Federal Administrative Elite of Russia: Career Paths and Channels of Recruitment

Federal Administrative Elite of Russia: Career Paths and Channels of Recruitment

Tev D.B.,

Cand. Sci. (Soc.), Senior Researcher, The Sociological Institute of the RAS – Branch of the Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Saint Petersburg, denis_tev@mail.ru

elibrary_id: 180843 | ORCID: 0000-0001-5442-7585 | RESEARCHER_ID: N-5461-2017

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2016.04.10
Rubric: Russia Today

For citation:

Tev D.B. Federal Administrative Elite of Russia: Career Paths and Channels of Recruitment. – Polis. Political Studies. 2016. No. 4. P. 115-130. (In Russ.). https://doi.org/10.17976/jpps/2016.04.10


The article presents the results of a study of channels of recruitment and career paths of members of the administrative elite of the Russian Federation, conducted in 2013‑2014. Federal administrative elite was understood as a set of persons occupying key positions in the structures of Russian presidential and executive power. The source of empirical data is a biographical database which contains information about 575 senior administrators, including the president and key officials of his administration; government members, deputy ministers, heads of federal services and agencies and their deputies, as well as principal officials of government apparatus. The analysis led to a number of major conclusions. First, with all the variety of career paths, the dominant trends are internal recruitment and professionalization of high officials: administrative structures, primarily federal, are the main source of elite cadres. Second, the militarization of the administrative elite is essential, but outside the force structures themselves it is not the prevailing trend of recruitment, being more pronounced in the presidential administration than among governmental and ministerial elite. Third, the management of economic structures is a significant, but usually indirect source of recruitment of elite administrators, and plutocratization is most typical for the ministries responsible for the regulation of the branches of the economy. Although some administrators are from the economic elite of the federal level, in general, to judge by the composition of the higher officialdom, inter-factional elite mobility is not high. Finally, the federal Parliament (and in general, representative bodies of various levels) plays a secondary role as a supplier of not only administrative elite in general, but even members of the government, which in many advanced capitalist democracies have traditionally been recruited from the deputies. Relatively weak incidence of parliamentary careers among the government elite reflects the specificity of the political system of modern Russia, characterized by weakness of parliamentary institutions. 

administrative elite; career; recruitment; militarization; plutocratization; professionalization; parliament.

Content No. 4, 2016

See also:

Tev D.B.,
Federal administrative elite of Russia: features of a career after leaving office. – Polis. Political Studies. 2023. No1

Polyakov L.V.,
Theory of nation-building by Svyatoslav Kaspe. – Polis. Political Studies. 2012. No2

Palitay I.S.,
The Young Generation of the Russian Political Elite: Status and Personal Characteristics. – Polis. Political Studies. 2020. No5

Chirikova A.Ye., Ledyaev V.G., Seltser D.G.,
Power in a Small Russian Town: Configuration and Interaction of Major Local Actors. – Polis. Political Studies. 2014. No2

Barsukova S.Yu., Zvyagintzev V.I.,
Mechanism of Political Investment, or How and What For Russian Business Takes Part in Elections and Covers the Expenses of Party Life. – Polis. Political Studies. 2006. No2

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