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A Normal Country

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  • Andrei Shleifer
  • Daniel Treisman

Abstract

During the 1990s, Russia underwent an extraordinary transformation from a communist dictatorship to a multi-party democracy, from a centrally planned economy to a market economy, and from a belligerent adversary of the West to a cooperative partner. Yet a consensus in the US circa 2000 viewed Russia as a disastrous and threatening failure, and the 1990s as a decade of catastrophe for its citizens. Analyzing a variety of economic and political data, we demonstrate a large gap between this perception and the facts. In contrast to the common image, by the late 1990s Russia had become a typical middle- income capitalist democracy.

Suggested Citation

  • Andrei Shleifer & Daniel Treisman, 2003. "A Normal Country," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2019, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:fth:harver:2019
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    File URL: http://www.economics.harvard.edu/pub/hier/2003/HIER2019.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Djankov, Simeon & McLiesh, Caralee & Nenova, Tatiana & Shleifer, Andrei, 2003. "Who Owns the Media?," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 46(2), pages 341-381, October.
    2. Branko Milanovic, 1999. "Explaining the increase in inequality during transition," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 7(2), pages 299-341, July.
    3. Karla Hoff & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 2004. "After the Big Bang? Obstacles to the Emergence of the Rule of Law in Post-Communist Societies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 753-763, June.
    4. Brainerd, Elizabeth, 1998. "Winners and Losers in Russia's Economic Transition," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1094-1116, December.
    5. Kevin M. Murphy & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1992. "The Transition to a Market Economy: Pitfalls of Partial Reform," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 107(3), pages 889-906.
    6. Olivier Blanchard & Michael Kremer, 1997. "Disorganization," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1091-1126.
    7. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez‐De‐Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 1999. "Corporate Ownership Around the World," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 54(2), pages 471-517, April.
    8. repec:hrv:faseco:30747162 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Mara Faccio, 2006. "Politically Connected Firms," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(1), pages 369-386, March.
    10. Claessens, Stijn & Djankov, Simeon & Lang, Larry H. P., 2000. "The separation of ownership and control in East Asian Corporations," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 81-112.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Steven Rosefielde, 2005. "Russia: An Abnormal Country," European Journal of Comparative Economics, Cattaneo University (LIUC), vol. 2(1), pages 3-16, June.
    2. Nina Cankar & Simon Deakin & Marko Simoneti, 2008. "The Reflexive Properties of Corporate Governance Codes: The Reception of the 'Comply or Explain' Approach in Slovenia," Working Papers wp371, Centre for Business Research, University of Cambridge.
    3. Corinna Manig & Alessio Moneta, 2014. "More or better? Measuring quality versus quantity in food consumption," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 155-178, July.
    4. Iwasaki, Ichiro & Dolgopyatova, Tatiana & Yakovlev, Andrei & Bruno, Dallago, 2004. "Corporate Governance in Transition Economies. Part 1: The Case of Russia," Discussion Paper Series b29, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.
    5. Karla Hoff & Joseph E. Stiglitz, 2004. "After the Big Bang? Obstacles to the Emergence of the Rule of Law in Post-Communist Societies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 753-763, June.
    6. Elizabeth Brainerd & David M. Cutler, 2005. "Autopsy on an Empire: Understanding Mortality in Russia and the Former Soviet Union," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 19(1), pages 107-130, Winter.
    7. Glushchenko Konstantin, 2004. "Integration of the Russian Market. Empirical Analysis," EERC Working Paper Series 04-06e, EERC Research Network, Russia and CIS.
    8. Anwar Shah, 2006. "Corruption and Decentralized Public Governance," Chapters, in: Ehtisham Ahmad & Giorgio Brosio (ed.), Handbook of Fiscal Federalism, chapter 19, Edward Elgar Publishing.
    9. Phyllis Dininio & Robert W. Orttung, 2004. "Explaining Patterns of Corruption in the Russian Regions," William Davidson Institute Working Papers Series 727, William Davidson Institute at the University of Michigan.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • P2 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Systems and Transition Economies
    • P3 - Economic Systems - - Socialist Institutions and Their Transitions

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