The second Autumn Meetings in St. Petersburg were organised by the German-Russian Exchange on September 29, 2018 in cooperation with the Russian Branch of the Heinrich-Boell-Foundation, Centre for German and European Studies (St. Petersburg State University – University of Bielefeld), Polish Institute in St. Petersburg, Goethe Institute in St. Petersburg, Consulate General of the Netherlands in St. Petersburg, French Institute in St. Petersburg.

For the year 2018, the focus of discussions especially lied on the changes in the social and political life in Europe, which are caused by the informational technologies and have a long-term significance.

The Autumn Meetings in 2018 were attended by 12 speakers and 4 moderators from 7 European countries, with 9 experts coming from European countries or Moscow to St. Petersburg specifically for the event. In total, around 150 people participated in the Autumn Meetings on September 29 in different ways: as listeners, discussion participants, speakers and volunteers.

In addition to the discussions on 29 September, some guests held additional workshops and public lectures in different venues of the city on 27, 28 and 30 September. Seven additional public lectures and workshops were attended by around 200 people.


St. Petersburg, WELCOME space, Gostiny Dvor, Nevsky pr. 35, entrance from Sadovaya street

12.30 Introduction

13.00 – 14.00: How Is European Labour Changing: organization of work, working spaces and times, new professions and adaptation of education, solidarity economy 
Moderator: Lilia Zemnukhova, European University at St. Petersburg, Russia

Anja Abendroth, University of Bielefeld, Germany
Laura Aufrère, Université Paris 13 – Sorbonne Paris Cité, RIPESS Europe, France  
Margarita Kuleva, Higher School of Economics, St. Petersburg, Russia

14:00 – 14.30: Open Space

14:30 – 15.30: How Is European Media Changing: traditional and social media, post-truth and fake news, virtual public sphere, new transparency and right for information
Moderator: Johannes Voswinkel, Heinrich-Boell-Stiftung, Moscow

Iwona Reichardt, New Eastern Europe Journal, Krakow, Poland
Olga Dovbysh, University of Helsinki, Finland
Thielko Grieß, correspondent of Detschlandradio in Moscow, Germany

15:30 – 16.00: Open Space

16:00 – 17.00: How Is European Politics and Government Changing: new ways of political communication, e-government, e-democracy, electoral campaigns, political control over people, personal data protection vs. transparency
Moderator: Elena Belokurova, German-Russian Exchange St. Petersburg, Russia

Andreas Leutzsch, University of Bielefeld, Bielefeld, Germany
Dominik Tommendal, European Academy Bayern, Munich, Germany
Dmitry Plakhov, Community of the Blok-Chain Developers, St. Petersburg, Russia

17:00 – 17.30: Open Space

17:30 – 18.30: How Is European Activism Changing: political mobilization and its control, crowdfunding and crowdsourcing, voluntary and activist engagement, work with open data, IT activism, freedom of expression vs. extremism and hate speech  

Moderator: Stefan Melle, German-Russian Exchange Berlin, Germany

Filip Noubel, Prague Civic Centre, Prague, Czech Republic
Coen Bergman,, the Netherlands
Maria Grekova, Simple Things, St. Petersburg, Russia

18:30 – 19.00: Open Space

19.00 Reception

In addition to the discussions on September 29, in he framework of the Autumn Meetings-2018 the following Workshops and Public Lecturers were organized:

September 27, 18:00 (House on Sredny pr.): What is social solidarity economy? A workshop with local actors and researchers, By Laura Aufrère, Centre d’Economie de Paris Nord, Université Paris 13 – Sorbonne Paris Cité, member of RIPESS, France, in English / Russian

September 27, 19:00 (Ligovski prospect 87, office 300, German Russian Exchange): What Online Advertising Data Reveals about People in Europe and Beyond, Ingmar G. Berber research director of the social Computering Group at Qatar Computering Research Institute, in English

September 28, 14:00 (Zelenkov per. 7A): A Look Ahead: Where is the EU Going? Public Lecture at the Faculty of Comparative Political Science, Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, by Dominik Tommendal, European Academy Bayern, Munich, Germany, in English

September 28, 19:00 (Nevsky pr. 12): New organisational models in the artistic and cultural field: how to organise the creation processes in common and for the common, Public Lecture in the French Institute by Laura Aufrère, Centre d’Economie de Paris Nord, Université Paris 13 – Sorbonne Paris Cité, member of RIPESS, France, in French / Russian

September 28. 19:40 (Birzhevaya Line 14): Citizen Engagement in Smart Citizen Projects: Organizing Changes in Amsterdam, lecture at the ITMO University, by Coen Bergman,, the Netherlands, in English

Abstract: In Waag’s Amsterdam Smart Citizens Lab we explore the tools and applications to map the world around us. Along with citizens, scientists, and designers, we deal with themes ranging from air quality to the conditions of bathing water to noise pollution. With the help of low-tech technologies and sensors we are able to map and improve our living environment. With Smart Citizens we ask questions on what world do we want to live in and what role can technology play in this? We explore solutions that we can influence ourselves. We develop do-it-yourself (or do-it-together) solutions and creative interventions. In the lecture I will tell about our experience of engaging citizens and empowering them to influence their environment and local policy with (low cost) technology and community organization.

September 30, 14:00 (German-Russian Exchange, Ligovsky pr. 87, office 300): MindHack: how to challenge your own assumptions when designing a civic project? Workshop by Filip Noubel, Prague Civic Centre, Prague, Czech Republic, in Russian

September 30, 17:00 (German-Russian Exchange, Ligovsky pr. 87, office 300): Citizen Engagement in Smart Citizen Projects: How to Organize Changes? Workshop by Coen Bergman,, the Netherlands, in English.