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Decentralisation and development in post-socialism: local characteristics and outcomes in post-socialist Bulgaria


  • Mieke Meurs


Over the past two decades decentralisation of government has been widely promoted by international development organisations. In former socialist economies, where governance had been extremely centralised, decentralisation seemed a way to build economic efficiency and improve public sector governance from the bottom up. This article examines the experience with decentralisation in Bulgaria at the end of its first decade. It finds that the characteristics of local governments varied greatly and evaluates the impact of varying local government characteristics on economic and social outcomes. There is some evidence that local government characteristics do have a significant impact on performance, but this is impact is outweighed by inherited, historical differences in economic development.

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  • Mieke Meurs, 2008. "Decentralisation and development in post-socialism: local characteristics and outcomes in post-socialist Bulgaria," Post-Communist Economies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 20(1), pages 11-32.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:pocoec:v:20:y:2008:i:1:p:11-32 DOI: 10.1080/14631370701865706

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Modigliani, Franco, 1986. "Life Cycle, Individual Thrift, and the Wealth of Nations," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(3), pages 297-313, June.
    2. Böhringer, Christoph & Rutherford, Thomas Fox & Wiegard, Wolfgang, 2003. "Computable general equilibrium analysis: Opening a black box," ZEW Discussion Papers 03-56, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    3. Rutherford, Thomas F., 1995. "Extension of GAMS for complementarity problems arising in applied economic analysis," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 19(8), pages 1299-1324, November.
    4. Miroslav VerbiÄ & Boris Majcen & Renger Van Nieuwkoop, 2006. "Sustainability of the Slovenian Pension System: An Analysis with an Overlapping-Generations General Equilibrium Model," Eastern European Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(4), pages 60-81, August.
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