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Publication: The Russian demography problem and the armed forces

Finnish Defence Research Agency
Publication date 8.12.2016 7.52
Press release

Arseniy Svynarenko´s publication The Russian demography problem and the armed forces: Trends and challenges until 2035 is part of the broader research entirety of the Research Agency´s strategic prognosis.

The purpose of this report is to describe the current demographic situation in Russia, and on that basis, provide an estimate of the development of conscription age (18-30) males in Russia until 2035. The report will also identify the main reasons for non-eligibility for military service, since this is one of the key factors influencing the future size of the Russian armed forces. The following components should be taken into account in this regard: the health of the conscription age population, the functioning of the Russian healthcare system and chronic illness penetration, as well as changes in the level of alcohol and drug use among the young male population.

When analysing the factors that determine the availability of human resources for the Russian army, it is important to pay attention also to social processes in Russian society. The implementation of patriotic education programmes and young people’s attitudes towards, and trust in, the army and military service, reflect both political and social processes in Russia as well as trends in the development of cultural and citizenship identities. The question that is addressed in this report only indirectly concerns the impact of Russian economic development to demography situation and the development of the armed forces in general. In the conclusion, estimation will be provided on the main development trends among conscript age population and reservists until 2035 and implications of the situation for the Russian armed forces in 2035.

The viewpoints of this research report are writers own and thus they don´t necessarily reflect the opinion of the Research Agency.