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Laboratory of Museum Technologies


Svetlana BELORUSSOVA, Head of the laboratory, Candidate of sciences in history. Her research interests include an ethnic history of Turkic-speaking peoples of the Ural-Volga region, virtual ethnicity and cyberethnography, visual anthropology and ethnographic cinema, ethno-projects and ethno-leaders, travel anthropology, ethno-expertise.

Natalia ALEKSASHENKO, Senior Researcher, Candidate of sciences in history. Her research interests include trassology, experiment, the technology of production and use of bone objects, comparative study of archaeological and ethnographic objects, paleoeconomics.

Natalia CHERNYAEVA, Researcher, Candidate of sciences in philosophy, Ph.D. Her research interests include gender anthropology, visual philosophy, and visual anthropology, history of modern motherhood and childhood.

Gleb DANILOV, Junior researcher. His research interests include paleogeography of circumpolar regions, archeology of Northeast Eurasia, scientific methods of dating in geology and archeology.

Natalia KAZUROVA, Senior researcher, Candidate of sciences in history.

Julia KONKOVA, Researcher. His research interests include arctic design, northern aesthetics, traditional ornament of the North, artistic image of traditional culture of nomads, ethnodesign, interpretation of traditional cultural values in contemporary design practices.

Denis KUKANOV, researcher. His research interests include ethno-design, arctic design, northern aesthetics, forms and designs of traditional cultural objects.

Nadezhda STANULEVICH, Researcher, Candidate of sciences in history. Her research interests include the history of photography, museum collections, and historical and cultural heritage.

Oksana SULEIMANOVA, Researcher, Candidate of sciences in history, Her research interests include virtual ethnicity, material culture of modern urban population of the Kola Peninsula, family culture, migration processes, culture and traditions of the Kola Sami.

Arseniy SUZUMOV, Junior researcher. He studies virtual ethnographic geographic information systems, cartographic heritage of Russian ethnographers, use of geographic information systems in ethnological expertise (development of geographic information systems for ethnological expertise), spatial analysis in the study of ethno-cultural landscapes.

Ekaterina TOLMACHEVA, Senior researcher, Candidate of sciences in history. Her research interests include the theory and practice of creation, storage, use, and study of ethnographic audiovisual documents, the history of ethnographic photography, digitization, and methodology of field photography.

Evgenia UCHANEVA, Researcher. Her research interests include physical anthropology, craniology, osteology, anthropology of the population of South Siberia, paleodemography, application of natural science methods in anthropology and archeology, 3D-modeling, geometric morphometry in anthropology.


The Laboratory of Museum Technologies conducts fundamental and applied research in anthropology, archaeology, ethnography, and museum studies. The Museum of Archeology and Ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences (MAE RAS) possesses unique archeological, anthropological, and ethnographic collections totaling over one million items. Only 0.5% of them are currently on display in the permanent exposition of the MAE RAS. This disproportion between the vast museum collections and the available exhibition space creates the need for developing innovative technologies of presenting the museum’s collections to the public. Laboratory staff carries out projects in the field of digitalization, visualization, and design of museum collections. They analyze the history of visual images in the MAE RAS collections, develop methods of analysis, publication, and presentation of visual materials, and create an integrated digital database of museum materials. Finally, they study methods of reconstructing the ways of life, support systems, habitat, and cultural specifics of the ancient and modern populations of the planet.

The Laboratory implements interdisciplinary research in the following areas: (1) Traceology in Archaeology and Ethnography; (2) Natural Science Methods in Physical Anthropology; (3) Geochemistry in Archaeology; (4) Visual Technologies; (5) Ethno-design; (6) Cyber-ethnography. Two groups of factors determine the formation and adjustment of the Laboratory’s research program. Firstly, it is the rapid development of cybersphere’s, digital and visual trends in museum expositions worldwide. Secondly, it is the internal development of the MAE RAS infrastructure, in particular, the plan to build a multifunctional research and preservation center of the museum (MRPC), which will have a cutting-edge research and collection center with many technological and design possibilities. The task of the creation of the MRPC requires full digitization of ethnographic, archaeological, and anthropological collections and preparing their digital catalog. The MRPC will enable comprehensive interdisciplinary research of the museum’s unique collections, state-of-the-art levels of preservation and safety, and broad access to the museum collections for specialists worldwide.

The activities of the Laboratory are also determined by the general re-exposition plan of the MAE RAS, including the creation and launch of the new permanent exhibition “Petrovsky Kunstkamera, or the Tower of Knowledge” (1st floor) and “Imperial Hall: Multinational Russia” (2nd floor). Among other things, the Laboratory plays the role of a “talent pipeline” for the MAE RAS: it is the youngest department among the Kunstkamera’s divisions.


  1. Aiba T. G. “Abkhaz-Abaza Diaspora in Europe. Some Issues of Preservation of Traditional Culture of Abkhaz and Abaza Abroad”. History, Archaeology, and Ethnography of the Caucasus. Vol. 18, № 1 (2022). Pp. 154-166.
  2. Aleksashenko N. A. “Trassological methods in the study of ancient and traditional technologies.” Kunstkamera. 2020. № 3. Pp.93-103.
  3. Belorussova S. Y. “Religion in virtual space.” Ethnography. 2021. № 4 (14). Pp. 94-118.
  4. Belorussova S. Yu. “Cyberethnography: methodology and technology.” Ethnography. 2021. № 3 (13). Pp. 123-145.
  5. Golovnev A. V., Belorussova S. Y., Kisser T. S. Virtual ethnicity and cyberethnography. St. Petersburg: MAE RAS. 2021. 280 p.
  6. Golovnev A. V., Garin N. P., Kukanov D. A. Yamal’s reindeer herders (materials for the Atlas of Nomadic Technologies). Yekaterinburg: UrO RAS, 2016. - 152 p.
  7. Golovnev A. V., Kukanov D. A., Perevalova E. V. The Arctic: an atlas of nomadic technologies. St. Petersburg: MAE RAS, 2018. 352 p.
  8. Danilov G. K. “Ring layouts of land dwellings of western Chukotka: from the Neolithic to the present: neolithic dwellings.” Proceedings of the International Symposium; IIMK RAS, SGSPU. St. Petersburg: Nevskaya typografia Publishing House, 2021. 48 p.
  9. Kazurova N. Between life and death. Notes on the works of Abbas Kiarostami. Moscow: New Literary Review, 2018. - 232 p.
  10. Tolmacheva E. B. “Constructing an ethnic image: approaches to the visualization of historical and cultural facts (on the example of photo documents from the collection of I. S. Polyakov).” ΠΡΑΞΗΜΑ. Problems of visual semiotics. 2021. № 1 (27). Pp. 180-200.
  11. Stanulevich N.A. “Prokudin-Gorskii’s technique of color photography: color separation, additive projection, and pigment printing.” Color Culture and Science Journal. 2022. Vol. 14 (1). Pp. 33-41.
  12. Uchaneva E. N. N., Savenkova T.M. “New paleoanthropological materials from the Early Proterozoic vaults of the Minusinsk Basin.” Camera praehistorica. 2019. №2. Pp.123-136.
  13. Chernyaeva N. A. “The right to look” and “the right to be seen”: conflicts of the visual.” Proceedings of the Ural Federal University. Social Sciences. 2019. № 152 (2), Pp. 40-48.