Radical socio-economic reforms in post-Soviet Russia provided rich factual material for the studies of institutional change. Russian economic order is characterized by heterogeneity of economic and institutional development of the regions, especially concerning the difference between the central regions and the peripheral ones. The study of institutional change can rely on synthesis of new institutional economic theory (namely, Douglas North's approach) and original (old) one. Transition from a natural state to an open access order depends in many respects both on the actions of special interest groups and on the quality of a social capital. In peripheral regions of the North-Caucasian Federal District, the quality of a social capital and an institutional system is largely determined by the dominance of ceremonial values. In modern economic orders, the role of the state changes in quantitative as well as in qualitative aspects. This, in turn, emphasizes policy aimed at accumulation of human capital, creation of impersonal social networks, postindustrial form of solidarity and expansion of instrumental values. If implemented at the federal and regional levels, such a policy set the vector of change for civil institutions modernization in the peripheral regions.