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Transition from plan to market, height and well-being

Author

Listed:
  • Adsera, Alicia
  • Dalla Pozza, Francesca
  • Guriev, Sergei
  • Kleine-Rueschkamp, Lukas
  • Nikolova, Elena

Abstract

Using newly available data, we re-evaluate the impact of transition from plan to market in former communist countries on objective and subjective well-being. We find clear evidence of the high social cost of early transition reforms: cohorts born around the start of transition are shorter than their older or younger peers. The difference in height suggests that the first years of reforms in post-communist countries were accompanied by major deprivation. We provide suggestive evidence on the importance of three mechanisms which partially explain these results: the decline of GDP per capita, the deterioration of healthcare systems, and food scarcity. On the bright side, we find that cohorts that experienced transition in their infancy are now better educated and more satisfied with their lives than their counterparts. Taken together, our results imply that the transition process has been a traumatic experience, but that its negative impact has largely been overcome.

Suggested Citation

  • Adsera, Alicia & Dalla Pozza, Francesca & Guriev, Sergei & Kleine-Rueschkamp, Lukas & Nikolova, Elena, 2019. "Transition from plan to market, height and well-being," CEPR Discussion Papers 14027, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:14027
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Pyle, William, 2020. "Russians’ "impressionable years" : life experience during the exit from communism and Putin-era beliefs," BOFIT Discussion Papers 17/2020, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
    2. William Pyle, 2020. "Russians' "Impressionable Years": Life Experience during the Exit from Communism and Putin-Era Beliefs," CESifo Working Paper Series 8379, CESifo.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    height; Structural reforms; transition from plan to market; Well-being;

    JEL classification:

    • I14 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health and Inequality
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • O12 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • P36 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions - - - Consumer Economics; Health; Education and Training; Welfare, Income, Wealth, and Poverty

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