Artikel: Presidential popularity and international crises: an assessment of the rally-’round-the-flag effect in Russia. In: Post-Soviet Affairs, Vol. 40, No. 2


In times of severe international crises, the domestic public typically becomes more loyal to its government, creating a so-called “rally-’round-the-flag” effect and boosting a political leader’s popularity. The bulk of research on the link between international crises and presidential popularity rates deals mostly with the experience of the US and other Western democracies. We focus on the case of Russia as a non-democratic major power. Our empirical analysis investigates whether military conflicts with Russian involvement are followed by an increase in presidential popularity during the presidencies of Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev. The results of our monthly time-series estimation reveal that a boost in popularity, if there is one at all, is on average small in magnitude for less violent conflicts, whereas a substantially important increase in presidential approval ratings can be observed after international crises in which violence is a central element of conflict management from the very beginning. (Open Access)

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