Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Political Science

First Advisor

Dr. Wally Bacon


The author argues that population decline is the most important challenge to the Russian Federation in the twenty-first century. First explored are the causes o f the decline, including losses incurred during World War II and Stalin’s bloody purges of the 1930s. Massive health problems are reviewed and offered as leading causes of the loss o f population. Diseases such as alcoholism, tuberculosis, and HIV/AIDS are noted at the top o f the list. The writer points a finger at the health system as a whole, indicating that its status is of a third world country. Second, the writer examines what effects the decline has had on Russia as a whole. Most notable is the lack of an active population that can fill the labor needs o f Russia. The writer contends that if the Russian economy is to continue to grow it must find a way to replace workers as the population grows older. In regards to national security, testimony from the Russian military is that there are not enough able bodied soldiers to fill the ranks. Third, increased immigration is offered as the only viable short term solution to Russia’s population decline.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Political Science and the Faculty of the Graduate College University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Science, Political Science University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright 2005, Michael C. Sullivan

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