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Helping Hand or Grabbing hand? State Bureaucracy and Privatization Effectiveness

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Why have economic reforms aimed at reducing the role of the state been successful in some cases but not others? Are reform failures the consequence of leviathan states that hinder private economic activity, or of weak states unable to implement policies effectively and provide a supportive institutional environment? We explore these questions in a study of privatization in postcommunist Russia. Taking advantage of large regional variation in the size of public administrations, and employing a multilevel research design that controls for pre-privatization selection in the estimation of regional privatization effects, we examine the relationship between state bureaucracy and the impact of privatization on firm productivity. We find that privatization is more effective in regions with relatively large bureaucracies. Our analysis suggests that this effect is driven by the impact of bureaucracy on the post-privatization business environment, with better institutional support and less corruption when bureaucracies are large.

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Paper provided by W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research in its series Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles with number jse20091.

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Handle: RePEc:upj:weupjo:jse20091

Note: Appears in American Political Science Review 103(2): 264-283
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Keywords: transition economies; privatisation; employment effects;

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  1. J. David Brown & John S. Earle & Almos Telegdy, 2005. "The Productivity Effects of Privatization: Longitudinal Estimates from Hungary, Romania, Russia, and Ukraine," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles 05-121, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  2. Olivier Jean Blanchard & Maxim Boycko & Marek Dabrowski & Rudiger Dornbusch & Richard Layard & Andrei Shleifer, 1993. "Post-Communist Reform: Pain and Progress," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262023628, December.
  3. Stephen Knack & Philip Keefer, 1995. "Institutions And Economic Performance: Cross-Country Tests Using Alternative Institutional Measures," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 7(3), pages 207-227, November.
  4. Jeffry M. Netter & William L. Megginson, 2001. "From State to Market: A Survey of Empirical Studies on Privatization," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 39(2), pages 321-389, June.
  5. Frye, Timothy & Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina, 2001. "Rackets, Regulation and the Rule of Law," CEPR Discussion Papers 2716, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  6. Stephen G. Donald & Kevin Lang, 2007. "Inference with Difference-in-Differences and Other Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 221-233, May.
  7. Simeon Djankov & Peter Murrell, 2002. "Enterprise Restructuring in Transition: A Quantitative Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(3), pages 739-792, September.
  8. Maxim Boycko & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1993. "Privatizing Russia," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 24(2), pages 139-192.
  9. Mauro, Paolo, 1995. "Corruption and Growth," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(3), pages 681-712, August.
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Cited by:
  1. Bruno, Randolph Luca & Bytchkova, Maria & Estrin, Saul, 2011. "Institutions and Entry: A Cross-Regional Analysis in Russia," IZA Discussion Papers 5504, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Alexander Libman, 2012. "Democracy, size of bureaucracy, and economic growth: evidence from Russian regions," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 43(3), pages 1321-1352, December.
  3. Denisova, Irina & Eller, Markus & Frye, Timothy & Zhuravskaya, Ekaterina, 2007. "Who Wants to Revise Privatization and Why? Evidence from 28 Post-Communist Countries," CEPR Discussion Papers 6603, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.

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