Russian version

¹ 4-2005

Theoretical Issues of Regional Economics
R.M.Melnikov Analysis of the dynamics of regional economic differentiation: foreign approaches and domestic practice
The dynamics of regional inequality in the Russian economy is examined using the Tail indices and Barro and Sala-i-Martin’s model of conditional convergence. A new network of zoning is proposed that better presents the spatial aspect of regional differentiation and the character of conditional convergence process observed in the Russian economy from 2001 than the networks of federal mega-districts and economic regions. A conclusion about stability of differentiation between the mega-districts versus the tendency to lower differentiation within the mega-districts is made through comparison of the rates of the processes of conditional and unconditional ?-convergence.

V.S. Zaikin, V.N. Pavlov. A vague approach to certainty characteristics in economic decisions
The introduction of economic categories of reliability and maneuverability into the process of decision-making at the macrolevel is associated, in the authors’ opinion, with not enough belief that proposed decisions will be fulfilled because any decision about future development is fraught with unpredictability of final results. The paper considers an approach to the study of reliability and maneuverability based on a vague description of uncertainty of economic processes.

Regional Policy and Economic Issues of Federalism
Yu.S. Yershov, N.M. Ibragimov, L.V. Melnikova The Siberian Federal District: status quo and perspectives of development
The paper considers the economic development trends of the Siberian Federal District (SFD) in comparison with the national trends. It notes similarity between mega-district and national economic and demographic processes, processes of reproduction and industry-related distribution of labor and the precedence of national over purely regional economic conditions in the economic development of the district. The authors find serious enough distortions in the national statistics, the explanation of which would require a special study. Stated are mostly negative changes in the indicators characterizing the role of the SFD in the national economy. It cites a brief characteristic of mid-term prediction of the economic development across territories carried out by the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade (MEDT) and forecast estimations carried by the authors over the last years on the basis of multiregional multisectoral models. One of the main conclusions is pessimistic prediction on the perspective economic development of the SFD if the present market model of the Russian economy remains unchanged.

Economic Issues of Regional Development
V.A.Kryukov Institutional conditions in the sphere of use of mineral resources in Russia: systemic character in theory, fragmentation in reality
The paper considers problems encountered in the formation of institutional systems in the sphere of mineral resources. In the Russian situation when mineral resources are in state ownership while the major assets located on the surface are mostly the assets of joint-stock companies it is especially important to have a comprising and solid system of norms and rules (of the institutions) forming the climate in the sphere of the use of mineral resources. Such a system of institutions must include not only special features in involvement of various mineral resources into economic turnover but also provide instruments for resolving social conflicts arising about the choice of directions in the use of mineral resources. Of a special importance are procedures in federal/regional interactions.

N.M. Zubarev, A.F. Shupletsov, S.A. Bragin Optimization in provision of regional programs of development under narrow budgetary financing
It is shown that optimization in financing the earmarked programs of industrial development in the Irkutsk region, under narrow investments from the budget, makes it possible to estimate priority and effect of program measures. Due to uncertainty of initial conditions under which the regional economy is functioning, underestimation of the economic and social values of the outcomes takes place at the time of the development of programs. In order to deal with such problems it is suggested that option agreements between the bodies of state government and industrial corporations be used. The field of practical use of the suggested methods includes the activity of regional authorities and of the management of corporations.

N.M. Volovskaya, M.V. Udaltsova, L.K. Plusnina, A.V. Rusina Management of self-employment in a region
The paper proposes a model, concept and mechanism for management of self-employment of the population. The regional management of self-employment will help individuals take an active position in life and overcome abiding or paternalistic inclinations.

Prospects in the Social and Economic Development of Siberia
V.I. Suslov, S.A. Suspitsyn Development strategies for Siberia: macroeconomic and spatial projections
The paper systematizes objectives and basic setting conditions of the Strategy of Social-economic Development of Siberia and presents macroeconomic estimates of the consequences of its execution. Possible territorial shifts in the social-economic development of Siberia are estimated and shown in the aspect of its consolidated regions.

Regional Development and International Cooperation
Yu.Sh. Blum, T.I. Babenko, L.V. Mashkina. Export of wood products of the Siberian Federal District
The study has shown that absence of infrastructure and of enterprises of high-value processing undermines the efficiency in the use of forest resources in most regions of the Siberian Federal District; the prospects in the development of the forest potential of the district are in direct relationship with the possibility to attract investments and improve the institutional framework of forest management; in the foreseeable future, the sector it will continue being dependent on the situation in the world market, and the absence of alternatives to the growing demand of China in forest products at the expense of Russia is also the “spot of growth” of the forest complex of Siberia.

Social Issues of Regional Development
A.M.Sergiyenko The situation and behavior of the poor in the labor market
The paper shows who today is found in the category of rural paupers, how their social-economic position has changed since the start of the reforms, what factors have predetermined this dynamics, what is the difference between the position, motivation and behavior of the paupers versus more wealthy groups in the labor market and, according to this, what should be the main focus in the social policy. The information base are data from sociological surveys of the households and experts conducted in 2001-2002 in the Altai krai, the Novosibirsk region and the Republic of Altai.

Ye.A. Morozova The system of social protection: a research approach
The paper is devoted to a presently significant problem of social protection which in the Russian society is now not very effective because it has no theoretical support. The author argues a need for systemic, both theoretical-methodological, and applied approach to the issue of social protection. Social protection is a component and instrument of social policy, is exercised through social governance and pursues the aim of harmonization of social relationships, which is why its theoretical basics are laid in the relevant teachings. As the basic elements of the system of social protection, its kinds and directions, objects and subjects, mechanisms and indicators are discussed.

V.D. Borisov Living standards in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia): normative and legal framework
The author examines standards of minimum needs of the population. He states that this borderline of minimum needs really exists, in some or other way defined, but there is no common ground about just what basket of goods and services would provide the subsistence minimum (SM). No agreed approach to the definition of the size of the survival minimum exists either. According to the author, the methods of definition of the survival minimum for various social-economic groups reflect the current tendencies in consumption but they cannot be thought of as accurate since the set of goods in the SM is characterized as minimum diet for the poor. On the case of the living standards of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) it is shown how in their formation it is possible to take into account the established diet traditions and regional features of consumption.

Regional and Interregional Aspects of Structural and Investment Policy
Pushkarenko, A.B., V.I. Filatov, and V.Z. Yampolskii The oil and gas sector of the Tomsk region
On the basis of the analysis of the conditions in the oil and gas sector of the Tomsk region; of dynamics in the volumes of output in it, of capital investments, growth of new products and high tech services rendered to the Tomskneft open company by research and education organizations and innovative-active enterprises, of summary indicators of contract R&D and research-technical services fulfilled by organizations of the National Body of Control (NBC) for the major clients operating in the oil and gas sector in the territory of the Tomsk region – a conclusion is made about the formation in the Tomsk region of an oil-and-gas cluster (OG-cluster). The authors examine factors that have played a system-forming role in the establishment of the cluster and the advantages which the Tomsk region has gained from the activity of the cluster working in the interests of the oil and gas complex of Western Siberia.

I.P., Kulyasov, A.A. Kulyasova, S.S. Pchelkina Regional aspects of the global process of forest certification
The paper considers how the promotion of the global process of voluntary forest certification according to the system of Forestry Trustee Council at the regional and local levels proceeds. The forestry certification, along with improving the system of management, requires serious changes in economic, environmental and social approaches to the development of forestry areas and communities of forest villages. The paper is based on sociological surveys conducted in 2003-2005 in two forest villages of the Archangel region where certified forestry enterprises are functioning. On these cases it is shown how the global processes are reflected on the regional-local level. The authors also examine the activity of regional companies and local national forestry enterprises under direct global influence.

M.V.Namkhanova Strategy in the development of cooperative production in the Republic of Buryatia
Problems and prospects in the development of the cooperative production of bread and bread products are considered using the materials on the activity of the consumer cooperation of the Republic of Buryatia. The dynamics of this sector over the years of reforms is analyzed and the directions in which the efficiency and competitiveness of the products of BurKoopSoyuz produced in rural places can be improved are shown.

Russia-Canada Program Exchange of Experience in Northern Development
M.A.Todyshev Issues of legal framework of the life activity of Russian aboriginal peoples after changes made in the federal legislation
The paper considers the role of the Association of Aboriginal Peoples of the North, Siberia and the Far East of the Russian Federation which presents at the federal and international level the interests of 40 aboriginal peoples. It shows directions in the legislation activity aimed at the creation of a special "aboriginal law" required to handle relations in the sphere of the use of mineral resources in the areas of traditional living of aboriginal peoples and to maintain their life-support system.

The Activities of Regional Executive and Legislative Bodies
Sh.I.Sharipov Problems of the development of the rural side in the Republic of Dagestan
Transformations in the agrarian sector of the Republic of Dagestan not supported by the corresponding mechanism of state regulation resulted in a substantial drop of the potential of collective agricultural enterprises. This led to the formation of such an agrarian structure in which individual farming on household plots is the main source of self-employment and food provision for the main part of the rural inhabitants. In the result of our comparative analysis of rural places in a region, the Southern Federal District, and nationally it is found that after years of the agrarian reforms the labor and human potential in Dagestan tends to improve.

Foreign Experience of Regional Science, Regional Policy and Spatial Development
T.D.Khuziyatov Regional economic policy in China: a strategy of revival of north-eastern areas
In August 2003, the Chinese government adopted a strategy of revival of old industrial bases of North-Eastern China designed to accelerate the social-economic development of this region. It is going not only about reconstruction and reequipment with modern equipment of industrial enterprises in north-eastern provinces of China most of which were created with the help of the USSR in the 1950s. The author evaluates the strategy in a context of equalization of rate of economic growth in different regions of China, restructuring state enterprises and increasing competitiveness of border territories.

Russian Regions: Figures and Facts
S.A. Suspitsyn Receptiveness of regional economies to investments in fixed capital

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