Regionalism has been a persistent concern for the Russian central state throughout its modern history.While onemight expect that this is only natural given the country’s size and diversity, Russia’s leaders have played a greater role than geography in stimulating and fostering regionalism. The problem of regionalism reached its apogee during the mid-1990s as politicians and observers warned of Russia’s impending disintegration. Indeed, the principal achievement of Vladimir Putin’s presidency (2000-08) was to reverse the tide of regionalism. While President Dmitrii Medvedev (2008-) and Putin (now premier, or Chairman of the Government) appeared concerned about a potential revival of regionalism as a consequence of the global financial crisis, Medvedev managed to surpass his predecessor by replacing Russia’s most powerful governors with loyal managers. It remains to be seen, however, if the Kremlin has overcentralized power for fear of a revival of regionalism during the 2011-12 election season. In this light, it is useful to revisit the development of regionalism in Russia to evaluate whether it poses a genuine threat to the central state.