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Photo: “Vladimir Putin Speech at State Duma plenary session 2020-03-10 03“, by The Presidential Press and Information Office, licensed under CC BY 4.0. Hue modified from the original.

Shcherbak, Andrey. “Russia’s “conservative turn” after 2012: evidence from the European Social Survey.” East European Politics (2022): 1-26.


Russian politics is often described as having taken a “conservative turn” since the start of Putin’s third term. This refers to the rise in the political influence of the Russian Orthodox Church, the ideological shift to traditional values, and the growth of authoritarianism. This study aims to explore ordinary Russians’ commitment to this conservatism using data from European Social Survey, 2010–2018. I suggest a four-factor model for measuring popular conservatism in Russia: Loyalism, Conformity, Religiosity, and Traditionalism/Security. The study reveals a surge in conservative attitudes in 2014–2016 and a steady decline thereafter.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.