Year of Graduation
Effect of Institutional and Procedural Factors on the Level of Electoral Frand: Case of the Russian Federal Elections
The emergence of new democracies in 1980s was accompanied by the promotion of the idea of ’free and fair’ elections. It was supposed that former autocracies would adopt the norms of competitive democratic processes, but it turned out that elections in such countries remained extremely fraudulent. It provoked a discussion about the effectiveness of institutional changes in terms of reducing the level of forensics. This research is aimed at resolving the following question: which factors, institutional or procedural, have a more significant effect on the level of electoral fraud? To answer this question in this paper I provide causal mechanisms that can explain the engagement of local officials in fraudulent practices, develop a new measure of electoral fraud, and test the effect of different factors on the data on Russian legislative and presidential elections (2011-2012). At the end I show which factors can be considered the main determinants of malpractices at the Russian federal elections.