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  • Author: Ivan Timofeev
  • Publication Date: 11-2017
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for World Economics and Politics
  • Abstract: The article aims to highlight Russian approaches to Chinese One Belt-One Road initiative. It examines possible opportunities and challenges for co-development of the Eurasian Economic Union and the Belt project. Both projects and their co-development may reduce the uncertainty in Eurasia, caused by significant structural changes in international relations and the world economy, the emergence of new trade regimes and the erosion of leadership in international affairs. Russian interests in this regard are determined by the need for modernization and long-term development, which could also help to address acute security issues. These particular factors encouraged Russia to come up with an ambitious plan of the Extensive Eurasian Partnership, although the prospects of its implementation currently are uncertain. The present article argues that the success of Russia-China collaboration in Eurasia will depend crucially on the future dynamics of the Eurasian integration, as well as on the agreement to co-develop the Eurasian Economic Union and the Belt Initiative with concrete and mutually beneficial projects.
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Russia
  • Author: Veera Laine
  • Publication Date: 10-2016
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Finnish Institute of International Affairs
  • Abstract: In recent years, the Russian state has been described as becoming “more nationalistic”. In the time period encompassing the Sochi Winter Olympics, the occupation of Crimea, the war in Donbas that continues to this day, air strikes in Syria, and the state seeking new legitimacy during the deepening economic crisis in Russia, many notions have been connected to growing nationalism. But nationalism as such is an ambiguous concept. Moreover, there is hardly any state in today’s global system that could be said to be totally devoid of nationalistic argumentation. Therefore, the way in which the Russian state leadership is using nationalism in order to achieve its political goals requires a critical empirical study. Authoritarianism, conservatism, and even imperialism have been discussed as “new” features of the Russian state. But the change in the self-understanding of the Russian state is not a result of one factor, such as strengthening national pride, but rather a wide range of ideas that have been reshuffled in relation to each other. This Working Paper focuses on the state-led nationalism in this changing ideational environment between the years 2012 and 2016, and how it has been received by the people.
  • Topic: Nationalism, International Affairs, Power Politics, Authoritarianism, Neoimperialism
  • Political Geography: Russia
  • Author: Col. Douglas Mastriano
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College
  • Abstract: The strategic calculus changed in Europe with the 2014 Russian seizure of Crimea and its ongoing war against Ukraine. Compounding the dilemma of an aggressive Russia, is the application of ambiguity to create a clock of uncertainty that prevents a decisive response to counter its destabilizing activities. However, this application of ambiguity is easily defeated, if nations are willing to take concerted efforts now to preempt and deter further Russian aggression. Project 1704 provides an honest assessment of the tenuous strategic environment that now envelopes Eastern Europe and offers specific recommendations on how to continue the 70 years of unparalleled peace that most of Europe has enjoyed.
  • Topic: Politics, International Security, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Russia, Ukraine, Eastern Europe, Crimea
  • Publication Date: 01-2014
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Crisis Group
  • Abstract: Russia has invested extensive resources and prestige in the Winter Olympics to be held in the Black Sea resort of Sochi, 7-23 February 2014. The tab, an estimated $51 billion, does not include a nationwide security operation to protect the venue against attack by a resilient and ruthless armed jihadi movement. A spate of bombings, including two in December in the southern city of Volgograd, show that North Caucasus Islamist terrorists are determined to strike opportunistically across the country to mar the games and challenge President Vladimir Putin, who has promised a "safe, enjoyable and memorable" Olympic experience. If ripple effects of security for Sochi and the ambitious regional tourism project the games are meant to inaugurate are not to worsen the situation in the war-to rn North Caucasus, local communities must be assured they will benefit from the development plans, not fall victims to rapacious local elites or the abuses allegedly accompanying the Games. Equally important, they will need guaranteed long-term security, not simply oppressive security regimes.
  • Topic: Security, Islam, International Affairs, Insurgency, Governance
  • Political Geography: Russia, Caucasus, Sochi
  • Author: John W. Parker
  • Publication Date: 01-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Institute for National Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Independent Russia is approaching the start of its third decade of post-Soviet existence. After the economic chaos of the Boris Yeltsin decade and the recovery and stabilization of the Vladimir Putin decade, Russia's leaders have high ambitions for a return to great power status in the years ahead. Their aspirations are tempered, however, by the realities of Russia's social, economic, and military shortcomings and vulnerabilities, laid painfully bare by the stress test of the recent global financial crisis. Looking ahead, some also calculate that Russia will be increasingly challenged in the Far East by a rising China and in the Middle East by an Iran that aspires to regional hegemony.
  • Topic: Cold War, Nuclear Weapons, International Affairs, Power Politics
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States
  • Author: Jeffrey Mankoff
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: Like much of the world, Russia has been in the midst of a serious economic crisis since the late summer of 2008. Although the worst appears to be over, Russia will continue to feel its effects longer than many other industrialized countries, largely because of a rigid economy burdened with an overweening state role. The recognition that Russia faces serious long-term challenges has emboldened President Dmitry Medvedev and others to call for far-reaching economic restructuring. If successful, their economic policies could undermine the semi-authoritarian, state-capitalist model developed under Prime Minister and former president Vladimir Putin. Although concrete reforms have so far been limited, Medvedev's demands for change (seconded in some cases by Putin) have acquired increasing momentum in recent months. The speed of Russia's recovery and obstacles along the way will play a major role in determining both the success of Medvedev's call for modernization and the course of Russia's foreign policy since a quicker recovery would diminish the pressure for fundamental reform and lessen the need for caution internationally.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Economics, International Affairs, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: Russia
  • Author: Henry E. Hale, Nikolai Petrov, Masha Lipman
  • Publication Date: 02-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Can autocratic governments that incorporate elements of democracy provide good governance? The authors approach this question with an inductive study of Russia, which is widely regarded as a leading hybrid regime and an innovator in the field. They argue that for most of the past decade, and especially during Vladimir Putin's second term as president, Russia has been characterized by a hybrid regime that strongly resembles those in many other Eurasian states, as well as Venezuela and Iran. This type of regime combines a high degree of state centralization with the gutting of democratic institutions, and their sys-tematic replacement with substitutions that are intended to serve some of their positive functions without challenging the incumbent leaders' hold on power.
  • Topic: Government, International Affairs, Political Theory, Authoritarianism
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eurasia
  • Author: Pierre Razoux
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: The world financial crisis, the Iranian crisis and the Georgian crisis illuminate through different prisms the complex relations between Israel and Russia.The seeming contradictions of this odd couple are a constant source of serious concern and perplexity to theWestern world, and to NATO in particular, all the more so since Russia sent its army into Georgia and is back on the world stage as an essential player.Why is it that only six weeks after the verbal clash over the Georgian crisis in August 2008 (when Russia accused Israel of having armed and trained the Georgian army), Russia and Israel abolished their visa regulations, thus facilitating reciprocal trade? How do we explain the acceleration of capital flows between the two countries, at a time when world trade is clearly slowing down? And why is it that Moscow, after Washington, is still a destination of choice of Israeli prime ministers, while the Israeli authorities continue to insist that Israel has a special relationship with the United States? Are we to infer from this, then, that Israel and Russia are upgrading their strategic ties, as a popular Turkish magazine suggests ? Lastly, why was Israel one of the very few states in the Middle East to maintain regular relations with Russia after the ColdWar, unlike the many Arab states who coldshouldered their former arms supplier just as it was preparing to deliver sophisticated missile systems to Syria and a nuclear power station to Iran? For many observers, trapped in Cold War thinking, it was impossible to imagine Israel and Russia, the USSR's successor, as anything other than irreconcilable adversaries. This perception of Israel as the West's champion against Sovietsupported Arab countries overlooked the fact that the Arab-Israeli conflict arose from a regional conflict that went way beyond the confines of East-West confrontation. It also failed to take into account the deep and longstanding bonds between Israel and Russia, particularly in the area of immigration.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Arabia, Syria
  • Author: Manmohan Agarwal
  • Publication Date: 10-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: Rapid economic growth in the large developing countries collectively known as BRICSAM (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa and Mexico) has the potential to change the balance of economic power in the world. This paper analyzes this potential building on developments in these economies over the past four decades in the context of the evolution of the world economy. This evolution has two significant features: increasing economic integration and a hiatus in growth. Increasing integration can be observed in the almost universal rise in the share of the exports of goods and services in GDP, and the increase in private capital flows. There has been a hiatus in growth since the 1973-1974 increase in the price of oil.
  • Topic: Economics, Globalization, International Political Economy, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, India, South Africa, Brazil, Mexico
  • Author: Sergei Prozorov
  • Publication Date: 07-2004
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The Northwestern Federal District of the Russian Federation has been particularly active in asserting itself as a macro-regional political subject, transcending the administrative borders of the subjects of the Russian Federation. This affirmation of the Northwest as a macro-region is also characterised by the explicit location of the Federal District within the international regional context and the linkage of the newly elaborated strategic development plans with EU policies in the region, particularly the Northern Dimension. This strategic policy discourse is grounded in the problematisation of the existing format of EU-Russian cooperation on the regional level as marked by the passivity of Russian regions vis-à-vis EU policies. The district-level strategies proceed, on the contrary, from the need to assume a more active and assertive position towards the EU that would allow to integrate the policies of the Northern Dimension with the domestic reform vision in Russia. The paper seeks to analyse the international dimensions of the strategic discourse of the Northwestern 'macro-region', elucidate the conflict episodes and conflict issues that are articulated in this discourse and address the wider implications of the emergence of the Northwestern Federal District for the EU-Russian regional cooperation in the border regions.
  • Topic: Politics, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Russia, Europe, Asia