Linguistic expeditions





Kazakevich, Olga Anatolievna


Present Position

1972 – current: Moscow State University

                      Scientific Research Computer Center

Currently – director of the Laboratory,
Candidate of Science, Philology



Education and Professional Training
University Degrees

Graduated from the Philological Faculty of Lomonosov Moscow State University (Department for Structural and Applied Linguistics) in 1971. In 1971-1976 she had her post-graduate studentship there. Since 1972 she has been working at Lomonosov Moscow State University, till 1975 at the philological faculty as a part-time researcher, and since 1976 in the Laboratory for Computational Lexicography of the Research Computer Centre first as a junior researcher, then as a senior researcher, since 2001 as a leading researcher, and since 2007 she executes the functions of the laboratory chief. In 2003 she was awarded with the honorable title "Distinguished Researcher of Lomonosov Moscow State University".

In 1989 she took her doctor's degree in linguistics (kandidat filologicheskikh nauk) at Lomonosov Moscow State University for the thesis "Computer data bases of the Selkup language: creation and use in linguistic research (Mashinnyi fond selkupskogo yazyka: sozdaniye i ispol’zovaniye v konkretnykh lingvisticheskikh issledovaniyakh)”. In 1998 she aquired the academic status of Senior researcher. In 1997 she was awarded with the Medal to the 850th anniversary of Moscow and in 2004 with the Medal to the 250th anniversary of Lomonosov Moscow State University. She published over 190 works including six monographs (five of them in collaboration). She is one of the authors of the “University Grammar of Selkup” (St.Petersburg, 2002), the first (and up to now the only) textbook of a Northern minority language of Russia for the university level.


Research areas

Samoyedology, the Selkup language and folklore, the Ket language and folklore, the Evenki language and Folklore, Linguistic typology, Sociolinguistics (language situation of indigenous minorities of Russia), Language endangerment, Language contacts, Use of computers in linguistic studies, Visual anthropology.

Olga Kazakevich is a pioneer in using computer for the processing of linguistic data of the languages of autochthonous populations of Siberia. Computer database of Selkup texts developed in 1987-1992 under her leadership became a rich source of unique linguistic material. Since 1992 she has been working at documentation of and research into endangered languages of Siberia. In 1996-2007 she led several successfully completed projects concerned with the documentation and description of local dialects of Selkup, Ket, and Evenki and supported by international and Russian research support foundations (Open Society Research Support Foundation, Russian Foundation for Basic Researches, and Russian Foundation for the Humanities). Among the results of those projects was the development of multimedia databases of Selkup, Ket, and Evenki (demoversions of the bases are presented at the internet site In 1998-2000 she was the coordinator of the Russian-Japanese joint project aiming at creation of an English version of the sociolinguistic database “Endangered languages of Russia” (the work was being done on the basis of the Institute of Linguistics, Russian Academy of Sciences, and the University of Tokyo).


At present she leads a research group working at processing, indexing  and preparing for publication (both as a book and as an internet resource) Selkup, Ket, and Evenki texts in the framework of the project “Changing Russia reflected in life-stories of the Ket, Selkup, and Evenki”. The project is supported by the Russian Foundation for the Humanities.


Documentation of and research into endangered languages presupposes linguistic fieldwork. Within the last ten years (1998-2007) the expeditions led by Olga Kazakevich were supported by Open Society Research Support Foundation, Russian Foundation for Basic Researches, and Russian Foundation for the Humanities. In 2002, 2003 students of the Department for Theoretical and Applied Linguistics of Lomonosov Moscow State University and in 2005-2007 students of the Institute of Linguistics of Russian State University for the Humanities received training in field linguistics in her expeditions.


Since 2000 she lectures at the Institute of Linguistics, Russian State University for the Humanities as a part-time docent. The courses taught currently are Sociolinguistics, Documentation of endangered languages, Ecology of minority languages, Minority Languages of Europe, Field linguistics.

She is a member of the International Sociological Association, Research Committee Sociolinguistics (since 1994) and of the International Arctic Social Sciences Association (since 2004).


In 1997 she was invited as an expert to participate in the sessions of the Working group on Minorities of the United Nations. In 2000-2005 she was a member of the Expert Council on Ethnic School by Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation.


Main publications:

Ispolzovanije EVM dla issledovanija bespismennykh i mladopismennykh jazykhov (Using Computers in Studies of Unwritten and New Written Languages). Moscow, 1990;


Ocherki po selkupskomu jazyku (The Selkup Language. The Taz Dialect). Vol. 1, 2, 3. Moscow, 1980, 1993, 2002 (in collaboration).


Selkupskiy yazyk. Uchebnoye posobiye dlia pedcollegzhei I pedvuzov (Selkup. A Textbook for teacher training colleges and universities). Saint-Petersburg, 2002 (in collaboration).


Pismennyie yazyki mira: Yazyki Rossiyskoi Federatsii. Sotsiolingvisticheskaya entsiklopediya (Written Languages of the World: Languages of the Russian Federation. A Sociolinguistic Encyclopedia). Vol 1, 2. Moscow, 2000, 2003 (author of several articles, editorial work).


Mifologiya sel’kupov (Selkup Mythology). Tomsk, 2004 (in collaboration).


Izmemeniye struktury yazyka s ogranichennoi sferoi upotrebleniya [Structural changes in a lesser used language] // Malyie yazyki I traditsii: sushshestvovaniye na grani. Vypusk 1. Lingvisticheskiye problemy sokhraneniya I dokumentatsii malykh yazykov. Posviashshiaietsia 75-letiyu akademika Viacheslava Vsevlodovicha Ivanova [Minority languages and traditions: existence on the brink Issue 1. Linguistic problems of preservation and documentation of minority languages. To hournor Academician Viacheslav Vsevolodovich Ivanov]. / Ed. By A.E. Kibrik. Moscow, 2005, pp. 122-134.


Language Endagerment in the CIS (Chapter 11) // Language Diversity Endangered / Matthias Brenzinger (ed.) / Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs 181. Berlin; New York: Mouton de Gruyter, 2007. P. 233-262 (in collaboration with A.E. Kibrik).