Unique and insightful, this book takes a look at Russia's development through the Tsarist and Soviet periods. Rather than make the more familiar comparisons between Russia and the West, Russia and Development focuses on political and social mobilization in adjacent Central Asia. It examines the role of local government and civil society in development, as well as popular responses to the policies of Putin and Medvedev aimed at modernizing Russia and forging a new Eurasia alliance in Russia's 'development neighbourhood'. The book uses local sources and case studies to pose important questions about the role of empire, revolution, nationalism and democratization in the twenty-first century. With unique insider knowledge, Charles Buxton ultimately places Russia's current development model in an international context, where Russia is increasingly becoming a competitor to Western-led development practices.
Essential reading for anyone interested in the region or development thought and practice.
After gaining a degree in Russian and a masters in sociology of literature, Charles Buxton worked in east London for over fifteen years as a community activist, then coordinator of a voluntary sector training programme for the unemployed. In 1995 he took up a position with VSO as regional manager, preparing projects and sending NGO, education and health sector volunteers to eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Since 2001 he has been based in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, as programme manager for INTRAC (International NGO Training and Research Centre), working with civil society organizations across Central Asia.
Introduction Part I: The Heritage 1. Capitalism, Civil Society and Development in Russia (to 1917 and from 1989) 2. State and Development in the Soviet period 3. Moving East and South: Empire and After Part II: Development and Struggle 4. Political Mobilization From War Communism to Coloured Revolution 5. Local Government Decentralization: Civil Society Development in the Urals and Siberia 6. Development Challenges in an Insecure Neighbourhood: Tajikistan 7. Beyond Alienation: Social Movements and Protest in Russia in the 2000s Part III: The International Context 8. NGOs Challenging Political and Economic Power 9. Russia as a BRIC Postscript