Officially registered in the Federal Service for Supervision in the Area of Telecom, Information Technologies and Mass Communications
Electronic No. 77-8029.

On the web since fall 2000

Journal of Economic Sociology is indexed by Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI) from Web of Science™ Core Collection

Funded by the National Research University Higher School of Economics since 2007.

2013. Vol. 14. No. 3

Full text of the journal

Vadim Radaev
Editor’s Foreword
P. 5–7


Victor Polterovich
«An Expert must Strive to be Independent while Society should Support His Inspiration» Victor Polterovich interviewed by Andrey Yakovlev
P. 8–26

At the end of 2012 and the start of 2013, the Higher School of Economics and the Association of Russian Economic Think Tanks (ARETT) conducted a project devoted to modern conditions and trends in the development of think tanks as a significant segment of independent research in Russia and their roles in the formation of economic policy. In the frameworks of this project, the quantitative survey of 50 think tanks was enriched by a series of in-depth interviews with the heads of some of these organizations (ARETT members and nonmembers). In addition to the interviews, for better understanding of how think tanks and the expert community are seen by academic researchers, in January 2013 an interview with the President of the New Economic Association, Victor Polterovich was also conducted. Economic Sociology’s editorial staff consider the arguments offered by Victor Polterovich in this interview as important, not only to understand the evolution of think tanks but also for stimulating the development of Russian academic community. Economic Sociology’s editorial staff is much obliged to Victor Polterovich and Andrey Yakovlev (as team leader of the HSE-ARETT project) for the opportunity to publish the full text of this interview.

New Texts

Anna Zudina
Informal Employment and Subjective Social Status: The Case of Russia
P. 27–63

Numerous studies of informal employment were focused on its possible impact on the income of informal workers. However, the consequences of informal employment regarding the socioeconomic position of workers and social inequality in general could not be reduced to mere monetary changes. This article presents the results of an empirical study of the subjective social status of informal workers in Russia from 2000–2010.

The study was carried out on the basis of a large nationally representative panel: the Russia Longitudinal Monitoring Survey at the Higher School of Economics (RLMS-HSE) for the years 2000–2010.

The dynamics in the average subjective social status of different categories of informal employment are investigated and compared to formal employment, unemployment and other economically inactive states. Special attention is paid to the analysis of informal employment as a factor in subjective social status. For these purposes, ordered probit regressions were estimated for each of 11 RLMS-HSE waves and then panel regressions with fixed effects were conducted to reveal potentially unobserved effects that might result in self-selection into the employment sector or the initial psychological inclination towards certain self-estimations. The conducted step-by-step analysis obtained significant changes in the self-estimations of self-employed people which tend to be mainly associated with men. Irregular workers are deemed to be most vulnerable if compared with other categories of informal employed people.

Thus, there is no evidence to argue that informality serves as a mechanism of social stratification according to which informally employed people are referred to as “second class”. The findings represent not so much a characteristic of informal employment in the Russian labour market as an indicator of quality of formal institutions, because the formal sector is deemed by working people to be unrelated to opportunities for personal welfare or to a social care system.

New Translations

Neil Fligstein
The Architecture of Markets: An Economic Sociology of Twenty-First-Century Capitalist Societies (translated by Alexander Kurakin)
P. 64–95

Market societies have created more wealth and more opportunities for more people, than any other system of social organization in history. Yet we still have a rudimentary understanding of how markets themselves are social constructions that require extensive institutional support. This groundbreaking work seeks to fill this gap, to make sense of modern capitalism by developing a sociological theory of market institutions. Addressing the dynamism that capitalism brings with it, Neil Fligstein argues that the basic drift of any market and its actors is toward stabilization.
“The Architecture of Markets” represents a major and timely step beyond recent, largely empirical studies that oppose the neoclassical model of perfect competition but provide sparse theory toward a coherent economic sociology. Fligstein offers this theory. His political-cultural approach explains why governments remain crucial to markets and why so many national variations of capitalism endure. States help make stable markets possible by, for example, establishing the rule of law and adjudicating the class struggle. State-building and market-building go hand in hand.
Fligstein shows that market actors depend mightily upon governments and the members of society for the social conditions that produce wealth. He demonstrates that systems favoring more social justice and redis¬tribution can yield stable markets and economic growth as readily as less egalitarian systems.
The journal publishes the chapter 9, «Globalisation», excerpt from «The Architecture of Markets» by Neil Fligstein. The author questions why increasing globalisation has not resulted in convergence of organisational forms at national level. In search of an answer to this puzzle, Fligstein uses the analytical tools of a politicalcultural approach. As the main tasks of the chapter the author considers the development of working definitions of globalisation and a review of arguments demonstrating that globalists exaggerate the scope of its impact on the organisation of production, the state’s role in providing for their citizens and social stratification.

Beyond Borders

William J. Baumol
The Microtheory of Innovative Entrepreneurship (translated by Yuriy Kapturevsky)
P. 96–108

Entrepreneurs are widely recognised for the vital contributions they make to economic growth and general welfare, yet until fairly recently entrepreneurship was not considered worthy of serious economic study. Today, progress has been made to integrate entrepreneurship into macroeconomics but, until now the entrepreneurhas almost completely been excluded from microeconomics and standard theoretical models of the firm.«The Microtheory of Innovative Entrepreneurship» provides a framework for introducing entrepreneurship into mainstream microtheory and incorporating the activities of entrepreneurs, inventors, and managers into standard models of the firm. William Baumol distinguishes between the innovative entrepreneur, who comes up with new ideas and puts them into practice and the replicative entrepreneur, who can be anyone who launches a new business venture, regardless of whether similar ventures already exist. Baumol puts forward a quasiformal theoretical analysis of the innovative entrepreneur’s influential role in economic life. In doing so, he opens the way to bringing innovative entrepreneurship into the accepted body of mainstream microeconomics and offers valuable insights that can be used to design more effective policies. «The Microtheory of Innovative Entrepreneurship» lays the foundation for a new kind of microtheory that reflects the innovative entrepreneur’s importance to economic growth and prosperity.

The journal publishes chapter 1, «Entrepreneurship in Economic Theory: Reasons for Its Absence and Goals for Its Restoration», in which the author summarises the main reasons why formal economic theory ignores the role of innovative entrepreneurs in economic growth. In addition, Baumol identifies the key issues to which the proposed theory of entrepreneurship, as he argues, is intended to find solutions.

Debut Studies

Alena Albutova
Social Entrepreneurship in Russia: Key Actors and the Development Potential
P. 109–132

In the article, the different approaches to defining social entrepreneurship are presented as well as the results of research dedicated to the emerging organisational field of social entrepreneurship in Russia. While this type of economic activity is institutionally constituted in the US and Western Europe, where there are specific laws and tax privileges, in Russia it has just only started to develop. Its manner of development in Russia depends not only on social and economic factors and historic conditions but on the activities of key players in this emerging field. The expert interviews conducted at the first stage of the research helped the author to distinguish those key players, including the «Our Future» fund, which served as a single source of financial support for social entrepreneurship as the research was conducted: 186 applications submitted to competitions for social entrepreneurs held by the fund over three years are analysed to discover the model of social entrepreneurship promoted by the fund. According to the results, the stability and financial independency of social projects are referred to the key characteristics of social projects supported by the fund.

Professional Reviews

Elena Gorban
A Review of Sociological Theories and Interpretations of the Notion of «Lifestyle»: From Class Society to Postmodern
P. 133–144

The paper systematises key theoretical perspectives to the notion of lifestyle and the related empirical studies in socialsciences. It also reviews elements of this concept from different perspectives. The main aim is to find senses which researchers ascribe to the notion of lifestyle. The article embraces well-known texts devoted to lifestyle as well asless-known ones in Russia, including papers written in French. It pays equal attention to methodological issues and empirical research in order to describe the phenomenon of lifestyle in full detail. Special attention is given to the concept of lifestyle created by Pierre Bourdieu in the late XX century. His conception has many followers as well as a pleiad of critics; research by both groups is presented in the paper. Bourdieu demonstrated empirical evidence of consistency or rationality in people’s tastes, connecting consumer preferences with social class, upbringing and most importantly, habits. He argued that a person’s inclinations to any activity, hobby or even food preferences,can be explained by external factors and education level. However, the transition observed in the XXI century caused changes in societies and Bourdieu’s theory turns out to be irrelevant in some cases. The formation of a consumer society generated a new type of consciousness, including a new variety of lifestyle; postmodernism, which runs counter to logical expectations and consistency of choice implying confusion, eclecticism, plurality, and irrationality.

New Books

Vadim Radaev
Preface to the Russian Edition of: Fligstein N. 2001. The Architecture of Markets: An Economic Sociology of Twenty-First-Century Capitalist Societies. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press (translated by Alexander Kurakin. 2013 (Forthcoming). M.: HSU Publishing House)
P. 145–151

Research Projects

Nikolay Karbainov
The Center for Cultural Studies of Post-Socialism at the Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University
P. 152–158


Alexander Chepurenko
Karl Marx as a Sociologist: A Textological Analysis of «Capital»
P. 159–178


Tatyana Filippova
Russian Healthcare System: What is a Diagnosis?
P. 179–184

Olga Gourova
Interdisciplinary Seminar «Critical Approach to Consumption and Consumer Studies in Post-Soviet Societies», Kazan, 29–30 March, 2013
P. 185–191

Rambler's Top100 rss