Professor of politics and society, University College London.

Alena Ledeneva

Professor of politics and society, University College London. Her research focuses on corruption, informal economy, economic crime, informal practices in corporate governance, and the role of networks and patron-client relationships in Russia and other postcommunist societies. She has published prolifically on the topic: How Russia Really Works (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2006); Unwritten Rules (London: Centre for European Reform, 2001); Russia’s Economy of Favours (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1998) and co-edited the volumes Bribery and Blat in Russia (Basingstoke: Macmillan, 2000). She is a member expert of Valdai Disscussion Club, and currently leads the UCL pillar in the multimillion European Commission ANTICORRP research project.

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Articles by Alena Ledeneva

  1. Economies of favors or corrupt societies? Exploring the boundaries between informality and corruption

    The only functioning system for transactions in the Soviet Union was in fact blat, the system of corruption and tacit agreement and alliances among all parties involved in a given transaction, is here argued. The “knowing smile” was a shared signal for those in the system.

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