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Russian Politics


Admission requirements

Not applicable


This course familiarizes students with the main developments in contemporary Russian politics since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. It provides a unique opportunity to investigate the collapse of a superpower and its aftermath, and examine the relative successes and failures of democratization or authoritarian consolidation in the Russian Federation. By the end of the course students will be familiar with such concepts as democratic transition and regime change; institutional choice; electoral politics, contentious politics and the role of political opposition; state- and nation-building; and hybrid authoritarian regimes. Students will develop a detailed knowledge of the specifics of the Russian polity within the diversity of the post-Soviet political experience.

Course objectives

The objective of this course is to advance students’ knowledge and understanding of developments in Russian politics since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Students will familiarize themselves with key institutions and processes in the contemporary Russian political system. By the end of the course, it is expected that students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of Russian domestic politics and identify and assess key institutions and processes in contemporary Russia

  • Interpret the broader meanings of political developments with reference to appropriate concepts drawn in particular from the field of political science

  • Critically assess media messages from and about Russia and place them in a broader context of Russian domestic politics

  • Demonstrate their presentation (written and oral) skills



Method of instruction

Lecture/seminar/self-study. During the first meeting, the instructor will explain the structure of the classes and the distribution of study hours.

Course load

Total 280 hours
Lectures: 26 hours
Final exam: 2 hours
Written assignments, presentations, literature: 252 hours

Assessment method

3 x written assignments (50% combined), final written exam (50%).
Resit: written exam, assignments can be compensated.


Blackboard will be used for:

  • providing study materials


Selected articles and book chapters will be available on Blackboard.


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.

General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Contractonderwijs


For questions about the content of the course, you can contact the teacher: Dr. M.J.Frear

Coordinator of Studies: mw. drs. T. Bouma

Administrations Office: van Wijkplaats


Not aplicable