Natalia Otrishchenko


Junior Fellow

Center for Urban History of East Central Europe
6 Bohomoltsia Street
Ukraine 79005

n.otrishchenko [at]

PhD in Sociology (field of Methodology and Methods of Sociological Research), Institute of Sociology, the National Academy of Science of Ukraine.

2012 – 2015
PhD program, Institute of Sociology, the National Academy of Science of Ukraine. Supervisor – Prof. Dr. Eugen Golovakha.

2011 – 2012
MA in Sociology, Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, diploma cum laude. Supervisor – Prof. Dr. Natalia Chernysh.

2006 – 2011
Bachelor of Sociology, Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, diploma cum laude.

2007 – 2011
Multi-Institutional Individual Humanity Studies at Ivan Franko National University of Lviv, Ukrainian Catholic University, and University of Warsaw.

2009 – 2010
UGRAD – Global Undergraduate Exchange Program in Eurasia and Central Asia – academic year of non-degree coursework at Berea College, KY, USA.

Professional Experience
2015 – Present
Research fellow with focus on planned urbanity in Socialism and beyond, Center for Urban History of East Central Europe, Lviv.

2013 – Present
Coordinator of the “Urban Stories” oral history archive in Urban Media Archive, Center for Urban History, Lviv.

2012 – 2013
Project assistant, “Lviv interactive” project, Center for Urban History, Lviv.

2011 – 2012
Volunteer, Center for the Study of Public Opinion, City Institute, Lviv City Council.

Teaching Experience
Tutor of research studio, “Urban Summer School: Open Form”, National Institute of Architecture and Urban Planning, Lublin-Szumin-Warsaw.

Coordinator of International Urban Summer School “Sykhiv: Spaces, Memories, Practices” (Lviv, 2017) and public lectures program “Sykhiv by Night,” Lviv.

Tutor of research studio, The Sixth Minsk architectural forum, Minsk.

Tutor of research studio, International Urban Summer School “Idea of the City: Reality Check”, Slavutych.

Gastdozentin at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg, Alexander Bruckner Center for Polish Studies: preparing and teaching seminar course “Voices of/in the City: Oral and Public History in East Central Europe,” Halle.

Tutor of research studio, International Urban Summer School “Novyi Lviv”, Lviv.

International research projects
2019 – Present
Post-doc researcher, “Legacies of Communism? Post‐Communist Europe from Stagnation to Reform, between Autocracy and Revolution”, ZZF Potsdam.

2017 – Present
Coordinator of quantitative and qualitative sociological research in Ukraine, “Kultury historyczne w procesie przemian: uzgadnianie pamięci, historii i tożsamości we współczesnej Europie Środkowej i Wschodniej”, Collegium Civitas.

2017 – Present
Interviewer, “Społeczna antropologia pustki – Polska i Ukraina po II wojnie światowej”, Institute of philosophy and sociology PAN.

2012 – 2015
Project assistant, interviewer, moderator, “Region, Nation and Beyond. An Interdisciplinary and Transcultural Reconceptualization of Ukraine”, Saint-Gallen University.

2012 – 2014
Interviewer and researcher, “The memory of vanished population groups in today's East and Central European environments”, Lund University.

Ukrainian research projects
2015 – 2016
Coordinator of quantitative and qualitative sociological research, Community Involvement in Urban Spatial Planning project, Ladyzhyn, Ternivaka, and Dobropillia.

2013 – 2014
Co-coordinator, “Voices of Resistance and Hope: Kyiv-Lviv-Kharkiv”.

2011 – 2012
Assistant, moderator, “Stereotypes, Tolerance, and Strategies of History Teachers (based on Focus Group Discussions).”

Community-oriented projects

2014 – Present
Lecturer and facilitator, seminars on urban sociology and oral history in Kyiv, Lviv, Odesa, Poltava, Rivne, Chernivtsi, Kharkiv.

2017 – 2018
Developer and presenter, popular science program “Tomorrow”, “Skovoroda radio”.

Organization of conferences and workshops
Organization of panel “History is (not) a Weapon: Relations to the Past in Contemporary Belarusian, Polish, and Ukrainian Societies”, ASEEES Summer convention, Zagreb.

Co-organization “Ludwik Fleck and His Thought Collectives” conference, Lviv.

2018 – 2019
Organization of workshops “(Re)making story”, Lviv.

Co-organization “The Ins and Outs of Socialism: Visions and Experiences of Urban Change in the Second World” conference, Lviv.

Co-organization “Oral History in the Age of Change: Social Contexts, Socio-Political Challenges, Academic Standards”, Kharkiv.

Organization of panel “Long Live Soviet Urbanism: Imagining and Experiencing Planned Districts” and round table “Recordings and Recyclings? Experience of Academia and NGO in Oral History Projects”, ASEEES-MAG Summer convention, Lviv.

Research Project

Urban Experts and Changing Cities: Reshaping Professional Field (1970‐2010)

The spatial reconfiguration was one of the fundamental tools of Soviet authorities. It helped party to envision, organize, and manage new cities and communities, as “the architectural form of the city and planning of urban space were vested with a social-transformative role in the lives of its residents” (Crowley & Reid 2002: 11). However, there were specific people – architects, engineers, geologists, transport specialists, economists, “urban experts” in general – behind a number of decisions related to urban spatial development. My project aims to zoom into the scale of one city and trace various processes of expertise assembling and reassembling.

For almost half a century Lviv was incorporated into Soviet project and was gradually transformed by socialist urban planning. After the collapse of the USSR the urban spaces of the former “socialist cities” started to be redefined. A number of infrastructures developed during state socialism were reinterpreted and creatively appropriated. Educational or scientific institutions, urban environment, engineering networks as well as everyday practices, cultural patterns, and systems of reference were inherited from Soviet period and became a building material for an independent state. The same people who experienced Soviet reality had to reinvent Ukraine on the basis of what they had. Different actors were involved in the development of a new urban “identity”, which in the case of Lviv combined both local, regional, pan-Ukrainian, and multicultural aspects (Hentosh & Tscherkes, 2009, p. 276). I am focusing on these actors – professionals who were imagining and directing the future of the city. In early 1990s their connections with the central schools in Moscow was shattered; thus, urban experts had to look for new reference frameworks – either borrowed from new contexts or rather “hybrid” ones.

My research aims to reveal how social milieu of professionals adapted to the paradigmatic shift: I am going to delineate their personal strategies of navigation within changed social conditions and the effects of their decision-making on the urban fabric of the city. I am interested how urban experts claimed their positions, how norms were negotiated, what were the shifting boundaries of their professional autonomy, what were the sources and resources (both physical and symbolic), connected to the issue of authority. With such actor-driven and longue durée approach my project contributes to the discussion about the “legacies of communism” and challenges the unambiguousness of 1989/91 division. It will provide a nuanced picture of intersection between global, national, and local professional networks and their investments into reshaping a particular urban space.

Selected Publications

Selected presentations

September 2020 – “Connections and Continuance: Urban Planning Education in (Post-) Socialist Lviv” / “Agency versus/with Structure: On the Question of how Transformation is Enacted”, Online-workshop, the Leibniz Centre for Contemporary History Potsdam (ZZF).

June 2020 – “Continuance or Rupture? Discussing Lviv’s Future in the late 1980s and early 1990s” / Urban seminar, Center for Urban History.

February 2020 – “The Rise and Fall of Underground Tram in Socialist Lviv” / “Cities in the USSR and the Eastern Bloc: Urbanization, Ecology and the Municipal Economy (1917-1991)”, University of Erlangen-Nuremberg.

November 2019 – “One Plan to Rule Them All: Architects and the Visions of Urban Development in Late Soviet Lviv” / The Danyliw seminar on Contemporary Ukraine, the Chair of Ukrainian Studies, University of Ottawa.

May 2019 – “Reclaim positions and reimagine the city? Lviv urban experts since the late 1980s” / “Three Decades of Post-socialist Transition”, TU Darmstadt.

April 2019 – “‘People Who Own the Territory’: Expert Knowledge and Urban Planning in Lviv during the 1970s–80s” / “Communist Parties in East Central Europe: Frameworks of Knowledge Acquisition and Dissemination 1945–1989”, Central European University.

March, 2019 – "Curating Oral History Archive in Contemporary Ukraine: Various Publics and Formats of Communication" / "Oral history in action", Jagellonian University.

October, 2018 – “Exploring Urban Environments of the Late Socialism: Sykhiv Summer Program” / “History of European Urbanism in the 20th Century – Distinctive and Common Themes,” Pavol Jozef Šafárik University.

June, 2018 – “The Same Hands’: Urban Experts and Long-Term Transformations (1977-2017)” / Ninth International Social Science Summer School in Ukraine, Zaporizhzhia.

November, 2017 – “Slavutych: Urban Practices, Memories and Imaginations” / “Polesia as a landscape of intervention”, Herder Institute for Historical Research on East Central Europe.

October, 2017 – “(Re)defining Places for Community in Sykhiv Housing Estate” / “Facing Post-War Urban Heritage in Central and Eastern Europe”, Budapest University of Technology and Economics.

September, 2017 – “Where Does History Start? Connections to the Past in Residential Areas Developed during Late Socialism” / “History Takes Place – Dynamics of Urban Change” Summer school, Belgrade and Sarajevo.

June, 2017 – “Inhabiting Urban Landscapes: Protest Spaces in Kyiv, Lviv, and Kharkiv during Euromaidan” / “Civic Activism and Protest Culture in the Black Sea Countries”, New Europe College.

March, 2017 – “Public oral history and urban space transformations”, Liberal Arts European college in Minsk.

March, 2017 – “The Limits of Engagement: Oral History and Transformation of Urban Environments in Ukraine” / “Between Divergent Narratives and National Loyalties: Oral History and Politics of Memory in Eastern Europe”, Herder Institute for Historical Research on East Central Europe.

August, 2016 – “The Voices of the City: Digital Archive of Lviv Oral History” and “Afterlife of Planned Districts: Human Perspective of Sykhiv Public Spaces” / 13th International Conference on Urban History of the European Association for Urban History “Reinterpreting Cities”, University of Helsinki.

June, 2016 – “Unplanned Spaces of Planned Districts: Sykhiv Case Study” / “The Good Life in The City”, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität.

March, 2016 – “Memory about the Others in Postwar Pidzamche: Between anonymity and emotional ties” / “Cultural diversity in East-Central European Borderlands: cityscapes, memories, people”, Lund University.

September, 2015 –  “Bridging Academic and Public: UStories as Oral History Archive for Research and Community Development” / “Oral history in Central-Eastern Europe: Current research areas, challenges and specificity”, Uniwersytet Łódzki.

Selected publications

Otrishchenko, N.: Work-in-progress (to be published in 2021 or 2022): “All We Need to Know about the City: Visions of Urban Environment Management in Late Soviet Lviv”.

Otrishchenko, N. (2019). “Reclaiming positions and reimagining the city? Lviv urban experts since the late 1980s” (295–301). In: Three Decades of Post-socialist Transition. Conference Proceedings, ed. by N. Camprag, A. Suri. Darmstadt: TUprints.

Otrishchenko, N. (2019). “Between Anonymity and Attachment: Remembering Others in Lviv’s Pidzamche District”. Journal of Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society 5:2, 87–120.

Otrishchenko, N., Sklokina, I., et al. (2019). “Slavutych: Urban Practices, Memories and Imagination. Research Report of the Studio at the Summer School ‘The Idea of the City: Reality Check’”. Zeitschrift für Ostmitteleuropa-Forschung / Journal of East Central European Studies. 68, 3: Polesia: Modernity in the Marshlands. Interventions and Transformations at the European Periphery from the Nineteenth to the Twenty-first Century, 477–99.

Otrishchenko, N. (2019). “Exploratory Fieldwork on Balconies as Threshold Spaces on the Juliusz Słowacki housing estate in Lublin”. Ask: Research and Methods 28:1, 61–80. 

(In)visible Traces: The Presence of the Recent Past in the Urban Landscape of Sarajevo / Місто: історія, культура, суспільство. – 2018. – Випуск 1 (5). – С. 235–44.

Wydarzenia – Ludzie – Historia. Raport z badań sondażowych o pamięci współczesnych Polaków i Ukraińców / Joanna Konieczna-Sałamatin, Tomasz Stryjek, Natalia Otrishchenko. – Warszawa: Collegium Civitas, 2018. – 102 s. (ISBN: 978-83-61067-82-5) [in Polish, English, and Ukrainian versions]

Сихів: простори, пам’яті, практики. Результати третьої міської літньої школи / Упорядниця Наталя  Отріщенко. – Львів: ФОП Шумилович, 2018. – 180 с. (ISBN 978-966-97142-3-7)
(Re)defining Places for Community in Sykhiv Housing Estate / Folia Geographica Socio-Oeconomica. – 2017. – 30. – P. 27–37.

Колекції інтерв’ю Центру міської історії. Принципи організації та можливості використання у громадських проектах / Вісник Львівського університету. Серія філологічна. – 2017. – Випуск 66. – С. 245–55.

Шляхи та образи: способи зображення простору на ментальних мапах / Антропологія простору: збірник праць у 4 т. Т.1: Культурний ландшафт Києва та околиць / Наук. ред. М. Гримич. – Київ: Дуліби, 2017. – С. 104–114.

Я сумніваюсь, отже, я існую: міркування щодо творення знання про український соціум / Соціологічні читання пам'яті Наталії Паніної і Володимира Ядова. Виступи та есе. – Київ: Інститут соціології НАН України, 2016. – С. 155–163.

“Куда людям хочется идти”: публічні простори в українських малих містах / (Не)Задоволення публічними просторами. Урбаністичні студії ІІІ / Упорядники С. Шліпченко, І. Тищенко. – Київ: Всесвіт, 2017. – С. 284–297.
Процесуальний підхід до встановлення якості дослідження (на прикладі показника валідності) / Соціальні виміри суспільства. – Випуск 7 (18) – Київ : Інститут соціології НАН України, 2015. – С. 576–587.
Beyond the Square: The Real and Symbolic Landscapes of Euromaidan / Ukraine’s Euromaidan: Analyses of a Civil Revolution / Ed. by D. R. Marples and F. V. Mills /  Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society. – Stuttgart: ibidem-Verlag, 2015. – p. 147–162.

Надійність кодування проективних малюнків: приклад застосування ĸ Коена // Вісник Львівського університету. Серія соціологічна. – 2015. – Випуск 9. – С. 99–109.
“Šios vietos dvasia teikia stiprybės”: ukrainiečių protestai Kijevo Nepriklausomybės aikštėje / Vietos Dvasios Beieškant. Kolektyvinis straipsnių rinkinys / Sud. R. Čepaitienė. – Vilnius: LII, 2014. – P.295–318.