Yu. O.Gaivoronsky

Main Page ~ Authors ~ Yu. O.Gaivoronsky
  • 3, 2023

    • Patronal Politics and Turnovers of Regional Governors in Russia (Evidence from Social Network Analysis)

      The article is devoted to testing different approaches to explaining the turnover of the heads of the Russian regions after the return of direct gubernatorial elections. Until recently, two basic explanatory models of gubernatorial turnovers — electoral and socio-economic — were the most popular among the Russian political scientists. The influence on such turnovers of informal institutions and practices, which play a significant role in Russian politics, largely remained outside of view of researchers, and even today it is rather understudied. Therefore, the authors focus on identifying the possible role of this factor, employing network and regression analysis for this purpose.

      Based on the Henry Hale’s concept of patronal politics, the authors operationalize informal practices as patron-client relations, which implies unification of federal political and economic actors (patrons) and heads of regions (clients) into a patronal network, the position in which is potentially capable of influencing political stability. To measure a key indicator that reflects the weight of the head of the region in the patronal network, the authors make use of the centrality index that they calculated on the basis of their unique database, which covers all individuals who held the post of a governor from 2012 to 2021, as well as federal actors associated with them.

      The authors’ regression analysis of the factors that influence governors’ turnover testifies to the high explanatory power of the network model: the governor’s presence within the patronal network and his proximity to the key (central) actors of this network reduce the likelihood of resignation. At the same time, alternative explanatory models (electoral and socio-economic), as well as personal characteristics of governors (age, length of tenure, end of term at the office) retain their significance.

      DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2023-110-3-67-90

      Pages: 67-90

  • 4, 2022

    • Recruitment of the Governors Corps in Contemporary Russia: Evolution of Patronal Networks (20172021)

      The article presents an attempt to study the structural dynamics of federal-regional political networks in the process of recruiting heads of the regions. The authors focus their attention on the current stage of the evolution of the federal center’s approach towards the formation of the governor’s corps, which began with the change of the team in the presidential administration in the second half of 2016. The theoretical framework of the study is the concepts of patron-client relations and patronal politics. For the empirical testing, the authors employ the apparatus of the Social Network Analysis (SNA), which makes it possible to assess both the political elite itself and the specific influence of individual figures.

      The conducted research documents a distinct tendency towards the growing structural complexity of the federal-regional patronal network, when an increasing number of federal actors are directly or indirectly involved in the process of recruiting regional leaders, which entails the formation of new intra-elite connections. However, despite the intensive personnel rotation, the tectonic shifts in the structure of patronage are not visible. The backbone of the network remains unchanged and contains on the stable basis a part of the federal political and economic elite, who looks to the leader of the state and enjoys his support. At the same time, the process of the growing complexity of the patronal network is accompanied by an increase in the importance of the President of the Russian Federation, primarily from the point of view of intra-network coordination, which, according to the authors, indicates a rising demand for such coordination in the modern Russia.

      DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2022-107-4-146-167

      Pages: 146-167