Analysis

This listing contains all the analytical materials posted on the Russia Matters website. These include: RM Exclusives, commissioned by Russia Matters exclusively for this website; Recommended Reads, deemed particularly noteworthy by our editorial team; Partner Posts, originally published by our partners elsewhere; and Future Policy Leaders, pieces by promising young scholars and policy thinkers. Content can be filtered by genre and subject-specific criteria and is updated often. Gradually we will be adding older Recommended Reads and Partner Posts dating back as far as 2011.
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Five Years After Russia Declared Victory in Syria: What Has Been Won?

Thomas Schaffner March 18, 2021 RM Exclusives
Has the intervention paid off or has Obama’s 2015 prediction that the operation would end in a “quagmire” for Russia come true? An assessment of some key costs and benefits generated by Russia’s intervention in Syria.
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We Need to Have a Talk About Alexei Navalny

Terrell Jermaine Starr March 01, 2021 Recommended Reads
If Navalny is serious about challenging the current regime, Russians—and the outside world—have a right to know precisely whom we’re dealing with.
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Will Pro-Navalny Protests Threaten Putin’s Power?

Angela Stent and Adrianna Pita February 04, 2021 Recommended Reads
The recent protests in Russia are fueled by a combination of frustrations with Vladimir Putin’s repressive government, Russia’s stagnant economy and the impacts of COVID, but whether demonstrations will grow into a larger, sustained movement remains to be seen.
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The Curious Case of ‘Russian Lives Matter’

Kimberly St. Julian-Varnon July 11, 2020 Recommended Reads
In Moscow, the Kremlin attacks U.S. racism while the liberal opposition ignores it, or worse.
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Unplugging the Baltic States: Why Russia’s Economic Approach May Be Shifting

Emily Ferris July 01, 2020 RM Exclusives
The probability of Russia resorting to a Crimea-style intervention in the Baltics remains low. As a key energy supplier and major trading partner for the region, Russia has more to gain by using economic levers as opposed to military ones to retain influence.
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Russia and Collective Security: Why CSTO Is No Match for Warsaw Pact

Dmitry Gorenburg May 27, 2020 RM Exclusives
The CSTO is too organizationally weak and insufficiently integrated to serve as a capability multiplier for its members, and the weakness of other member states' military forces make them of limited value to Russia as military allies.
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Russia’s Stock Market Rallies But Still Not a Source of Long-Term Capital

Ben Aris December 12, 2019 RM Exclusives
Russia’s stock market has been described as one of the best performing in the world this year, but the factors driving the uptick won’t fix the economy’s main problem: business people’s lack of confidence in the system.
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What Is the State’s Share in Russia’s Economy?

Nini Arshakuni and Natasha Yefimova-Trilling June 26, 2019 RM Exclusives
While press reports say 70% of Russia’s economy is in state hands, some top experts think it’s closer to 35-45%. They’ve seen a trend of strategic nationalization under Putin and doubt the coming years will bring greater efficiency or competition.
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The ‘Who, What, When’ of Russia Sanctions: A Cheat Sheet for Laymen

Alexey Eremenko September 26, 2018 RM Exclusives
This explainer spells out the major sanctions imposed on Russia by the U.S. and EU since 2014: who has been targeted; what behaviors are to be punished or deterred; what activities have been restricted; and for how long.
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The Collapsing Russian Defense Budget and Other Fairy Tales

Michael Kofman May 22, 2018 RM Exclusives
Recent reports claiming Russia slashed defense spending by 20 percent from 2016 to 2017 are wrong, the author argues. They stem from a government decision to pay down old debt, not actual cuts to spending.
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For Russia and America, Election Interference Is Nothing New: 25 Stories

Arjun Kapur and Simon Saradzhyan March 22, 2017 RM Exclusives
As headlines scream about Russia’s “unprecedented” interference in U.S. politics, it’s helpful to get some historical perspective on how often countries try to tinker with each other’s elections.
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25 Years After the Collapse of the Soviet Union: What Comes Next?

RM staff December 08, 2016 RM Exclusives
Graham Allison, Niall Ferguson, Mary Elise Sarotte and Arne Westad consider the fall of the USSR as “applied history,” pondering what went right, what went wrong and what policymakers can learn.