Russian Economy and the State in the Eyes of a Foreign Economist Part 1
Grigory Khanin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.1.2-295-318

The article analyses the book written by the English economist Thane Gustafson “Wheel of Fortune. The battle for oil and power in Russia”. The author of the book is known for his deep works on the oil industry of the USSR and the state of post-Soviet Russia. In a peer-reviewed book, Gustafson analyzes Soviet and post-Soviet Russian society through the prism of the Russian oil industry. The author of the article supplements Gustafson’s analysis with his own assessments of the state of the oil industry of the USSR and the Russian Federation, taking into account the replacement cost of fixed assets. Gustafson, paying tribute to the achievements of the Soviet oil industry, shows the inevitability of its crisis in the 80s due to defects in the command economy. Thane Gustafson analyzes the crisis of the oil industry of the late 80s and early 90s as a consequence of the weakness of state power, the capacity of which in Russia he assesses as the most important factor in its economic development. He considers the privatization of the oil industry, with all its shortcomings, as a condition for the beginning of the revival of the oil industry. Another factor, he believes, is the attraction of foreign capital, technology and Western management practices. The strengthening of state power with the advent of Putin and the successful operation of private oil companies, along with rising world oil prices, ensured a rapid increase in oil production in the Russian Federation, which allowed Gustafson to assess the period 2001-2004 as an oil miracle. He associates the subsequent slowdown in oil production with the depletion of old oil fields with poor development of new ones. At the same time, Gustafson attaches considerable importance to this slowdown in the nationalization of the oil industry and the growing hostility in Russia towards foreign capital in general and the West in particular. The author supplements this analysis with calculations showing the limited financial resources of oil companies and their poor use. Gustafson predicts a crisis in the Russian oil industry and recommends liberalization of the industry and increased integration of the Russian oil industry into the global economy.

Factors and Ways of Enhancing the Investment Attractiveness of the Region
Galina Litvinceva,  Alina Goldobina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2019-11.4.2-243-266

Investments are the resource which is necessary for economic development on the micro-, meso- and macro-levels. The investment attractiveness of the region is of special importance now when the Russian Federation entities are implementing important programs of social and economic development. Enhancing investment attractiveness and the intensification of investment activity in the region are indispensable prerequisites for increasing its competitiveness. Economists from various schools have repeatedly been studying this problem.

Theoretical and practical aspects of forming and analyzing the investment attractiveness of the Russian Federation entities are successively considered in the paper. The focus is made on the Siberian Federal District and the Novosibirsk Region. The time period of the analysis is 2006–2017. Official information of the Federal State Statistics Service is used.

The authors summarize the most significant characteristics of the region investment attractiveness and show the relation of this notion with such categories as an investment potential and risk as well as investment climate.

They identify the main applied methods of assessing the investment attractiveness of the region, which are based on both functional and organizational groups.

The authors modified the approach evaluating the investment attractiveness of the Siberian Federal District regions. This approach includes the calculation of annual and average rates of risk-free returns on fixed capital investments for the period under review. Special attention was given to the District industrial regions.

The Novosibirsk Region as an administrative center of the Siberian Federal District attracts particular attention. Therefore the authors studied the investment attractiveness of this region and factors influencing it, basing on the correlation-regression analysis. As a result the most significant factors which prevent enhancing the investment attractiveness of the region are identified.

The paper considers the peculiarities of government regulation of investment attractiveness on the regional level. The authors describe the measures to raise it specified in the District program documents. Basing on the calculations made and documents analyzed, the authors formulate additional measures to promote the investment attractiveness of the Novosibirsk Region and thus to increase its competitive advantage in the long run.

The Curse of Cashlessness and “Money Partisans”: The Repressive Function of Technologically Advanced Money
Dmitry Khaustov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2019-11.4.2-267-291

The article provides an overview of current works on the nature of money in the modern world; considers the problems of the essence of money and their functions on the example of the main topics of the books by F. Martin “Money: The Unauthorized Biography” and K. Rogoff's “The Curse of Cash”. The author formulates the key contradictions of the “money” category based on the argument that money is a social agreement or a solid amount of the precious metal discussed in the book by F. Martin. In particular, the money of “primitive peoples” can be highly abstract and inconvenient for accumulation - fiduciary money, stimulating trust. This thesis is illustrated by the monetary system of the Yap Islands in the Pacific Ocean. William Laundhes, the secretary of the English treasury at the end of the 17th century, believed that Money is a system of credit accounts and debt repayment, in which cash plays the role of a vivid illustration of the state of an individual account of a member of society. O. Spengler wrote that money is a function, a force, which value lies in its action, not mere presence. The article considers local monetary systems, money with a demurrage, negative interest rates, and a possible waiver of cash circulation. The experience of the so-called “monetary partisans” - local payment systems that operate in parallel with the official monetary circulation is rather interesting. There are possible explanations for the abandonment of paper money in favor of metal in medieval China. The practice of Khubilai’s financiers, perhaps, was one of the factors in the fall of the Yuan dynasty. The double currency circulation was probably used for the first time in history as a repressive economic mechanism on such a large scale. The introduction of significant negative interest rates can stimulate a variety of social practices that can be described as “corruption”. It is concluded that there is a categorical dichotomy in the structure of the concept “money” - money as a commodity and as a tool for the transit of debts. The author supposes that technologically advanced forms of money can perform a repressive function. The author believes that we can talk about a kind of monetary cyberpunk, by analogy with cyberpunk - the science fiction genre, describing the decline of human culture against the background of technological progress in the computer age. The repressive function of money in many cases is latent for monetary circulation as a social institution.

On the Approach to a Priori Estimation in Financial Problems
Egor Alekseev,  Lyudmila Serga,  Oleg Ryzhkov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2019-11.4.2-292-301

In the process of financial management, there regularly appear tasks of making decisions about the importance of a particular value in the conditions of uncertainty. For such decisions, statistical methods are actively used, but in many cases the initial information is insufficient and / or subjective.

The article considers the problem of assessing financial values in the conditions of absence, insufficiency or inapplicability of statistical data. The authors describe an approach to a priori estimation, based on the formation of an undistorted assessment basis with the inclusion of the maximum number of acceptable alternatives and the application of a statistical-game approach to estimation. The assessment obtained using the proposed approach is stable and reproducible and it minimizes the expected absolute estimation error. The proposed approach shifts the emphasis in the work of specialists from the actual performance of the calculations to the search and analysis of the feasibility of alternatives, i.e. on the formation of a complete, comprehensive and reasonable basis for the assessment. Also, the authors discuss the possibility of applying this approach to the organization of financial management accounting at the university.

The article considers the tasks of the system of financial management accounting at the university, determines the financial values used in management accounting, for the assessment of which the a priori approach can be applied with the greatest efficiency.

The Role of Cognitive Technologies in the Implementation of the Idea of “New Horizon” in Management Strategies
Irina Brylina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2018-4.2-181-192

The article analyses the potential of cognitive management strategies in emerging society of knowledge. The author states that intellectual capital as the source and development mechanism of society under the conditions of emerging society of knowledge failed to stand the test of time and was replaced by knowledge in terms of its functions. The importance and urgency of the issue makes it necessary to address to several problems, among which the following ones may be mentioned:

  • The investigation of structural components of technology as an instrumental approach of rational action, the investigation of knowledge and knowledge-based emerging technologies as the foundation of knowledge society;
  • The investigation of the role of cognitive technologies in management activity as a management strategy of innovative type. The formation of this strategy is a response to the challenges of emerging society of knowledge.
During the investigation of above mentioned problems the author uses the potential of comparative method and possibility of an integrative approach and comparative methodology. The article reveals the specificity of quantitative management strategies and defines the potential of cognitive management technologies. Knowledge management is presented as a multi-disciplinary approach to the achievement of organizational goals through the most effective usage of knowledge and cognitive technologies. The use of cognitive technologies is seen by the author as the basis of competitive advantages of an organization, where management process is carried out through the usage of knowledge arrays and knowledge technologies. The process of knowledge management is presented as a complex of interrelated practices, aimed at the development and optimal management, manifesting the potential through the influence on behaviour, mental structures, values and beliefs.

The Paradigmal Context of the Development of the Robust Control of Economic Systems
A.A. Tropin,  E.V. Freydina,  Mikhail Alekseev
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2018-4.2-160-180

The development of methodological and theoretical aspects of robust management of economic systems is correlated with the evolutionary concept of management in the continuum of paradigms: subject-object, subject-subject and subject ─ poly-subject environment. The introduction of robust management means the transition within each paradigm from the concept of equilibrium to the concept of robust stability of economic systems. The article considers management of the economic systems interaction within the paradigm "subject ─ poly-subject environment", as well as the establishment of the coherence of the models of behavior of economic entities with the internal organization of their knowledge of reality in the continuum of management paradigms, so it is possible to obtain a reasonable assessment for the input of robust management in the space defined by each paradigm. Poly-subject environment of the economic systems operation is presented as a self-developing system having a certain hierarchy of levels of its formation. The research is focused at the primary level of development – "initial self-regulation", which includes the market (or business) environment represented by a variety of elementary organizational structures "subject – subject" and environmental elementary structures – business situations, characterized by chaos and uncertainty. Chaos is considered as the behavior of subjects which generates information with some measure of uncertainty. As a result, to order the chaos of the poly-subject environment the research is aimed at developing a typology of "suppliers" of information on the level of its uncertainty. Six types of information providers are identified and for each type the information generating uncertainty is determined. The natural continuation of the ordering of the poly-subject environment of the selected hierarchical level is the systematization and disclosure of the essence of the models of consumer information behavior, different internal organization of knowledge: from realism to rationalism and, consistently deepening the methods of knowledge, to cognitivism and constructivism. Depending on the internal organization of knowledge, which is attributed to the consumer of information, its immersion takes place in the context of a certain management paradigm. As a generalizing knowledge the matrix map of the connectivity of the models of behavior of economic subjects with the internal organization of knowledge about their actions in the context of the evolutionary representation of management paradigms is presented. The created structure of knowledge allows us to come to the statement: at the present stage each of the fundamental paradigms presented to the scientific community occupies a certain space with moving borders in the management of economic systems, which is also a guide for the development of the mechanism of robust control

Considerations on the Research Interest to the Application of Fuzzy Sets Method for the Analysis of the Effectiveness of Innovation Projects in Dissertations in Russia
Elena Muzyko
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2018-3.2-50-65

The paper presents a critical review of dissertations defended in Russia during the period 1998–2017 devoted to the application of fuzzy sets theory for the evaluation of investment and innovative projects. The author analyzed about 150 dissertations. The analysis has shown that the methods of the fuzzy sets theory are actively used by scientists. The explosion of interest to the application of the fuzzy sets method to investment analysis is observed in 2003–2006 after defending a doctoral dissertation by A.O. Nedosekin. The author highlights the appearance of a number of works in the area of technical and physicomathematical sciences related to the use of fuzzy sets method for the analysis of investment and innovation activities. In these research studies the authors usually examine the issue from the point of technical execution – substantiate the algorithms and methods of assessment and decision-making under the conditions of uncertainty, automatize this process. Russian authors study the investment potential of industrial, construction, high-tech, IT-enterprises, as well as the industrial complex as a whole, transport and scientific and innovation infrastructure that indicates the gradual deepening of specialization in this field of research. Despite the fact that Russian researchers show rather a high interest in the fuzzy sets method, only a small part of the works uses it in combination with the real options method (9 %) to assess the effectiveness of investment and innovative projects. The author comes to the conclusion that to analyze the effectiveness of venture financing of innovative projects, the combination of real options method and fuzzy sets method does not occur in the works of Russian authors.

Cryptocurrency as a Tool of Financial Market
Alexandra Shmyreva,  Nikolay Anokhin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2018-3.2-39-49

The subject of the research is a relatively new financial market instrument - cryptocurrency. The authors use methods of comparative analysis and logical investigations, which allow to evaluate a variety of cryptocurrency characteristics and a mechanism of its regulation. The article considers debatable issues about the essence of cryptocurrency. In the sphere of practical application cryptocurrencies are treated like digital currencies, electronic means of payments, new forms of electronic money, “new money” and even a mirage. The paper analyzes the current state of cryptocurrencies in different aspects (structures, user communities, gender component, age characteristics of users, use of device-type and browser). The authors give an assessment of the mechanism for regulating cryptocurrencies in separate countries, which recognize this instrument and actively regulate it, as well as countries, which reject or just tolerate cryptocurrency, but do not have the regulatory framework for its use. Obviously, cryptocurrency is a relatively new instrument of the financial market, but its value does not depend on the amount of labor invested, as it is traditionally characteristic for conventional goods and services. The analysis of the cryptocurrency structure shows that bitcoin still remains the most widespread type, although ethereum is building up its volumes. The bitcoin users are mainly men of the age category from 24 to 44. An important and significant aspect of cryptocurrencies functioning is their regulation. Cryptocurrency has an official status (goods, financial asset, payment means or other instrument) in forty countries. Venezuela became the first country to sell its cryptocurrency “petro”, a distinctive feature of which is its real provision. As far as Russian regulation is concerned, there is no legislative certainty yet, although some efforts have been made in this direction for the past two years. However, while the cryptocurrency is not recognized by the state, there are doubts that it will enjoy full confidence. In the long term, it seems certain that cryptocurrency will be regulated at the international level, and the emphasis will be on preventing the use of digital assets for money laundering and illegal financial transactions.

Cryptocurrency and Conventional Money: A Friend among Strangers, a Stranger among Friends
L.G. Golubkova,  Vadim Rozin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2018-3.2-24-38

The article analyzes the phenomenon of cryptocurrency. The authors reconstruct three versions of its creation: 1) it is a scam in the spirit of the Mavrodi pyramids, 2) it is new money that allows to earn adequately, 3) a conspiracy version. The authors sort out the myths about cryptocurrency. Namely, that money must necessarily be provided by gold or the economy of the country, and also be material (visible and perceived). Today, money is not provided with anything, and the "materiality" of money lies in their importance and efficiency. In this case, the authors characterize the efficiency with the help of four classical functions of money: money as a measure of value, a means of circulation, accumulation, and a means of payment. In addition to these functions, two more are singled out: money as a social institution and money as a tool for regulating economic relations. Cryptocurrency in its functions and structure is correlated with the sphere and functions of conventional money. The conventional money and cryptocurrency are two different systems of principles and conditions. In the first system, the state and elites are interested in manipulating conventional money and therefore created financial and other institutions that guard these manipulations. In the second one - financial institutions and consumer societies are still developing, but, in terms of their principles, they look like opponents of the first system. The authors suggest a hypothesis that the idea of creating cryptocurrency is to block manipulations with conventional money (their source is the state, economic and financial elites). With further improvement, as well as the disappearance of feverish demand, the cryptocurrency is likely to be able to more or less effectively perform the first four classical functions of money, and it wasn’t supposed to provide the other two functions (if we are talking about the existing system of management, economy and supporting social institutions). The paper considers different variants of the development of cryptocurrency and the possible interrelationships of crypto-communities with the state. The authors come to the conclusion that the victory of the state over the crypto-communities is not predetermined, both because of the crisis of modern civilization and its institutions, and the lack of control over these communities by the state.

Evolutionary Approach to the Concept of Robust Control of Economic Systems
A.A. Tropin,  E.V. Freydina,  Mikhail Alekseev
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2018-3.2-3-23

Fundamental goal-setting of the functioning of economic systems is manifested in the intention for the sustainable development in the environment which is represented by “chaos” and is filled with uncertainty and the fundamental goal-setting is limited to “fundamental stochasticity” and “fundamental instability”. This feature stimulates the development of theoretical and practical aspects of new control mechanisms which include robust control that is a control configured to dampen uncertainty in an application to open systems. The article considers the development of the concept of robust control of economic systems in the continuum of fundamental paradigms “subject-object”, “subject-subject” and “subject-polysubjective environment” which determine the evolutionary view of control. The research is aimed at revealing the changing environment of the functioning of economic entities and developing models of reflexive and robust control of their interaction.             The model of market (polysubjective) environment used in the analysis takes into account the chaos and uncertainty and reflects the fundamental characteristics of the behavior of market participants: the existence of different pictures of subjective perception of the surrounding reality, the need for decision-making in the conditions of uncertainty, the emergence of reflexive processes that accompany the interaction of market actors. The methodology of introdu robust control into the polysubjective environment is based on the approach to structuring a reflexively active method, where the business situation, regarded as the carrier of uncertainty, and the elementary organizational structure, is the "subject-subject" interaction as its elementary organizational structure. The action in the context of "subject-subject" is determined by the generated model of reflexive control, which differs from the model of J. Soros, by the introduction of an interpreting function. It is shown that the result of interaction between economic entities is a random variable and to assess the admissibility of making a decision in the "point of agreement" it is necessary to seek compliance of the meeting result with the constraints imposed by the robust limit. The image of the process of generating control actions is represented by means of functions of reflexive governance acting within the limits of a robust limit.