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Economic Institutions and Democratic Reform
A Comparative Analysis of Post-communist Countries. Economies and Societies in Transition
Economic Institutions and Democratic Reform rigorously and systematically explores the political effects and consequences of economic reform in more than 20 post-communist countries. By using primary quantitative data and stringent statistical analyses, Ole Norgaard demonstrates that there is no universally applicable economic reform strategy and that popular democracy is often the foundation of a successful economy, rather than a powerful executive or president, as is popularly asserted. The book also shows that generalised models are not productive when studying the complexity of post-communist transformation. The author argues that the danger to democracy comes from the alienation of citizens and the collapse of public service and education systems instigated by individuals who, with few democratic credentials, capture the political playing field. These leaders have often been encouraged by Western governments who believe democracy can only be imposed on reluctant societies by newborn capitalist elites.
This book will be essential and challenging reading for political scientists and economists as well as policymakers in NGOs, such as aid agencies and the institutions of the EU.
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What Reviewers Are Saying
'The excellent series Economies and Societies in Transition continues with a major contribution to the analysis of dramatic transformations taking place in the latest decade, in post-communist countries, that of Ole Norgaard... From a theoretical perspective, Ole Norgaard's book is a major contribution to development of transitology in general, of post-communist one, in particular. From a pragmatic perspective, it is an essential and challenging lecture for political scientists and politicians, economists, sociologists, civic actors, public servants and officials from international institutions. If all those involved in the battle for democracy will read this book, the democracy will be less threatened. Through his study, Ole Norgaard is a great defender of democracy.' -- Doina Catana, Journal for East European Management Studies