In Search of Critical Capacity: Exploring Attitudes of NPO Leaders in Russia

32 Pages Posted: 2 Mar 2015

See all articles by Anaël Labigne

Anaël Labigne

Association for the German Science

Olga Kononykhina

Hertie School of Governance

Irina Mersiyanova

National Research University Higher School of Economics (Moscow)

Date Written: February 17, 2015

Abstract

Following a public sphere approach to civil society research, we develop a working definition of Critical Capacity to analyze what leaders of Russian nonprofit organizations (NPOs) say regarding their political embeddedness. Theoretically, we stress the value added of differentiating more explicitly between the nonprofit sector, the third sector and civil society – the Critical Capacity concept represents a way forward towards applying that essential differentiation. Empirically, factor analysis on representative and current survey data confirms four dimensions of Critical Capacity, namely NPO leaders’ attitudes toward the role of the state, other NPOs, international cooperation as well as recent political events. In a second step, and based on these four dimensions, a cluster analytical model helps us to identify six reliable opinion clusters as well as the qualitative and quantitative characteristics of each group. Finally, we conclude on strength and weaknesses of our approach and address further research.

Keywords: cluster analysis; critical capacity; civil society; institutionalism; nonprofit sector; public sphere; Russia; third sector

JEL Classification: Z

Suggested Citation

Labigne, Anaël and Kononykhina, Olga and Mersiyanova, Irina, In Search of Critical Capacity: Exploring Attitudes of NPO Leaders in Russia (February 17, 2015). Higher School of Economics Research Paper No. WP BRP 59/SOC/2015, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2566207 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2566207

Anaël Labigne (Contact Author)

Association for the German Science

Pariser Platz 6
Berlin, 10117
Germany

Olga Kononykhina

Hertie School of Governance ( email )

Schlossplatz 1
Berlin, 10178
Germany

Irina Mersiyanova

National Research University Higher School of Economics (Moscow) ( email )

Myasnitskaya street, 20
Moscow, Moscow 119017
Russia

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