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Crisis of governance: why market solutions to economic problems are not popular in Russia

Kuznetsov, Andrei and Kuznetsova, Olga (2004) Crisis of governance: why market solutions to economic problems are not popular in Russia. ISSN 1528-6959

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Abstract

This paper looks at links between firms' behavior and the institutional environment in Russia. It seeks to show that the intentional weakening of the economic and administrative role of the state in the early stages of reforms has increased the economic and social cost of transition. This happens as the majority of firms in Russia still prefer short-term solutions and partial adjustment to full-scale restructuring as they often fail to show anticipated responses following privatization and price liberalization. The shortage of market-type response can be attributed to the fragility of market-based incentives. The new institutional economics maintains that the cradle for these incentives is the system of institutions, which are the rules of the game in the society or, more formally, the humanly-devised constraints that shape human interactions. Accordingly, this paper argues that for the post-communist reforms to achieve their objectives, it is essential for the state to provide a framework, institutionalizing economic conflict and thus contributing to sustainable development. However, the analysis suggests that the evolvement of a modern institutional rëgime in the country is likely to be delayed as a consequence of vested interest of a number of powerful economic groups.

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