Potential U.S. Involvement in the Development of Siberia
Andrew Langsner, a civil engineering major from Lebanon, NH, will be spending the summer where most of us never dream of traveling—Siberia. With funding from the International Research Opportunities Program (IROP), he will research the potential for U.S. involvement in the development of Siberia, focusing on current plans and construction projects, receptivity of Siberian citizens to U.S. engineers, and the differences in engineering education and practices in the U.S. and Siberia.
Through the course of his research Andrew will interview engineering students, tour sites that exhibit different elements of Russia's infrastructure, and speak with professional engineers and others involved in development, including the families working on these projects. He will also visit grade schools to meet the students and get their impressions of American culture.
Andrew will explore questions including: How has infrastructure developed in the Soviet era stood the test of time? Are current development plans as grandiose as those implemented in Soviet Russia to symbolize the greatness of communism, or are Russian scientists and engineers following a more modest and realistic approach? Who designs, approves, funds, builds, and oversees these projects? And, what are the conditions like for families working on these projects—do parents see more opportunity for their children on the horizon?
History professor Cathy Frierson will serve as Andrew's UNH mentor. While in Siberia he will work under the guidance of Julia Uzbekova and Evgenii Vodichev, research associate and associate director at the Institute of History at the Russian Academy of Sciences respectively.