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Building Capitalism
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  • 13 b/w illus. 62 tables
  • Page extent: 0 pages
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 (ISBN-13: 9780511839320)

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This book offers the most comprehensive empirical analysis of the economic transformation of the countries comprising the former Soviet bloc during the first decade after communism. It debunks many myths, seeing transition as a struggle between radical reformers and those thriving on rent seeking. Privatization has undoubtedly been beneficial, and its positive effects will grow over time. The main problem has been the continuation of large, unregulated and ubiquitous state apparatuses living on corruption, while no country has suffered from too radical reforms. Where malpractices of the elite can be checked, market reforms and democracy have proceeded together.


List of tables and charts; Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; Introduction; 1. What communism actually was; 2. The decline and fall of socialism; 3. Strategic policy choices; 4. Changes in output and their causes; 5. Liberalization; 6. Financial stabilization; 7. Privatization; 8. Social developments and policy; 9. State and politics in the transformation; 10. Role of the outside world; 11. Conclusions; Bibliography; Index.


"Is there anything inevitable about the sharpness of Russia's economic mood swings? Useful evidence for anyone considering this conundrum is provided by...the...technical economic analysis offered by veteran Russia-watchers as Anders Aslund." The Economist

"A fact-filled and challenging analysis for anyone interested in one of the great transformations of the past half-century." Foreign Affairs

"Building Capitalism stands out as a comprehensive economic history of the postcommunist transformation...Written in a clear and engaging style, the book leads the reader through the main stages of this great drama...Overall, the book provides a tour through more than a decade of transition history, with one of the most knowledgeable and erudite experts in the field as the guide." Finance & Development

" previous works match this volume in depth, detail, and comprehensiveness...A must acquisition for collections in transition economics; highly recommended to specialists and upper-division undergraduate and graduate students." Choice

"... a broad, comparative study." Comparative Politics

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