Testing the family investment model in Russia: Estimating indirect effects of SES and parental beliefs on the literacy skills of first-graders
The family investment model provides a powerful perspective for understanding the processes underlying relations between parents’ SES and children’s achievement. The extant research on the role of parental investments has largely built on U.S. studies. The present work extended this line of investigation to a novel context by testing family investments as a proximal link between SES and child outcomes in Russia. The study focused on predictors of literacy skills in children entering primary school. It examined the pathways from parental education, income and beliefs to children’s literacy skills through family investments: resources available at home, joint parent-child literacy activities and access to outside-home resources and activities. As hypothesized, these investments mediated the relation of parental income and education to child literacy, with education being more strongly related to child outcomes than income. Beliefs about the importance of developing literacy skills prior to school were found to be independent of SES and linked to child outcomes through the same sorts of family investments as SES. The findings show the robustness of the family investment model across diverse contexts and advance our understanding of the model by incorporating parental beliefs in its current framework.
The paper discusses parental beliefs about the purposes, methods, and modes of interacting with the child about the transition to school and learning in first grade. Using interviews with the mothers of first-graders we show the contradictions and difficulties of forming their own pedagogical theories. In particular, we show that parents form their beliefs using various, often contradictory sources (scientific publications, the traditional view of the child, the perception of the modern world as a high-risk, etc.) and cope with these contradictions in different ways.
Institutions affect investment decisions, including investments in human capital. Hence institutions are relevant for the allocation of talent. Good market-supporting institutions attract talent to productive value-creating activities, whereas poor ones raise the appeal of rent-seeking. We propose a theoretical model that predicts that more talented individuals are particularly sensitive in their career choices to the quality of institutions, and test these predictions on a sample of around 95 countries of the world. We find a strong positive association between the quality of institutions and graduation of college and university students in science, and an even stronger negative correlation with graduation in law. Our findings are robust to various specifications of empirical models, including smaller samples of former colonies and transition countries. The quality of human capital makes the distinction between educational choices under strong and weak institutions particularly sharp. We show that the allocation of talent is an important link between institutions and growth.
The article is devoted to the study of the authoritarianism prevalent in the mass consciousness of Russians. The article describes a new approach to the consideration of the authoritarian syndrome as the effects of the cultural trauma as a result of political and socio-cultural transformation of society. The article shows the dynamics of the symptoms of the authoritarianism, which appear in the mass consciousness of Russians from 1993 to 2011. This paper proposes a package of measures aimed at reducing the level of the authoritarianism in Russian society.
This work looks at a model of spatial election competition with two candidates who can spend effort in order to increase their popularity through advertisement. It is shown that under certain condition the political programs of the candidates will be different. The work derives the comparative statics of equilibrium policy platform and campaign spending with respect the distribution of voter policy preferences and the proportionality of the electoral system. In particular, it is whown that the equilibrium does not exist if the policy preferences are distributed over too narrow an interval.
The article examines "regulatory requirements" as a subject of state control over business in Russia. The author deliberately does not use the term "the rule of law". The article states that a set of requirements for business is wider than the legislative regulation.
First, the article analyzes the regulatory nature of the requirements, especially in the technical field. The requirements are considered in relation to the rule of law. The article explores approaches to the definition of regulatory requirements in Russian legal science. The author analyzes legislation definitions for a set of requirements for business. The author concludes that regulatory requirements are not always identical to the rule of law. Regulatory requirements are a set of obligatory requirements for entrepreneurs’ economic activity. Validation failure leads to negative consequences.
Second, the article analyzes the problems of the regulatory requirements in practice. Lack of information about the requirements, their irrelevance and inconsistency are problems of the regulatory requirements in Russia.
Many requirements regulating economic activity are not compatible with the current development level of science and technology. The problems are analyzed on the basis of the Russian judicial practice and annual monitoring reports by Higher School of Economics.
Finally, the author provides an approach to the possible solution of the regulatory requirements’ problem. The author proposes to create a nationwide Internet portal about regulatory requirements. The portal should contain full information about all regulatory requirements. The author recommends extending moratorium on the use of the requirements adopted by the bodies and organizations of the former USSR government.