Political Attitudes of Local Elites in Contemporary Russia (Cases of Municipalities of the Perm Territory)

Political Attitudes of Local Elites in Contemporary Russia (Cases of Municipalities of the Perm Territory)

Shkel S.N.,

National Research University Higher School of Economics, St. Petersburg, Russia, stas-polit@yandex.ru

elibrary_id: 482517 |

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2020.06.09
Rubric: Russia Today

For citation:

Shkel S.N. Political Attitudes of Local Elites in Contemporary Russia (Cases of Municipalities of the Perm Territory). – Polis. Political Studies. 2020. No. 6. P. 119-134. (In Russ.). https://doi.org/10.17976/jpps/2020.06.09

This work was supported by the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (RFBR) “Political and Institutional Characteristics of Municipalities and the Quality of the Distribution of Public Goods at the Local Level: the Experience of the Perm Territory”, grant number 18-411-590012. The author expresses his great appreciation to the Development Partnership Program run by the European University at St. Petersburg.


The article studies the factors that shape the political attitudes of the elites. Using data from semi-formalized interviews with municipal deputies and heads of administrations in cities and regions of the Perm Territory, the author identifies the reasons for the different positions held by politicians about the issue of canceling direct elections for mayors and municipal heads. The results of this analysis showed that the successful experience of the electoral struggle has not affected political attitudes, and does not provide a sufficient basis for the formation of democratic values. Calculation of data by the Fisher exact test method showed a statistically significant relationship between political status (whether insider or outsider) and the political attitudes of the local elites. A substantive analysis of the collected interviews made it possible not only to systematize the main arguments for legitimizing authoritarian and democratic practices, but also to clarify the role the legacy of the past plays in the successful installation of undemocratic orders. Negative experiences of direct elections, associated with conflict between elites and general managerial inefficiency, is a significant argument for simplifying authoritarian legitimation. 

elections, political elites, local politics, democracy, authoritarianism, municipalities, Russian politics, Perm Territory.


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Content No. 6, 2020

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