Masters programs in philosophy and contemporary times: Challenges and prospects

Alek­san­dr M. Dorozhkin
Nation­al Research Lobachevsky State Uni­ver­si­ty of Nizh­ni Nov­gorod
Svet­lana V. Shibarshi­na
Nation­al Research Lobachevsky State Uni­ver­si­ty of Nizh­ni Nov­gorod

Mas­ters pro­grams in phi­los­o­phy and con­tem­po­rary times: Chal­lenges and prospects

Abstract. This arti­cle focus­es on the changes hap­pen­ing in con­tem­po­rary Mas­ters Phi­los­o­phy pro­grams tak­en in a broad­er con­text of changes in acad­e­mia on the whole. As an exam­ple the authors con­sid­er the his­to­ry and evo­lu­tion of the Mas­ters pro­gram in phi­los­o­phy at Lobachevsky State Uni­ver­si­ty of Nizh­ni Nov­gorod (Rus­sia), focus­ing on the rea­sons for its cre­ation, pri­mar­i­ly relat­ed to the log­ic of the Hum­boldt mod­el of high­er edu­ca­tion. They accen­tu­ate that its new con­cept has been sug­gest­ed and intro­duced in con­text of the new gen­er­al socio-eco­nom­ic and cul­tur­al chal­lenges of the time, the accom­pa­ny­ing new uni­ver­si­ty mod­els and the preva­lence of insti­tu­tion­al prag­ma­tism. The authors inves­ti­gate the prob­lem of ways and instru­ments of orga­niz­ing cours­es and teach­ing in Mas­ters Phi­los­o­phy pro­grams that are more ade­quate to mod­ern times, as well as pos­si­ble careers of the grad­u­ates. The lat­ter issue address­es us to some prag­mat­ic ideas about pos­si­ble trans­for­ma­tions in aca­d­e­m­ic phi­los­o­phy, such as the ‘field phi­los­o­phy’ (Robert Frode­man and Adam Brig­gle) imply­ing a more active engage­ment of philoso­phers into inter­ac­tions with sci­en­tists, engi­neers, politi­cians, and oth­er social groups. Along with it, we also con­sid­er philoso­phers’ par­tic­i­pa­tion in inter­dis­ci­pli­nary research projects (Nan­cy Tua­na) and social and human­i­tar­i­an exper­tise.

Ключевые слова: high­er edu­ca­tion, Mas­ter in Phi­los­o­phy, Hum­boldt­ian uni­ver­si­ty, dig­i­tal tech­nolo­gies, insti­tu­tion­al prag­ma­tism

DOI: 10.5840/dspl20192332


The report­ed research was fund­ed by RSF (Russ­ian Sci­ence Foun­da­tion) with­in the research project No. 18–18-00238, “Non-Hum­boldt trad­ing zones: an idea and project of the new infra­struc­ture of sci­ence”.


  1. Brig­gle, A. A Field Philosopher’s Guide to Frack­ing: How One Texas Town Stood Up to Big Oil and Gas. New York: Liv­eright Pub­lish­ing Corp, W.W. Nor­ton & Com­pa­ny, 2015. 352 pp.
  2. Brig­gle, A., Frode­man, R. Changes in Sci­ence Pol­i­cy Make Phi­los­o­phy Inevitable, Social Epis­te­mol­o­gy Review and Reply Col­lec­tive. Octo­ber 16, 2016. Avail­able at: (accessed on May 20, 2019)
  3. Buchanan, B., Bas­t­ian, M., Chrulew, M. Intro­duc­tion: Field Phi­los­o­phy and Oth­er Exper­i­ments, Par­al­lax, 2018, vol. 24, no. 4, pp. 383–391. DOI: 10.1080/13534645.2018.1546715.
  4. Clark, B.R. Pod­derzhanie izme­nenii v uni­ver­site­takh. Pre­em­stven­nost keis-sta­di i kontsept­sii [Sus­tain­ing Change in Uni­ver­si­ties: Con­ti­nu­ities in Case Stud­ies and Con­cepts] / transl. from Eng­lish by E. Step­ki­na. Moscow: Izd. dom Vysshei shkoly ekonomi­ki Publ., 2011. 312 pp. (In Russ­ian)
  5. Collins, H., Evans, R. Inter­ac­tion­al Exper­tise and the Imi­ta­tion Game, in: M.E. Gor­man (ed.), Trad­ing Zones and Inter­ac­tion­al Exper­tise. Cre­at­ing New Kinds of Col­lab­o­ra­tion. Cam­bridge: MIT Press, 2010, pp. 53–70.
  6. Collins, H., Evans, R., Gor­man, M. Trad­ing Zones and Inter­ac­tion­al Exper­tise, Stud­ies in His­to­ry and Phi­los­o­phy of Sci­ence, 2007, vol. 38, no. 4, pp. 657–666. DOI: 10.1016/j.shpsa.2007.09.003.
  7. Dorozhkin, A.M. Filosof kak medi­a­tor [Philoso­pher as a Medi­a­tor], Tsyfrovoj uchenyj: lab­o­ra­toriya filoso­fa / The Dig­i­tal Schol­ar: Philosopher’s Lab, 2018, vol. 1, no. 2, pp. 6–23. DOI: 10.5840/dspl20181213. (In Russ­ian)
  8. Dorozhkin, A.M. Mag­i­s­tratu­ra po filosofii na fakul­tete sot­sial­nykh nauk NNGU: per­vyi opyt i per­spek­tivy [Master’s Pro­grams in Phi­los­o­phy at Fac­ul­ty of Social Sci­ences in Lobachevsky State Uni­ver­si­ty: First Expe­ri­ence and Per­spec­tives], Vest­nik NNGU. Seri­ia: Inno­vat­sii v obra­zo­vanii [Her­ald of Lobachevsky Uni­ver­si­ty of Nizh­ni Nov­gorod. Series in Inno­va­tions in Edu­ca­tion], 2000, no. 1, pp. 161–165. (In Russ­ian)
  9. Dorozhkin, A.M. O voz­mozh­nos­ti­akh i roli filosof­skoi mag­i­s­tratu­ry kak formy, prodolzhaiushchei estestven­no-nauch­noe i guman­i­tar­noe obra­zo­vanie [On the Role and Poten­tial of Master’s Pro­grams in Phi­los­o­phy as a Con­tin­u­a­tion of Edu­ca­tion in the Nat­ur­al Sci­ences and Human­i­ties], Vest­nik NNGU. Seri­ia: Inno­vat­sii v obra­zo­vanii [Her­ald of Lobachevsky Uni­ver­si­ty of Nizh­ni Nov­gorod. Series in Inno­va­tions in Edu­ca­tion], 2003, vol. 4, no. 1, pp. 180–185. (In Russ­ian)
  10. Frode­man, R., Brig­gle, A. Socrates Tenured: The Insti­tu­tions of 21st Cen­tu­ry Phi­los­o­phy. Lan­ham, MD: Row­man and Lit­tle­field, 2016. 167 pp.
  11. Frode­man, R., Brig­gle, A., Hol­brook, J.B. Phi­los­o­phy in the Age of Neolib­er­al­ism, Social Epis­te­mol­o­gy, 2012, vol. 26, no. 3–4, pp. 311–330.  DOI: 10.1080/02691728.2012.722701.
  12. Gal­i­son, P. Trad­ing Zone. Coor­di­nat­ing Action and Belief, in: M. Bia­gi­oli, The Sci­ence Stud­ies Read­er. New York: Rout­ledge, 1999, pp. 137–160.
  13. Gibbs, P., Yli­jo­ki, O.-H., Guzmán-Valen­zuela, C., Bar­nett, R. (eds.), Uni­ver­si­ties in the Flux of Time: An Explo­ration of Time and Tem­po­ral­i­ty in Uni­ver­si­ty Life. Lon­don, New York: Rout­ledge, 2015. 208 pp.
  14. Hawk­ing, S., Mlodi­now, L. Vysshii zamy­sel [The Grand Design] / transl. from Eng­lish by M. Kononov. Saint Peters­burg: Amfo­ra Publ., 2013. 208 pp. (In Russ­ian)
  15. Kasavin, I. Gift ver­sus Trade: On the Cul­ture of Sci­ence Com­mu­ni­ca­tion (in print), Phi­los­o­phy of the Social Sci­ences. First pub­lished online August 1, 2019. DOI: 10.1177/0048393119864698.
  16. Kasavin, I.T. Zony obme­na kak pred­met sot­sial­noi filosofii nau­ki [Trad­ing Zones as a Sub­ject-mat­ter of Social Phi­los­o­phy of Sci­ence], Epis­te­mologi­ia i filosofi­ia nau­ki / Epis­te­mol­o­gy & Phi­los­o­phy of sci­ence, 2017, vol. 51, no. 1, pp. 8–17. DOI: 10.5840/eps20175111. (In Russ­ian)
  17. Kuznetso­va, T.A., Repp, P.N. Myslen­nyi eksper­i­ment kak metod poz­nani­ia [A Thought Exper­i­ment as a Method of Cog­ni­tion], Uspekhi sovre­men­noi nau­ki [Suc­cess­es of Con­tem­po­rary Sci­ence], 2016, vol. 4, no. 8, pp. 129–133. (In Russ­ian)
  18. Lek­torsky, V.A. Che­lovek i kul­tura. Izbran­nye statji [Human­i­ty and Cul­ture. Select­ed Papers]. Saint-Peters­burg: SPbGUP Publ., 2018. 635 pp. (In Russ­ian)
  19. Man­tysa­lo, R., Akki­la, I., Bal­duc­ci, A. Nor­ma­tive Plan­ning Research in a Mate­r­i­al World? Trad­ing Zones and Assem­blages, in: L. Lieto, R.A. Beau­re­gard (eds.), Plan­ning for a Mate­r­i­al World. New York: Rout­ledge, 2016, pp. 132–146.
  20. Nak­a­gawa, K., Taka­ta, M., Kato, K., Mat­suyu­ki, T., Mat­suhashi, T. A University–Industry Col­lab­o­ra­tive Entre­pre­neur­ship Edu­ca­tion Pro­gram as a Trad­ing Zone: The Case of Osa­ka Uni­ver­si­ty, Tech­nol­o­gy Inno­va­tion Man­age­ment Review, 2017, vol. 7, no. 6, pp. 38–49. DOI: 10.22215/timreview/1083.
  21. Neborskii, E.V. Rekon­stru­irovanie mod­eli uni­ver­site­ta: perekhod k for­matu 4.0 [A Recon­struc­tion of the Uni­ver­si­ty Mod­el: A Tran­si­tion to the 4.0 For­mat], Inter­net-zhur­nal “Mir nau­ki” [Online-jour­nal ‘The World of Sci­ence’], 2017, vol. 5, no. 4. Avail­able at: (accessed on June 7, 2019). (In Russ­ian)
  22. Niki­forov, A.L. Filosofi­ia dlia liuboz­natel­nykh [Phi­los­o­phy for the Curi­ous]. Moscow: Knorus Publ., 2018. 163 pp. (In Russ­ian)
  23. Porus, V.N. Filosofi­ia nau­ki dlia aspi­ran­tov: exper­i­men­tum cru­cis [Phi­los­o­phy of Sci­ence for Post­grad­u­ate Stu­dents: Exper­i­men­tum Cru­cis], Epis­te­mologi­ia i filosofi­ia nau­ki / Epis­te­mol­o­gy & Phi­los­o­phy of sci­ence, 2007, no 4, pp. 63–82. (In Russ­ian)
  24. Saprykin, D.L. Znache­nie i smysl poni­ati­ia “obra­zo­vanie” (na primere nemet­skoi filosofii kontsa 18-nacha­la 19 v.) [The Mean­ing and Impli­ca­tion of the Con­cept “Edu­ca­tion” (On the Exam­ple of the Ger­man Phi­los­o­phy of the Late 18 – Ear­ly 19 Cen­turies)], Vest­nik Moskovsko­go uni­ver­site­ta. Seri­ia 7: Filosofi­ia [Moscow Uni­ver­si­ty Physics Bul­letin. Series 7: Phi­los­o­phy], 2008, no 1, pp. 19–42. (In Russ­ian)
  25. Scott, C.D. The Death of Phi­los­o­phy: A Response to Stephen Hawk­ing, South African Jour­nal of Phi­los­o­phy, 2012, vol. 31, no. 2, pp. 384–404. DOI: 10.1080/02580136.2012.10751783.
  26. Shibarshi­na, S. “Pol­e­va­ia” filosofi­ia i prob­le­ma vza­imod­eistvi­ia mezh­du filoso­fa­mi i razlich­ny­mi sot­sial­ny­mi grup­pa­mi [“Field” Phi­los­o­phy and the Prob­lem of Inter­ac­tions between Philoso­phers and Var­ied Social Groups], Tsyfrovoj uchenyj: lab­o­ra­toriya filoso­fa / The Dig­i­tal Schol­ar: Philosopher’s Lab, 2018, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 190–211. DOI: 10.5840/dspl20181112. (In Russ­ian)
  27. Tha­gard, P. Being Inter­dis­ci­pli­nary: Trad­ing Zones in Cog­ni­tive Sci­ence, in: S.J. Der­ry, C.D. Schunn, M.A. Gerns­bach­er (eds.), Inter­dis­ci­pli­nary Col­lab­o­ra­tion: An Emerg­ing Cog­ni­tive Sci­ence. Mah­wah, NJ: Erl­baum, 2005, pp. 317–339.
  28. Tua­na, N. Embed­ding Philoso­phers in the Prac­tices of Sci­ence: Bring­ing Human­i­ties to the Sci­ences, Syn­these, 2013, vol. 190, no. 11, pp. 1955–1973. DOI: 10.1007/s11229-012‑0171-2

Comments are closed.