Economics and Globalization Publications
Event summaries from meetings sponsored by the Environmental Change and Security Program between June 1999 and May 2000.
316. Where Have All the Illiberal Democracies Gone? Privatization as a Catalyst to Regime Change in Postcommunist EuropeJul 07, 2011
May 2005 - Scholars of postcommunist change are beginning to take analytical note of a recent wave of regime liberalizations. What do we make of it? As scholars, we have misdiagnosed the trend. While we have rightly focused on the collapse of moderately authoritarian regimes in the face of mass resistance movements, we must begin to do more comparative analysis that includes illiberal countries that have become more authoritarian during the same period. Behind the headlines about liberal oppositions facing down corrupt, illiberal incumbents, the analytically salient pattern might be the instability of illiberal democracies and their movement in either a more democratic or authoritarian direction.
We must reinvigorate the comprehensive—and reject the exclusively militaristic—definition of security, Margaret Brusasco-Mackenzie warns.
One important conclusion to be drawn from this analysis is the urgent need for environmental sustainability—for sustainable use, sustainable consumption, sustainable development—in ways that do not enrich current generations at the expense of future ones.
The root causes of the threats to much of Asia’s biological diversity, particularly in the region’s more unstable and authoritarian countries, can be generalized in three words: conversion, consumption and corruption.
May 1997 - The successor states to the former Yugoslavia may be unanimous in their opposition to any political project even hinting at its recreation, but they still face a set of surprisingly common economic problems. (On the emergence of the successor states from the collapse of Yugoslavia, see Yugoslavia and After: A Study in Fragmentation, Despair, and Rebirth, edited by David A. Dyker and Ivan Vojvoda [New York: Longman, 1996].) For one, there is the obvious absence of the economic boom that a postwar recovery period often generates. As a partial solution, business enterprises are turning back toward their nearest neighbors, their former compatriots. Even this movement faces two further problems. First, their transitions to a market economy based on private enterprise are in the best case half-finished and have in the worst cases created new vested interests grounded in political power and corruption. Second, while private entrepreneurship has indeed grown apace, its enterprises are typically too small or too closely linked to political or outright criminal networks to press effectively, from below, for a legal market framework.
Experts review new publications (Part 1).
Complete set of commentaries on population, health, environment, and conflict in Africa by Wangari Maathai, Marc Ravalomanana, John Katunga, Milline J. Mbonile, Nana K. Poku, Anthony Nyong, Kenneth Omeje, and Patricia Kameri-Mbote.
This issue includes reports from Ecologic - Centre for International and European Environmental Research, the Master of Science in Foreign Service Program at Georgetown University, and the Natural Heritage Institute.
These two papers provide some theoretical underpinnings for an alternative--evolutionary--approach to economic reform in Eastern Europe. Such an approach places little emphasis on reforming old organizations, but instead pins its hopes on the growth of a nascent private sector. An evolutionary policy, therefore, combines a policy of the gradual phasing out of the old institutional framework, an active program to promote new private sector activity and the institutions that this sector requires, and gradual privatization using market processes. The papers analyze both the evolution of centrally planned economies in the region as well as the impact of conservatism.