Inequality, Democracy and Taxation: Lessons from the Post-Communist Transition
Using data for post-communist economies (1989-2002), we examine the determinants of income inequality. We find a strong positive association between equality and tax collection but note that this relationship is significantly stronger under authoritarian regimes than under democracies. We also discover that countries introducing sustainable democratic institutions early are characterised by lower inequality; we confirm that education fosters equality and find that larger countries are prone to higher levels of inequality.
The nature of European imperialism during the "long nineteenth century" is still contested. Although the shadows of the old polemic framed by Schumpeter and Lenin's diametrically opposed positions are still occasionally cast upon the discussion, more recent appraisals of European imperialism have emphasized its relationship to both the consolidation of liberalism in Europe and attempts to globalize the economies and value systems of European nation states. Given this new line of inquiry, the exact relationship between the various forms of liberalism in Europe and the various imperial projects of Europe have yet to be scrutinized. Was there an overarching European project of liberal imperialism or were there overriding regional and national differences that differentiated the imperialism/s of the various European states? Did the contours of the domestic struggles between liberals and non-liberals (particularly conservatives and socialists) as well between different types of liberals leave a significant imprint on the expansionist policies of European states or was there a national consensus that eroded party lines on issues of foreign policy? What was the social composition of the supporters of empire in civil society? Is it possible to speak of a popular movement for empire? In this state-of-the-field anthology, leading scholars in the fields of European imperial history and intellectual history explore these questions and more, in order to thoroughly investigate the phenomenon of "liberal imperialism."
The purpose of this paper is to assess the size of public sector within the Russian banking industry. We identify and classify at least 78 state-influenced banks. We distinguish between banks that are majority-owned by federal executive authorities or Central Bank of Russia, by sub-federal (regional and municipal) authorities, by state-owned enterprises and banks, and by "state corporations". We estimate their combined market share to have reached 56% of total assets by July 1, 2009. Banks indirectly owned by public capital are the fastest-growing group. Concentration is increasing within the public sector of the industry, with the top five state-controlled banking groups in possession of over 49% of assets. We observe a crowding out and erosion of domestic private capital, whose market share is shrinking from year to year. Several of the largest state-owned banks now constitute a de facto intermediate tier at the core of the banking system. We argue that the direction of ownership change in Russian banking is different from that in CEE countries.
The main focus of this paper is the relation between the realisation of the right of the child to express his/her views and democracy in Russia. With this in view, I will study the interconnection between the right to express the views and the right to participate. Further, I will give an overview of the specifics of democracy in Russia, how they influence political participation, and what could be done to prevent the further infantilisation of citizens in Russia. Finally, I will explore traditional perceptions with regard to children’s participation in Russia and the legal framework and practice of the implementation of the child’s right to social and political participation.
The purpose of this paper is to carefully assess the size of public sector within the Russian banking industry. We identify and classify at least 78 state-influenced banks. For the state-owned banks, we distinguish between those that are majority-owned by federal executive authorities or Central Bank of Russia, by sub-federal (regional and municipal) authorities, by state-owned enterprises and banks, and by "state corporations". We estimate their combined market share to have reached 56% of total assets by July 1, 2009. Banks indirectly owned by public capital are the fastest-growing group. Concentration is increasing within the public sector of the industry, with the top five state-controlled banking groups in possession of over 49% of assets. We observe a crowding out and erosion of domestic private capital, whose market share is shrinking from year to year. Several of the largest state-owned banks now constitute a de facto intermediate tier at the core of the banking system. We argue that the direction of ownership change in Russian banking is different from that in CEE countries.
The article is dedicated to fiscal incentives for business angels. Business angel, a comparatively new phenomenon in Russia, is defined in the first part of the article. The second part is a research of fiscal incentives intended for private investors in order to encourage them to support small innovative enterprises. The research is based on European and North American experience. Finally, the third part suggests the ways of creating a system of fiscal incentives for business angels in Russia.
This publication is an continuation of the series of yearly Academic Papers, published since 2006, by the “Baltic Practice” interdisciplinary research Center, in a form of structured and edited collection of research papers of participants of the International HSE Summer School “Practice at the Baltic Sea” or simply “Baltic Practice”, submitted by the students of National Research University “Higher School of Economics”, as well undergraduate and graduate students from several European universities, complimented by the commentaries and research articles by research groups academic leaders and experts.
This book seeks to “re-think democracy.” Over the past years, there has been a tendency in the global policy community and, even more widely, in the world’s media, to focus on democracy as the “gold standard” by which all things political are measured. This book re-examines democracy in Russia and in the world more generally, as idea, desired ideal, and practice. A major issue for Russia is whether the modernization of Russia might not prosper better by Russia focusing directly on modernization and not worrying too much about democracy. This book explores a wide range of aspects of this important question. It discusses how the debate is conducted in Russia; outlines how Russians contrast their own experiences, unfavourably, with the experience of China, where reform and modernization have been pursued with great success, with no concern for democracy; and concludes by assessing how the debate in Russia is likely to be resolved.
Early polities are often called as tributary (from Latin tributum). It is a question of great importance but also of great difficulty which tributes (taxes) the Rus’ collected from the subjugated population in the 9-11th centuries. The oldest Rus’ian chronicle texts contain several references about an extraction of some taxes in favor of the Rus’, but these references are difficult to understand. The author interprets the chronicle reports with these references taking two approaches: 1) it is taken for granted that the chronicle preceding to “The Tale of Bygone Years” is preserved in the so-called Novgorod First Chronicle of Younger Redaction, and 2) the chronicle reports are compared with the evidence of non-Rus’ian origin (the treaties by Constantine Porphyrogentis, the Arabian geographers’ accounts from the 9-11th centuries etc.). The most important conclusions drawn by the author are: 1) the tribute rate matched to the “standards” common in Eastern Europe in the 9-11th centuries, and this was in fact a fur skin which corresponded in prize to 4-7 g silver, 2) the Rus’ian ruling class collected the tribute (dan’) during the yearly circuit around the subjugated territory, extracting also some naturalia for feeding as “gifts”; both the circuits and the naturalia were called as poliud’e, 3) the evidence on both the tribute rate and methods of extracting the tribute comes from different regions of Old Rus’ – from Novgorod to Kiev. This fact shows that the basic principles of tax system which the Rus’ applied to the subjugated territories were the same anywhere. These principles laid a foundation for the “tributary” dominance of the Rus’ in the 9-11th centuries.
The paper examines the structure, governance, and balance sheets of state-controlled banks in Russia, which accounted for over 55 percent of the total assets in the country's banking system in early 2012. The author offers a credible estimate of the size of the country's state banking sector by including banks that are indirectly owned by public organizations. Contrary to some predictions based on the theoretical literature on economic transition, he explains the relatively high profitability and efficiency of Russian state-controlled banks by pointing to their competitive position in such functions as acquisition and disposal of assets on behalf of the government. Also suggested in the paper is a different way of looking at market concentration in Russia (by consolidating the market shares of core state-controlled banks), which produces a picture of a more concentrated market than officially reported. Lastly, one of the author's interesting conclusions is that China provides a better benchmark than the formerly centrally planned economies of Central and Eastern Europe by which to assess the viability of state ownership of banks in Russia and to evaluate the country's banking sector.
The paper examines the principles for the supervision of financial conglomerates proposed by BCBS in the consultative document published in December 2011. Moreover, the article proposes a number of suggestions worked out by the authors within the HSE research team.