De facto states, according to the most established elaborations of the concept, by definition strive towards full-fledged, internationally recognised independence. However, in many cases, independence may actually be perceived as a second best option. This article argues that in seeking further integration with a patron post-Soviet de facto states are behaving similarly to small-sized dependent jurisdictions in other parts of the world. Conceptualising post-Soviet de facto states as small dependent jurisdictions contributes to a more nuanced understanding of their state-building project, their relationship with the patron state, their political economy, as well as their long-term path of development.
Comai, Giorgio. 2018. ‘Conceptualising Post-Soviet de Facto States as Small Dependent Jurisdictions’. Ethnopolitics 17 (2): 181–200. https://doi.org/10.1080/17449057.2017.1393210.