2011 in English and Russian under the title ‘World Religions in the Context of the Contemporary Culture: New Perspectives of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding: Christianity and Islam in the Context of Contemporary Culture: New Prospects of Dialogue and Mutual Understanding in the Russian Federation and Eastern Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus’, consists in elaborating and presenting to the academic community, as well as the wide international audience, an original collective text, regarding in a systematic and correct, although abridged and popular way:
  • fundamental regularities and prospects of the present-day stage of intercivilizational, intercultural, interfaith dialogue between world religions, primarily Christianity and Islam, taking place in the framework of highly dynamic progress of a new, global civilization, opening both new outlooks as well as unexpected challenges,
  • basic historical and geographical, sociopolitical and religious, cultural and psychological peculiarities and presuppositions of a responsible and constructive ‘dialogue of cultures’, primarily the dialogue between the Islamic civilization and the Christian one, regarded basing upon the material of regions and countries chosen as focal for the present stage of the project: Eastern Europe and Russian Federation (inter alia, republics of the Volga region, and the Northern Caucasus), as well the Transcaucasian countries and Central Asia),
  • strategies and tactics (primarily, best practices) of conducting constructive interfaith dialogue along the following keynote directions:
    • fostering ‘peace culture’ and promoting social cohesion (especially taking into account problems and expectations of such target groups as students, women, migrants and the 'new poor', primarily, in the conditions of modern urban agglomerations,
    • enhancing cultural diversity and the creative potential of the society,
    • fundamental regularities and tendencies, challenges and problems, practices and prospects, arising in the course of including higher education into the general context of the contemporary multidimensional dialogue between the adherents of the leading world religions, primarily Christianity and Islam.
The book is divided into three parts, the first of which is dedicated to 'Fundamental problems of interfaith dialogue in the present-day world', the second one presents 'Issues and Prospects of Dialogue between Islam and Christianity in Multi-ethnic Societies of the Present-day World', while the third one contains 'Reflections on Fundamental Issues of Education for New Prospects of Interfaith Dialogue in the Context of Contemporary Culture'. The book is intended primarily for young students, as well as for broader international reading audience, interested in a new and dynamic realm of science, namely, the theory of intercultural, interfaith dialogue, especially between the adherents of Christianity and Islam.




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