The project is carried out in 2023-2025 in Perm Research Center of the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences and supported by the Russian Science Foundation under Grant № 23-18-00530, https://rscf.ru/project/23-18-00530/
The task of managing political-territorial heterogeneity is currently gaining great importance. This is due to the fact that clearly defined territorial boundaries are one of the key attributes of a modern state, but within these boundaries, individual parts of the state vary (according to sociocultural, economic and other characteristics), and in recent decades, such heterogeneity has increasingly acquired political significance, which gives rise to political-territorial conflicts, risks of separatism and a threat to the territorial integrity of the state. Scotland and Catalonia are the most striking, but far from the only cases. Reacting to the risks of separatism, states usually implement reforms that, with rare exceptions, are institutional adopting. Reforms, however, do not always have a positive effect; in many cases they escalate political-territorial conflicts. Thus, the question arises why institutions that are inefficient from the point of view of managing political-territorial heterogeneity are adopted.
The key idea of the project is that effectiveness of institutional reforms depends on not only their content but also mechanisms of institutional adopting. Based on the concept of institutional isomorphism by Paul DiMaggio and Walter Powell, all cases of institutional reforms that have taken place in contemporary states in the period from 1991 to the present will be analyzed in terms of normative, mimetic, and coercive isomorphism.
The project will result in the creation of a database on institutional reforms and a series of comparative studies grounded on a large amount of empirical material. The results of the project will be published in leading peer-reviewed Russian and foreign academic journals and presented at academic conferences. In a popular form, the collected empirical material will be presented in the form of the Political-Territorial Atlas of Modernity.