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Campus inNizhny Novgorod

‘Russia and England: Oncoming Traffic. Economics, Politics, Culture’

As part of the UK-Russia Year of Culture, HSE’s Nizhny Novgorod campus held the international conference “Russia and England: Oncoming Traffic. Economics, Politics, Culture.”

On the 26th and 27th of May, as part of the UK-Russia Year of Culture, the Faculty of the Humanities at HSE’s Nizhny Novgorod campus held the international conference “Russia and England: Oncoming Traffic. Economics, Politics, Culture” on the 26th and 27th of May. The conference saw the participation of Britain, the U.S., Brazil, France and Russia (Moscow, Nizhny Novgorod, Perm and Yekaterinburg).

An agreement was signed in the conference’s framework between HSE’s Nizhny Novgorod campus and Cambridge University Press. The University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES) will cooperate with the HSE in preparing students for Cambridge exams. In addition, Cambridge professors are planning to visit HSE’s Nizhny Novgorod campus to give lectures.

The conference was opened by a presentation of the book Shukhov’s Code by Tatyana Vinogradova and Sergei Avdeyev. The book is about V.G. Shukhov, the genius Russian engineer who created the first oil pipeline and whose breakthroughs led to the design of the world’s first hyperboloid structures. In addition, Shukhov’s talent influenced the great English architect of modernity, Norman Foster, who designed London’s famous ‘Gherkin’ skyscraper.

At a citywide open conference for teachers of foreign languages, modern methods of teaching English in schools were discussed. Professor Svetlana Ter-Minasova from Lomonosov Moscow State University spoke in front of teachers from Nizhny Novgorod. Ter-Minasova is the dean of Moscow State University’s Faculty of Foreign Languages and Area Studies, the chair of the Russian Ministry of Education’s Foreign Language Research and Methodology Council and the president of the National Society for English Language Teachers in Russia. A presentation was also given at the conference by Elena Solovova, who is the head of HSE's Department of Foreign Languages in Moscow, a member of the Ministry of Education’s Presidium of the Foreign Language Research and Methodology Council, and a member of the editorial board for the magazine Foreign Languages in School. According to the deputy director of HSE’s Nizhny Novgorod campus, Eduard Babkin, the English language has long been the international language of science, just as Latin was in the Middle Ages. For that reason, studying English intensively is an important step for blending pre-university education with university education.

In addition, Karen Hewitt (Oxford, England), who is a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE), and Professor Munira H. Mutran (University of São Paulo, Brazil) gave lectures for bachelor’s and master’s students of the Faculty of the Humanities at the conference.

One of the most important ways of understanding a country’s culture is through music and films. This is why the conference opened with a performance by students of the Nizhny Novgorod State Conservatory named after Glinka who sang songs in Russian and English. The concert finished with a series ofthe best contemporary British documentaries and animated films, which was supported by the British Council in Russia.