Generational Change in Russia

For most of the 1990s, American foreign policymakers, analysts of Russia in the United States, and leaders of American nongovernmental organizations have pointed to generational change as the beacon of hope for Russia. Because it was believed that the transition from communism to capitalism and democracy would require a "short-term" decline in the well-being of Russian society--and that the older generations would suffer the most during the transitional period--all hope was placed on the young people. Unlike their grandparents and parents, the younger generation would enjoy the benefits of reform and therefore embrace the reforms advocated by the American policymakers and analysts.