Abstract and Keywords
As the post-communist societies are in the second phase of transition, there is a fundamental inconsistency in the logic of their economic and welfare institutions. This article argues that, in the early stages of transition, it was the reorganization of the economy that dominated the process of institutional change. For some forty years of socialism, the former socialist countries had been on a convergence trajectory. They had entered the socialist experiment at very different levels of economic development, with different institutional arrangements and major cultural–religious differences. Although these differences did not disappear altogether, they were substantially reduced. But as communism broke down, the old fault-lines re-emerged, and the European socialist countries split between Central and Eastern Europe. The article begins by conceptualizing these different trajectories in European socialist countries from socialism and then proceeds to show how this has impacted on the two phases of transformation that have taken place.
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