Wednesday, November 23, 2022

War-Driven Exodus from Russia Degrading Society More than Economy, Zubarevich Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Nov. 19 – The exodus of talented young Russians as a result of the war in Ukraine has degraded society more than it has the economy, Natalya Zubarevich says, adding that the economy which is based on the export of raw materials rather than manufacturing is less affected by their departure than many might expect.

            Indeed, the economic geographer says, the Russian economy is adapting to the shocks it has received, including both sanctions and emigration, although in the longer term, the Moscow State University economic geographer says, the exodus will mean that the Russian economy will fall further and further behind the rest of the world (

            But the departure of the most qualified people, Zubarevich says, while “bad for the economy is very bad for society” because it removes from the scene precisely those people who constitute the basis for the emergence of a civil society, a development that many in the Putin regime may in fact welcome despite its longer-term consequences.

            At the same time, however, Zubarevich expresses a certain confidence that “a significant share” of those who have left because of the war will eventually return when and if the country’s top leadership and, by clear implication, Vladimir Putin, leaves the scene. Then, the social and economic consequences of their departures now will be overcome.

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