The common research area of ViA is Digital Solutions for Social Challenges. Since the beginning of 2017, research within HESPI has been organized in the following sub-areas:
1. Sustainable national economy and knowledge society
- Development of economics and regional governance
- Human resources development and inclusion policy
- Research of natural and cultural heritage
The development of the research direction is aimed at promoting the growth of the economy of Latvia (including in the regions, nature conservation areas), in the conditions of shrinking economy when development can take place by working more efficiently in one unit of time or by creating more expensive products and services for export.
In order to ensure the creation of smarter, more expensive products and services (in various sectors, especially highlighting our developments in tourism, art, transport, education, social services), an increase is required in human and social capital that can work and develop in the conditions of the 4th industrial revolution where new knowledge and skills that technology cannot provide are demanded.
At the same time, the 4th industrial revolution makes significant changes in the qualitative and quantitative demand for labour force. The creation and implementation of the social policy which strengthens the knowledge society, as well as the provision of appropriate education for different target groups plays an important role in providing the workforce.
The second way is the efficiency improvements in production and management processes that require an approach of systemic analysis and understanding of human behaviour. Work with these types of solutions requires interdisciplinary skills and knowledge that can be provided by a team of researchers consisting of both economists, management science, communication, history and political science researchers, and researchers in natural sciences and humanities.
2. Communication ecosystem and technologies
The development of the research area is a proactive response to the challenges of society. Taking into account the topical challenges associated with the entry of digital technologies into the communication ecosystem of society, there is a need for improving the competence of society in the fields of media literacy and strategic communication. The research team has been actively involved in the implementation of the national level projects, as well as expanding an extensive cooperation at the international level.