Published by Foreign Affairs, Vol. 87 no. 1, page(s) pp. 68-84 January/February 2008
A growing conventional wisdom holds that Vladimir Putin's attack on democracy has brought Russia stability and prosperity -- providing a new model of successful market authoritarianism. But the correlation between autocracy and economic growth is spurious. Autocracy's effects in Russia have in fact been negative. Whatever the gains under Putin, they would have been greater under a democratic regime.