Russian Constitutional Development: Formal and Informal Practices

30 Pages Posted: 12 Nov 2015

See all articles by Andrei Medushevskiy

Andrei Medushevskiy

National Research University Higher School of Economics

Date Written: November 12, 2015


Transitional constitutionalism remains the subject of intensive political controversies. On the ground of the Project realized by the Institute of Law and Public Policy (Moscow) this article presents the analysis of the basic constitutional principles (pluralism, separation of powers, federalism, independence of justice, the guarantees of political rights and freedoms) describing the changing character of their implementation in different areas of constitutional practices – legislation, constitutional justice, administrative activity and informal practices and the comparative level of constitutional deviations in each of them. The important new acquirement of this research is the concept and methodology of the constitutional monitoring and recommendations for the full-scale reforms in key areas of Russian constitutional and political settlement. The author shows that the true choice of modern society is not the dilemma - constitutionalism versus its negation but the choice between real and sham constitutionalism with a big variety of intermediate options between them. It is precisely the area, which the author defines as a transitional type of constitutionalism, the field of collision of different political stakeholders. This is an area of unstable equilibrium where the implementation of different legal strategies and technologies may produce a definitive effect.

Keywords: The Russian Constitution, constitutional principles, legislation, justice, administration, formal and informal practices, constitutional reforms.

JEL Classification: Z

Suggested Citation

Medushevskiy, Andrei, Russian Constitutional Development: Formal and Informal Practices (November 12, 2015). Higher School of Economics Research Paper No. WP BRP 27/PS/2015. Available at SSRN: or

Andrei Medushevskiy (Contact Author)

National Research University Higher School of Economics ( email )

Myasnitskaya street, 20
Moscow, Moscow 119017

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