Dr Olga Zeveleva, a postdoctoral researcher on the team, has started her first stage of fieldwork. She is conducting a series of qualitative interviews with people who have worked for Moscow-based and St. Petersburg-based NGOs. The data Olga gathers during this stage of the project will allow us to analyse discourses produced by civil society organisations and NGOs, in order to understand how these groups of people create categories of vision and division of those drawn into Russia’s penal nexus.
The project Director, Judith Pallot, and Dr Olga Zeveleva, one of GULAGECHOES post-doctoral researchers, spent the day in Tallinn in discussion with representatives of the Ministry of Justice and Prison Department of Estonia. The purpose of the meeting was to explore the possibilities of conducting interviews in the country’s three prisons in Tallin, Tartu Varga and Viru. The talks were extremely productive. A lot of useful and new information was conveyed about the prison reforms in Estonia and the mentoring and accommodation services that are being developed by the Ministry of Justice to help prisoner re-entry. The prospects for developing the Estonian case study for the GULAGECHOES project look extremely promising. Dr Anna Markina of the Law Department University of Tartu, set up the meeting and we are looking forward to future collaboration with her and with Mr Stanislav Solodov an analyst at the Ministry of Justice who heads up re-entry services.
The Research Coordinator of the project Dr Larisa Kangaspuro was invited to attend a workshop in Stockholm. “The international co-operation at the Nordic Council of Ministers” was the information’s meeting and workshop on 7 February 2020 regarding Open call programme for Nordic-Russian co-operation and NGO´s in The Baltic Sea Region.
The aim of the meeting was provide all the relevant information for applying for funding, help to build strong partnerships and help to find the right partner.
Mikhail Nakonechnyi, a postdoctoral researcher, responsible for historical dimension of the GULAGEchoes project, has started his first archival fieldwork in the State Archive of the Russian Federation (Moscow). The archive contains tens of thousands of case files, which could be relevant to the purposes of the project. Concurrently working with materials of the GULAG, the Ministry of Justice and camp Procuracy, he intends to glean unpublished documents, generated by the Stalinist law enforcement agencies. These unique sources allow to get a multi-institutional perspective on the questions of ethnicity and ethnic relations in the Soviet system of judicial incarceration between 1930 and 1953.
January 30-February 1st
Visit of Dmitri Omelchenko from HSE St Petersburg who is scheduled to direct a film under the project’s auspices for use as training in the management of “difference” in the penitentiary system. The purpose was to discuss the current prospects for implementing earlier agreed plans for the filming.