This research, realized with the support of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, aims at investigating the internal and external implications and challenges of the process of modernization, a driving political target in Russia that the Putin's return to the country's presidency will further reinforce. All four papers spell out in different domains what is intended by modernization and how it is being accomplished, highlighting the limits and structural hindrances. The Russian political elite channels a project of conservative and partial modernization restricted to economics. Changes will take place selectively and gradually, as is compatible with the stability of the country.
Petrov’s paper looks at modernization from a regional perspective also, and argues that the two main obstacles to its successful achievement are inertia and mass bureaucracy.
From an economic perspective, Hanson’s paper points out that the weakness of competition and property rights in Russia, the decayed state of Russian science, and an economic structure that does not generate a high demand for research, development and innovation, are all serious impediments to a modern economy.
Giusti’s and Penkova’s papers analyze how the Russian leadership has attempted to redesign its relations and foreign policy objectives in harmony with the internal project of modernization. Russian allies will increasingly be selected on the basis of their potential contribution to the process of modernization. The first paper analyzes the modalities and prospects of the EU-Russia Partnership for Modernization, while the latter explores the potentialities of the Eastern vector of modernization (China, India or nearby foreign countries). Although these countries are probably not a viable primary source of technological advancement, they nevertheless complement and strengthen the Western orientation. The two vectors – Western and Asian – should not be seen as opposing one another; deepening cooperation with Europe and structuring the CIS are compatible with ensuring the Asian rearguard.
Scarica: Modernizing Russia Internal and External Implications and Challenges, settembre 2011