Soviet Scientists and World Science: The Effectiveness and Social Relations of Soviet Natural Scientists

  • Peter Kneen
Part of the Studies in Soviet History and Society book series (SSHS)


The previous chapters dealt with scientists as one of the occupational categories into which the Soviet working population is divided. This chapter is concerned with Soviet scientists as members of real professional groups. It considers how Soviet scientists organise themselves and how effectively they contribute to the advancement of their disciplines in the world at large.


Science Citation Index Foreign Scientist Informal Relation Soviet Scientist Foreign Journal 
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Notes and References

  1. 1.
    See T. S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions (University of Chicago Press, 1972);Google Scholar
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  4. 2.
    On consensus among natural scientists see F. P. Jevons, The Teaching of Science (London: Allen & Unwin, 1969) p. 140;Google Scholar
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  6. 3.
    On the growth of natural science in modern times see Derek de Solla Price, Little Science, Big Science (New York: Columbia University Press, 1963) pp. 1–22.Google Scholar
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    Robert K. Merton, ‘Singletons and Multiples in Scientific Discovery’, Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, cv5 (October 1961) pp. 470–86.Google Scholar
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  9. W. O. Hagstrom, The Scientific Community (New York: Basic Books, 1965) pp. 15–16.Google Scholar
  10. 9.
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  14. 12.
    Arthur Holt, ‘An Analysis of the Level of Soviet Polymer Research by Means of Citations’, Appendix 6B of Ronald Amann, ‘The Chemical Industry: Its Level of Modernity and Technological Sophistication’, in Ronald Amann, Julian Cooper and R. W. Davies (eds), with the assistance of Hugh Jenkins, The Technological Level of Soviet Industry (Newhaven and London: Yale University Press, 1977) pp. 320–8.Google Scholar
  15. 14.
    In addition to the data presented by Narin and Carpenter, see V. V. Nalimov and Z. M. Mul’chenko, Naukometriya, p. 146 and Yu. T. Burbulya and V. P. Korbarskaya, ‘Issledovanie tsitiruemosti matematicheskoi literatury’, Nauchno-tekhnicheskaya informatsiya, seriya 2, no. 2 (1978) pp. 10–14.Google Scholar
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  18. 19.
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    Ibid., pp. 163–7; see also L. L. Balashev, ‘Voprosy nauchnoi informatsii v oblasti biologii’, Nauchno-tekhnicheskaya informatsiya, seriya 2, no. 2 (1967) pp. 9–12,Google Scholar
  21. Arnost Kol’man, ‘A Life in Soviet Science Reconsidered: The Adventure of Cybernetics in the Soviet Union’, Minerva, vol. xvi, no. 3 (Autumn 1978) pp. 416–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 23.
    Several studies of informal scientific networks are conveniently discussed and analysed by Diana Crane in ‘Transnational Networks in Basic Science’, in Robert O. Keohane and Joseph S. Nye Jr (eds), Transnational Relations and World Politics (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1972) pp. 235–51;Google Scholar
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  26. 24.
    For analysis of participants in international exchange programmes see Earl Callen, ‘US-Soviet Scientific Exchange in the Age of Detente’, Survey, vol. 21, no. 4 (Autumn 1975) pp. 52–9,Google Scholar
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  28. 25.
    Arnost Kol’man observes: Delegations to international scientific congresses have to be approved by the Central Committee of the Communist Party and as a result they consist not of genuine scientists, but of administrators who are not able to take part in the discussion of scientific problems; in all such delegations there is an informer who is assigned to it by the KGB. See ‘A Life in Soviet Science Reconsidered’, pp. 416–24; see also Zhores A. Medvedev, The Medvedev Papers, pp. 19–20; J. D. Nye, ‘Russians at Conferences’ (correspondence), Nature, vol. 249 (3 May 1974) p. 8,CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. and Philip H. Abelson, ‘International Geophysics: Science Dominates Politics’, Science, 190 (3 October 1975) p. 34. See, for example, J. Gaston, ‘Communication and the Reward System of Science: A Study of a National “Invisible College”’, Sociological Review Monograph, 18, pp. 25–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Thane Gustafson, ‘Why Doesn’t Soviet Science Do Better Than It Does?’, in Linda L. Lubrano and Susan Gross Solomon (eds), The Social Context of Soviet Science (Folkestone: Wm Dawson, 1980) p. 35.Google Scholar
  31. 33.
    B. P. Gottikh and G. G. Dyumenton, ‘Lichnye nauchnye kommunikatsii i organizatsiya fundamental’nykh issledovanii’, Vestnik Akademii nauk SSSR, vol. 12 (1979) pp. 65–78.Google Scholar
  32. 37.
    K. B. Serebrovskaya, ‘Sovremennyi neformal’nyi kollektiv v fundamental’nykh issledovaniyakh’, in Sotsial’no-psikhologicheskie problemy nauki (Moscow: Nauka, 1973) pp. 96–127.Google Scholar
  33. 38.
    On this and other points see Linda L. Lubrano ‘Scientific Collectives: Behaviour of Soviet Scientists in Basic Research’, in L. L. Lubrano and S. G. Solomon, The Social Context, pp. 101–36; see also V. Zh. Kelle et al. in Sotsiologicheskie problemy nauchnoi deyatel’nosti (Moscow: Institut sotsiologicheskikh issledovanii AN SSSR, 1978) Table 8, p. 129, for survey data on the relative importance to natural scientists in the academies of sciences of informal relations inside and outside the institute in which they are employed.Google Scholar
  34. 41.
    On the comparative slowness of Soviet scientific journals, see Yu. B. Granovskii, Naukometricheskii analiz informatsionnykh potokov v khimii (Moscow: Nauka, 1980) pp. 64–7; L. L. Balashev, Nauchno-tekhnicheskaya informatsiya, pp. 9–12; A. Kol’man, ‘A Life in Soviet Science Reconsidered; V. V. Nalimov and Z. M. Mul’chenko, Naukometriya, pp. 153–5;Google Scholar
  35. Zhores A. Medvedev, Soviet Science (Oxford and Melbourne: Oxford University Press, 1979) pp. 153–7.Google Scholar
  36. 45.
    R. Kaiser, Russia: The People and the Power (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books, 1977) pp. 275–95; Zhores A. Medvedev, The Medvedev Papers, pp. 165–7.Google Scholar
  37. 48.
    Mark Ya. Azbel, Refusenik (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1981) pp. 335–6.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Peter Kneen 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter Kneen
    • 1
  1. 1.University of DurhamUSA

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