Analysis Of Regional Strategy Tools

Abstract

Currently, as a result of the existence of two different foundations of the modern stage of strategic planning in Russia: the planned Soviet economy and situational foreign experience, including both corporate strategic management and the experience of implementing state strategic planning, the theoretical and methodological basis is more likely a set of practically oriented mechanisms, weakly interconnected by a single base. In this work, we studied the main tools used in the practice of regional socio-economic strategy and evaluated their effectiveness. The existing cluster policy in the regions focuses primarily on the formation of production clusters in the most competitive types of production activities. With the expansion of the practice of applying cluster policy, the theoretical understanding of the concept of this tool, as well as the applied aspects of its application, changed. Currently, scientific research provides both positive and negative arguments regarding the effectiveness of this tool. Another tool in the practice of regional planning today is the marketing development of the territory, namely, its marketing attractiveness to external consumers. One of the common mechanisms of spatial development, designated in strategies as a territorial growth point, is the creation and development of agglomerations. The analysis revealed that at present strategic planning is still based on the experience of Soviet planning and has a number of features related to the legislative framework, a federal structure with prevailing control by the federal center, and also with high turbulence of the Russian economy, nevertheless less generally, regional strategies are quite effective.

Keywords: Strategysocio-economic developmentregion

Introduction

The spatial development of the territory is now becoming an increasingly urgent problem to ensure the spatial connectivity of the country and national security. However, at present, in Russia, the mechanisms of territorial development are not functioning systematically and weakly, they do not contain a clear understanding of the economy of the future, which is due to both the lack of a unified legislative framework and the mechanisms of interaction of experts in this field with regional government bodies (Kolomak, 2014).

In particular, one of the most important documents of the strategic planning system, the spatial development strategy of Russia, has been developed for several years and is still at the design stage, which, according to Russian scientists, indicates the fragmentation of approaches at the federal level to spatial development. Currently, starting in mid-2014, all new strategies have examined in detail the spatial development of regions, mainly in the context of municipalities or larger administrative districts. However, it seems important to highlight the strategic role of small settlements.

In some strategies, the priority of spatial development is included in the overall objective of the strategy. The place and role of spatial development in the public administration system has become more clearly established, the primary idea of the target image of the country's spatial organization has appeared, the number of tools and mechanisms of territorial development has expanded (Ellison & Glaeser, 1999).

Problem Statement

The topic of the country's spatial development is reflected in the President’s policy statements “On National Goals and Strategic Tasks of the Development of the Russian Federation for the Period until 2024”. A government draft of the Spatial Development Strategy of Russia until 2025 was also developed. In this regard, there is a need to develop an optimal set of regional strategies, as well as a mechanism for evaluating these strategies.

Research Questions

The subject of the article is the content and quality of regional development strategies and their relevance to the real socio-economic situation.

Purpose of the Study

The aim of the study is to analyze and assess the quality of modern tools used in the domestic practice of regional strategic planning.

Research Methods

When performing the study, both general scientific and special methods of scientific knowledge were used. Deductive and inductive methods, system analysis was used to determine the essence of regional strategy. In the study of the quality of strategic tools, comparative analysis methods and a selective method were used, which is a statistical method for studying the general properties of the totality of any objects on the basis of studying the properties of only part of these objects.

Findings

In this study, at the first stage, the main tools of regional strategic planning are analyzed. In the process of their development in domestic practice, cluster policy is the highest priority. So, in the Concept of Long-Term Socio-Economic Development of the Russian Federation for the period until 2020, the need “to create a network of territorial-production clusters that realize the competitive potential of the territories” is noted. In addition, the transition to the principles of cluster policy is considered in the Strategy for Innovative Development of the Russian Federation until 2020, as one of the main goals of the innovation policy of the regions. As a result, the number of regions in which this or that cluster policy is being implemented is currently growing rapidly. The existing cluster policy in the regions focuses primarily on the formation of production clusters in the most competitive types of production activities in the region (Bortnik et al., 2015). For example, in the Ivanovo Region, it is planned to create "the largest textile cluster in the Central Federal District, the core of which is the textile and clothing industry in the region." Such an emphasis on the leading industries of the regions will contribute to the concentration of forces due to the interaction of cluster members and increased access to the latest technologies, highly qualified personnel, the close territorial location of industries and, therefore, will provoke effective innovative development.

With the expansion of the practice of applying cluster policy, the theoretical understanding of the concept of this tool, as well as the applied aspects of its application, changed. Currently, scientific research provides both positive and negative arguments regarding the effectiveness of this tool. Researchers note the emergence of the phenomenon of “hypertrophied clusterophilia” or increased attention to the creation of clusters in the territory as a tool for its development and attracting investments (Lebedeva, 2014).

Despite the usefulness of such a set of measures, there are threats associated with the specifics of the spatial organization of the Russian economy, and therefore, when developing a policy regarding the Republic of Crimea, it is necessary to take into account its territorial, economic and natural features, as well as focus on the best Western models for implementing such a policy. Based on the principle of the territorial-cluster approach to managing the economic development of Crimea, it is advisable to create clusters of two levels: regional and municipal. Russia has not yet developed a unified methodology for identifying potential regional clusters, and the mechanisms of interaction among cluster members are not effective enough.

Another tool in the practice of regional planning at the present stage can be attributed to the marketing development of the territory, namely, its marketing attractiveness to external consumers. If this aspect is available, we can talk about the strategy not only as an instrument for implementing the activities of regional government bodies to improve the quality of life in the territory, but also as a mechanism for attracting new capital to the region: financial, human and infrastructural.

Analysis of the marketing attractiveness of the territory arises in certain areas and stages of the analysis of the socio-economic condition of the region. The marketing aspect was affected in no more than 10 strategies, and mainly represents a statement of the insufficient level of attention to a specific problem (insufficient marketing support for production, the absence of a clear marketing strategy at many enterprises, etc.), and only in two documents fixed problems are reflected in the tasks and activities of the strategy.

It should be noted that the marketing aspect should not be the key in the strategy of socio-economic development of Crimea due to the existence of other tools where such issues can be considered more broadly and effectively. In particular, the Agency’s standard for strategic initiatives in the region provides for the development of an investment strategy. By 2016, the vast majority of regions have approved investment strategies along with the rest of the components of the regional investment standard. In addition, in some regions and municipalities, despite the absence of legislative need, there is a marketing strategy. The need for the development of such strategies and the scientific justification of the reasons are devoted to many scientific works of Russian and foreign researchers (Aiba & Arenkov, 2014; Rozhkov, 2015).

In the practice of regional policy in Russia and foreign countries, two types of state influence on the spatial development of the territory are distinguished: equalizing and based on the idea of forming points or growth poles, which is the third regional strategy tool.

The formation of growth points compactly located and dynamically developing industries (enterprises), which give rise to a chain reaction of the emergence and growth of the surrounding territory, is one of the important tasks in determining the development of the region. Therefore, such a task often arises in documents adopted by governing bodies in the development of long-term plans for the socio-economic development of the region.

At the same time, the lack of unified approaches to the allocation of growth points in the Russian Federation is wide variety and unsystematic when reflected in strategic planning documents. This, in turn, inhibits the development of a unified vision of growth points at the level of the country and its individual regions, and distorts the incentives for the development of individual territories. Therefore, it seems important to at least systematize approaches to identifying growth points in goal-setting documents at the level of macroregions and constituent entities of the Federation in order to form their ordered hierarchical list and develop appropriate methodological recommendations for regional authorities.

At the regional level, in most strategic documents, “growth points” are part of the spatial development mechanisms of the region based on the goal and objectives of its development. Growth points in the constituent entities of the Russian Federation are understood to mean different concepts: both individual territories of regions (of the same type in a number of parameters) and specific mechanisms of spatial development: territorial clusters, agglomerations, and even branches of the economy. The analysis shows that at the regional level 174 both various mechanisms are used individually and collectively.

In some regions, breakthrough points are interpreted as zoning of the territory. So, in the Republic of Kalmykia, the territory is differentiated into five main points of growth-subregions: Central, Western, Northern, East Volga, East Caspian. Such a use of the term “growth points” is not entirely correct, since the document provides a simple zoning of the entire territory of the region, which contradicts the principle of identifying breakthrough territories. In the Tomsk region, in the existing territorial structure of resettlement, the distribution of productive forces, considering their specialization in the region, three economic zones are distinguished: southern, northern and central. In addition to the three zones, the main spatial priority for the development of the region is the Tomsk agglomeration.

Most often, certain territories of breakthrough regions are referred to in the strategies as zones of leading (intensive) economic development, which is a consequence of the priority indicated in the Concept for Long-Term Socio-Economic Development of the Russian Federation – Presidential Decree No. 204 of May 7, 2018 “On National Goals and Strategic Tasks” the development of the Russian Federation for the period until 2024 "

For example, in the Republic of Karelia, four centers and development corridors that are areas of intensive economic development are designated as locomotive territories: the Petrozavodsk Development Center and the Petrozavodsk-Kondopoga corridor, the Belomorsk-Segezha-Medvezhyegorsk development corridor, and the Kostomuksha- development corridor associated with it Belomorsk, Development Corridor Northern Ladoga: Pitkäranta-Sortavala-Lahdenpohja.

The main types of territories (districts) from the perspective of their development are identified in the strategy of the Saratov region: locomotives, bioecopolises, infrastructural satellites and depressive ones. The first group includes the Balakovo and Engels municipal districts and the city of Saratov, and in the future, the Balashov and Volsky municipal districts. The development potential of these territories indicated the creation of industrial parks, technology parks, clusters, "centers of excellence", special economic zones.

One of the common mechanisms of spatial development, designated in strategies as a territorial growth point, is the creation and development of agglomerations. In world practice, the formation of agglomerations already has a rather long history, in Russia this process began active development only in the 2010s, although mention of the formation of agglomerations is also found in the first strategies of 2006 (Artobolevsky, 2007).

At the second stage of the study, the quality of the above strategic instruments is assessed. For this, it is advisable to use a set of indicators characterizing regional socio-economic development, in particular, investments in fixed assets, population incomes, employment level and gross regional product (GRP), etc. This article considers only a key indicator of the effectiveness of regional strategies – GRP. The results of comparing the planned and actual values of this indicator in regional strategies are shown in table 01 and in figure 01 by the example of a random sample from eleven regions, while the prevailing value of the actual values of the GRP indicator for ten of them can be noted. On average, the actually achieved indicator value exceeds the planned one by 42.8 %, the largest deviation value is typical for the Voronezh region (191.02 %) in relative terms and for the Moscow region in absolute terms (551.3 billion rubles). Based on the results of the analysis of the random sample, we can conclude that the effectiveness of regional strategies in general. Over time, there has been a noticeable rise in the quality of strategies, mainly due to the involvement of the expert community. Most of the strategies comply with regulatory legal acts regulating the content and occupancy of strategies at the state level, the main requirements for documents of socio-economic development for the long term are considered.

Table 1 -
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Figure 1: [Comparison of planned and actual values of GRP of regions, billion rubles
[Comparison of planned and actual values of GRP of regions, billion rubles
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Conclusion

Thus, in this study, we examined the tools used in the practice of regional strategic planning at the present stage, and also evaluated their effectiveness. These include aspects related to the marketing development of the territory, identification of potential regional clusters, the formation of growth points, the emergence of agglomerations. The analysis revealed that at the present stage, strategic planning is still based on the experience of Soviet planning and has a number of features related to the legislative framework, a federal structure with prevailing control from the federal center, and also with high turbulence in the Russian economy (Kokodey, 2016; Namkhanova, Alesina, & Kokodey, 2017; Pakhomova & Kokodey, 2018). These factors indicate the need for a methodological update of regional strategic planning in terms of systematizing the tools and mechanisms used to ensure balanced development of Russian regions in the national economy.

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Publisher

European Publisher

First Online

31.10.2020

Doi

10.15405/epsbs.2020.10.05.411

Online ISSN

2357-1330