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Economics in the Former Soviet Union


  • Michael Alexeev
  • Clifford Gaddy
  • Jim Leitzel


One of the most notable, but least discussed, aspects of the halting attempts during the past six years to reform the economies of the Soviet Union, and now those of its successor states, has been the prominent role played by professional economists. Not since the mid-1920s has the Soviet political leadership felt so strongly the need to draw upon the expertise of the economics profession to help determine its course of action. In this paper, we attempt to characterize the current state of economics in the former Soviet Union, investigate the implications that the condition of Soviet economics has for reform, and suggest possible future directions for the discipline. Our information comes from four main sources: professional publications of Soviet and Western economists, published remarks by Soviet economists, personal interviews and discussions which we conducted with young Soviet economists in the summers of 1990 and 1991, and a questionnaire administered to Soviet economists and graduate students in the Soviet Union.

Suggested Citation

  • Michael Alexeev & Clifford Gaddy & Jim Leitzel, 1992. "Economics in the Former Soviet Union," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 6(2), pages 137-148, Spring.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:jecper:v:6:y:1992:i:2:p:137-48
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/jep.6.2.137

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gerschenkron, Alexander, 1978. "Samuelson in Soviet Russia: A Report," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 16(2), pages 560-573, June.
    2. Krueger, Anne O, et al, 1991. "Report of the Commission on Graduate Education in Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 29(3), pages 1035-1053, September.
    3. Sutela,Pekka, 1991. "Economic Thought and Economic Reform in the Soviet Union," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521389020.
    4. Vladimir G. Treml, 1969. "Interaction of Economic Thought and Economic Policy in the Soviet Union," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 1(1), pages 187-216, Spring.
    5. Sutela,Pekka, 1991. "Economic Thought and Economic Reform in the Soviet Union," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521380201.
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    1. K. Sonin & I. Khovanskaya & M. Yudkevich., 2008. "Budget Uncertainty and Faculty Contracts: A Dynamic Framework for Comparative Analysis," VOPROSY ECONOMIKI, N.P. Redaktsiya zhurnala "Voprosy Economiki", vol. 12.
    2. Ganiev, Ibragim & Djanibekov, Nodir & Hasanov, Shavkat & Petrick, Martin, 2017. "The state of doctoral research in Uzbekistan: Results of a survey of doctoral students in agricultural economics," IAMO Discussion Papers 259805, Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO).
    3. Alexander Libman & Joachim Zweynert, 2014. "Ceremonial Science: The State of Russian Economics Seen Through the Lens of the Work of ‘Doctor of Science’ Candidates," Working Papers 337, Leibniz Institut für Ost- und Südosteuropaforschung (Institute for East and Southeast European Studies).
    4. Libman, Alexander & Zweynert, Joachim, 2014. "Ceremonial science: The state of Russian economics seen through the lens of the work of ‘Doctor of Science’ candidates," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 38(3), pages 360-378.
    5. Ivan Boldyrev & Martin Kragh, 2013. "The fate of social sciences in Soviet Russia: the case of Isaak Il’ich Rubin," HSE Working papers WP BRP 17/HUM/2013, National Research University Higher School of Economics.
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    7. Lokshin, Michael, 2009. "A survey of poverty research in Russia: Does it follow the scientific method?," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 191-212, September.
    8. Osipian, Ararat, 2004. "Facilitating economic development through the reform of economic instruction," MPRA Paper 8462, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Çokgezen, Murat & Çokgezen, Jale, 2014. "Internationalization of post-Soviet Economists: Evidence from Central Asia and the Caucasus," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics, pages 26-38.
    10. Muravyev, Alexander, 2011. "О Российской Экономической Науке Сквозь Призму Публикаций Российских Ученых В Отечественных И Зарубежных Журналах За 2000-2009 Гг
      [Economic science in Russia through the lens of publications of Rus
      ," MPRA Paper 30230, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    11. Coupé, Tom, 2008. "The visibility of Ukrainian economists 1969-2005," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 2114-2125, October.
    12. Mirucki, Jean, 1996. "A Visibility Analysis of the Scientific Production of Ukrainian Economists," MPRA Paper 30411, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Mirucki, Jean, 1999. "A visibility analysis of the scientific production of Ukrainian economists: 1969-94," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 185-196, July.
    14. Murat ÇOKGEZEN & Jale ÇOKGEZEN, 2014. "Internationalization of post-Soviet Economists: Evidence from Central Asia and the Caucasus," Journal of Economics and Political Economy, KSP Journals, vol. 1(1), pages 26-38, September.
    15. Edward K. Zajicek & Todd P. Steen & S. Ryszard Domański, 1997. "The Reform of Higher Economic Education in Poland," The Journal of Economic Education, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 28(4), pages 377-382, December.
    16. Osipian, Ararat, 2004. "Reform of Economic Instruction in the Former Soviet Bloc," MPRA Paper 7589, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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    JEL classification:

    • A11 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Role of Economics; Role of Economists


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