PATTERNS OF SPATIAL DEVELOPMENT: EVIDENCE FROM RUSSIA

Veronika MASLIKHINA

Ph.D. in Economics, Associate Professor of  Department of Management and Law, Volga State University of Technology, Yoshkar-Ola, Russia

Maslikhina_nika@mail.ru

Abstract

The aim of the paper is to analyze the trends of spatial inequality in Russia in 1994-2015 based on the convergence concepts. Russia faced the problem of inter-regional inequality as well as most countries. The situation is aggravated by the external economic and domestic factors in recent years. The fall in energy prices and Western sanctions had a negative impact on the country’s economic development. Russia is compelled to take into account geopolitical interests in the implementation regional policies in some regions (the Far East, the Crimea, the Kaliningrad region, the republics of the North Caucasus, the Arctic). Many regional budgets have budget deficit, highly debt load. They optimize spending on the social sphere and reduce investments in the real economy. Russia is emerging from the crisis despite the difficult situation. A review of the theoretical positions of the four types of convergence concepts (σ-, β-, γ-, ρ-convergence) was made. The spatial inequality evaluation was carried out on the basis of σ-convergence and absolute β-convergence concepts. The Williamson coefficient, the Hoover index, the Theil index and the Atkinson index were used to analyze spatial inequality based on the σ-concept. Differentiation has increased over the analyzed period, but gap decreased after 2005. The  convergence speed  is 1.79% in Russia. Regions with a low initial level of development have higher growth rates than regions with a higher initial level of development

Keywords: spatial inequality, spatial development, β-convergence, σ-convergence, Russia

JEL classification: D63, O52, R1, R58
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