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East-West trajectory dilemma in Ukraine’s post-communist transformation Petro Kuzyk 18 February 2015 GSG Annual Conference.

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Presentation on theme: "East-West trajectory dilemma in Ukraine’s post-communist transformation Petro Kuzyk 18 February 2015 GSG Annual Conference."— Presentation transcript:

1 East-West trajectory dilemma in Ukraine’s post-communist transformation Petro Kuzyk 18 February 2015 GSG Annual Conference

2 Initial suggestions: A new East-West divide has taken root in post- communist Eastern Europe Ukraine’s foreign course dilemma is about a choice of trajectory for its development Successful post-communist transitions in the East-European region are imitations of Western institutions

3 Two models of post-communist transformation Different outcomes of transformation evident by the end of the 1990s: the post-communist Eastern Europe divided in two parts Successful CEE countries followed the Western-bound model (swift transition to liberal democracy and market economy): “Return to Europe” The Post-Soviet model: half-hearted reforms (democracy “with adjectives”, state-regulated and oligarchic economy). Conserving some structures from the past

4 A country at the cross-roads Both alternative transformation models available to Ukraine Ukrainian foreign trajectory problem: “multi-vectorism” (the “East-and-West” integration policy) Most governments attempted to imitate the West structures and follow the Post-Soviet developmental patterns simultaneously East or West?

5 The roots of the problem The puzzle of Ukraine political and societal divide: ethnic, linguistic, religious, regional? An “East-West” divide: rather pro-European Western and Central parts vs. pro-Russian/Eurasian or mixed East and South. Deep societal structures of the divide: political subcultures. National-Democratic vs. Post-Soviet

6 1991, 1994, 2004 presidential elections and 2006 parliamentary elections: electoral winners (Source: Kolodii A. Ukraїns’kyi rehionalizm iak stan kul’turno-politychnoї poliaryzovanosti. In Ahora. Ukraїna – rehional’nyi vymir.- No.3, P.88)

7 Regional winners of 2010 presidential election (2 nd round, left) and 2012 parliamentary election (multi-mandate party constituency, right) (Source:

8 2014 presidential election (1 st and 2 nd places by constituencies, above) and parliamentary election (multi-mandate constituency leaders and Opposition Bloc returns by regions, bellow) (Source:

9 Two political cultures

10 Consequences “Multi-vectorism” responsible for ineffective transformation: no stable political system or strong economy Reiteration of the Western and Eastern integration alternatives reinforces the domestic cleavages (and vice- verse) Foreign trajectory ambiguity is a source of Ukraine’s foreign security threats (Russia’s land-grab and triggering of war in the East)

11 A way out? - breaking free from the vicious circle (foreign trajectory ambiguity and societal cleavages): Stop the conflict in Donbas Swift democratic/ Western-bound reforms Integration into the European and North-Atlantic structures

12 comments, questions? thank you!

13 “Should Ukraine join the following international organizations?” European Union June 2006 December 2009 December 2011 August 2012 December 2013 March 2014 May 2014 Yes43.742, ,148,047,553,0 No35.932, ,635,936,635,5 Indeterminate20.424, ,316,115, 911,6 Customs Union with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan June 2006 December 2009 June 2010 August 2012 December 2013 March 2014 May 2014 Yes55.358, ,535,125,724,5 No22.720, ,545,353,061,1 Indeterminat e , ,019,521,314,4 (Source: Ilko Kucheriv DI Foundation )


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