• Carnegie.ru Commentary

    As Putin’s Authority Dwindles, Protests in Russia Are Newly Effective

    Having lost his leadership, President Putin now has one chance to carry out major reform that would at least temporarily restore the status of national leader to him. The problem is that after twenty years at the helm, he needs to offer society something a little more solid than the national projects. His final reform must in some sense put an end to the way of ruling the president has adhered to since he first came to power: i.e., using brute force to rule the country.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    No Change Ahead, a Jaded Putin Signals at Annual Phone-In

    Putin perceives growing discontent with the authorities as a purely emotional reaction, based not on real problems but on society’s failure to understand the true picture. This means that no significant revision of the country’s social and economic direction should be expected. Instead, the president and society will suspect each other of being unreasonable and not understanding what is really going on.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Why Jailed U.S. Investor Calvey Is the Least of Putin’s Concerns

    While the authorities used the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum to blame the United States for Russia’s problems, the forum’s main unofficial topic was the lawlessness and impunity of the security services, or siloviki. Faced with the question of what is preventing business and investors from developing in Russia, the authorities and the business elite had contradictory answers.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Every Man for Himself: The Russian Regime Turns On Itself

    The Russian regime is less and less like a well-tuned orchestra with a confident conductor, and more and more like a cacophony in which every musician is trying to play louder and get more attention than everyone else. No one is focusing on the harmonious sound of the symphony. Instead, institutional and corporate priorities take precedence over national priorities, and are carried out at the latter’s expense. This political divergence has been provoked by Putin’s political absence, and fueled by a general fear of an uncertain future and lack of clarity regarding Putin’s plans.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Why the Kazakh Experiment Won’t Work in Russia

    Unlike Nazarbayev, Putin was not as strongly affected by the death of the Uzbekistani President Islam Karimov and the ensuing division of power which ended badly for late president’s family. Will Putin even leave behind much that will need protection? It seems that his primary concern will not be family or the family business, but problems of another dimension: what will become of Crimea, Russia’s presence in Syria, and the country’s ability to assert its sovereignty and withstand the confrontation with the U.S. and NATO.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Overhyped: How “Putin’s Chef” Became One of the Most Influential People in Russia

    Businessman Yevgeny Prigozhin used to avoid the spotlight. Much of his work—the Russian internet troll factory, the Wagner private military company, and political research in Africa—required secrecy. But all that changed when Russian and Western media exaggerated his role in Russian politics and essentially forced him into President Vladimir Putin’s inner circle.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Modernizing the Masses: Russia’s People vs Putin

    Putin’s press conference made it clear that for the president, the question of whether ordinary people want to participate in modernization is secondary to the fact that the government wants to carry it out, and that there are enough people around who are “full of optimism and ready to work.” The subject of optimism and the future epitomizes the problem of the gap between the modernization agenda and public sentiment.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Russia in 2019: What Putin’s Annual Press Conference Revealed

    The main takeaways from Putin’s end-of-the-year press conference are that he has less and less room to maneuver on foreign policy, and that his optimism about a “breakthrough” in the domestic arena is clearly divorced from reality. Circumstances are forcing Putin to turn from geopolitical problems to domestic ones, and that is proving difficult.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Putin’s Courtiers: How Sanctions Have Changed Russia’s Economic Policy

    Sanctions have thrust Vladimir Putin’s inner circle into the public domain. In response, the state has lent sanctioned individuals a helping hand. While previously, they would get individual government contracts, the lucky few are now setting their sights on entire industries via the mechanism of public-private partnerships. The president sees state capitalists as patriotic businesspeople, and they realize that sanctions have made Russia the only place where they can make money.

    • Carnegie.ru Commentary

    Rule by KPI: The Kremlin’s New Approach to Governing Russia

    At a time when the regime’s approval ratings are declining and discontent is growing, the Kremlin has embraced a new approach to governing Russia, best described as a fusion of Soviet and corporate managerial approaches. Championed by the presidential administration’s Sergei Kiriyenko, it has made the authorities look and act a lot like a corporation—for better and worse. On the one hand, they now invest more time and resources in training politicians and government officials, having them participate in brainstorming sessions and play business simulations; but ordinary Russians are still treated with contempt, dangerously widening the gulf between state and citizen.

Carnegie Experts on
Putinology

  • expert thumbnail - Baunov
    Alexander Baunov
    Senior Fellow
    Editor in Chief of Carnegie.ru
    Moscow Center
    Baunov is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center and editor in chief of Carnegie.ru.
  • expert thumbnail - Gaaze
    Konstantin Gaaze
    Nonresident Scholar
    Carnegie Moscow Center
    Konstantin Gaaze is a nonresident scholar at the Carnegie Moscow Center.
  • expert thumbnail - Kolesnikov
    Andrei Kolesnikov
    Senior Fellow and Chair
    Russian Domestic Politics and Political Institutions Program
    Moscow Center
    Kolesnikov is a senior fellow and the chair of the Russian Domestic Politics and Political Institutions Program at the Carnegie Moscow Center.
  • expert thumbnail - Movchan
    Andrey Movchan
    Nonresident Scholar
    Economic Policy Program
    Moscow Center
    Movchan is a nonresident scholar in the Economic Policy Program at the Carnegie Moscow Center.
  • expert thumbnail - Samorukov
    Maxim Samorukov
    Deputy Editor of Carnegie.ru
    Moscow Center
    Samorukov is deputy editor of Carnegie.ru.
  • expert thumbnail - Stanovaya
    Tatyana Stanovaya
    Nonresident Scholar
    Carnegie Moscow Center
    Tatyana Stanovaya is a nonresident scholar at the Carnegie Moscow Center.

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