Harriman Institute 2012-13 Core Project
Dr. Kimberly Marten, Core Project Director
Post-doctoral fellows: Dr. Jesse Dillon of Northwestern University and Dr. Fredrik Sjoberg of Uppsala University
The project "Corruction and Patronage" will investigate from a variety of academic and policy perspectives the definitions, significance, costs, benefits, and trajectories of corruption and patronage (also called clientelism), both within Eurasian societies and comparatively. The questions asked include: are corruption and patron/client favoritism ills that impede a society’s progress, or instead a good way to get things done in societies without well institutionalized legal systems? Are patronage-based clans a viable alternative to the modern state as a governance mechanism? How did the West get good governance, and is there anything that the outside world can realistically do to encourage its development in Eurasia—or are efforts in that direction naive, bound to be resented, and doomed to have their resources diverted within the very system they hoped to eradicate? The project director has a special interest in how these questions apply to security institutions and armed non-state actors in the post-Soviet space, but the scope of the project is broad and interdisciplinary. Activities will include dedicated workshops and visiting speaker panels.