This umbrella topic implies approaching the EU as a political system and studying it by applying concepts and theories of comparative politics (following the agenda set by Simon Hix back in mid-1990s).
Current research projects:
Today there are at least two research projects which I am running and which fall into this broadly defined research field. The first one has to do with the MEPs and the determinants of their behaviour (this project is a collaborative attempt with a colleague from the Mannheim University, Germany). Another one, supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research, deals with the EU neighbourhood policy and the Eastern partnership project, in particular.
Publications on the topic:
- Dekalchuk A. A., Khokhlova A. A. Russian and Western scholarly perspectives on EU–Russia relations in Justice and Home Affairs: how ‘indigenous’ is the Russian scholarship? // Journal of Contemporary European Studies. 2019. Vol. 27. No. 2. P. 171-183.
- Dekalchuk A. A. From Hidden Othering to Open Rivalry: Negotiating the EU-Russia Role Structure through the Visa Dialogue, in: EU-Russia Relations in Crisis: Understanding Diverging Perceptions. Routledge, 2018. Ch. 5. P. 93-111.
- Dekalchuk A. A. Book Review: Irina Busygina, Russia-EU Relations and the Common Neighbourhood: Coercion vs. Authority, London and New York: Routledge, 2018, in: The Uppsala Yearbook of Eurasian Studies Vol. II. L. : Wildy, Simmonds & Hill Publishing, 2017. P. 191-199.
- Dekalchuk A. A., Khokhlova A. A., Skougarevskiy D. National or European Politicians? Gauging MEPs Polarity When Russia is Concerned / Издательский дом НИУ ВШЭ. Series PS "Political Science". 2016. No. WP BRP 35/PS/2016.
- Декальчук А. А. Арабская весна и реформа Шенгена // Международные процессы. 2016. Т. 14. № 4. С. 80-98.
- Dekalchuk A. A. When the Revolutionary Wave Comes: Arab Spring and the Role of the European Commission in the Schengen Reform, 2011-2013 / Издательский дом НИУ ВШЭ. Series IR "International Relations". 2015. No. WP BRP 23/IR/2015.
- Декальчук А. А., Хохлова А. А. Когда n=1: проблема "уникальности" Европейского союза в современной компаративистике // Политическая наука. 2015. № 4. С. 116-134.
- Декальчук А. А. Реформы в условиях внешнего шока: принятие Европейского ордера на арест как ответ на трагедию 11 сентября 2001 года // Полития: Анализ. Хроника. Прогноз. 2015. Т. 76. № 1. С. 55-66.
This broad topic covers issues as diverse as studying local activism and the interactions between the local authorities and local population, and analyzing the way the Federal center penetrates into the local communities through State-run corporations such as Rosatom.
Current research projects:
Studying issues of local communities in Russia is a part of the collaborative endeavour run together with the colleagues at the Department of Political Science, Indiana University. As a part of this collaboration the team of scholars is now preparing a collective volume devoted to researching local communities and local activism in Russia.
I do see some potential in extending the current research focus to cover all the local communities in the towns of the nuclear power industry in Russia.
Forthcoming publications on the topic:
Dekalchuk A. A., Grigoriev I. Skateboarding together: Generational Civic Activism and Non-Transition to Politics in Sosnoviy Bor. In: Urban Activism in Russia. Indiana University Press (forthcoming).
I focus mainly on discourses of international relations between Russia and the West from the end of the Cold War to the present.
Theme of Supervision:
I am happy to supervise PhD students working in areas of International Relations (IR) theory, International Political Thought and Security Studies that seek to understand and explain experiences of conflict and tension in contemporary Russia-West relations.
Dissertation topics may include studies of:
- Divergences in strategic or ideological worldviews between Russia and its Western ‘partners’ (principally the EU, NATO and the US)
- Rivalries between Russia and its Western ‘partners’ in projects of regional security governance in post-communist Eurasia (i.e. Eastern and Central Europe, the Balkans & the post-Soviet space)
- Russian geopolitical thought and its links to ideas of Orthodox faith, civilization, empire, great power, hegemony and the legitimate use of force
- Realist IR theory in Russia and its distinctiveness from American / British realist theory
My current research projects:
For journal articles:
- ‘Poles apart? The Russian-American tension in realist theory’ (with Andrej Krickovic)
- ‘An ideology of civilization? Rationalism in the Russian narrative of the state’ (with Sergei Akopov)
- ‘A new ‘concert of powers’? Russia’s anti-progressive vision of global reform’
For a monograph:
- ‘Sweet Enemies? The EU and Russia’s special relationship, 2003-14’
My research publications:
- Article: 2018. ‘Introduction: the return of spheres of influence?’ (with Susanna Hast) Geopolitics 23 (2), 277–284
- Article: 2018. ‘Between new spheres of influence: Ukraine’s geopolitical misfortune’ Geopolitics 23 (2), 285–306
- Chapter: 2017. ‘Liberal theory’ for Anthony Lang and Antje Weiner (eds.) The Handbook of Global Constitutionalism, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Press, 106–116
- Chapter: 2016. ‘The crisis of spheres of influence in the EU-Russia relationship’ in Andrey Makarychev and Alexandra Yatsk (eds.), Vocabularies of International Relations after the Crisis in Ukraine, London: Routledge, 19–34
- Transparency and the Rule of Law: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Ukraine; Timothy Frye with Jordan Gans-Morse.
- The Russian State, Regions, and Corporate Society under the Economic Sanctions: Japan-Russia-US International Joint Research Project; Ichiro Iwasaki, Timothy Frye, Andrei Yakovlev and Alexander Muravyev
- The Evolution of State-Business Relations in Russian Manufacturing Sector: Andrei Yakovlev with Nina Ershova
- Quality of Governance, Business Climate and Economic Development in Russia’s Regions: Andrei Yakovlev with Lev Freinkman and Denis Ivanov
- What accounts for variations in the strength of property rights across regions and sectors in Russia?
- Why are some regions in Russia better governed than others?
- Why are some firms more vulnerable to corporate raiding than others?
- What legal defenses can firm use to protect property rights?
- Under what conditions do state actors, like judges, elected officials, and bureaucrats support stronger property rights?
- How these conditions were changed in last two decades?
Recent Publications on the Topic:
- Timothy Frye Property Rights and Property Wrongs: How Power, Institutions and Norms Shape Economic Conflict in Russia. 2017. Cambridge University Press.
- Timothy Frye & Andrei Yakovlev “Elections and Property Rights: A Natural Experiment from Russia.” Comparative Political Studies. January, 2016. Vol. 49. No. 4. P. 499-528.
- Timothy Frye “Legality and Violence.” Introduction. Post-Soviet Affairs, Vol. 30, Special Issue 2-3. 2014
- Timothy Frye with Irina Denisova, Markus Eller, and Ekaterina Zhuravskaya. “Everybody Hates Privatization, but Why? Survey Evidence from the Postcommunist World.” Feb. 2012. Journal of Comparative Economics. 40:1, 44-61. (Honorable Mention, National Prize in Applied Economics, 2014. Russia)
- Timothy Frye “In From the Cold: Causal Inference and Postcommunist Studies.” Annual Review of Political Science, 2012, vol. 15.
- Timothy Frye & Ichiro Iwasaki “Government Directors and Business State Relations in Russia.” European Journal of Political Economy, June, 2011. 27(4), 2011, pp. 642-658
- Timothy Frye with Irina Denisova, Markus Eller and Ekaterina Zhuravskaya “Who Wants to Revise Privatization? The Complementarity of Market Skills and Institutions.” American Political Science Review, May 2009 (Honorable Mention, National Prize in Applied Economics, 2010. Russia)
- Timothy Frye with Andrei Yakovlev and Yevgeny Yasin “The "Other" Russian Economy: How Everyday Firms View the Rules of the Game in Russia.” Social Research. Spring 2009.
- Timothy Frye “Original Sin, Good Works, and Property Rights in Russia.” World Politics. July 2006.
- Timothy Frye “Credible Commitment and Property Rights: Evidence from Russia.” American Political Science Review. August 2004.
- Marques I.M., Levina I., Kazun A., Yakovlev A. "Calling the Cavalry: Firm-level Investment in the Face of Decentralized Expropriation." Journal of Institutional Economics. 2020 (in print)
- Yakovlev A. A., Freinkman L., Makarov S., Pogodaev V. How Do Russia’s Regions Adjust to External Shocks? Evidence from the Republic of Tatarstan. Problems of Post-Communism. 2020 (in print).
- Yakovlev A. A., Aisin A. Friends or Foes? The Effect of Governor-Siloviki Interaction on Economic Growth in Russian Regions. Russian Politics. 2019. Vol. 4. No. 4. P. 520-545.
- Freinkman L., Yakovlev A. A. Institutional frameworks to support regulatory reform in middle-income economies: Lessons from Russia’s recent experience. Post-Communist Economies. 2015. Vol. 27. No. 3. P. 354-369.
- Rochlitz M., Kulpina V., Remington T. F., Yakovlev A. A. Performance incentives and economic growth: regional officials in Russia and China. Eurasian Geography and Economics. 2015. Vol. 56. No. 4. P. 421-445.
- Yakovlev A. A., Sobolev A. S., Kazun A. Means of production versus means of coercion: can Russian business limit the violence of a predatory state? Post-Soviet Affairs. 2014. Vol. 30 (2-3). P. 171-194.
- Yakovlev A. A. Russian modernization: Between the need for new players and the fear of losing control of rent sources. Journal of Eurasian Studies. 2014. Vol. 5. No. 1. P. 10-20.
- Demidova O., Yakovlev A. A. State-business relations and participation of firms in public procurement in Russia: an empirical study. Journal of Public Procurement. 2012. Vol. 12. No. 4. P. 547-572.
- Kuznetsov B., Dolgopyatova T. G., Golikova V., Gonchar K. R., Yakovlev A. A., Yasin E. Russian manufacturing revisited: industrial enterprises at the start of the crisis. Post-Soviet Affairs. 2011. Vol. 27. No. 4. P. 1-37.
- Yakovlev A. A. The evolution of business-state interaction in Russia: From State Capture to Business Capture. Europe-Asia Studies. 2006. Vol. 58. No. 7. P. 1033-1056.
- Dolgopyatova T. G., Iwasaki I., Yakovlev A. A. Organization and Development of Russian Business: A Firm-Level Analysis. Palgrave Macmillan, 2009 (Honorable Mention, National Prize in Applied Economics, 2012. Russia.)
Possible Topic Areas:
- The logic of policymaking in Non-democratic Regimes
- Policymaking Processes in Non-democratic Regimes
- Blame Attribution and Responsibility Assignment in Non-democratic Regimes
- Electoral Targeting of Social Policy Benefits
- The Popular Logic of Authoritarian Policymaking: Blame and Attribution in Russia (Ekaterina Borisova, Israel Marques II, Regina Smyth, Alexei Zakharov)
Can authoritarian regimes effectively rely on policy processes to generate popular support and shape political participation? In doing so, are they able to strategically distribute blame and credit for policies across different regime actors? Existing work posits a number of logics for authoritarian policymaking, ranging from a clientalistic desire to foster dependence on state largess to a desire to create “consultative accountability” and demonstrate attentiveness to popular needs. While this literature suggests that the effects of policymaking on popular opinion may vary based on the instigators and implementers of policies, less work has been done to understand whether and why individuals assign credit or blame to politicians at different levels of government. In this paper, we develop a model of blame/credit attribution in which the willingness of individuals to distinguish between different regime actors depends crucially on the extent to which policy has personal costs or benefits. Where individuals are directly affected, they are much more likely to distinguish between regime actors that made different policy proposals or who stepped in to address popular concerns. Where they are less directly affected, blame or attribution tends to correlate across regime actors. To test this model, we take advantage of a recent housing renovation program in Moscow (Russia) aimed at replacing aging Stalin-era buildings, in which residents of eligible buildings were relocated to new apartments. The policy was contentious, resulting in numerous revisions to accommodate public complaints. Using extensive archival work and interviews, we begin by documenting variation in the nature of policy proposals made by politicians at different levels of the Russian government (including federal officials), as well as subsequent suggested modifications. We then explore whether this variation is reflected in how participation shapes popular support for actors at different levels of the regime using an original survey of 2000 Muscovites. We exploit a quasi-natural experiment in assignment of buildings to the program in order to compare direct beneficiaries to bystanders in otherwise similar, nearby buildings that were not included. We then compare these groups to a representative sample of Muscovites to show the generality of our results. Our findings provide important insights into the logic of authoritarian policymaking and blame attribution. These have important implications for scholars of regime survival, public opinion, and collective action in non-democratic regimes.
Possible Topic Areas:
- Political Economy of Investment under Weak Institutions
- Property Rights and Business/State Capture
- Public Private Partnerships
- The Politics of Education and Labor Market Policy (Russian and Comparative)
- Businesses’ Role in Policymaking and Lobbying Strategies
- Binding Ties, Binding Commitments: Evidence from Public-Private Partnerships in Vocational Education
Work on the political economy of investment emphasizes the importance of credible commitments between the firms and the state for developmental outcomes. How can credible commitment be generated in environments characterized by pervasive state-led violence, expropriation, and weak constraints on officials? This paper explores this question through the lens of public-private partnerships in vocational education in Russia’s regions. Research on Europe and the OECD cases emphasizes a strong civil society, such as strong workers’ and employers’ associations, along with free-markets overseen by a well-constrained state, as crucial to fostering credible commitments between firms and the state that allow for cooperative co-investment in vocational education. Yet in many Russian regions, cooperative efforts in vocational education have emerged despite weak employer associations and unions; poorly functioning market institutions; and weak institutions that enable pervasive state corruption and violent predation. In this paper, I argue that in the absence of strong formal institutions, personal ties between state officials and businesses allow firms to acquire information about potential partners within the state bureaucracy and punish low-level officials for breaching agreements and engaging in rent-seeking. This mechanism creates commitment mechanisms between well-connected firms and the state that allow for co-investment. The state in turn uses its powers of contract enforcement to insure that firms do not free-ride on cooperative institutions, creating credibility between firms. To test this theory I take advantage of an original dataset of all public-private partnership contracts between Russian firms and public vocational education institutions for 2013. Drawing on a separate dataset of all Russian firms, I match firms that participate in public-private partnerships to non-participants to create a sample for analysis. I use a unique database of biographical information on regional executives, legislators, and firm officers in the sample to trace their shared work histories, birthplaces, and education and establish connections. This work has important implications for the literature on vocational education and public-private partnerships, as well as for research on business-state relations and investment in violent, weakly institutionalized settings.
- Marques II I., Levina I. A., Kazun A., Yakovlev A. A. Calling the Cavalry: Firm-level Investment in the Face of Decentralized Expropriation // Journal of Institutional Economics. 2020 (Forthcoming)
- Article Thomas F. Remington, Israel Marques II. Partnerships for skill development in Russia // Post-Communist Economies. 2020. Vol. 32. No. 1. P. 1-23.
- Article Remington T. F., Marques II I. The Reform of Skill Formation in Russia: Regional Responses // Europe-Asia Studies. 2020 (Forthcoming)
- Marques II, Israel (2017). Political Connections and Non-Traditional Investment: Evidence from Public-Private Partnerships in Vocational Education. NRU - Higher School of Economics Series PS "Political Science" WP BRP 56/PS/2017.
- Marques II, Israel (2017). Training Strategies and Skill Development Amid Weak Institutions: Evidence from Russia. NRU - Higher School of Economics Series PS "Political Science" WP BRP 52/PS/2017.
- Govorun, Andrei V., Marques II, Israel., and William Pyle (2016). The political roots of intermediated lobbying: evidence from Russian enterprises and business associations. Business and Politics 18 (4): 395-433.
- Levina I. A., Gregory V. K., Marques II I., Yakovlev A. A. Uncertainty as a Factor in Investment Decisions: The Case of the Russian Federation's Regions. World Bank Series WPS "Policy Research Working Paper" 7806.
Possible Topic Areas:
- Structure and Origins of Inequality
- Public Labor Market Policies (toward Automation)
- Public Labor Market Policies (toward the “gig” economy and flexible labor market policies)
- Economic Concentration and Public Opinion
- Public Opinion on Inequality
- Social Policy Responses to the Above
- Labor Market and Economic Outcomes of Public Policy in the above areas
Rising inequality is one of the most powerful challenges of the modern era. Although inequality itself is not new, popular accounts have emphasized a number of structural changes to the global economy that have exacerbated inequality. These include increasing financialization, the spread of automation of high-skill tasks, the emergence of short-term contracts and the “gig” economy, increased market concentration, the increased use of big data and artificial intelligence in management and decision making. Although many of these phenomenon are not entirely new, the increased digitalization of the global economy, the emergence of technological commerce “platforms” (Yandex Yeda, Yandex Taxi, Delivery.ru, etc.), and increasingly cheap and powerful network connections have drastically increased the tempo and scale of their impact on the economy. This project direction seeks to understand contemporary trends in inequality in Russia, its origins, the factors that exacerbate (or mitigate) its effects, and the implications of trends driving inequality for labor markets and social welfare. It will be particularly focused on the ways in which political institutions and decision making have exacerbated (or mitigated) the above phenomenon and their influence on inequality.
Possible Topic Areas:
- Individual Level and Employers’ Preferences for Social Policy
- The Politics of Social Policy Reform and Design (Russian or comparative)
- The Origins of Social Policy/the Welfare State (Russian or comparative)
- Labor Market and Economic Outcomes of Social Policy
- Electoral Targeting of Social Policy Benefits
- The Foundations of Social Policy Support: Experimental Evidence on How Institutional Quality Affects Redistributive Preferences (with Joseph B. Schaffer and Sarah Wilson Sokhey [University of Colorado, Boulder])
We examine how variation in institutional quality—specifically tax evasion—influences individuals’ support for redistributive policies. While much is known about preferences for social policy, there is less research examining how institutions condition these preferences. To address this, we conduct laboratory experiments in the USA at the University of Colorado and in Russia at the Higher School of Economics. In our experiment, individuals vote on a tax rate which contributes to a common pot, complete a clerical task (or are randomly assigned to be unemployed), and then receive payment based on how well they complete the task and their portion of the common pot which is distributed equally. Participants play 3 rounds and vote on their preferred tax rate at the beginning of each round after being updated with information about their own productivity relative to the average and, when relevant, how prevalent underreporting is. In one version, participants are not allowed to cheat by underreporting their earnings. In the other versions, participants may underreport their earnings with either the same risk of audit across individuals or a variable risk of audit across individuals. This research design allows us to test our expectation that individual productivity and the risk of being caught interact to influence a person’s preference for redistribution (as captured by her preferred tax rate). Our research offers valuable contributions to existing work by considering how and to what extent institutional quality influences individual preferences for social policies. To our knowledge, this is the first experiment to examine this question.
- Marques, Israel (2016). Political Institutions and Preferences for Social Policy in the Post-communist World. Ph.D dissertation. Columbia University.
- Marques, Israel (2018). “Firms and Social Policy Preferences Under Weak Institutions: Evidence from Russia”. BOFIT Discussion Papers 7/2018. Bank of Finland.
Possible Topic Areas
- Measuring national or subnational regime characteristics
- Latent variable modeling
- Measuring identity
- Identity politics
- Language policy
- Center-periphery relations
Current Project 1: Using experts to measure regime characteristics
Scholars increasingly rely on experts to code difficult-to-observe but important concepts in political science. In this project I work with colleagues to better understand the advantages and disadvantages of expert-coded data, as well as to develop state-of-the art methods to aggregate these data into both accurate and precise measurements. In particular, I focus on Bayesian latent variable models as a method for aggregation, and analyze data from the Varieties of Democracy Project, a large cross-national expert-coded data gathering enterprise.
- “The V–Dem measurement model: Latent variable analysis for cross-national and cross-temporal expert-coded data.” With Daniel Pemstein, et al. 2019. V–Dem Working Paper 21.
- “What makes experts reliable? Expert reliability and the estimation of latent traits.” With Daniel Pemstein, Brigitte Seim and Yi-ting Wang. 2019. Research & Politics. 6(4): 1-8.
- “IRT models for expert-coded panel data.” With Daniel Pemstein. 2018. Political Analysis. 26(4):431-456.
Current Project 2: Language and separatism
Traditional conceptualizations of the link between ethnicity and separatism conflate different elements of identity, yielding unclear mechanisms by which identity translates into mobilization and conflict. My research focuses on one such element, arguing that linguistic differences demarcate boundaries between identity groups in a relatively permanent and noticeable fashion, creating conditions conducive to separatist mobilization. Language can thus divide and unite individuals of different ethnic backgrounds, providing a much clearer understanding of many cases of purportedly “ethnic” separatism than ethnic identity itself. The project examines this theory across cases from the former Soviet Union, analyzing both cross-regional patterns of separatism and individual-level determinants of support for separatism. It uses data gathered over approximately two years of fieldwork, including an original survey of two post-Soviet regions, focus groups, interviews with ethnic activists and politicians, qualitative content analysis of regional newspapers, and survey data from the 1990s.
- “Identity, social mobility and ethnic mobilization: Language and the disintegration of the Soviet Union.” 2018. Comparative Political Studies. 51(7):831-867.
- “Ethnicity as a variable: An assessment of measures and datasets of ethnicity and related identities.” With Yoshiko M. Herrera. 2015. Social Science Quarterly. 96(3):689-716.
- “Stabilization and symbolism: Language and regional politics in the Chuvash Republic.” 2012. Nationalities Papers. 40(1):127-147.
- “Framing language policy in post-Soviet Azerbaijan: Political symbolism and interethnic harmony.” 2011. Central Asian Survey. 30(2):181-196. Lead article.