Head of Expert Analytics Department of the Region Government: “SUSU is a Whole City of Knowledge”

South Ural State University provides students with a lot of possibilities for their self-realization. Specialists graduated from SUSU achieve the success in careers and work on the serious positions not only in the field of engineering but a humanitarian field as well. Head of Expert Analytics Department of the Chelyabinsk Region Government Anton Artemov told on the advantages which the SUSU student obtains when decides to connect his life with politics.

— Why did you decide to enter SUSU exactly?

— For me SUSU is a family university, my parents and a lot of other relatives studied exactly within the walls of our university starting from 1949, from CMEI (Chelyabinsk Mechanical Engineering Institute) to SUSU. That is why my acquaintance with the university started long before my entering it; there were classes in a scientific society of students and even participation in Technopolis Newspaper work — I managed to publish an article on the Doors Open Day which was in 2003 or 2004. On the other side SUSU is a whole city of knowledge, new acquaintances and perspectives which totally involves from the first minutes of being within the university atmosphere. The energy and potential of the young generations who come at the university and wish to change themselves and consequently the surrounding world prepossess greatly. Other universities did not produce such an impression upon me, my choice was predetermined.

— Why were you interested in Political Studies? Was it a family direction as well?

— No, on the contrary, in my family there are the representatives of engineering professions from the one side and medical professionals from the other side, notably hereditary. It happened so that I distinguished myself having devoted my life to the humanitarian science. This choice was done step by step starting from the deep childhood when I was keen on the ancient world.  I was interested in the world order in that period of history — organization of Greek Poleis, governmental and political organization of society, norms and institutes, fundamental principles of democracy which were formed in the period of the ancient world. Afterwards, it was expressed in the interest towards history in general and social studies what added up to the active life position and public life at secondary school what greatly predetermined the choice of profession in the political science direction which exactly studies the interaction of people, society and government. Political science can give the understanding of their structures hence allows finding optimum forms of population life quality improving.

— What was your students life?

— My life was definitely various. SUSU has always given the students wide possibilities for self-realization and professional becoming. In my case the active life position and choice of political studies did their work. I was an irrepressible student and a social activist. During my students life I decided that I should have taken maximum knowledge and tried it in practice. Our university encouraged this activity which was fulfilled in the form of internships, visits of other universities and regions for the exchange of experience in the conferences and “schools” that is continuous mobility both in regards to geography and communication. 

— At what companies did you pass your internships? 

— Among the biggest at the work of which I participated I can indicate Institute of Public Planning (IPP), Company for Development of Public Relations (CDPR) and the Russian Association of Political Science. Participation in these big-scale projects predetermined my professional preferences. Mainly it was the work on information gathering and its analytical adaptation for formation of recommendations in a wide range of fields as corporate responsibility of the city-forming enterprises and accompaniment of big federal projects including Census of Population in 2010.  

— How did you start your career?

My professional becoming started in the years of my study at the university, as a result of my internships public security became the field of my interests. Having graduated from the university in 2011 I got a lot of different job offers because first of all our Department actively participates in the students’ employment and secondly this profession is quite rare. I settled on the suggestion to participate in the work of Main Expert Administration — a new division in the frames of the Region Government. I was attracted by the possibility to head the whole project on the study of the social strain in the region as well as participation in the legal expertise in the direction of public security.  This is exactly the mixture of theory and practice which I dreamt about during my university years. At present I take the post of Head of Expert Analytics Department of the Chelyabinsk Region Government.

— What tasks does Expert Analytics Department carry on?

— The specific feature of this division activity consists in accompanying the management decisions on the issues of dealing with society, different organizations and unions, and cooperation with municipal entities.  This is a work with the public opinion, expert society, analysis of political processes in the Region that is a so called Big Data. We are at the very beginning of this way but to my mind this is the task of young professionals (political analysts) to introduce new knowledge in the work including the Governmental Entities. I can note that exclusively the graduates of SUSU both politologists and sociologists work in our department. 

— What skills which were obtained at the university did contribute to the professional becoming?

— First of all this is an ability to do critical thinking and to doubt any information. This is the most important quality of any researcher and any analyst. If we admit any information as given we will not be able to consider and to predict the case scenario, to carry out a modeling of the situation, including political situation. On the basis of SUSU, particularly at Department of Political Science which I graduated from there was formed an uncommon educational program, which touched upon totally different disciplines: Political Analysis and Forecasting, Politics in Movies and Games Industry, Geopolitics, Democracy: Theory and Practice, Theory of Political Parties. Moreover, the university has stable ties with foreign universities which from time to time organize special courses and in case with Department of Political Science it was the course “Government and Constitutional State” of  Stanford University. We had a very serious teaching staff – Igor Sibiryakov, Mikhail Besedin, Vladimir Khvoschev.  Informal forms of students’ activity such as dispute clubs, round tables, organization of own events also contributed to the formation of critical thinking. At SUSU there is an atmosphere when a student is given all the possibilities for self-realization and development of personal skills.   

— How do you understand the work of modern politologists from the point of view of your rich experience in this sphere?

— Traditionally a politologist can develop in two directions. The first direction is an academic one when the professionals of this type mainly deal with the science, they form new theories and tendencies as the state and the society cooperate with each other.  The second type of professionals in the sphere of political science is a “craftsman” who are used to be called political strategists, they take part in election campaigns, form the image of politicians or big companies, or they accompany big projects. But there is the third type of politologists to which many graduates of our department can refer to — these are the political consultants and political experts. Their task is to perform an expert and dispassionate analysis of the political situation and give the recommendations to the customer for making management solutions. 

— What would you wish to students, especially those from humanities specialities, so that they could have successful careers?

— My first advise will be a general one: don’t wait for ready-made solutions from life, take the initiative, don’t be shy to ask your teachers and mentors questions, and of course, develop yourself, be the master of your own life. To political analysts I can say the following: you need to think critically and not stand hostage of the accepted mythologems, legends, and “extremes” about that there are political analysts who work for the authorities, and the opposing political analysts. You need to interact with a wide community group and not be shy to work with authorities, suggest correct decisions to it, since namely this is the main task of our profession.

Azaliya Sharafutdinova
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