TENDENCIES OF THE RUSSIAN RURAL AREAS DEVELOPMENT: THE RESEARCH TASK AND FIRST RESULTS OF THE COMPARATIVE CASE-STUDY

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Abstract


The article presents the first results of field expeditions of 2018 as a part of the project that aims to assess problems and prospects of two most important social institutions of the Russian countryside - local authorities and entrepreneurship - in terms of the dominant scenarios of their interaction and their role in maintaining and stabilizing the situation in rural areas. Such an analysis of the practices of coordinating the interests of local authorities and entrepreneurship at the local level is important for understanding the balance of formal and informal elements in rural life for the real mechanisms of interaction of government institutions and key actors of local communities often differ from the regulatory rules if the latter fail to solve the problems of rural society. The planned three-year research will repeat the field expeditions of a decade ago, i.e. this is a comparative case study that combines quantitative and qualitative approaches (statistical data, participant observation and semi-formalized interviews), and the cases represent the features of the non-black-earth regions of Russia (where depopulation has become practically irreversible). The authors briefly summarize the findings of the first expeditions (a fundamental change in the composition of power structures, destruction of economic ties, dependent position of local government due to its financial and legal weakness, etc.) to set the context for comparative analysis, and describe their first impressions of the new field expedition to the old addresses (the scale and success of business activities in different areas are compared, factors that determine such activities are the heroic efforts of local authorities, new young and active entrepreneurs, reorientation of production to more popular and commercially successful niches, etc.).


About the authors

O B Bozhkov

Sociological Institute (branch of FCTAS) RAS

Author for correspondence.
Email: olegbozh@gmail.com
7th Krasnoarmeiskaya St., 25/14, Saint Petersburg, 190005, Russia

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I V Trotsuk

Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia (RUDN University); Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration

Email: irina.trotsuk@yandex.ru
Miklukho-Maklaya St., 6, Moscow, 117198, Russia; Vernadskogo Prosp., 84, Moscow, 119571, Russia

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