Siberia as the Territory of Wanderers: from Ancient Conquerors to Digital Migrants and Nomads
Scientists of Tomsk University have started a large-scale transdisciplinary project dedicated to drawing up communication portrait of Siberia in the course of transspective analysis (past – present – future). It is assumed to be visualized as an interactive Siberia pattern map (communication megaplatform). The subject matter will be aspects of communication, life styles and mobility routes of traditional nomads, as well as modern digital migrants and digital nomads who are members of the global information and communication community.
Digital nomads are people who are not confined to a particular spot thanks to digital technologies and mobile communication used in their professional activities, education or free time. They are always mobile and always online. Global digital nomads travel the world, local – move around wi-fi zones in cities. On the contrary, digital migrants change their places of residence involuntarily, as a rule, and not that often. They use digital technologies and social networks mostly to communicate with the expatriate community and homeland inside and outside the territory of hosting countries and regions.
"Siberia is still either a giant blank page for the majority of the world that lives in a network information society, or a collection of myths," says Irina Kuzheleva-Sagan, Project Manager, Head of Social Communication Department and Director of the Laboratory of Human New Media Technologies. "The foreigners still see it as "the land of perpetual cold, exile and savage people" looking from the perspective of stereotypes that took centuries to shape. This has a negative impact on the regional image and in a sense hampers its social and economic development. Meanwhile, Siberia that occupies a significant part of Eurasia has always been the region of multicultural communication determined by nomadic and migration processes. Global trends of the modern society such as mobility, network distribution and wireless communication development reinforce these processes, thus causing new communication identities to appear (digital nomads and digital migrants) and Siberia to become one of the global communication hubs."