In the light of increasing contestations of the liberal order worldwide, this research project aims to investigate alternative models which emerge in the post-socialist space. By taking the cases of Poland, Russia and Tajikistan, it will analyse similarities and differences which characterise political and socio-economic orders in these countries. The project will move away from the ‘transitional’ and ‘illiberal’ lenses towards a decolonial understanding of ordering there. Theoretically, the project will incorporate insights from norm localisation research, decolonial and post-development theory, and sociology of knowledge. Against the background of a common past (until 1989/1991), this will allow an analysis of different components of emerging post-socialist orders, including external influences from international organisations, such as the EU, who promote liberal governance frameworks in these countries. Three components will be analysed: governance models, welfare systems and imaginaries of ‘good life.’ Methodologically, this research will rely on fieldwork in three countries, which will be undertaken in close collaboration with local research institutions. Specific research methods will include elite interviews, multi-sited participant observation and analysis of publicly available sources in Polish, Russian and Tajik languages, i.e. news, legal frameworks, policy documents, interviews, memoirs, speeches and statistical data.