Синтетическая классификация регионов: основа региональной политики
Russia is one of the most diverse nations in terms of regional inequality. This article investigates which political factors influence on the distributive politics of the federal government and how this contributes to the goal of equalizing disproportions. The authors have analyzed annual regional breakdown of federal transfers for ten last consecutive years. Part of these transfers was defined as “politically sensitive” (subsidies, “other grants”) being different from transfers based on clear economic indicators (equalizing grants) or tied to the transfer of certain powers to the regions (subventions). The authors used such variables as regional economic wealth (precursor of bargaining power), governors’ political influence (measured by expert ratings), ethnic composition (buying loyalty of ethnically non-Russian regions), geopolitical vulnerability (areas claimed / influenced from abroad), and electoral campaigns (“pork barrel” and “loyalty reward” politics). Most of these factors proved to be important.
In spite of increasing funding and the establishment of special budget instruments, government policy aimed at the economic development of di erent parts of Russia’s territory has not demonstrated signi cant success. is article suggests that one of the causes for these shortcomings is the in uence of the bureaucracy, which disempowers every new mechanism for resolving current economic problems in the Russian regions, even if doing so has a negative impact on the economic development of the country as a whole. is issue has not been a priority for Russia’s powerful presidency.
How do Russian leaders balance the need to decentralize governance in a socially and politically complex country with the need to guarantee political control of the state?
Since the early 2000’s Russian federal authorities have arranged a system of political control on regional elites and their leaders providing a ‘police control’ of special bodies subordinated by the federal centre on policy implementation in the regions. Different mechanisms of fiscal federalism and investment policy were used to ensure regional elites’ loyalty and a politically centralized but administratively decentralized system was created.
Asking clear, direct and theoretically informed questions about the relationship between federalism, decentralisation and authoritarianism, this book explores the political survival of authoritarian leaders, the determinants of policy formulation and theories of federalism and decentralization, to reach a new understanding of territorial governance in contemporary Russia. An important work for students and researchers in Russian studies and regional and federal studies.
Maintain autocratic regimes is widely acknowledged to require elites loyalty. However, loyalty of which elites is more important to establish high voting for an autocrat and high turnout? As elections in electoral autocracies are designed to demonstrate superiority of the autocrat over his rivals – Russian subnational elections serve to legitimatize the leadership of a pre-decided race favorite rather than establish fair competition. Even given that there is no intrigue in the election outcome, do conflicts still influence the result of voting? And which conflicts prove to be the most influential on the elections result? Basing on empirical evidence of gubernatorial election in Russia we explore how conflicts between the governor and the elites at municipal and regional levels affect incumbents elections outcome. We collected electoral data in 43 regions and 1402 municipalities and coded qualitative data on conflicts between governor and elites. We find that conflicts between governors and the mayors of regional capitals have the only robust negative effect on both governors electoral result and turnout. In the regions with this conflict, governors receive up to about 16 percentage points lower support and 15 percentage point lower turnout. The explanation to the finding bases on the logic of mobilization machinery performance. Encouraging loyalty of these mayors secures smoother political machinery in the most electorally significant areas of the region (regional capitals) and thus has the most pronounced impact on the outcome of an electoral campaign. This finding provides another confirmation of the paramount role of covert rather than open inter-elite competition for electoral autocracies maintenance.