IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Privatization, Property Rights and Development Potential: Lessons from Poland and Russia


  • Marshall I. Goldman

    () (Davis Center for Russian Studies, Harvard University
    Wellesley College)


The privatization process in Russia necessitates a reexamination of one of economics' most sacred tenets. Under the wrong circumstances, private property rights can become a destructive force, not the constructive force for economics growth and political stability that economists have always taken for granted. In Poland, a carefully crafted privatization effort was set in motion only after the essentials of a market infrastructure with checks and balances had been instituted. As a consequence, Poland escaped the oligarchic capitalism, corruption, and massive theft schemes such as "Loans for Shares" that haunts Russia today and discredits and undermines the entire reform effort. The paper also explains why it was that in the absence of a system of economic and legal checks and balances, those few who took the opportunity to seize state property of set up cooperatives and banks could become so rich so quickly.

Suggested Citation

  • Marshall I. Goldman, 1999. "Privatization, Property Rights and Development Potential: Lessons from Poland and Russia," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 25(4), pages 389-398, Fall.
  • Handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:25:y:1999:i:4:p:389-398

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Kojima,Masami & Koplow,Doug, 2015. "Fossil fuel subsidies : approaches and valuation," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7220, The World Bank.

    More about this item



    JEL classification:

    • P31 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Socialist Enterprises and Their Transitions
    • P27 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - Performance and Prospects
    • L33 - Industrial Organization - - Nonprofit Organizations and Public Enterprise - - - Comparison of Public and Private Enterprise and Nonprofit Institutions; Privatization; Contracting Out


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:25:y:1999:i:4:p:389-398. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Victor Matheson, College of the Holy Cross). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.