I am comparing super-rich Brits and Russians engaged in large-scale projects in civil society, charity and/or arts philanthropy. My aim is to identify the similarities and differences between one of the newest and one of the oldest capitalist societies. I see philanthropy as a vehicle to regulate intra-elite power relations and elite cohesion as well as to legitimise social inequality.
Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship, 2015-2017, University College London
I draw upon the family as a research entity to explore gender relations and the role elite women have in recreating class boundaries. For the Russian side I have focused on the Forbes-200. I have examined all the families on the list and have conducted interviews with 18 of its members. For the UK side, where many such in-depth interviews already exist, I have built up a database using the names in the Sunday Times Rich List, to be checked against other databases such as Who’s Who and Burke’s Peerage and, most importantly, a database holding information on the 350,000 UK charities registered with the Charities Commission.