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Democracy Institutions and the Level of Democracy in regions of Russia (Democracy Rating Evaluation for Russian Regions)

Priority areas of development: humanitarian
Head: Petrov, Nikolay
Department: Centre for Fundamental Studies

Goal of research: Summary review on international experience of countries (national level) democracy ratings and sub-national level rating evaluation for Russian regions; upgrade and elaboration for expert and instrumental (calculated) evaluations of democracy institutions and the level of democracy in Russian regions; explanation models of democracy indexes spatial variation among Russian regions. 


  • Comparative analysis of rating evaluation methods for national and sub-national level;
  • Statistical analysis (correlation analysis, factor analysis, dispersion analysis).

Empirical base of research:

  • database of international democracy ratings by counties;
  • database of rating evaluation for Russian regions (political, social, economic etc.);
  • database of social and economic statistics (Rosstat data);
  • database of electoral results (national and regional elections);
  • database of political indicators: regional legislatures composition, regional leaders and other public officials rotation by regions.

Results of research

Main results of project are:

  • database of international rating on democracy evaluation by countries; analytical review on national-level democracy evaluation in the context of main international democracy ratings;
  • database on rating evaluations for Russian regions: regional government efficiency, open information, investment climate etc.; in the future, some of that evaluation could be integrated into complex regional democracy rating;
  • new (updated) procedures for expert and calculated democracy rating evaluations and their particular components;
  • series of democracy indexes in dynamics, by period from 1997 (calculated electoral rating) and from 2001 (expert rating) to present time;
  • tentative model of socio-economic exploration for calculated (electoral) democracy rating, based on correlation analysis.

New structure of expert rating arrange democracy rating variables (used in 2001-2013) into three components: “institutional design and political competition”, “civic participation (feedback)” and “good governance”, which could be used, further, as three particular indexes;

New evaluation method, which combine expert and objective constituents, is proposed for political design and competition.

New technique of democracy evaluation, based on electoral parameters, is proposed for regions of Russia and, in the future, for other post-communist (post-Soviet) countries. New technique is adapted for changes in electoral laws from 1990-es to 2010-es. New scheme include the same components (“competition”, “citizens feedback”) as expert rating; thus, integrated rating became possible afterword.

Level of implementation,  recommendations on implementation or outcomes of the implementation of the results

Main practical goal was to elaborate updated versions for expert and calculated ratings of democracy in Russian regions in place of previous versions issued since 2001. Early version of rating were used, by both Russian and foreign students, in big number of researches in regional and political development of Russia.

Databases collected during project period, as well as regional democracy rating indexes in temporal dynamics, enable further evaluations on main trends and inequalities in political development. They can be used for students in Russia’s socio-economic and socio-political development in regional aspects.


Титков А. С. Индекс демократии на региональном и субрегиональном уровне (на примере России и Пермского края), in: Методология и теория исследований локальной политики: Сборник статей. Пермь : ИД "Гармония", 2014. 
Bertelsmann Transformation Index.: Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2014. 
Петров Н. В. Russia Country Report, in: Bertelsmann Transformation Index.: Bertelsmann Stiftung, 2014. С. 1-28.