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10/20/2022 - 10/21/2022 | Leipzig


Resources in Use: Visions and Practices in Late Imperial Russia and the Early Soviet Union

In the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, the use of resources was embedded in aspirations of economic development and civilizing missions, as well as in attempts to enforce and establish centralized control over imperial peripheries. With the advent of the age of reforms in the 1860s, efforts directed at resource use were intertwined with ambitious endeavors to increase social participation and self-governance.
While resources were indeed at the core of imperial expansion and a globalizing economy, more research is needed to understand how these processes were tied together in different places. Therefore, this workshop seeks to develop new perspectives on resource use and distribution in late imperial Russia while exploring (dis-)continuities in the early Soviet
Union. The discussion will focus on the interplay between state planning and processes unfolding on the ground in order to locate imperial and global entanglements of resource policies and practices.



Thursday, October 20, 2022

Welcome and Introduction

Panel I: Resource-Making

Aleksandr Korobeinikov (Budapest)
Resource Imagination: Discourses and Practices of Resource Use in Postimperial Yakutia, 1894–1930

Katja Bruisch (Dublin)
Putting Wet Land to Use: Actors and Practices of Resource-Making in Late Imperial and Early Soviet Russia

Natalia Nikiforova (Saint Petersburg)
»Useless Fossils« and Precious Waste. Conceptualization of Resources for Soviet Electrification, 1920s–1930s

Comment: Alexandra Oberländer (Berlin)

Lunch Break

Panel II: Processing Resources

Chechesch Kudachinova (Mannheim)
From Imperial Knowledge Societies to the Stalin Prize: Historical Political Ecology of Siberia’s Medicinal Botany, 1890s–1940s

Lutz Häfner (Bielefeld)
Devastating Phylloxera or the Creative Chance to Modernize Winegrowing in Late 19th and Early 20th Century Russia?

Comment: Katja Castryck-Naumann (Leipzig)

Coffee break

Panel III: Public Resources

Timm Schönfelder (Leipzig)
Hunting Resources: Nature Protection and Sustainability in Fin de Siècle Russia

Michel Abeßer (Freiburg)
The (Mis-)Managment of Plenty? Fish as a Contested Resource in the 19th Century Lower Don Region

Immo Rebitschek (Jena)
Between Hunger and Profit – Public Works as Resources in Late Imperial Russia

Comment: Steffi Marung (Leipzig)

Joint dinner


Friday, October 21, 2022

Panel IV: Selling Resources

Friedrich Asschenfeldt (Princeton)
NEP and the Politics of Grain Exports

Boris Belge (Basel)
The Warehouse: Moving and Storing Objects

Corinne Geering (Leipzig)
The Countryside’s Human Resources: Marketing Russian Village Industries

Comment: Robert Kindler (Berlin)

Concluding discussion


The Leibniz Institute for the History and Culture of Eastern Europe (GWZO)
focuses its research on the region between the Baltic Sea, the Black Sea and the Adriatic from late antiquity until the present day in a comparative perspective. We examine transformations, interrelationships and entanglements in a globalizing world. The institute thus seeks to contribute to a deeper understanding of political, economic and social developments in the countries, societies and cultures of East Central and Eastern Europe.


Corinne Geering (GWZO Junior Research Group »Contrasting East Central Europe«),

Immo Rebitschek (University of Jena) and

Timm Schönfelder (GWZO Department Humans and Environment)


This measure is co-financed by tax revenues as set out in the adopted budget of the Landtag of Saxony.

Information on participating / attending:


10/20/2022 10:00 - 10/21/2022 13:00

Event venue:

GWZO: Specks Hof (Entrance A),
Reichsstraße 4–6
04109 Leipzig

Target group:

Scientists and scholars, Students



Subject areas:

Economics / business administration, Geosciences, History / archaeology, Politics, Social studies

Types of events:

Seminar / workshop / discussion




Virginie Michaels


Presse- und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit

Event is free:


Language of the text:


URL of this event:

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