Dataset 'Characteristics of Political Elites: Long-term Trends in Post-Socialist Central and Eastern Europe'

Version 1.1, published: March 16, 2023

Restricted access

Oksana Chorna

Main category: Elites
Additional categories: Gdr Research
Oksana Chorna, Charlotta Cordes, Mareike zum Felde, Friederike Jahn, Kateřina Kňapová, Daniel Kovarek, Ekaterina Paustyan, Heiko Pleines, Michael Rochlitz, Esther Somfalvy, David Swierzy (2023): Dataset 'Characteristics of Political Elites: Long-term Trends in Post-Socialist Central and Eastern Europe', v. 1.1, Discuss Data, <doi:10.48320/40A44168-EC91-460B-BC16-429B1D0F432D>.


This dataset presents characteristics of political elites in post-socialist countries of Central and Eastern Europe (Czech Republic, GDR-Eastern German regions, Hungary, Poland, Russia, Ukraine) from the end of socialism until 2020, i.e., over a period of 30 years (and for Ukraine additionally up to 2023). The focus is on elite positions assigned through state-organised selection processes (including democratic elections).

The dataset covers the incumbents of a predefined sample of political elite positions in selected reference years with respect to sociodemographic characteristics (age, gender, professional background, membership in specific social groups such as the wealthy, business, or military) and with respect to their role during socialism (old elite, dissenters, newcomers after socialism).

In this version the documentation of data collection has been slightly updated and a summary of selected results has been added (file with descriptive statistics as graphs).

This version now contains the original dataset in restricted access. Registered users of Discuss Data can request full access to the dataset.


GDR Other Russia Ukraine


Business Elites Political Elites Hungary Czech Republic Poland

Language of data



Comparative Politics Political Sociology

Methods of data collection

Desk Research

Methods of data analysis

Descriptive Statistics