1st Edition

Russia's Authoritarian Elections

Edited By Stephen White Copyright 2012
    216 Pages
    by Routledge

    216 Pages
    by Routledge

    Russia is the world’s largest country, and its politics affect the entire international community. Formally, who exercises the power of government is decided, as in Western democracies, by competitive elections that are held at regular intervals. But there have increasingly been doubts about the extent to which Russian parliamentary and presidential elections can be considered ‘free and fair’, and it is the argument of this coauthored study that they are better defined as ‘authoritarian elections’, with a number of distinct characteristics. Using a wide range of sources, including surveys, election statistics, interviews, focus groups and the printed press, the contributors to this important collection analyse Russia’s authoritarian elections in a variety of ways: how they are conducted, what citizens think about them, and how the Russian experience relates to a wider international context. Elections are the central mechanism by which citizens can seek to hold their government to account; this collection shows the ways in which that mechanism can be manipulated from above such it becomes more of an extension of central authority than a means by which the public at large can impose their own priorities.

    This book was originally published as a special issue of Europe-Asia Studies.

    1. Elections Russian-Style, Stephen White, University of Glasgow.

    2. Changing the Russian Electoral System: Inside the Black Box, Stephen White, University of Glasgow and Ol’ga Kryshtanovskaya, Russian Academy of Sciences and the Institute for Applied Politics

    3. Russia’s Authoritarian Elections: The View from Below, Stephen White, University of Glasgow and Valentina Feklyunina, Newcastle University

    4. Metastasised Fraud in Russia’s 2008 Presidential Election, Evgenya Lukinova, University of Oregon, Mikhail Myagkov, University of Oregon and Peter C. Ordeshook, California Institute of Technology

    5. The Regional Roots of Electoral Authoritarianism in Russia, Grigorii V. Golosov, European University at St Petersburg and the Center in Support of Democracy and Human Rights Helix

    6. Regional Elections and Electoral Authoritarianism in Russia, Cameron Ross, University of Dundee

    7. Public Perceptions of Electoral Fairness in Russia, Ian McAllister, Australian National University and Stephen White, University of Glasgow

    8. Elections, International Observers and the Politicisation of Democratic Values, Derek S. Hutcheson, University College Dublin

    9. Post-Soviet Electoral Practices in Comparative Perspective, Sarah Birch, University of Essex

    10. Appendix: The Russian Federal Elections, 2007–2008, Stephen White, University of Glasgow


    Stephen White is the James Bryce Professor of Politics and a Senior Research Associate of the University's School of Central and East European Studies. He graduated from Trinity College Dublin in history and political science, and then completed a PhD in Soviet studies at Glasgow - including an exchange year at Moscow State University - and a DPhil in politics at Wolfson College Oxford. He is the chief editor of the Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics, and was for some time also the editor of International Politics.