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On the web since fall 2000

Journal of Economic Sociology is indexed by Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI) from Web of Science™ Core Collection

Funded by the National Research University Higher School of Economics since 2007.

2012. Vol. 13. No. 5

Full text of the journal

Editor’s Foreword (Vadim Radaev)
P. 5–7


James March
Interview with James March: «If You Think You’re a Good Scholar You Do It Regardless of Whether It has Any Consequences» (translated by Dana Assalauova)
P. 8–17

New Texts

Irina Kozina
Temporary Agency Workers: Social Characteristics and Employment
P. 18–33

The article is devoted to new forms of employment being formed under conditions of agency work (or leasing labour). The human capital theory postulates that marginal social groups are mainly involved into temporary agency work which doesn’t provide workers with social guarantees. It can be found on the lowest step of the social ladder. So, social costs of increase in labour market flexibility may be very high and show up discrimination of agency workers, pushing them away from the labour market core and transforming them into working poors. The author considers the issues related to agency work in terms of social guarantees and proposes critical views on different topics including social characteristics of groups involved into agency work, motivation for getting jobs, assessment of work conditions, work satisfaction, etc.

Empirical data is generated from the survey of 1012 temporary agency workers employed for Kelly Services, Adecco and Ancor in seven Russian regions.

Research findings show that the structure of shared views on work agency is fragmented. It is resulted from co-existence of different demands in labour markets including demand for flexible employment. Comparing to labour markets in different countries the Russian one has some peculiarities. One of them implies that high educated young people are dominant among agency workers. They consider leasing labour as a direct way to stable employment. From the long term perspective temporary workers are oriented to getting stable positions and standard employment. It is concluded that temporary work practices are not discriminative and comparable with the overall labour markets in Russia.

New Translations

Frank Dobbin
Forging Industrial Policy: The United States, Britain, and France in the Railway Age (translated by Yekaterina Golovlyanitsina)
P. 34–56

In the middle of XIX century, governments in the US, France and Britain formed markedly different, but equally prosperous, industrial policy strategies. To understand the origins of these different policies, this book examines the evolution of public policies governing one of the first modern industries, the railroads.
The historical analysis of secondary sources traces the evolution of both national industrial policy and political cultures in each country. Dobbin shows that governing principles in industrial policies reflect collective meanings from political sphere. Consequently, promotion patterns of industry formation correspond with the development of political institutions. Thus, the differences in the conceptions of economic efficiency could be explained in the terms of different political organization. In addition, the author argues that emerging industrial institutions reproduce those existing ones. Institutional isomorphism is based on shared meanings in political structures, which shape industrial policy defining which policy solutions were perceived as rational, efficient and moral.
Dobbin’s theory is a bold approach to developing a full cultural theory. The author challenges conventional thinking in economics, political science, and sociology by arguing that cultural meaning plays an important role in the development of purportedly rational policies designed to promote industrial growth. The journal publishes Russian translation of chapter 1 “Political Culture and Industrial Rationality”? of “Forging Industrial Policy — Political Culture and Industrial Rationality”, in which Frank Dobbin proposes conceptual discussion on the origins of the cross-country differences in industrial policies. To understand the origins of these different policies, the author examines the evolution of public policies governing one of the first modern industries, the railroads.

Beyond Borders

Joel Mokyr, Hans-Joachim Voth
Understanding Growth in Europe, 1700–1870: Theory and Evidence (translated by Yuriy Kapturevsky)
P. 57–102

Unlike most existing textbooks on the economic history of modern Europe, which offer a country-by-country approach, The Cambridge Economic History of Modern Europe rethinks Europe's economic history since 1700 as unified and pan-European, with the material organised by topic rather than by country. This first volume is centred on the transition to modern economic growth, which first occurred in Britain before spreading to other parts of western Europe by 1870. Each chapter is written by an international team of authors who cover the three major regions of northern Europe, southern Europe, and central and eastern Europe. The volume covers the major themes of modern economic history, including trade; urbanization; aggregate economic growth; the major sectors of agriculture, industry and services; and the development of living standards, including the distribution of income. The quantitative approach makes use of modern economic analysis in a way that is easy for students to understand.

The journal publishes the chapter 1 «Understanding Growth in Europe, 1700–1870: Theory and Evidence» by Joel Mokyr and Hans-Joachim Voth of The Gifts of Athena, in which authors summarize recent research by growth economists and contrasts their interpretations with the existing historical evidence and recent findings of economic historians.

Debut Studies

Mariya Neuvazhaeva
Institutional Frameworks of the Development of Non-Government Universities in Russia
P. 102–128

The paper proposes a critical study focusing on the development of non-government higher education sector in Russia from new institutionalism perspective in economic sociology. Conditions under which private universities spread in other countries are identified. In some countries non-governmental universities successfully complement governmental ones, in some countries private universities displace state universities. Recent research shows that private sector produces some organizational divergences (especially under privatization and emerging liberal markets). However the presented paper argues that Russian case is specific. Governmental and non-governmental universities are initially intertwined. This fact provokes us into thinking about the Russian higher education system from the alternative point of view. Based on in-depth interviews with founders and lecturers from Moscow private universities and the survey of students the paper intends to trace structuration of non-governmental education field and to demonstrate impacts of institutional isomorphism mechanisms on private universities.

Professional Reviews

Igor Chirikov
Four Methods for Defining Organizational Boundaries in Sociology
P. 129–145

The paper codifies the theoretical perspectives in sociology of organizations related to studies in organizational boundaries. Four methods for conceptualizing organizational boundaries are identified, depending on a key metaphor which each method proposes. The presented metaphors include (1) boundary as membrane (flap); (2) boundary as convention; (3) boundary as interface; (4) boundary as forefront. In addition, the paper discusses the organizational perspectives’ general methodological drawbacks in studying organizational boundaries.

New Books

Vadim Radaev
Preface to Russian translation (2012. Forthcoming): Dobbin F. 1994. Forging Industrial Policy: The United States, Britain, and France in the Railway Age. Cambridge [England], NY: Cambridge University Press
P. 146–149

Research Projects

Costs for Supporting Cash and Cashless Payments in Russian Retailing (headed by Prof. Vadim Radaev)
P. 150–152


Dilyara Ibragimova
Workshop on Applied Behavioral Finance Studies
P. 153–162


International Conference Embeddedness and Beyond: Do Sociological Theories Meet Economic Realities?, Moscow, October 25–28, 2012
P. 163–172

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