Ukraine of the last years has been an unpredictable country. The frequent changes of government and parliamentary coalitions as well as the contradictory foreign policy orientations of the main political actors and the switching between different modes of international integration – how can one predict the future of such a state? Are there any constants and long-term trends?
The following collected volume is an excerpt from a broader collective investigation of several Ukrainian scholars conducted in 2007-2008, and revised in accordance with the new realities of 2010. On the basis of an analysis of different spheres of society, the authors propose integrated scenarios of the nearest Ukrainian future: (1) a “realistic” (inert) one, (2) an “optimistic” one, and (3) a “pessimistic” one. The real development of the coming years may comprise elements of all three scenarios. Yet the reader will be able to follow certain constant tendencies – the deepening of the socio-demographic crisis, the politicians’ continued ignoring of the social capital and resources of civil society, as well as a possible loss of sovereignty in Ukraine’s relations to Russia.
In the introduction, Galushko presents the approaches and concepts of the study. The chapter “The Main Problems and Tendencies of Socio-Economic Development” was written by a team of sociologists under the leadership of Smola. The attempts of “development by plan” and evolution of the information sphere of Ukraine are analyzed in separate contributions by Smola. Viktor Kotigorenko considers risks of ethnic conflicts while Evgenii Magda outlines the main tendencies of political development. Elena Titova deals with the problems of a preservation of the Ukrainian cultural heritage. In conclusion, integrated scenarios are formulated by Galushko in collaboration with Smola and Magda.