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NEPORUS. New Political Groups and the Russian State (completed)

The project aims to identify the factors that have enabled the change in the Russian political climate towards increased social mobilization seen in channels such as social media.

People walking in a demonstration.

Mass demonstrations in Moscow 2011.

Photo: Bogomolov.PL, Wikimedia Commons

From 2008 to 2012 Russia has experienced a dramatic increase in civil society organization and social movement activity best illustrated by the mass demonstrations that took place in Moscow in 2011.

What are the causes behind the increased social mobilization? We aim to take a closer look at

  • the use of social media in Russia
  • changing social identities
  • the existing legal framework


The project will draw on social movement theories (SMT) with some adaptations to major assumptions of recent area studies, with a special focus on the effect of social media on framing, coordination and collective action. The postdoctoral position will be dedicated to exploring this field in detail.

Four themes are outlined, with the basic assumptions of SMT adapted to the post-communist reality of Putin’s Russia.

The major research question will be divided into a subset of researchable themes:

  • Developments within the executive; the dual state and government–presidential relations.
  • Social media and framing: the sustainability of protest mobilization.
  • State-sponsored counter-movements and framing.
  • Legal developments and the NGO sector.
  • Networks and mobilization: political groups, framings and frame resonance in society

Want to know more about the project? Read our project outline here.

Distribution list

We issue a distribution list with information on current publications and upcoming events.


Neporus project participants gathered in Oslo in June 2014 for an initial workshop. Photo: Alf Tore Øksdal.


NEPORUS involves a network of well-established international area-specialists and makes use of both qualitative and quantitative methods to understand the formation of new political groups in post-communist Russia.
The researchers have specific expertise on the Russian executive and the presidential system, social movements and the framework for political movements in Russia.

This involves academicians from the

  • University of Arizona
  • University of Berkeley
  • The Swedish Defence Research Institute
  • The European University in St. Petersburg

The NEPORUS project is led by professor Geir Flikke from the University of Oslo.


The project is funded by The Norwegian Research Council.

Tags: Russia
Published Apr. 4, 2014 1:10 PM - Last modified Apr. 16, 2020 5:32 PM


Project leader:

Geir Flikke

+47-22 84 59 48