Consumption of addictive goods in Russian regions and its impact on the quality of human capital

Roman Yu. Skokov, Olga V. Brizhak


Research relevance. Consumption of addictive goods and its impact on the human capital is widely discussed in contemporary research literature, not only on the micro- and macro- but also on the meso-level. At the present stage of the ongoing transformations we are prompted to reassess current approaches to this problem and to re-evaluate its public significance; moreover, practical application of available research outcomes should also be reconsidered. In Russia, consumption of addictive goods is subject to significant regional variations determined by socio-economic and other factors.

Research aim. The study is aimed at investigating the impact of consumption of addictive goods (alcohol) on the quality of Russian consumers' human capital and at building a system of indicators to estimate this impact.

Data and methods. The study uses the methods of comparative analysis, expert estimation, ranking, and economic-statistical analysis, it also proposes a spatial approach to problems associated with regional variations in human capital of consumers of addictive goods. The study relies on the Russian and international research evidence; the data of the Federal State Statistics Service and its regional offices; expert estimates and the authors' own calculations.

Results. The study demonstrates the connection between consumption of addictive goods and consumers' human capital. It also describes a system of statistical indicators that can be used for estimating the impact of alcohol consumption on human capital and the criteria such indicators should meet. Based on the proposed indicator set, the study analyzes and compares the trends in human capital deterioration on the regional and national levels. As a result of cross-regional analysis, regions with the highest and lowest figures of human capital deterioration are identified.

Conclusions. As their addiction progresses, alcohol consumers face an increasing devaluation of their human capital. This parameter varies significantly across Russian regions due to a range of climatic, regional, and socio-economic factors, which should be taken into account when devising and implementing regional alcohol policies. The existing system of statistical observations uses a limited set of indicators that needs to be expanded to allow for a more comprehensive cross-regional analysis.


addictive goods, consumer behavior, theory of consumer demand, government regulation, human capital, regional variation, regional policy

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