The Contradictions in Putin’s Economic Nationalism: From Western Partner to Fortress Russia

In: Russian Politics
Peter Rutland Government Department, Wesleyan University Middletown, CT USA

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This article charts the trajectory of Putin’s economic policy. All countries face the challenge of preserving national interests and identity while reaping the benefits of global economic integration. These pressures are particularly acute in the case of Russia, given its historical legacy as a global superpower. From the outset, Putin’s pragmatic embrace of global integration and market incentives was in tension with his authoritarian centralization of power at home and hostility towards the West abroad. Up until 2008, Putin was able to keep these two conflicting worldviews, and rival policy teams, in balance. But after 2012, geopolitical confrontation won out over economic development, culminating in the reckless invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

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