Doctor of Sciences (Economics), Professor, Head of the Finance and Credit Department, Federal State Budgetary Educational Institution of Higher Education “Vologda State University”, Russia
Candidate of Sciences (Economics), Research Associate of the Sector for Research in the Effectiveness of Management of Socio-Economic Systems of the Department for Issues of Socio-Economic Development and Management in Territorial Systems, Federal State Budgetary Institution of Science “Vologda Research Center of the Russian Academy of Sciences”, Russia
The existence of significant differences in the levels of socio-economic development of Russian regions and the need to determine state impact methods aimed at reducing inequality indicate the existence of territorial differentiation; this is the problem the article authors address. The paper proposes a methodological approach to the assessment of inter-regional differentiation, which helps solve a set of inter-related tasks on the basis of the data of state statistics and expert surveys. To assess the extent and size of territorial inequalities, the variation and Theil indices are used. The correlation and regression analysis discloses a trend to reduce differences among Russian regions in 2005-2017. On the basis of the author’s method, the integral index (aggregating 22 private indicators) is calculated; on its basis, RF subjects are grouped according to a socio-economic development level. The complexity and scale of the differentiation problem is emphasized by the fact that at the end of 2017, 43 subjects belong to the groups with below average and low development levels. The work identifies “backward regions” (18) and “regions with a sign of depression” (13), which should become a priority object of the federal regional policy. The analysis proves the hypothesis about weak influence of the state policy tools of regional development in Russia on processes of territorial development and confirms reduction in the scale and consequences of differentiation. The authors propose a conceptual scheme of the mechanism to manage the process of reducing inter-regional differentiation and overcoming its consequences, which can be used when implementing the Strategy for Spatial Development of the Russian Federation and other strategic planning documents. The results can be used by federal authorities to improve methods and tools for implementing the state policy of regional development, as well as serve as the basis for further research on this topic.
Keywords: Russian Federation, region (RF subject), inter-regional differentiation, gross regional product, convergence.
JEL classification: R1, R5