In relation with a new phase of the reformation of the state structure of Russia (from 2000), the problems of federalism take on the special actuality, both theoretically and practically. None of the subjects of the federation, except Moscow, has special scientific research institutions studying problems of federalism with the regard for real interests and actual problems of the regions of Russia. Research centers in Moscow carry out in general orders of the federal government bodies.
By force of a number of reasons, Republic of Tatarstan is one of the outposts of federalization of Russia, is an initiator and a generator of the principal ideas in this area. Creative collective of the Institute of History of the Academy of Science of Tatarstan, working at the Project «Prospects of Federalism in Russia: Theoretical and Practical Aspects» (with the financial support of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, 1999-2001), has arrived at a conclusion that there is necessity to establish the Autonomous Non-profit Non-governmental Organization «Kazan Institute of Federalism» (KIF), and the specialized scientific practical periodical journal «Kazan Federalist» in order to study conditions, problems and perspectives of federalism in Russia and to propagate obtained results of the research works among the interested people, organizations and public.
During realization of the Project «Perspectives of Federalism in Russia: Experience of Comparative Research» (with the financial support of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, 2001-2003) has been lead the comparative analysis of the federal systems of Russia and foreign countries on the following essential and commensurable aspects: realization of a subsidiriaty principle in the state building, relations between the center and subjects of Federation in sphere of interbudgetary relations, structure of executive authority, judicial system, protection of cultural minority and radical small peoples, features of an education system, external activity of subjects of Federation.
Five conferences are lead: two - all-Russian, with participation of scientists from Moscow, Kazan, Nizhni Novgorod, Orenburg, deputies of Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, People's Deputies of the RT, and also employees of the Apparatus of the plenipotentiary of the President of the Russian Federation in the Privoljsk Federal Region, the International Republican Institute (the USA), and three – international, in which researchers from Russia, the USA, Germany and Spain have taken part.
8 numbers of the magazine «Kazan Federalist» are issued, which are dispatched in libraries, the state bodies, and also to other interested organizations and persons across Russia, the countries of the CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) and far abroad.
Proceeding from the purposes of the research Project «Political and Legal Resources of Federalism in Russia» (with the financial support of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, 2004-2006) , applications, decisions and activity of the most influential political actors which publicly or indirectly act pro or contra the further development of the federal beginnings in a state system of the country have been considered. Positions of political leaders, heads of subjects of Federation and the central bodies of the government and management are investigated; the federal and regional legislative processes touching federal relations and institutes in modern Russia are considered also.
Scientific-practical conferences (4), seminars (1), «round tables» (1) with the invitation of representatives of the expert and scientific community, working politicians, representatives of the state structures – for revealing tendencies of development of federal relations in the Russian Federation and possible variants of behaviour of political elite are carried out. In June-August, 2006 a series of «brain storms» is carried out in Moscow, Stavropol territory, Sverdlovsk area and Tatarstan Republic. The representatives executive and legislature of the different levels, well-known regional and Moscow experts, scientific experts on practical and theoretical problems of the Russian federalism have taken part in these actions. The task was put to rethink a problem of relations «centers – regions» from positions of regional elites and experts, on the one hand, with another – to invite to dialogue representatives of the federal authority and analysts who would estimate character of the changes observed in this space for years of reforms on strengthening of a vertical of authority.
10 numbers of magazine «Kazan Federalist» have been published. It is prepared for edition the monography «Political and Legal Resources of Federalism in Russia » (632 pages).