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Political-Economic Symbioses: Towards a Political Economy of Bulgarian Transition


  • Andrei Bundzhulov

    () (University of National and World Economy, Sofia, Bulgaria)


Transition is usually referred to as ‘the Transition’, with a capital letter and in singular, and as ‘from – to’ (‘from totalitarianism and state economy to democracy and market’). This study speaks not of a single, transparent, manageable ‘Transition’ but of many transitions as spontaneously occurring transformations and as legitimating strategies of the actors taking part in them. The key concept to describe these processes is ‘political-economic symbioses – a concretion of political and economic networks whose immediate origin can be found in the last period of the ‘former regime’. They take place at diverse levels and in diverse fields as transformations and restructuring of diverse types of capital (political, economic and social). The network analysis to which I adhere here is close to the sociology of Michel Callon, Bruno Latour, John Law etc., known as ‘actor-network sociology’, combined with that of Pierre Bourdieu, used by Laszlo Bruszt and David Stark in the analysis of the economic transformation in Hungary in the early 1990s. Combining these approaches provides the key to understanding that critical weakening of the state and institutions that is observed in the transition years.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrei Bundzhulov, 2015. "Political-Economic Symbioses: Towards a Political Economy of Bulgarian Transition," Nauchni trudove, University of National and World Economy, Sofia, Bulgaria, issue 2, pages 57-83, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:nwe:natrud:y:2015:i:2:p:57-83

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    political-economic symbioses; conversion; network resources; delegation;

    JEL classification:

    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • E26 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Informal Economy; Underground Economy
    • P16 - Economic Systems - - Capitalist Systems - - - Political Economy of Capitalism
    • P20 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies - - - General


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