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Lessons from the Transition Economies: Putting the Success Stories of the Postcommunist World into a Broader Perspective

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  • Popov, Vladimir

Abstract

Why many transition economies succeeded by pursuing policies that are so different from the radical economic liberalization (shock therapy) that is normally credited for the economic success of central European countries? First, optimal policies are context dependent, they are specific for each stage of development and what worked in Slovenia cannot be expected to work in Mongolia. Second, even for countries at the same level of development, reforms needed to stimulate growth are different; they depend on the previous history and on the path chosen. The reduction of government expenditure as a share of GDP did not undermine significantly the institutional capacity of the state in China, but in Russia and other CIS states it turned out to be ruinous. It is the growth diagnostics that should reveal the missing ingredient for economic growth. Finally, and most important, introducing this .missing ingredient. should not result in the destruction of other preconditions for growth. The art of the policymaker is to create markets without causing the government failure, as happened in many CIS countries.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) in its series Working Paper Series with number UNU-WIDER Research Paper RP2009/15.

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Length: 18
Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:unu:wpaper:rp2009-15

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Keywords: transition; growth diagnostics; path dependence;

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References

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  1. Persson, Torsten & Tabellini, Guido, 1994. "Is Inequality Harmful for Growth?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 600-621, June.
  2. Vladimir Popov, 2000. "Shock Therapy Versus Gradualism: The End Of The Debate (Explaining The Magnitude Of Transformational Recession)," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 42(1), pages 1-57, April.
  3. Alesina, Alberto & Perotti, Roberto, 1996. "Income distribution, political instability, and investment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 1203-1228, June.
  4. Polterovich, Victor & Popov, Vladimir, 2007. "Democratization, Quality of Institutions and Economic Growth," MPRA Paper 19152, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Polterovich, Victor & Popov, Vladimir, 2006. "Stages of Development, Economic Policies and a New World Economic Order," MPRA Paper 20055, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. Perotti, Roberto & Alesina, Alberto, 1996. "Income Distribution, Political Instability, and Investment," Scholarly Articles 4553018, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  7. Polterovich, Victor & Popov, Vladimir, 2003. "Accumulation of Foreign Exchange Reserves and Long Term Growth," MPRA Paper 20069, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Kolodko, Grzegorz W., 2000. "From Shock to Therapy: The Political Economy of Postsocialist Transformation," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, Oxford University Press, number 9780198297437, October.
  9. Polterovich, Victor & Popov, Vladimir & Tonis, Alexander, 2008. "Mechanisms of Resource Curse, Economic Policy and Growth," MPRA Paper 20570, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Polterovich, Victor & Popov, Vladimir, 2005. "Appropriate Economic Policies at Different Stages of Development," MPRA Paper 20066, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  11. Vladimir Popov, 2007. "Shock Therapy versus Gradualism Reconsidered: Lessons from Transition Economies after 15 Years of Reforms1," Comparative Economic Studies, Palgrave Macmillan, vol. 49(1), pages 1-31, March.
  12. Polterovich, Victor & Popov, Vladimir & Tonis, Alexander, 2007. "Resource Abundance, Political Corruption, and Instability of Democracy," MPRA Paper 19154, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  13. Robert R. Kaufman & Barbara Stallings, 1991. "The Political Economy of Latin American Populism," NBER Chapters, in: The Macroeconomics of Populism in Latin America, pages 15-43 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Ofer, Gur, 2010. "Twenty Years Later and the Socialist Heritage is still Kicking: the Case of Russia," Working Paper Series, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) wp2010-59, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  2. Iwasaki, Ichiro & Suzuki, Taku, 2014. "Radicalism versus Gradualism: A Systematic Review of the Transition Strategy Debate," RRC Working Paper Series, Russian Research Center, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University 45, Russian Research Center, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
  3. Popov, Vladimir, 2010. "The Long Road to Normalcy," Working Paper Series, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) UNU-WIDER Working Paper W, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
  4. Uvalic, Milica, 2010. "Transition in Southeast Europe: Understanding Economic Development and Institutional Change," Working Paper Series, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER) wp2010-41, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

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