Andrei Y. Melville
- Member of the HSE Academic Council
- Andrei Y. Melville has been at HSE since 2009.
Education, Degrees and Academic Titles
Doctor of Sciences* in Social Philosophy
Lomonosov Moscow State University
Candidate of Sciences* (PhD) in Social Philosophy
Degree in Philosophy
Lomonosov Moscow State University
According to the International Standard Classification of Education (ISCED) 2011, Candidate of Sciences belongs to ISCED level 8 - "doctoral or equivalent", together with PhD, DPhil, D.Lit, D.Sc, LL.D, Doctorate or similar. Candidate of Sciences allows its holders to reach the level of the Associate Professor.
A post-doctoral degree called Doctor of Sciences is given to reflect second advanced research qualifications or higher doctorates in ISCED 2011.
Awards and Accomplishments
Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences (since 2014)
Head, Department of Political Science (since 2014)
Dean, Faculty of Politics, National Research University Higher School of Economics (since 2010)
Department Head, Department of Comparative Politics, HSE (since 2010)
Professor, Faculty of Politics, HSE (since 2009)
Vice-Rector for Research, MGIMO-University (1999-2009)
Dean, Faculty of Political Science, MGIMO-University (1998-2004)
Department Head, Department of Comparative Politics, MGIMO-University (1998-1999)
Department Head, Department of Political Science, MGIMO-University (1991-1998)
Professor, MGIMO-University (1989-2009)
Section Head, Institute of the USA and Canada, Russian Academy of Science (1982-1989)
Research Fellow, Institute of the USA and Canada, Russian Academy of Science (1975-1982)
Other professional positions
Chair, Dissertation council in political science (212.048.08), Higher School of Economics (since 2010)
Chair, Dissertation council in political science (209.002.02), MGIMO-University (2008-2009)
Visiting professor, University of California, Berkeley (1992 and 1994)
Visiting professor, University of Bergen (1997, 1999 and 2009)
Professor, Stanford Overseas Program (2005-2007)
Chair, Board of the Megaproject on education in Russia, Open Society Institute (1998-2004)
Member, Presidential commission on human rights (1997-2002)
Member, Academic council of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia (2000-2009)
Student Term / Thesis Papers
D. Efimov «Successful Dictatorship: Indicators, Factors, Strategies». Faculty of Social Sciences, 2016
A. Zhuravlev «"Good" Institutions and Democratization in an Authoritarian Regime as Dictator's Rational Choice». Faculty of Social Sciences, 2016
A. Novikov «Policy Framing in Policy Making Process: the Case of Biotechnology Regulation in the EU». Faculty of Politics, 2014
A. Zhuravleva «The influence of political stabiliy on economic growth in South Korea and Singapore». Faculty of Politics, 2014
D. Efimov «State Capacity in the Modern World: Types, Forms and Relationship with Regime Characteristics». Faculty of Social Sciences, 2018
J. Baumann «International Dimensions of Authoritarian Rule. Tracing the Links between Authoritarian Cooperation and Legitimation: Insights from the Belarusian Case 1994-2016». Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs, 2017
- Modern Political Science (Master’s programme; Faculty of Politics; 1 year, 1, 2 module)Rus
- Political Science (Bachelor’s programme; Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs; 2 year, 3, 4 module)Rus
- Multidimentional Typologies of Political Systems of Modern States (Bachelor’s programme; Faculty of Politics; 4 year, 3 module)Rus
- New Democracies and New Autocracies: Transformations of Political Regimes in the Modern World (Master’s programme; Faculty of Politics; 1 year, 1, 2 module)Rus
- Introduction to Political Science (Bachelor’s programme; Faculty of Politics; spec. "Political Research"; 1 year, 1-4 module)Rus
- Multidimentional Typologies of Political Systems of Modern States (Bachelor’s programme; Faculty of Politics; 4 year, 3 module)Rus
- Transformation of Political Regimes (Master’s programme; Faculty of Politics; spec. "Political Expertise"; 1 year, 1, 2 module)Rus
Editorial board membership
2018: Member of the Editorial Board, Вопросы государственного и муниципального управления (Public Administration Issues).
2015: Member of the Editorial Board, Russian Politics.
2014: Member of the Editorial Board, Вестник Российской нации.
2009: Member of the Editorial Board, Балтийский регион (Baltic region).
2004: Member of the Editorial Board (член Международного консультативного совета), Journal of International Relations and Development (Journal of International Relations).
2004: Member of the Editorial Council, Полития: Анализ. Хроника. Прогноз (Журнал политической философии и социологии политики).
2001: Member of the Editorial Board, European Journal of International Relations.
1989: Member of the Editorial Board, Полис. Политические исследования (Polis (Russian Federation)).
2012–2016: Member of the Editorial Board, American Political Science Review.
2008–2013: Member of the Editorial Board, International Studies Quarterly.
Political Atlas of the Modern World. And Experiment in Multidimensional Statistical Analysis of Modern States (ed. and co-author). Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell, 2010
Political Atlas of the Modern World (Ed. and co-author). MGIMO-University, 2007 (in Russian)
Political Science: Textbook (Ed. and co-author). Prospect-Press, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 (in Russian)
Russian Foreign Policy: Concepts and Realities (ed. and co-author). Central European University, 2005.
Categories of Political Science. Textbook (ed. and co-author). ROSSPEN, 2002 (in Russian)
Democratic Transitions. MONF, 1999 (in Russian)
The Glasnost Papers (co-editor and co-author). Westview Press, 1990
Conservatism in US Ideology and Politics. Progress Publishers, 1986
USA – Shift to the Right? Nauka, 1986 (in Russian)
Social Philosophy of Modern American Conservatism . Nauka, 1976 (in Russian)
Counter-Culture and New Conservatism (co-authored). Iskusstvo, 1976 (in Russian)
Recent Articles and Book Chapters
Quality of Institutions as the Priority of Modernization. – Resources of Modernization: Opportunities and Limits of the International Context. MGIMO-University, 2012 (in Russian)
Trajectories of Regime Transformation and Types of Stateness in Post-Communist Countries (co-authored). WP BPSR Series, HSE (02/2012)
Oligarchy. – IPSA Encyclopedia of Political Science, 2011
Preconditions of Democracy and Limits of Democratization (co-authored). – International Academic Conference on Economic and Social Development, HSE, 2012 (in Russian)
An Experiment in Quantitative and Qualitative Analysis of the Factors of Democratization. – METHOD, 2011 (in Russian)
Trajectories of Regime Transformation and Types of Stateness (co-authored). – POLIS, 2012, No. 2 (in Russian)
Russia’s Post-Communist Transformation in a Comparative Perspective (co-authored). – 20 Years and Onward – Post-Soviet-Russian Politics: Ideologies, State Systems and World Strategies. Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, 2011
Alternative Scenarios of the Russian Future: Is there a “Corridor of Opportunities”? – The World in XXI: Scenarios for Russia. Institute of the European Studies, Russian Academy of Science, 2011.
Preconditions of Democracy and Limits of Democratization: Factors of Regime Change in Post-Communist Countries (co-authored). – POLIS, 2011, No. 3
2020: Russian Alternatives Revisited (co-authored). – POLITIA, 2010, No. 2
Postponed and/or Cancelled Democratizations. – POLIS, 2010, No. 4
New Nations Formation: External and Domestic Factors of Consolidation (co-authored). – POLIS, 2010, No. 3
Russia in 2020: Alternatives Scenarios of the Russian Future (co-authored). – On Russia.Axel and Axson Johnson Foundation 2009
- Book Bosetti G., Cucciolla R. M., Kara-Murza A., Zhukova O. A., Ajani G., Semyonov A., Zubok V. M., Nathans B., Savranskaya S., Kramer M., Sheynis V. L., Obolonsky A. V., Sauvé G., Solovey V. D., Barabashev A. G., Prokofiev V. N., Zulkarnay I. U., Melville A. Y. Dimensions and Challenges of Russian Liberalism: Historical Drama and New Prospects / Ed. by R. M. Cucciolla. Vol. 8. Switzerland : Springer, 2019. doi (in press)
- Chapter Melville A. Y. “Fortress-Russia”: Geopolitical Destiny, Unintended Consequences, or Policy Choices?, in: The Return of Geopolitics. Berlin : LIT Verlag, 2018. Ch. 6. P. 97-112.
- Chapter Melville A. Y. Neo-Conservatism as National Idea for Russia?, in: State and Political Discourse in Russia. Rome : Reset-Dialogues on Civilizations, 2017. Ch. 5. P. 147-160.
- Article Melville A. Y., Mironyuk M. G. “Bad Enough Governance”: State Capacity and Quality of Institutions in Post-Soviet Autocracies // Post-Soviet Affairs. 2016. Vol. 32. No. 2. P. 132-151. doi
- Chapter Makarenko B., Melville A. Y. How Do Transitions to Democracy Get Stuck and Where?, in: Democracy in a Russian Mirror. NY : Cambridge University Press, 2015. Ch. 14. P. 255-291.
- Article Melville A. Y., Stukal D., Mironyuk M. G. “King of the Mountain”, or Why Postcommunist Autocracies Have Bad Institutions // Russian Politics and Law. 2014. Vol. 52. No. 2. P. 7-29. doi
- Article Melville A. Y., Stukal D., Mironyuk M. G. Trajectories of Regime Transformation and Types of Stateness in Post-communist Countries // Perspectives on European Politics and Society. 2013. Vol. 14. No. 4. P. 431-459. doi
- Preprint Melville A. Y., Stukal D. (Re-)Bulding the Ship of State at Sea? State Capacity and Regime Dynamics in Post-Communist Countries / NRU Higher School of Economics. Series PS "Political Science". 2012. No. 07.
- Preprint Melville A. Y., Mironyuk M. G., Stukal D. Trajectories of Regime Transformation and Types of Stateness in Post-Communist Countries / NRU Higher School of Economics. Series PS "Political Science". 2012. No. 02.
- Book Melville A. Y., Полунин Ю. А., Ilyin M., Mironyuk M. G., Timofeev I. N., Meleshkina E. Y., Ваславский Я. И. Political Atlas of the Modern World : An Experiment in Multidimensional Statistical Analysis of the Political Systems of Modern States. Malden : Wiley-Blackwell, 2010.
- Chapter Melville A. Y., Timofeev I. N. Russia in 2020: Alternative Scenarios of the Near Future, in: On Russia / Ed. by K. Almqvest, A. Linalater. Stockholm : Axel and Margaret Ax:son Johnson Foundation, 2010. P. 127-148.
- Chapter Melville A. Y. Post-Communist Russia as a Challenge to Transition Theories, in: Handbook of Global Political Policy. NY, Basel : Routledge, 2000. P. 461-487.
- Chapter Melville A. Y. Post-Communist Russia: Democratic Transitions and Transition Theories, in: The Challenges of Theories on Democracy: Elaborations over new Trends in Transitology. NY : Columbia University Press, 2000. P. 147-179.
- Article Melville A. Y. Russia in the 1990s: Democratization, postcommunism, or something else? // Demokratizatsiya: The Journal of Post-Soviet Democratization. 1999. Vol. 7. No. 2. P. 165-187.
- Chapter Melville A. Y. Russia’s Open-Ended Transition: Toward an Integrated Research Model, in: The Russian Transformation: Political, Sociological, and Psychological Aspects. NY : St.Martin's Press, 1999. P. 239-252.
- Article Melville A. Y. Post-communist Russia: Problems of Transition // World Affairs. 1998. Vol. 2. No. 2. P. 68-85.
- Article Reisinger W. M., Melville A. Y., Miller A. H., Hesli V. L. Mass and Elite Political Outlooks in Post-Soviet Russia: How Congruent? // Political Research Quarterly. 1996. Vol. 49. No. 1. P. 77-101.
- Chapter Melville A. Y. Public attitudes in Russia, in: Perceptions of Security: Public Opinion and Expert Assessments in Europe's New Democracies. NY, Manchester : Manchester University Press, 1996. P. 231-250.
- Article Melville A. Y., Bashkirova E. Russian Public Opinition between Elections // International Social Science Journal. 1995. Vol. 146. P. 553-565.
- Chapter Melville A. Y., Nikitin A. I. The End of the Consensus That Never Was: The Future of Soviet-American Relations as Viewed by the Soviet Public, in: Mutual Security: A New Approach To Soviet-American Relations. Macmillan, 1991. doi P. 337-355.
- Book The Glasnost Papers: Voices on Reform from Moscow / Ed. by A. Y. Melville, G. W. Lapidus. Oxford : Westview Press, 1990.
- Chapter Melville A. Y. Nuclear Revolution and the New Way of Thinking, in: Breakthrough: Emerging New Thinking : Soviet and Western Scholars Issue a Challenge to Build a World Beyond War. NY : Walker and Company, 1988. P. 175-183.
- Chapter Melville A. Y., Frank J. D. The Image of the Enemy and the Process of Change, in: Breakthrough: Emerging New Thinking : Soviet and Western Scholars Issue a Challenge to Build a World Beyond War. NY : Walker and Company, 1988. P. 198-207.
State Capacity, Democratization and the Problem of Sequencing
STATE CAPACITY, DEMOCRATIZATION AND THE PROBLEM OF SEQUENCING
National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow
The state and stateness as prerequisite for democracy and democratization is commonplace in comparative politics literature (Rustow 1970; Tilly 2007; Linz and Stepan 1996; Fukuyama 2004, 2007; Mansfield and Snyder 2007; Moller and Skaaning 2011, etc.). This assumption leads to important theoretical and practical implications, including the so-called sequencing argument, which suggests that an effective state must come first, followed by democratization later.
But in what sense are state and stateness prerequisites to democracy and democratization? States are not alike, in the real political world there are different types of states with different evolutionary stages, resources, capacities, priorities, and political regimes. Are there any types of states that are particularly disposed to further democratization? This problem of sequencing is of special importance for transitional states of the “third wave” that face the simultaneous challenges of state-building, nation-formation, economic reforms and regime transformation. Can state building and democratization complement each other instead? Can democratization start and be successful at low and medium levels of state capacity?
This paper starts with an overview of the extant literature and continues with the formulation of several hypotheses. The methodology and the data set are further discussed. Various relationships between levels of state capacity and trajectories of regime change (democratization) are explored. Some preliminary conclusions follow.
Extant literature dealing with the abovementioned problems is enormous indeed. The basic mainstream argument is, put simply, as follows: No state, no democracy. This basic argument seems to be theoretically and empirically unquestionable. There is hardly any doubt that democracy assumes a capable state and cannot exist in a vacuum of stateness. However, recent debates have outlined different and alternative approaches to various forms of relationships between types and levels of stateness and regime change, including the problem of sequencing. Several approaches in the literature can be identified:
(1) “Stateness First”
This powerful argument advances the mainstream logic: high levels of state capacity (availability of necessary resources and effective institutions) are necessary prerequisites for democracy and indispensible preconditions for successful democratization (Back and Hadenius 2008, Moller and Skaaning 2011, etc.).
(2) “Democratization without a State”
This is a logically possible but practically and substantially almost untenable hypothesis. Tansey (2007 and 2009) gives only few examples, which look dubious: Kosovo and East Timor. Scheuerman (2009) refers to globalization and transnationalization as factors that may eventually decrease the relevance of sovereign stateness to democratization. In any case, this is a pretty marginal argument in the literature.
(3) “Democratization Backwards”
Some authors point at historical (“classical”) regularity in European state-building starting from at least the 16th century – and even earlier. The argument is that “modern” states (“born in blood”) appeared first, and democratic practices and institutions came about gradually later. Other authors, though, question the universal character of such regularity within the context of the last decades of the “third wave” and argue for so-called “democratization backwards”, i.e. parallel and complimentary to the processes of state building in new transitional states. Rose and Shin (2001) provide empirical grounds to the thesis of the possibility of “Building the Ship of State at Sea”, i.e. building new institutions of democratic governance in transitional states of the “third wave” (thus bypassing the preliminary phase of building institutions of effective authoritarian governance). Bratton (2004), Bratton and Chang (2006) and Carbone and Memoli (2012), come to similar conclusions using different methodologies. Fortin (2011) underlines the problem of endogeneity in the issues under consideration and, since the direction of causality remains unclear, tends toward the conclusion that state-building and democratization may complement each other.
Important issues, however, remain undisclosed. For example, some authors raise the problem of a minimal threshold of stateness, understood as effectiveness of governmental institutions, which is indispensable for the beginning of democratization (Capelli 2008, Hanson 2011, Fortin 2011). This important problem is formulated in the literature, though adequate theoretical and empirical arguments are largely insufficient.
Further, Grzymala-Busse and Luong (2002) notice that attention should be paid to multiple authority centers during post-communist state-building and warn against “anthropomorphic conceptualization” of the transitional state as a monolithic entity. Another quite important issue has to do with the stability or variability of state capacity within the context of post-Communist transformations. Fortin (2010), for example, argues in favor of relative invariability of state capacity over time. This is an important question since, in the instance that this is accurate, we would need to control for quite different (“non-stateness”, “non-state capacity”) variables in the comparative analysis of post-communist transformations.
Finally, among the propositions most widespread in literature the J-curve is quite notable. Its theoretical grounds may be found, for example, in Tilly’s (2007: 16-19) classification of “crude regime types” along two axes (state capacity and democracy): high-capacity/undemocratic (example – Kazakhstan); low-capacity undemocratic (example – Somalia); high-capacity/democratic (example – Norway) and low-capacity/democratic (example – Jamaica). Tilly’s theoretical proposition seems to be confirmed by empirical research (Back and Hadenius 2008; Charron and Lapuente 2010; Fortin 2011; Moller and Skaaning 2011, etc.). The argument is the following: the highest levels of state capacity are attained in developed democracies, but its substantially high levels can be found in autocracies and they are much higher than those in transitional regimes. In a way, this is an argument in favor of the “Stateness First” approach in the “sequencing” debate.
One may go on with this reasoning and presume that there is certain logic in the sequencing of reforms and changes in countries undergoing transitions. It implies a priority of building a strong state and strengthening the “vertical of power” eventually followed by democratization which otherwise is fraught with the risk of losing control, chaos and even collapse of a state. If this is true, then one of the major problems of the democratic transition is how to get through this “danger zone” as the political and economic reforms may contribute to the deterioration of socio-economic situation, degradation of governance and growing discontent among large groups of population that do not gain anything from the reforms.
The review of existing theoretical and empirical literature leads us to the following hypotheses, which are further addressed in this paper:
H 1. Contrary to the mainstream in literature, high levels of state capacity are not always indispensable prerequisites for democratization. Democratization may start and proceed at relatively low levels of state capacity, although democratic consolidation occurs at its high levels. Post-communist democratization and state-building (enhancement of state capacity) may complement each other.
H 2. Despite the mainstream generic argument in the existing literature, post-communist non-democracies do not demonstrate higher levels of state capacity and institutional quality than transitional and hybrid regimes.
H 3. Levels of state capacity may change considerably during periods of radical social and political post-communist transformations.
Data and methodology
This paper concentrates on post-communist countries from the beginning of the Velvet Revolutions (1989) up to 2010. The sample consists of 27 countries, including Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Mongolia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.
To proceed with the analysis, state capacity needs to be defined in a measurable way with accessible empirical proxies. However, state capacity is a rather vague notion with no widely recognized definition yet. The literature on modern states, stateness, and state capacity is immense, but commonly accepted notions and definitions are still debatable.
For example, Fukuyama (2004) defines multiple dimensions of stateness, including functions, capabilities, and grounds for legitimacy of government. He suggests a list of state functions, including defense, law and order, property rights, protection of the poor, macroeconomic management, public health, education, financial regulation, redistributive pensions, environmental protection, unemployment insurance, asset redistribution, and fostering markets and cluster initiatives. Another approach is that of Baeck and Hadenius (2008) who consider stateness as the capacity of state entities to maintain sovereignty. A more detailed focus is taken by Hendrix (2010) via defining state capacity in terms of military capacity, bureaucratic or administrative capacity, and the quality and coherence of political institutions. An institutional approach is found in Fortin (2010) with state capacity measured by five indicators, which are corruption, contract intensive money, infrastructure reform, protection of property rights, and tax revenue. Another understanding of state capacity is presented by Charron and Lapuente (2010) and Charron and Lapuente (2011) who equate state capacity with the quality of government (measured by indicators of ICRG and WGI). Thompson (2014) considers state capacity as “state strength” which is measured by indicators reflecting state fiscal capacity (income tax revenue as a proportion of gross domestic product), state coercive capacity (coercive capacity scale), legitimacy (“voice and accountability”, “government effectiveness”, “rule of law” and “control of corruption, WGI) and armed force monopoly (“political stability”, WGI).
While some of these approaches to measurement of state capacity are merely theoretical and are not supported by corresponding set of empirical indicators, others are more empirically oriented. However, measurement of state capacity in post-communist countries remains a challenging task provided poor empirical base. Quality and diversity of accessible statistical data for numerous post-communist countries are pretty low. This implies both lots of missing data and dubious pieces of data.
The mainstream literature understands state capacity as a combination of two major components: (a) resources and (b) institutions. However, attempts to empirically measure these components run into several methodological problems. The first one is how to measure available resources. In some cases GDP per capita is used as criteria, although it certainly may be related not only to state capacity but to other variables. Gehlbach (2008), as well as other authors, for example, suggests levels of tax extraction as a measure of resources in defining state capacity. This would seem an appealing approach; however, we need to take into account that tax share of GDP may reflect the structure of the national economy, rather than the extractive capacity of the state – in particular when dealing with resource oriented economies and their political preferences and institutions. Besides, available data on tax structure in post-communist countries is missing in some important cases and does not give us sufficient indicators of the percentage of taxes in GDP. The second problem has to do with measures of institutions and institutional quality. One may choose between combinations of variables of the WGI or ICRG and other analytical instruments – again facing the problem of the missing data within the post-communist sample. These are serious methodological problems which require further attention (however, beyond the scope of this paper).
Taking these considerations and limitations into account, this paper attempts to measure post-communist state capacity using GDP per capita as criteria of available resources. To measure the quality of economic/financial and political institutions two variables are used: the Contract Intensive Money index (which reflects quality of financial institutions and in some degree people’s trust in national bank system) and the Physical Integrity Rights index from Cingranelli–Richards dataset (as a reflection of the rule of law, irrespective of the characteristics of the political regime). Democracy/autocracy as another key variable in this paper is measured by an average of two indices – Polity IV and Freedom House.
Two scatterplots with data on democracy/autocracy and state capacity in post-communist countries during two periods – from the beginning of the transition in 1989-1993 till 2006-2010 – are overlapped (Figure 1) in order to present rough trajectories of the dynamic of 27 post-communist countries. This data can be used to test the three hypotheses presented above. In particular, it affords to make several conclusions about state capacity and regime change in post-communist countries related to the problem of sequencing.
First, countries with relatively high levels of state capacity are leaders in democratization (as of 2006-2010). These are Slovenia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, etc. However, there are dramatic anomalies – countries which managed (for various reasons) to more or less successfully democratize staring from relatively low levels of state capacity – Croatia, Serbia, Georgia, Moldova. These cases prove that in particular circumstances (yet to be analyzed) democratization may start without effective stateness and state capacity, which at least partly confirms Hypothesis 1. However, it is important to note that in these cases relatively low levels of state capacity are nonetheless on the average somewhat higher than in most of autocracies which did not democratize. In principle, this may reinforce the abovementioned argument about the minimal threshold of stateness and state capacity necessary for the start of democratization.
Second, one common trend of the two decades of post-communist transformations is gradual increase of state capacity, regardless of regime characteristics, There are again exceptions, such as Ukraine or the Czech Republic which have advanced during the period analyzed on democracy score but not in state capacity, or Armenia, Uzbekistan and Russia, which have fallen (although to different degrees) both in the indices of state capacity and democracy. Apparently, different factors may have impact on these dynamics, including the growth of the GDP without the improvement of the quality of institutions.
Third, despite some very marginal increases in state capacity in authoritarian Kazakhstan and even to a lesser extent in Azerbaijan and Belarus, two decades of post-communist transformations did not result in the emergence of autocracies with high levels of state capacity. These findings support Hypothesis 2.
Fourth, these findings indicate that levels of state capacity may actually change, and sometimes quite substantially, during periods of radical political and socio-economic transformations. The overall effect of successful post-communist democratizations is correlated with gradual increases in state capacity and quality of institutions, although of very different degrees, which supports Hypothesis 3.
These empirical findings, which confirm our hypothesis, but may not be in tune with some important premises in existing literature, call for further research.
This paper contributes to the discussion of the “sequencing” problem by suggesting empirical evidence in favor of possible complementarity of state (re-) building and democratization and against the universality of “State First” approach. It further demonstrates that the J-curve argument is not confirmed in case of the post-communist sample. Post-communist (or rather – post-Soviet) autocracies successfully withstand democratization and do not produce high levels of state capacity and quality of institutions. Moreover, some post-Soviet hybrid and transitional regimes demonstrate higher state capacity and better governance than autocracies.
Baeck, Hanna and Axel Hadenius (2008) Democracy and State Capacity: Explaining a J-Shaped Relationship. Governance: An International Journal of Policy, Administration, and Institutions 21(1): 1-24.
Bratton Michael (2004) State Building and Democratization in Sub-Saharan Africa: Forwards, Backwards, or Together? Afrobarometer Working Papers, no 43.
Bratton, Michael and Eric Chang (2006) State Building and Democratization in Sub-Saharan Africa: Forwards, Backwards, or Together? Comparative Political Science 39(9): 1059-1083.
Capelli, Ottorino (2008) Pre-Modern State-Building in Post-Soviet Russia. Journal of Communist Studies and Transition Politics 24(4): 531-572.
Carbone, Giovanne and Vincenzo Memoli (2012) Does Democracy Foster State Consolidation? A Panel Analysis of the “Backwards Hypothesis” (http://www.sociol.unimi.it/papers/2012-04-19_G.%20Carbone%20e%20V.%20Memoli.pdf).
Charron, Nicholas and Victor Lapuente (2010) Does Democracy Produce Quality of Government? European Journal of Political Research 49(4): 443-470.
Charron, Nicholas and Victor Lapuente (2011) Which Dictators Produce Quality of Government? Studies of Comparative International Development 46(4): 397-423.
Fortin, Jessica (2010) A Tool to Evaluate State Capacity in Post-Communist Countries. European Journal of Political Research 49(5): 654-686.
Fortin, Jessica (2011) Is There a Necessary Condition for Democracy? The Role of State Capacity in Post-Communist Countries. Comparative Political Studies 45(7): 903-930.
Fukuyama, Francis (2004) The Imperative of State-Building Journal of Democracy 15(2): 17-31.
Fukuyama, Francis (2007) Liberalism versus State-Building Journal of Democracy 18(3): 10-13.
Gehlbach, Scott (2008) Representation Through Taxation: Revenue, Politics, and Development in Postcommunist States. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Grzymala-Busse, Anna and Pauline Jones Luong (2002) Reconceptualizing the State: Lessons from Post-Communism Politics and Society 30(4): 529-554.
Hanson, Jonathan (2012) Democracy and State Capacity: Complements or Substitutes? (http://faculty.maxwell.syr.edu/johanson/papers/hanson08.pdf).
Hendrix, Cullen S. (2010) Measuring State Capacity: Theoretical and Empirical Implications for the Study of Civil Conflict. Journal of Peace Research 47(3): 273-285.
Linz Juan and Alfred Stepan (1996) Problems of Democratic Transition and Consolidation. Southern Europe, South America, and Post-Communist Europe. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Mansfield, Edward D. and Jack L. Snyder (2007) The Sequencing “Fallacy” Journal of Democracy 18(3): 5-10.
Melville, Andrei and Denis Stukal (2012). (Re)Building the Ship of State at Sea? State Capacity and Regime Dynamics in Post-Communist Countries. WP BRP 07/PS/2012.
Melville, Andrei, Denis Stukal and Mikhail Mironyuk (2014). “King of the Mountain” or Why Postcommunist Autocracies Have Bad Institutions. Russian Politics and Law 52(2): 7-29.
Moller, Jorgen and Svend-Eric Skaaning (2011) Stateness First? Democratization 18(1): 1-24.
Rose, Ricgard and Doh Chull Shin (2001) Democratization Backwards: The Problem of Third-Wave Democracies British Journal of Political Science 32(2): 331-354.
Rustow, Dankwart (1970) Transitions to Democracy: Towards a Dynamic Model. Comparative Politics 2(3): 337-363.
Scheuerman, William E. (2009) Postnational Democracies Without Postnational States? Some Skeptical Reflections Ethics and Global Politics 2(1): 41-63.
Tansey, Oisin (2007) Democratization Without a State: Democratic Regime-Building in Kosovo Democratization 14(1): 129-150.
Tansey, Oisin (2009) Regime-Building: Democratization and International Administration. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Thompson, William R. (2014). Indian State Capacity: Where Does It Fit and What Might it Imply? (Unpublished manuscript).
Tilly, Charles (2007) Democracy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
 However, the concept of a strong state (in opposition to a weal state) frequently used in the literature, is rather dubious. It is not always clear what the sources of this strength are. Do they result from an opposition’s weakness, opportunities and monopoly to carry out repressions by the executive, lack of activity of the society, control of the media and so forth? This question is not entirely theoretical. It is quite practical as is directly linked to the argument in favor of authoritarian modernization in post-communist (rather – post-Soviet) states.
 This approach was previously developed and tested in collaboration with Denis Stukal (see Melville and Stukal 2012 and Melville, Stukal and Mironyuk 2014) and may be reassessed in further research.
 It should be noted that relatively low levels of state capacity, compared with the leaders of democratization, do not mean that post-communist autocracies lack resources for extensive economic development (in contrast, the majority of them are rich in natural resources, however, the proceeds of their export are distributed very unequally) or repressive capabilities. They may have both. However, the quality of their institutions does not improve.
On November 30 HSE staff members were awarded honor awards of the university at the meeting of the Academic Council.
In this year’s QS ranking by subject, HSE made it into the 51-100 group in three subject areas. The ranking is dominated by universities that need no introduction, Harvard, Oxford, London School of Economics and Political Science, etc. But which universities make the 51-100 group together with HSE? We asked some experts to tell us about HSE’s closest neighbours and their partnerships with HSE.
The Russian Science Foundation has announced winners of its latest grant competition to support basic scientific research and exploratory scientific research conducted by research teams.
Public Policy Department Winter School 2016 was as usual a great avenue to meet prospective students, share with them all the interesting academic and non-formal activities in the department. The two days power-packed and intensive activity of teaching and learning will be an unforgettable experience for the all the prospective students as the various professors from the department presented various topics to them.
On December 26, 1991, the Soviet Union was dissolved and the Russian flag was raised over Kremlin. Taylor & Francis Group gathered a large collection of studies on Soviet and post-Soviet periods containing 150 research articles to celebrate the 25th anniversary of this event. Articles by staff from the School of Political Science were also included in the collection ‘The Dissolution of the Soviet Union: 25 Years On’. All the publications will be available free of charge until the end of June 2017.
On July 23-28, 2016, the 24th IPSA World Congress of Political Science ‘Politics in a World of Inequality’ was held in Poznan, Poland. The event was organized by the Polish Association of Political Science and the Faculty of Political Science and Journalism of Adam Mickiewicz University. Over 3000 researchers, scholars and experts in political science and related fields from over 100 countries (including lecturers, students and doctoral students from HSE Faculty of Social Sciences) took part in the event. Plenary meetings, over 600 research panels as well as lectures by renowned experts, dedicated to topical issues of world policy and political sciences, were held during the congress.
On June 17-18, Venice hosted the International Conference ‘State and Political Discourse in Russia’, organized by the Italian Foundation for Reset Dialogues on Civilizations (ResetDOC). The HSE was one of the co-organizers of the conference, together with London School of Economics and Political Science, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies (Harvard University), and others.
The book ‘Democracy in a Russian Mirror’ edited by Adam Przeworski was issued by Cambridge University Press in May 2015. Three of the authors — Boris Makarenko, Andrei Melville and Mikhail Ilyin — are staff members of the School of Political Science.
On 8th May Andrei Melville, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences celebrates his 65th birthday.
From the 18th to 21st February the biggest American (in fact international - like the American Association of Political Science) professional association of researchers in international relations, global politics and comparative politics, theInternational Studies Association held it’s 56th annual convention, this time in New Orleans. As in recent years, more than 6,000 participants came from all over the world.
From the 5 -9 August the Fourth Global International Studies Conference organised by the World International Studies Committee took place in Frankfurt. The dean of the the HSE Social Studies Faculty, Andrei Melville, spoke in his capacity as Chairman of the Programme Committee.
In July, instructors and students from the HSE’s Faculty of Social Sciences took part in the 23rd World Congress of Political Science, which was held in Montreal by the International Political Science Association. Two collective projects by the HSE were presented on special panels.
A young scientists’ conference organized by the European Consortium for Political Research recently took place at the University of Innsbruck (Austria). Students of the HSE Institute of Education’s Master’s programme on Contemporary Political Conflicts organized a session called ‘Political Power & Foreign Policy Analysis’.
On May 7, 2014 leading Russian and international experts and HSE lecturers gave a presentation about a new international lecture series ‘Time for Russia’, organized by the Civil Society Development Foundation and the HSE.
Evgeny Yasin: ‘The HSE, the New Economic School and Gaidar Institute Are Restoring Research to the Pre-Revolutionary Level in Russia’
Today, HSE Academic Supervisor Evgeny Yasin celebrates his 80th birthday. The HSE News Service congratulates him, and in honour of the celebration, is publishing an extract from Andrey Kolesnikov’s book ‘Dialogues with Evgeny Yasin’.
In 2014, an innovative master’s programme on ‘Philosophy, Politics and Economics’ (PPE) will open at the HSE. The new programme is a result of cooperation between several HSE faculties: Political Science, Economics, Philosophy, and World Economy and International Affairs. Witten/Herdecke University (Germany) is an international partner of the programme.
On July 1, 2013, the Council for Foreign and Defense Policy (CFDP) held an international political conference ‘Democracy and Meritocracy: Are the Two Principles Compatible?’, in which international and Russian experts took part.
Leading British newspaper, The Independent, has published a list of the 10 best atlases, which includes the atlas created by a team of authors from the HSE Faculty of Politics.
On October 28th 2011, a session of the Academic Council of the Higher School of Economics took place at the HSE, The event began with an award ceremony: Claude Blanchemaison, Professor at the Paris-Dauphine University, former French Ambassador in Russia and a long-time friend of the HSE, was given the title of HSE Honorary Professor.
On June 3rd, the HSE Academic Council made several decisions regarding the future of some university departments.