• Strategy for social and cultural development of Satka

On December 13, 2013, the II Forum “A World Without Borders” ended in Satka, Chelyabinsk Region. The presentation of “The Strategy for social and cultural development of Satka municipal district”, prepared by the Higher School of Economics became the main event of this Forum. According to its developers, this document may become the primary sample for other municipal entities and small towns in the Russian Federation. The strategy was presented by professor Vitaly Kurennoy, the head of department of cultural studies in the National Research University – Higher School of Economics. “Satka district is the center of mining zone with industrial and commercial profile, and Satka is the mono-city with specific heritage, which needs to be changed. We propose the model solution, which later could be replicated not only in the region, but Russia-wide, — said Vitaly Kurennoy. — In the course of development of this strategy we strived to consider the specific aspects of this district as much as possible, and we propose a number of projects, related to education, services sector, landscape, image and so on. But, the human capital surely would be the central concept. No wonder the subject of culture and urban environment is brought to the foreground”.

The Strategy specifies the problem areas, and proposes the solutions based on international practice and scientific research made in the HSE. According to the head of Satka district Alexander Glazkov, the Strategy would allow to clearly determine the plan of activities in order to eliminate the gaps in the area of education and culture, as well as lay the groundwork for personal development of young people. The plan of further tactical activities will be prepared based on the Strategy. The progress of implementation of the Strategy and the first results will be presented on the international forum in Saint-Petersburg in December, 2014. Presentation of the Strategy was preceded by a round-table discussion, dedicated to economic matters. This discussion covered the issues related to employment of personnel, freed-up as a result of modernization of enterprises; creation of new jobs, diversification of economy, development of small and medium enterprises and other matters, highly important for industrial cities of Chelyabinsk Region. As was noted by the Minister of Economic Development of Chelyabinsk Region Elena Murzina, Satka district made into the list of pilot municipalities, which managed to establish effective cooperation with entrepreneurs.

Within the Forum, the organizers wished to establish a direct dialog with all city communities – adult population, students, school children, representatives of educational and cultural institutions, so the number of targeted activities for each group was provided in order to discuss the existing tasks and develop the solutions. A number of lectures and seminars was held: teachers from departments of cultural studies and design of the Higher School of Economics met with the young people of Satka and determined the most interesting and effective approaches to transformation of urban environment. Also, Ekaterina Genieva, the general director of the All-Russian State Library for Foreign Literature named after M.I. Rudomino, met with representatives of city libraries of Satka district. The participants discussed the tasks faced by libraries in the digital era, and Ekaterina Yurievna shared the experience of transformation of traditional libraries into the fully-featured “third place” – the public space for meetings and communication. “The library should become not the collection of books, but the gathering of people” – Genieva noted.

The Higher School of Economics also arranged a lecture on new educational standards and possibilities, provided by the international bachelor degree program, for school administrations, senior pupils and their parents. The initiative of Sobranie Fund on creation of the museum of the search movement in Satka was wholeheartedly supported by both the museum staff and city people, since the matter of soldiers of the Great Patriotic War, still considered missed in action, continues to be a sore subject for people in Satka. More than 6 thousand citizens of Satka were called to active duty, 3 300 are reported killed in action, and there is still no accurate data on the number of missing.

Organizers and participants: administration of Chelyabinsk Region, administration of Satka municipal district, Magnezit Group, Sobranie Fund, the National Research University Higher School of Economics, the All-Russian State Library for Foreign Literature named after M.I. Rudomino.

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