Trapped in Hybridity: Ukraine’s Regime Transformations after the 2014 Revolution

Trapped in Hybridity:
Ukraine’s Regime Transformations after the 2014 Revolution

Matsiyevsky Yu.V.,

Associate Professor, Department of Political Science, National University of Ostroh Academy, Ukraine,

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2018.01.07

For citation:

Matsiyevsky Yu.V. Trapped in Hybridity: Ukraine’s Regime Transformations after the 2014 Revolution. – Polis. Political Studies. 2018. No. 1. P. 96-115. (In Russ.).


Has the Ukraine’s regime changed since the 2014 revolution? What effects does a revolution haveon stability or change of a hybrid regime? To answer these questions the article deals with the changes informal and informal institutions and the quantitative and qualitative composition of elites after the changeof power in 2014. The author argues that despite the quantitative renewal of elites, greater in scope than inthe “post-orange period”, there has been no qualitative renewal of elites. Meanwhile, the old operationalcode of elites’ political culture, composed of corruption, clientelism and informal deals, still persists. Thelack of renewal of elites and the dominance of informal rules over formal procedures are the factors thatkeep the institutional core of Ukraine’s hybrid regime unchanged. Moreover, the case of Ukraine provesthat these institutions possess a considerable adaptive capacity. Ineffective institutional equilibrium –institutional trap that evolved in Ukraine in the mid-1990s, demonstrates the ability to persist even underextreme challenges posed by revolution and war. Ukraine will hardly be able to change its trajectory until thequalitative renewal of elites takes place. Elites’ rotation and/or quasi-replacement do not produce genuinerenewal. Since internal (economic decline and the threat of protests) and external (the war in the East)threats were unable to change the elites’ rent-seeking behavior, it can be stated that hybridization, ratherthan democratization or resurgence of authoritarianism, should be considered a defining trend of the postrevolutionary dynamics in Ukraine. 

Ukraine; revolution; political regime; regime change; elite change; informal institutions; institutional trap; clientelism.


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Content No. 1, 2018

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