Dr. Pivneva graduated from Moscow Teachers’ Training University named after Lenin in 1971, with an MA in English and German. She also completed an MA in History from Kharkov State University in 1981, and was a Candidate of Philosophy at Kiev State University in 1982. Dr. Pivneva completed a Ph.D. in Political Science from Moscow State University in 1992. She has been working at Kharkov National Pedagogical Scovoroda University since 1982 as an instructor, senior teacher, associate professor and a university professor. The listing of her publishing comprises 84 names. Since 1992 she has been teaching courses in political science, sociology, teaching methods in sociology, political and social institutions in Ukraine, political and social institutions in Ukraine (in English), fundamentals of democracy, social forecasting at the department of Political Science and Sociology. Since 2003 Dr. Pivneva has been a co-faculty at Kharkiv National Karazin University as professor of the Political Science Department, where she teaches courses in political culture: comparative and political science.
Social innovations in university education: Ukraine/USA context
University education has its civilization component which varies from university to university, but mostly concentrates on cultural education missions. They embrace critical thinking and propagation of culture through research and teaching; preparation of educational elite able to perform research and acquire new knowledge; formation an identity, a person which can absorb human values; contribution to social and economical development of the region it belongs, etc. The university uses the process of education to respond to, serve and strengthen their communities by creating social capital, preparing students to contribute positively locally, nationally and global. But we must bear in mind that as Wolff states “a university best fulfills its mission when it serves as critic of social ills and catalyst for social reform; a good university, therefore, is one whose professors are “engaged” (cit. in: Walton, 1979, p.186)
In this respect, special attention is paid to innovation mission of universities. In my opinion, it embraces all spheres of university activity but its essence is concentrated on public service. Through their public service, commitments, the university has forged a continuing, vital partnership with the citizens of their community. This partnership is affected by globalization which manifests itself in the transformations in societies, in innovations in all spheres of life: in economy – the global market is formed; in politics – the differences become transparent in political actions; in nation-building – new nation- states appear in the world; in social sphere – the civil society is being built; in culture – new type of it appears which is vested in mass culture. That’s why all these and other global changes demand the appearance of a new personality and the university is responsible for its upbringing. “Universities have the responsibility to foster in faculty, staff and students a sense of social responsibility and a commitment to the social good, which, we believe, is central to the success of a democratic and just society.” ( The Talloires declaration).
The innovative mission of the university in the globalization era is connected with flexible reaction to modern circumstances. In market economy the universities should orient on the demands of industry, economy, social sphere. At present modern universities as social institutes have hard times, because they have to be highly competitive, as there exist some educational establishments that provide the public with economical educational services -cheap and given in shorter times. The situation is complex due to the fact that the market can’t always distinguish the qualification of specialists at a first approach. Contemporary society needs also new technologies that will be able to assure its steady development. “The relationship between research and service is symbolic and synergistic. As important as new research discoveries will be, they can become widely effective only if the university is in a position to offer assistance in the application of new technologies and methods at the consumer level” (Koepplin, 1985, p.91). Hence the universities should investigate the processes in social sphere in order to be able to be fully incorporated in the innovative activity.
One of the main innovative assignments of the university refers to solving scientific and educational problems on the basis of international integration. The most vivid example of it is the decision of General Assembly of OUN to make the years of 2005-2014 (the 10th year time span) as years of education for steady development. Ukraine and USA are among the countries that supported this initiative in order to make possible contribution to the steady development of the society.