Communication of youth with the highest officials of the subjects of the Russian Federation on the social network “VKontakte” in 2022

Communication of youth with the highest officials of the subjects of the Russian Federation on the social network “VKontakte” in 2022

Popova O.V.,

St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia; INION RAN, Moscow, Russia,

elibrary_id: 240000 | ORCID: 0000-0002-0701-7767 | RESEARCHER_ID: AAE-8870-2022

Grishin N.V.,

St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia; INION RAN, Moscow, Russia,

elibrary_id: 304223 | ORCID: 0000-0002-0850-7581 | RESEARCHER_ID: AAH-4130-2020

Pogodina M.Ya.,

HSE University, St. Petersburg, Russia,

Article received: 2023.01.20. Accepted: 2023.05.23

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2023.04.09

Rubric: Russia today

For citation:

Popova O.V., Grishin N.V., Pogodina M.Ya. Communication of youth with the highest officials of the subjects of the Russian Federation on the social network “VKontakte” in 2022. – Polis. Political Studies. 2023. No. 4. P. 122-137. (In Russ.). EDN: SXGQCF

The research was carried out at the Institute of Scientific Information on Social Sciences of the Russian Academy of Sciences with the financial support of the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation and the Expert Institute of Social Research within the framework of the scientific project No. 122101100043–9 “Political trust of Russian youth: mechanisms of formation, state, trends and risks”.


The article studied the online communications of Russian youth with the highest officials of the subjects of the Russian Federation on the social network “VKontakte”. The research contributes to the study of the political effects of communications on social networks. The article is based on the results of an empirical study conducted in December 2022 and covering data for the calendar year. The source of empirical data was web-pages of the heads of the highest executive body of the subject of the Russian Federation. For data processing, the methods of thematic modeling and semantic analysis were used. The research was focused on the communication practices of Russian youth applied to the social network. The study provided knowledge on the list of topics and the tone that representatives of Russian youth adopt when interacting with the heads of state authorities. Priority topics of interest to young users have been identified with a differentiation made between the federal districts and regions. The information on regional differentiation allowed for an interpretation of the number of negative and positive comments from young people. Territorial and temporary differences in the distribution of comments on social networks in terms of tone have been explained. It was revealed that the main events of 2022 did not lead to significant changes in the tone of communication messages, except for a slight increase in the share of neutral comments. The assumption that political communication in social networks contributes to the spread of rather moderate and neutral opinions is confirmed. The study made it possible to clarify the ideas about the prospects and limitations of thematic modeling and semantic analysis methods in the study of communication in social networks.

political trust of youth, youth, political communication, social networks, network analysis, thematic modeling, semantic analysis.


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Content No. 4, 2023

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