The Top 10 Experts on Economics & Investing in Russia

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Russia has several obstacles to economic growth, including geopolitical tension, Western sanctions, and the decline in energy prices. Read these 10 experts for insight into this complex emerging market.

Once a part of the world’s second-largest economy under the Soviet Union, today Russia is the 10th-largest economy in the world. These days it is difficult to separate Russian economics and politics. Much of the recent English-language commentary on Russia deals with foreign policy and Russia’s current conflict with Ukraine. Most of the experts highlighted below do have strong backgrounds in economics or business, and their writings largely focus on the economics of the region. The list is presented in alphabetical order.

Mark Adomanis

Mark Adomanis writes on the Russian economy for Forbes. He has also written in the past for Salon, The Moscow Times, Russia Magazine, and the Washington Post, among others. His recent feature stories include criticism of Russian military spending increases and commentary on Western businesspeople’s bullishness on the Russian economy. Mark has his bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and is a candidate for an MA and MBA from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.

You can follow Mark on Twitter or connect on LinkedIn.

Sergey Aleksashenko

Sergey Aleksashenko, former deputy finance minister for the Russian Federation and former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Russia, is director of macroeconomic research at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow. He also serves as a nonresident senior fellow in global economy and development at the Brookings Institution. And he has previously written for The Moscow Times. His recent writings include a piece on how despite the recent rebound of the ruble, the Russian economy still faces many challenges and a treatise on why the Russian economy may be headed toward labor-based stagnation in the long run.

You can follow Sergey on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn.

Pavel K. Baev

Pavel K. Baev is a research director at the Peace Research Institute Oslo and a nonresident senior fellow on foreign policy at the Brookings Institution. He is also one of the foremost Russian experts writing at the Jamestown Foundation, which publishes global research and analysis, with a special focus on China and Eurasia. While mostly a foreign policy expert, one of Pavel’s most recent commentary on Russia is titled The Faltering Russian Economy Makes a Renewed Ukraine Offensive More Likely.

You can read Pavel’s blog Arctic Politics and Russia’s Ambitions on Facebook. You can also follow the Jamestown Foundation on Twitter.

Simeon Djankov

Simeon Djankov served as deputy prime minister and finance minister of Bulgaria from 2009 to 2013. Today, he is rector of the New Economic School in Moscow, a member of the Knowledge and Advisory Council at the World Bank, and a senior researcher and writer at the Peterson Institute for International Economics’ RealTime Economic Issues Watch. His recent blog posts focus on why Russia has been unable to undertake pension reform and commentary on Russia’s hopes for a Turkish pipeline.

You can follow Simeon on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn.

Clifford G. Gaddy

Clifford G. Gaddy is a Brookings Institution economist specializing in Russia and co-founder and senior scientific advisor of the joint Russian-American Center for Research on International Financial and Energy Security at Penn State University. He is also the author of numerous books, including Mr. Putin: Operative in the Kremlin, Bear Traps on Russia’s Road to Modernization, and The Siberian Curse. On the Brookings Institution blog, his most recent piece is a commentary on Western sanctions against Russia.

You can read an excerpt from Clifford’s book on Putin at The Atlantic.

Martin Gilman

Martin Gilman is a professor of economics at Moscow’s Higher School of Economics. He is also the author of the 2010 book No Precedent, No Plan: Inside Russia’s 1998 Default. In his recent editorial — The Russian Economy: Resilience But for How Long? — he argues that Russia’s economic woes go far beyond the recent economic sanctions and decline in oil price. He believes that Russia must diversify away from energy and raw materials and instead become an economy that productively uses human capital in a strong private sector.

Martin Gilman was with the International Monetary Fund from 1981 to 2005. In addition to his current position at HSE, he is also an expert at the Wilson Center.

Paul Gregory

Paul Gregory is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and an economics professor at the University of Houston. He is also chair of the International Advisory Board at the Kiev School of Economics. He publishes most of his writings on his own blog, wherein he mostly discusses Russia and the world economy. But he also contributes to Forbes on occasion. His recent article at Forbes is titled A Russian Crisis With No End In Sight, Thanks To Low Oil Prices And Sanctions.

You can follow Paul on Twitter.

Jon Hellevig

Jon Hellevig is a founding partner and CEO of Awara Group, a Russian consulting and outsourcing firm. He is co-author of Putin’s New Russia and writes regularly at Russia Insider. He had an excellent article back in December wherein he called out numerous errors made by Paul Krugman on the latter’s commentary on Russian debt. One of Jon’s more recent commentaries points to Russian inflation as being tragically misinterpreted.

You can read more on Jon at his Awara Blogs profile. You can also follow Jon on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn.

Pavel Ivlev

Pavel Ivlev is a Russian lawyer and since 2005 has been a political refugee living in the U.S. due to advising Yukos Oil and its former chairman and CEO. Today, Pavel is the founder of the Committee for Russian Economic Freedom. Many of the writings at CREF focus on the Russian economy. Recent pieces on the site deal with small businesses in Russia and Russian import substitution plans in the wake of Western sanctions.

You can follow the Committee for Russian Economic Freedom on Twitter, follow Pavel on Twitter, and connect with Pavel on LinkedIn.

Alexey Lossan

Alexey Lossan is deputy chief editor on business and economics at Russia Beyond the Headlines and probably publishes more articles on the Russian economy every month than anyone else on this list. His recent articles include news of Russia and China signing record-breaking economic contracts and a piece illustrating why Russia’s retirement age may be on the rise sooner rather than later.

He also has recently written about Russia’s plans to raid pension funds to finance infrastructure projects, and he has argued that Russia could be in danger of falling into another arms race.

Did we miss any of your favorite Russian economy experts? Let us know by adding a comment below.

About the Author: Jimmy Atkinson

Jimmy is a veteran Internet entrepreneur with a background in economics. He is passionate about self-directed investing, and maintaining a well-diversified portfolio with low costs. He resides in the Los Angeles area.

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