Aleksandr Riabushko currently serves as Public Relations and ICT Project Manager for Ulyanovsk Regional Government, Russian Federation. His team promotes the Ulyanovsk region in Internet, supervises and supports 334 official websites and 85 official blogs, conducts photo and video shooting of official events, and provides language translation services for the regional government. Under his management, the Ulyanovsk region moved from 61st place to 1st place in Russian official and non-official transparency ratings.
Working at this position from 2010, he strengthened the regional leadership in the field of transparency and ICT among other Russian regions. During the career, he launched around 70 PR & ICT projects. He also expanded the Ulyanovsk regional leadership on the global arena after successful collaboration with the World Bank and WeGO. His experience is highly appreciated at international conferences and is successfully implemented in different regions.
Aleksandr Riabushko previously worked for three years as press officer for the regional ministry of building and public utilities. He has a practitioner’s diploma in public relations and currently finishing a Ph.D. in Political Science, St. Petersburg University, Russian Federation. Aleksandr has a number of awards and certificates from Russian and foreign organizations, including a Certificate of Completion the e-Government Program for WeGO Member City Officials in Seoul Human Resource Development Center.
As political researcher, he has 7 publications in scientific journals (2 indexed in Scopus) and 5 publications in professional journals on public relations.
The ubiquitous distribution of the Internet fundamentally changes the communication environment. Representatives of government bodies, mass media and civil society activists interact with the help of new communication technologies. Media has ceased to play the role of a unique mediator in contacts between the population and the authorities, as the population have the opportunity to interact directly with representatives of government bodies at various levels. Thus, the nature of the relationship between representatives of government bodies, the media and citizens has altered: the speed of communication has increased, geographic boundaries have eroded, the scope for segmentation and segmentation of the target audience has changed, and many other features have emerged. Traditional media, such as newspapers, magazines, television and radio, with funds received from advertising or public funds, are compelled to create web-versions on the Internet, in order to compete with social networks of the Internet, including using mobile technology platforms. Media is becoming more targeted, striving to meet the needs of target audiences as precisely as possible. Audiences themselves ceased to be passive observers, they themselves have the ability to create content.
Along with new opportunities, ICT created new challenges for government officials. Now, citizens were given the opportunity to organize public events, i.e. physicial gatherings to voice an opinion for/against something, independently, bypassing the media. Social networks of the Internet have become a powerful factor in the formation of public opinion, including during election campaigns. Citizens are given the opportunity to organize recruiting in public and political organizations, form groups of interests, discuss topical issues, being anywhere in the world where there is access to the Internet. With the creative use of these opportunities, civil society is strengthened; the processes of development of the economy and the political system are intensified. Under the destructive scenario, prerequisites are created for the destabilization of authorities, there are risks of antisocial events, including forced shifts of power.
Ulyanovsk region of Russian Federation is chosen as the case to illustrate these challenges due to many aspects. Pioneering open data ecosystem, ICT and e-government leadership among Russian regions are the most significant for this choice. During the seminar there will be highlighted three main fields:
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