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Local Heroes : The Political Economy of Russian Regional Governance - Kathryn Stoner-Weiss

Local Heroes

The Political Economy of Russian Regional Governance

Paperback Published: 5th May 2002
ISBN: 9780691092812
Number Of Pages: 264

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In "Local Heroes," Kathryn Stoner-Weiss analyzes a crucial aspect of one of the great dramas of modern times--the reconstitution of the Russian polity and economy after more than seventy years of communist rule. This is the first book to look comprehensively and systematically at Russia's democratic transition at the local level. Its goal is to explain why some of the new political institutions in the Russian provinces weathered the monumental changes of the early 1990s better than others. Using newly available economic, political, and sociological data to test various theories of democratization and institutional performance, Stoner-Weiss finds that traditional theories are unable to explain variations in regional government performance in Russia.

"Local Heroes" argues that the legacy of the former economic system influenced the operation of new political institutions in important and often unexpected ways. Past institutional structures, specifically the concentration of the regional economy, promoted the formation of political and economic coalitions within a new proto-democratic institutional framework. These coalitions have had positive effects on governmental performance. For democratic theorists, this may be a surprising conclusion. However, it is possible, as Stoner-Weiss suggests, that the needs of democratic development may be different in the short run than in the long run. The "local heroes" of today may be impediments to the further development of democracy tomorrow. This provocative work, solidly grounded in research and theory, will interest anyone concerned with issues of economic and political transition.

Industry Reviews

"An important contribution to an understanding of the transition away from Soviet rule in Russia ... and to theories of elite politics and governmental performance... [It] will stimulate readers from a wide range of backgrounds."--William M. Reisinger, American Political Science Review "An excellent study... Interesting and provocative."--Choice "Local Heroes ... makes a substantial empirical contribution to our knowledge of ... four Russian regions. It is an important book for scholars of Russia and also offers many insights to scholars of other countries as well."--Sue Davis, Russian Review

List of Tables and Figures
Note on Transliteration
Introductionp. 3
The Political Economy of Government Performancep. 27
Decentralization and Democratization: The Development of Regional Government Institutionsp. 56
Who Governs Russia Well? Measuring Institutional Performancep. 90
Testing Theories of Performance Variation: Economic, Social-Structural, and Cultural Hypothesesp. 131
The Political Economy of Government Performance: Testing the Theoryp. 164
Democracy and the Market at Risk?p. 192
Regional Government Structuresp. 205
App. Bp. 208
Bibliographyp. 221
Indexp. 235
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780691092812
ISBN-10: 0691092818
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 264
Published: 5th May 2002
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.77 x 15.65  x 1.73
Weight (kg): 0.39