Are post-Soviet leaders doomed to be populist? A comparative analysis of Putin and Nazarbayev
The use of populist ideology can be an important element of the survival strategy for authoritarian leaders being an important tool for regime stabilization. The incentives for using populist ideology are shaping in response to a current combination of a threat to incumbent’s rule. As the examples of Putin and Nazarbayev, ruling in neighbouring authoritarian Russia and Kazakhstan, demonstrate, the intensity and scope with which the leader resorts to the use of populism, as well as concrete content of this ideology, can fundamentally differ.