The Revival of Russia's Gubernatorial Elections: Liberalization or Potemkin Reform?

James Goode

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


After an eight year pause, gubernatorial elections returned to Russia in 2012. Formerly appointed governors are now being put to the electoral test, and the Kremlin is discovering the extent to which it sacrificed effective regional leadership for loyalty to the federal center. It now finds itself on the horns of a dilemma: if it continues to heap blame on regional leaders for economic failures and declining trust in the country’s political institutions, then the ranks of volunteers willing to serve as governor will dwindle. Yet if it seeks to attract capable candidates to stand for governor, it may be forced to decentralize power and to allow an opening of regional elections to more opposition candidates.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-11
Number of pages3
JournalRussian Analytical Digest
Issue number139
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Russia
  • elections
  • federalism
  • authoritarianism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Sociology and Political Science


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