Call for Contributors – – “The Reform of Russian and Post-Soviet Militaries”

Issue 14th  –  “The Reform of Russian and Post-Soviet Militaries” – Anna Colin Lebedev, Isabelle Facon & Elisabeth Sieca-Kozlowski (14th issue Editors) – Articles Submission Deadline: March 15th, 2012 – Publication: Summer 2012.

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, the post-Soviet Armies seem to be in a constant process of reforming and/or discussing the possibility of change. In Russia, almost every Defense Minister has proposed a new project for the Armed Forces, has implemented it with more or less success, without any public debate accompanying the reform. In the beginning of the 2000s, President Putin has announced the transition from the conscription system to a partially professional army, which seemed to respond to the claims of civil society; nevertheless the project seems to have failed. The ongoing program launched in 2008 and called « The New Model Army» (“Aрмия нового облика »), has essentially consisted in downsizing the army, without clarifying the conception of the Armed Forces on which the reform has been based.

The process of reforming the post-Soviet armies can be analyzed at different levels. From the point of view of international relations, it can reveal the evolution of the perception by the State of itself and of its significant Others and show the search for a model of society succeeding to the Soviet ideology. Reforming also means defining the challenges and conflicts the Army expects to face, inside and outside the country. But conflicts can also serve as an impulse for reforms as in the case of Russia (with the Chechen campaigns and Georgia).

At the level of internal politics, the reform can be analyzed as a game between unequal actors engaged in more or less open political processes. The existence and the configuration of the debate on Army reforms are of a particular interest to evaluate the transformation of societies and the role of various social actors such as media, NGOs, military management and political actors. From the viewpoint of the public policy analysis, the reforms reflect a decision making model in an area considered as strategic or even secret by policymakers. The economical dimension of the Army is closely linked to the ideological priorities, but also reflects formal and informal mechanisms of economic regulation. At the micro-social level, the analysis of the impact of policies on the everyday functioning of the army would be an important contribution to the military sociology. From the historical point of view, a comparison with reforms conducted in Soviet Union and/or in the Russian Empire could assess the impact of political changes on the military institution.

The issue will not only focus on the most recent developments of Russian military reform, but also on the experience of other post-Soviet, as well as Eastern European countries and the mutual influence of the models. The history of reforming the army in the Soviet Union and in Imperial Russia can also be an important part of the issue.

The following aspects could be of particular interest, the list being far from exhaustive:

1. The historical evolution and international environment

– From the imperial times to nowadays: military functioning, reforms and culture;

– Are the post-Soviet armies rejecting or conserving the heritage of the Red Army? Which are the models chosen and for which reasons?

– The evolution of the military doctrine, the new threats, the evolutions of military cooperation with foreign countries?

– The wars’ impact (Chechen campaigns, Georgia) on reforms;

– Armament and disarmament; defense industry conversion.

2. The relationship between the Army and the State

– The structural reforms of the military units and the Ministry of Defense; tensions and oppositions;

– The legal framework of the reforms;

– The reform of the medical services in the army;

– The relationship of the Army with the other ministries and administrations;

– The financing of the army; the privatization of the social support via semi-public foundations; the lotteries as a source of financing.

3. The actors of the Military forces

– The reforms of military education;

– Foreigners in the Russian Army;

– The new actors in military units (psychologists, chaplains from the four traditional religions);

– Military careers; retired officers’ reconversion;

– Women in the Army;

– The demographical and quantitative evolution of the army / officer corps / Kontraktniki / conscripts;

– The sociological profile of the military (the officer corps, the rank and file etc.).

4. The relationship between Army and Society

– The reform of conscription and military service;

– The regional impact of the conscription reform;

– The management of the extraterritoriality principle;

– Pre-draft training (DOSAAF / ROSTO);

– The evolutions of the public opinion on conscription and professional army;

– The political parties and the Army;

– The role played by NGOs;

– The Civic Chamber and the Ministry of Defense;

– The creation of a military police;

– Dealing with dedovshchina;

– The role of the military journalists in the Army/Society relationship;

– The emergence and development of military sociology.

Guidelines for article submission

The journal will be published in three languages (French, English and Russian with a 100-word abstract in English) thanks to which most authors will be able to write in their mother tongue. This will ensure greater precision in the articles and avoid a decrease in scientific quality. But we draw your attention to the fact that most readers are essentially English speakers, therefore we do encourage articles in English in order to reach an audience as broad as possible.

The articles submitted to for publication should be original contributions and should not be under consideration for any other publication at the same time. Manuscripts should be attached as Microsoft Word format. References should be given in footnotes. (For more details about the guidelines for article submission please check or contact the Editorial Board). There should be a cover page stating the author’s background and affiliation, full address.

If you wish to submit an article, please first contact the editorial board and send a 100-word abstract in English. The deadline for article submission is March 15th, 2012, with publication in July 2012. Final decisions on publication will be made by the Editorial Board.

Please send your contributions or inquiries to:

Elisabeth Sieca-Kozlowski, Chief Editor,

Anna Colin Lebedev, Isabelle Facon & Elisabeth Sieca-Kozlowski (14th Issue Editors)


Papers dealing with other issues related to armies and power institutions in the CIS, as well as book review proposals are also welcome.



Publishers interested in publicizing their editions, please send review copies to:

Elisabeth Sieca-Kozlowski , CERSIPS c/° CERCEC, 190-198, av. de France 75244 Paris cedex

Cite this blog post
Elisabeth Sieca-Kozlowski (2011, April 6). Call for Contributors – – “The Reform of Russian and Post-Soviet Militaries”. Post-Soviet Armies Newsletter. Retrieved June 16, 2024, from