Introduced by Vladimir Frolov: Does Putin offer the right vision for Russia's foreign policy in the 21st century? Or is his foreign policy concept already outdated? Should Russia seek to be a global superpower defending the established international status quo and the 20th century system of international law that underpins it? Does Russia have the necessary resources and reliable allies to be a viable global power? Or should Russia retrench to a much more limited role as a Eurasian regional power, focusing its resources on where it matters most to its vital interests?
It is still hard to imagine a foreign policy doctrine, by Russia or any other country, that does not regard sovereignty as its core principle. We are still very far from world government.
The BRICS, by contrast, feel that no international consensus on values exists, although individually their views vary on the desirability of such a goal. Interestingly enough, among the BRICS countries Russia is probably closest to the West in believing that an international consensus on values is possible. It has proposed a number of working groups to discuss such a goal, but these calls have fallen on deaf ears.
Therefore, these groups disagree not on the importance of sovereignty, but rather on whose values should dominate in the international arena. The United States and NATO see no need to challenge the sovereignty of nations within that alliance because the quintessential values of the West are being upheld by domestic governments. The sovereignty of other nations, however, is subject to challenges because domestic governments there do not (or cannot) uphold Western values. The BRICS see almost no need to challenge the sovereignty of nations, even if their domestic governments do not uphold Western values.
I would therefore say that Russia's current foreign policy vision is commensurate with its regional power and influence. At the same time, it is also part of a growing network of nations that seek to fundamentally alter the architecture of international relations. Their ultimate goal is to reinforce international institutions so that they may serve as much to constrain the powerful as to protect the weak. I tend to regard this as an enlightened position.