The Aleksanteri Institute awarded funding for Finland Distinguished Professor project

The Board of the Academy of Finland has granted the Aleksanteri Institute five-year funding for a Finland Distinguished Professor (FiDiPro) project. With the FiDiPro programme, the Academy of Finland aims to further develop the Finnish research environment and invites top-level scholars to work in Finland for this purpose. The Aleksanteri Institute’s FiDiPro project invites one of the world’s leading analysts of Russia’s politics, Vladimir Gel’man from the European University at St. Petersburg, to work at the University of Helsinki. FiDiPro Professor Gel’man’s project scrutinises continuity and change in Russia’s political regime and the formation of its institutions with an ambitious comparative and theoretical approach. The project is entitled Regimes, Institutions and Change: Politics and Governance in Russia in a Comparative Perspective.

Description of the project: Why democracy, good governance and the rule of law have failed in contemporary Russia? What contributes to the prospects for stability or changes in political institutions? What are the alternative paths for developments in Russian politics and governance? Through answering these questions, this FiDiPro project aims to understand the logic of political regimes and patterns of governance in Russia. The project focuses on the role of agency and the making of political institutions and traces the process of institution-building in Russia after the collapse of the Soviet system. To fully understand the nature of the Russian polity, it will analyse the Russian experience within a broader theoretical and comparative cross-national perspective. It will also conduct within-nation comparisons of varieties of political regimes and patterns of governance on the sub-national level, and compare politics and governance of post-Soviet Russia with those in the pre- and late-Soviet periods.

The FiDiPro project will work in cooperation with research fellows of the Aleksanteri Institute and of the Finnish Centre of Excellence Finnish Centre of Excellence in Russian studies. Prof. Gel’man is leading the “Authoritarian Market Society as a Challenge” research cluster of the Centre of Excellence. The other partners of the FiDiPro project are:

  • Finnish Doctoral Programme in Russian and East European Studies
  • Graduate School in Political Studies
  • Faculty of Social Sciences of the University of Helsinki 
  • School for Management and the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence on European Politics and European-Russian Relations at the University of Tampere
  • The Bank of Finland’s Institute for Economies in Transition

List of the 12 FiDiPro projects funded by the Academy of Finland and more about the FiDiPro programme.

Further information: Head of International Affairs Anna Korhonen (anna.korhonen [at] or tel. +358 (0)9 191 23652).


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