Buying offices in the Eurasian state
How does the state actually work in post-Soviet Eurasia? Put aside the notion that these countries are moving toward modern liberal democratic statehood, Johan Engvall of Uppsala University argues in the current issue of Governance. What is evolving, instead, is the state as a kind of investment market, in which would-be officials invest in offices to obtain access to streams of income associated with those offices. Drawing on fieldwork in Kyrgyzstan between 2006 and 2013, Engvall explains how the system works. “Office-holding,” he says, “resembles a rather uncertain franchise-like agreement.” Free access to the article.