Материалы для чтения the four freedoms as part of europeanization process: conditions and effectiveness of the eu impact

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Fourth, the logic of trans-nationalism is also on the rise suggesting that the growing segments of political, economic and social exchanges increasingly stay out of control of the bureaucratic centralities263, which gives a green light to non-central actors. NGOs keep their voices loud: for instance, the acquitting judgment in Alexander Nikitin’s case gave legitimacy to environmental NGOs participation in soft security debates264. Transnational agenda is also culturally manifested: St.Petersburg, Kaliningrad or Pskov possess their own identities that make them important actors beyond Russia’s borders.

Fifth, the institutionalist platform is also getting more persuasive power. Institutions are increasingly seen as the “structures of incentives” setting practices applicable to a variety of spheres – domestic rules of business regulations, environment protection and product safety standards have to be compatible with those of the EU countries. Hence, the institutionalist agenda gives priority to projecting new norms and principles of the governance. Most important are not separate economic projects but forming the internationally-friendly infrastructure, creating the institutional ambit for effective regional governance. In other words, instead of asking “where the funds might be found”, officials have to think in terms of “how to set new rules of the game”, effective and workable - the norms of housing and sanitation, public amenities, exploitation of non-renewable resources, preservation of cultural heritage, safety of technical supply, regulation of land use, etc. Regional authorities in Russia have to reorient their strategies towards better marketing, enhancing accessibility of public goods and services, and inciting public debates in communities about future living conditions265.

Seemingly, the institutional reforming is one of priority for the Center for Strategic Studies of North West Federal District. The Doctrine of the Development of Russia’s North West presented by this think tank assumes that for integration into a European milieu, the federal district needs special managerial techniques, based on human capital, the culture of innovation, and non-governmental networking266.

In sum, Russia has a unique chance of organically participating in the region-building effort which opens up opportunities skipping traditional “East-West” lines and making them less divisive.



Andrey S. Makarychev,

Professor, Department of International Relations,

Nizhny Novgorod Linguistic University267


In May 2000, as a result of President Putin’s administrative reform, a new territorial entity was created on Europe’s eastern borders – the North West Federal District (NWFD). This new territorial unit, which eventually is supposed to join the family of Baltic / Nordic sub-national actors, is worth study for several reasons.

First, the territory of the NWFD historically was the meeting place of different trans-national experiences. For example, Ingermanland was a territorial intersection of different cultures (Russian, Izhor, etc.) and religions (Orthodoxy and Lutheranism)268.

Second, the NWFD is located at the intersection of three still unfinished processes: EU-building, nation-building in the three Baltic republics, and region-building at the level of the subjects of the Russian Federation. The district is also within a sphere of pronounced attention of one major non-European actor - the United States.

Third, there is a strong feeling amongst analysts that «the geo-economic balance of Russia is shifting to Europe, and in particular towards the Northwest»269. The question is not just whether Russia’s North West is a part of Europe, but what kind of encounter with Europe Russia is looking for, and what kind of Europe Russia wants to contribute to. The NWFD is becoming increasingly important for Moscow because here Russia is presented with a number of challenges. Some of these challenges relate to «hard security» concerns (such as Russia-EU and Russia-NATO relations), while others are of a more post-modernist nature (trans-border cooperation, the changing meaning of territorial arrangements, etc.).

Fourth, the provinces of the NWFD enjoy preferential treatment from most Western countries. For example, the Swedish Institute, the Eurasia Foundation, the Nordic Council and many other foreign foundations and international grant-making institutions run programs with a clear focus on Russia’s North-West territories270.

Yet the region-building process in the NWFD is still waiting to be tackled analytically. My paper is based on a combination of cognitivist/constructivist and institutionalist approaches to regionalism that by and large reflect two major analytical platforms that have emerged in Russian regional studies. One group of authors, who stick to a cognitivist/constructivist paradigm, equate region-building with the «imagining of a new region»271. Ideas, in this interpretation, form «regimes of signification»272 which are based upon remembering and forgetting as social institutions that justify the dominating memories273. Other – and more traditional - scholars focus their attention on institutional factors, including existing policy making bodies, organizations and programs that shape the state of regional affairs, etc.

The gap between these two approaches could be bridged by introducing the concept of «learning regions» – the type of territorial actors in which cognitive capital becomes embodied in institutionalist frameworks and settings. The concept presumes that in the absence of ideas some institutions simply may not be formed at all. By the same token, through the intervention of institutions the impact of ideas can be reinforced274.

Another useful vision is presented in Emmanuel Adler’s theory of «cognitive regions», whose borders are determined not only by geography but also by shared understandings and intellectual practices275. The shape of «cognitive regions» is not imposed by someone’s will, but appears as a result of «voluntaristic» and interactionist practices276.

Both approaches – «learning regions» and «cognitive regions» - in one way or another focus on the relationship between power and knowledge277. They seek to show that institutions are based on products of human consciousness that tend to take the form of collective understandings of reality. Both believe that the ability to generate ideas is a subtle, yet most effective, form of power. In this sense, the idea of the «pilot region», which is currently applied to the Kaliningrad oblast, correlates well with both concepts mentioned above.

However, constructivist approaches are often criticized for being insufficiently able to prove their theoretical claim of the principal influence of ideas upon institutions and the policymaking process278. In this respect, it is notable that there is a long Russian tradition of treating intellectuals as pure theorists who are prone to view society simply as an experimental ground for testing their ideas279. In a similar way, in the West it has been said that «much of today’s scholarship is either irrelevant or inaccessible to policymakers… Academicians often appear caught up in an elite culture in which labels, categories, and even the humor have meaning for ‘members only’. Their writings are filled with references to other scholars’ writings; they speak to each other rather than to a wider public… Much of what is produced is intended to gain the kind of academic identification with a theory or equation that will lead to professional advancement. Little evidence exists of a direct effort to influence public policy through scholarly writing»280.

My task in this paper is to show that there is a sphere at the intersection of Russia’s domestic and trans-national politics where the translation of intellectual products into policies does take place. This sphere comprises a number of region-building projects, all encompassing, in one way or another, Russia's North West territories. However, whilst ideas can inspire innovations they also require special kinds of «cognitive actors», whose role is to select the most viable pieces of thought and then «market» them281.

My intention is to show the ways in which the widely spread concepts of knowledge management, epistemic communities, forward thinking and intellectual capital are projected onto Russia’s North West. It is my assumption that knowledge agents (or cognitive actors) possess what could be called «soft authority», which is indispensable for the region-building process. The trans-national diffusion of information, ideas, interpretations, and experiences is also an important part of a region’s way of dealing with the outside world. It will be seen that the cognitive actors to be analyzed in this paper contribute to the instrumentalization of knowledge, i.e. the construction of legitimacy of policy judgements282.

Within the framework of my analysis, a useful distinction must be made between two types of ideas - cognitive and normative. To some extent, cognitive and normative ideas compliment each other and share some common denominators – for example, both stipulate the rationalist usage of discourse, exert influence through communication, provide constraints on policy actions, are built upon a reached consensus within a given domain, and reflect some prior social conditioning283. Yet they can also conflict with each other. Cognitive ideas are embodied in concepts, programs, strategies, and policy prescriptions that help decision makers chart a specific course of policy action. Normative ideas, in contrast, are images, symbols and metaphors that tend to produce a certain type of imagination and help public authorities legitimize their policy interests284. Normative ideas are products of human interpretation, not of expert analysis. If cognitive ideas, as a rule, are policy elite-oriented, then normative ideas are much more open to the general public and represent a kind of «dream world», a «world of illusion» to be identified with285.

Каталог: old -> Departments -> International relations
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International relations -> Материалы для чтения the four freedoms as part of europeanization process: conditions and effectiveness of the eu impact
Departments -> Учебная программа дисциплина: Физическая культура Направления подготовки: 031300. 62 031600. 62
Departments -> Учебно-методический комплекс по дисциплине " финансы и кредит" Нижний Новгород 2004 Печатается по решению редакционно-издательского совета гоу нглу им. Н. А. Добролюбова
International relations -> Материалы для чтения
International relations -> Материалы для чтения
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