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The Political Economy of Russian City Growth


  • Ira N. Gang

    () (Rutgers University)

  • Robert C. Stuart

    () (Rutgers University)


This paper examines the political economy of Russian city growth. For the 1980s, we model the growth of 168 Russian cities located in 71 Russian provinces (oblast level). We examine the role of both general socio-economic characteristics and specific state controls. Our goal is to understand the extent to which state controls on city growth actually limited city growth, controlling for the usual types of forces used to explain the attractiveness of different cities. We find that even with considerable variation of model specification, direct controls remain important as a factor explaining the growth of Russian cities in the immediate pre-transition era.

Suggested Citation

  • Ira N. Gang & Robert C. Stuart, 1999. "The Political Economy of Russian City Growth," Departmental Working Papers 199908, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:rut:rutres:199908

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gur Ofer, 1976. "Industrial Structure, Urbanization, and the Growth Strategy of Socialist Countries," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 90(2), pages 219-244.
    2. Ira N. Gang & Robert C. Stuart, 1998. "Mobility Where Mobility is Illegal: Migration and City Growth in the Soviet Union," Departmental Working Papers 199709, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
    3. Ira N Gang & Robert C Stuart, 1996. "Urban to Urban Migration: Soviet Patterns and Post-Soviet Implications," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Association for Comparative Economic Studies, vol. 38(1), pages 21-36, April.
    4. Dustmann, Christian & Preston, Ian, 2001. "Attitudes to Ethic Minorities, Ethnic Context and Location Decisions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(470), pages 353-373, April.
    5. Clayton, Elizabeth & Richardson, Thomas, 1989. "Soviet Control of City Size," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 38(1), pages 155-165, October.
    6. Annette N. Brown, 1997. "The Economic Determinants of the Internal Migration Flows in Russia During Transition," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 89, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.
    7. Ira N. Gang & Robert C. Stuart, 1999. "Mobility where mobility is illegal: Internal migration and city growth in the Soviet Union," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 12(1), pages 117-134.
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    Cited by:

    1. repec:eee:jcecon:v:45:y:2017:i:3:p:605-621 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Gang, Ira N. & Schmillen, Achim, 2017. "Sometimes, winners lose: Economic disparity and indigenization in Kazakhstan," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(3), pages 605-621.
    3. Danzer, Alexander M. & Dietz, Barbara & Gatskova, Ksenia & Schmillen, Achim, 2014. "Showing off to the new neighbors? Income, socioeconomic status and consumption patterns of internal migrants," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 230-245.
    4. Gang, Ira N. & Stuart, Robert C., 2004. "Russian Cities in Transition: The Impact of Market Forces in the 1990s," IZA Discussion Papers 1151, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    5. Omar S. Arias & Carolina Sánchez-Páramo & María E. Dávalos & Indhira Santos & Erwin R. Tiongson & Carola Gruen & Natasha de Andrade Falcão & Gady Saiovici & Cesar A. Cancho, 2014. "Back to Work : Growing with Jobs in Europe and Central Asia," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 16570.

    More about this item


    cities; city growth; migration; Russia; urbanization;

    JEL classification:

    • J6 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers
    • P20 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - General
    • R23 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Regional Migration; Regional Labor Markets; Population


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