zaverskiy, sergey

Spatial Distribution of Government Authorities and Regional Development

Russia is a country where the decision-making at various levels historically tied to the center. A number of different approvals is always required and a mechanism of decision-making is not always clear and also is highly personalized. Given the fact that Russia is a country with a large territory, this leads to significant differentiation in spatial development when only the center is developing (both at the country and regional levels) and periphery is degrading. This model of development is fixed and is reproduced as under these conditions centers pull on the available resources, and first of all – on the human resources. As a result, the regions are losing competitiveness and opportunities for future development. Furthermore, this model of development carries with it significant risks also for the centers that are facing the problems of urban development.

One of the possible solutions of this problem is institutional changes in order to reduce the level of administrative barriers for business, the level of corruption, etc. and thus to reduce the need for proximity to power. Their importance can not be denied, however, a number of historical, political and other reasons make these changes unlikely to be rapid.

Thus, there is a need to develop a parallel program of reforms within the existing system. A key focus in this case should be on the creation of growth points on different territories. Due to the fact that the current model relies heavily on the need for proximity to power, the reform of the territorial organization of power should be the most important. That means the deviation from the system when all authorities are concentrated at one place. The spatial distribution of the various government agencies will create points of attraction of resources in these areas and, therefore, give an impetus to the growth of competitiveness of larger areas. Rising costs for coordination, which can be caused by spatial dilution of government authorities, can be minimized due to the development of information technologies and emergence of new opportunities for interaction. In Russian conditions, the transfer of administrative functions from Moscow is the most demanded issue. The features and possible outcomes of this transfer should be discussed.

Wednesday 24 October 16:45-18:45 Panels II, Panel 6 Competition and Democray II (Hall 15)