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Fish: The determinants of economic reforms in the post-Communist world

Disclaimer. Don't rely on these old notes in lieu of reading the literature, but they can jog your memory. As a grad student long ago, my peers and I collaborated to write and exchange summaries of political science research. I posted them to a wiki-style website. "Wikisum" is now dead but archived here. I cannot vouch for these notes' accuracy, nor can I say who wrote them.

Fish. 1998. The determinants of economic reforms in the post-Communist world. East European Politics and Societies (winter): 31-79.


For a nice summary of this article, see the beginning of Kopstein and Reilly.

Fish's main argument is that states that voted completely new faces into power in 1990 struck a sure course toward economic reform. States that did not allowed the communist-era rent seekers to remain in power, and they remain in a halfway house between communism and liberalism to this day. This is an argument of path dependence. He makes this finding through a multivariate analysis of just about every variable (except, according to Kopstein and Reilly, proximity to liberal states, which they think explains "the why of the why": it explain WHY some states voted new faces into power in 1990 and some did not).

See further notes under the entry for Kopstein and Reilly 1999.

Research on similar subjects


Fish, Steven (author)Comparative PoliticsPost-CommunismLiberalization

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