The history of the study and development of Siberia
Siberia's vast expanses and natural resources have always sparked interest among researchers and government officials. The conquest of Siberia and its rich natural resources by Russia started back in the sixteenth century. However the sheer expanse of this super-region meant that massive resources were needed, in terms of both time and money, for its study. Even today Siberia remains one of the most under-researched territories within Russia and internationally.
Researchers at Tomsk University have set themselves the ambitious goal of gathering and systemising the study of Siberia, and its history, as well as the popularisation of the scientific data on its past and present. This project involves a wide range of issues, and will look at the full extent of Siberia's history through a number of different prisms: international relations as well as its social, economic, and cultural features. It will significantly enrich our understanding of the region by revealing new sources and using traditional and modern approaches to historical research. It also aims to position the experience of the conquest and study of Siberia in the global information space, both academic, educational and cultural.
'Our project aims to demonstrate the comparability of the Russian experience of conquest, bringing new largely empty territory into the state, for that is what much of Siberia was before the Russians arrived,' project leader Vasily Zinoviev said. 'With the population growth and resource exhaustion we see on the planet, it might offer key insights to humanity's future survival.'
For the first time, a research group at Tomsk State University's History Faculty will include academics and members of the expert community not only from Russia but from a number of other countries, including the United States, France, Poland, Estonia, Israel and Kazakhstan, united by their desire to deepen their knowledge of the history of one of Russia's largest regions.