Managing Collective Action: Government-Sponsored Community Initiatives in Russia
Russian authorities have been increasingly willing to facilitate apolitical self-organization to deal with day-to-day problems in people’s life. This enables the regime to channel the energy of the Russian civil society away from collective voice into the politically harmless collective exit. A case in point is community self-organization known as “territorial self-management” (TSM), which is supported by local administrations through cost-sharing and other means. We use a unique dataset on TSM in the city of Kirov to demonstrate that such initiatives accommodate a surrogate form of civic culture, where the sense of civic duties co-exists with skepticism about political voice and with the preference for government patronage. TSM build loyalty to the government in the society, but could also spark broader collective action restoring the agency relation between society and government.
This article is devoted to the study of problems of creation, organization and operation of financial control in Russia at the municipal level. The work is based on the laws and judicial practice materials on the organization of municipal financial control in the Russian Federation.
The article is dedicated to the functioning of the law and local government system which was created by the Ottomans to control their Balcan lands. Local conflict management is considered in the multiethnic and multiconfessional environment. The paper also focuses on the synthesis of secular and Islamic traditions in Ottoman legislature, as well as the way law influenced the historical development of the Balcan nations.
This report analyzes the architecture of fiscal decentralization in one hundred and ten countries as well as in major metropolitan areas. In the majority of these countries, local authorities are taking on more and more responsibilities for public investment and the provision of services that are essential for both economic development and the well being of their citizens. If increasing fiscal decentralization has been a global trend in recent decades, there are significant variations across and within regions and countries. Local budgets make up on average 25% of public expenditure in the countries of the European Union but less than 5% in many developing countries. Decentralization in terms of revenue and expenditure autonomy has also increased, however this has been uneven across countries and has seen greater advances in expenditure than in revenues, where sources remain limited and uncertain, especially for small and middle size cities. With accelerating urbanization and important shifts in the global context (climate change, increasing risk of natural disaster, migration, and demographic changes among others), current funding levels are insufficient for local governments to respond to the urbanization of poverty, growing investment requirements and other pressing needs. The economic and financial crisis that began in 2008 only worsened the situation. This book identifies universal challenges facing local government finance, as well as those more regional and country specific. Some of the most common are inadequate sources of revenue, unpredictable transfers and grants, excessive higher-level budget controls, and unfunded mandates. In addition to analyzing these challenges and opportunities, the report proposes recommendations to strengthen the fiscal role and performance of local governments around the world.
This publication contains materials of the scientific conference on "The constitutional theory and practice of public authorities: patterns and deviations", held in April 2015 at the initiative of the Department of Constitutional and Municipal Law at the Faculty of Moscow State University Lomonosov.
The publication is addressed to teachers, graduate students, applicants, students of universities, scientists - employees of legal academia. It is lso of interest to those working or studying in the faculties of political science, philosophy and sociology of education, for deputies and members of staff of representative bodies.
This SFI pamphlet provides a Policy Briefing on the critical and ubiquitous role being performed by benchmarking in public services both in the UK and internationally. It complements and partly draws on a special issue of Public Money and Management edited by me and Alan Fenna which also addresses these issues, and which includes some overlapping material treated in greater depth, and with comprehensive references (see Public services benchmarking and external performance assessment: An international perspective. Guest editors: Clive Grace and Alan Fenna (Vol. 33, No. 4, 2013) at http://www.tandfonline.com/r/pmm-benchmarking).
The author elaborates that in the transition from a previous political system into a liberal democracy, there is an ever-present threat of the encroachment of authoritarianism into the democratization agenda. This chapter argues that the conditions for “authoritarian syndrome” can be found in the form that democratization takes and in the culture of a given transitional state. The focus here is on the latter and on the social, political, and economic dynamics that can lead a transitional society to reject democratization. Russia, a transitional state where echoes of authoritarianism and great power aspirations are always on the surface of politics, is presented as a case study.
The problem of optimizing the size of municipalities in order to achieve the greatest administration efficiency is raised. The results of socio-economic survey of five small villages in Slovakia are sited, basing the identification of the factors that contribute to and limit the process of merging small municipalities.
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.