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  • Public defence: 2017-05-05 10:00 MB416, Huddinge
    Ingridsdotter, Jenny
    Södertörn University, School of Historical and Contemporary Studies, Ethnology. Södertörn University, Centre for Baltic and East European Studies (CBEES), Baltic & East European Graduate School (BEEGS).
    The Promises of the Free World: Postsocialist Experience in Argentina and the Making of Migrants, Race, and Coloniality2017Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis investigates the narrated experiences of a number of individuals that migrated to Argentina from Russia and Ukraine in the wake of the fall of the Soviet Union. The over-arching aim of this thesis is to study the ways in which these migrants navigated the social reality in Argentina, with regards to available physical, material, and socioeconomic positions as well as with regards to their narrated self-understandings and identifications. The empirical data consists of ethnographic in-depth interviews and participatory observation from Buenos Aires between the years 2011 and 2014. Through the theoretical frameworks of political discourse theory, critical race studies, auto-ethnography, and theories on coloniality, the author examines questions of migration, mobility, race, class, and gender in the processes of re-establishing a life in a new context. The interviewees were not only directly affected by the collapse of the USSR in the sense that it drastically changed their terrain of possible futures as well as retroactive understandings of their pasts, but they also began their lives in Argentina during the turmoil of the economic crisis that culminated in 2001. Central to this thesis is how these dislocatory events impacted the interviewees’ possibilities and limitations for living the life they had expected, and thus how discursive structures affect subject positions and identifications, and thereby create specific conditions for different relocatory trajectories. By focusing on how these individuals narrate their reasons for migration and their integration into Argentine labor and housing markets, the author demonstrates the role Argentine and East European history, as well as the neoliberal restructuring of the postsocialist region and Argentina in the 1990’s, had for self-understandings, subject positions, identities, and mobility. Various intersections of power, and particularly the making of race and whiteness, are important for the way that the interviewees negotiated subject positions and identifications. The author addresses how affect and hope played a part in these processes and how downward mobility was articulated and made meaningful. She also examines how participants’ ideas about a “good life” were related to understandings of the past, questions of race, social inequality, and a logic of coloniality.

  • Public defence: 2017-05-12 13:00 MA 624, Huddinge
    Yakusheva, Natalya
    Södertörn University, School of Natural Sciences, Technology and Environmental Studies, Environmental Science. Södertörn University, Centre for Baltic and East European Studies (CBEES), Baltic & East European Graduate School (BEEGS).
    Parks, Policies and People: Nature Conservation Governance in Post-Socialist EU Countries2017Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    The national parks in the Carpathian Mountains along the Polish and Slovak border represent encompassing policy agendas that strive to balance biodiversity conservation and social welfare tasks. These countries have, during the last 25 years, undergone rapid transformation from socialist regimes to liberal democracies, and this transformation has affected the political, social and economic spheres. The accession to the European Union (EU) introduced demands for further changes, such as closer integration of conservation and socioeconomic development and inclusive, transparent and accountable decision-making that are based on participatory mechanisms.

    This thesis explores key challenges and opportunities for nature conservation policy and practice at the local level in a context of post-socialist legacies and Europeanization. Multi-level governance, Europeanization, and post-socialist studies are used as theoretical vehicles for the analysis of four transboundary national parks: Pieninsky national parks (NP) in both Poland and Slovakia and Bieszczady NP [Poland] and Poloniny NP [Slovakia].

    The results of this study show that the early designation of the studied parks as protected areas prevented their exploitation and enabled preservation of important landscapes, which currently are highly valued at the European level. These nature conservation regimes have created tangible restrictions on the possible economic uses of these areas. However, rural development alternatives depend on a broader set of local, national and global factors such as the structure of the local economy and employment, the prioritization of nature conservation in national policies, investors’ interest, and increasing urbanization. Europeanization provided opportunities for local actors to benefit from additional funding made available for nature conservation and rural development. At the same time, demands for participatory decision-making posed significant procedural and conceptual challenges to achieving transparent, inclusive and accountable governance. The prevalence of informal practices in local policy-making and the lack of trust in state authorities pose further challenges to formal participatory processes. The opportunities of local actors to reach out across levels to express their interests remain scarce and are not institutionalized, whereas the multi-level characteristics of modern governance indirectly shape local processes by defining common legal and policy frameworks.