Cover Osteuropa 8/2013

In Osteuropa 8/2013

Neo-patrimonialisation instead of Modernisation
German Russia Policy and Russian Otkat

Fabian Burkhardt

Deutsche Fassung


The modernisation partnership between Germany and Russia has failed. Its premise had been: Russia is seeking catch-up modernisation, for which German industry and commerce has the technology. Economic renewal from above, went the argument, leads to the opening up of the political system. The reality is different. Russia’s political system is neo-patrimonial. The elites have no interest in modernisation. German and other international companies act opportunistically. They adapt to the informal practices of local economies. They do not contribute to the country’s modernisation, but to the stabilisation of the existing order. In this respect, this is a partnership in neo-patrimonialisation.

(Osteuropa 8/2013, pp. 95–106)