PECOB Portal on Central Eastern
and Balkan Europe
Università di Bologna  
Thursday May 26, 2022
Testata per la stampa

Rebuilding Leviathan

Party Competition and State Exploitation in Post-Communist Democracies

by: Anna Grzymala-Busse
published by
: Cambridge University Press
pp: 294
ISBN: 9780521696159
price: £ 16.99

Book's frontpage

Why do some governing parties limit their opportunistic behaviour and constrain the extraction of private gains from the state? This analysis of post-communist state reconstruction provides surprising answers to this fundamental question of party politics.
Across the post-communist democracies, governing parties have opportunistically reconstructed the state - simultaneously exploiting it by extracting state resources and building new institutions that further such extraction.
They enfeebled or delayed formal state institutions of monitoring and oversight, established new discretionary structures of state administration, and extracted enormous informal profits from the privatization of the communist economy.
By examining how post-communist political parties rebuilt the state in Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia, Grzymala-Busse explains how even opportunistic political parties will limit their corrupt behaviour and abuse of state resources when faced with strong political competition.


Table of contents

Chapter I: Introduction
Chapter II: Competing for the State
Chapter III: Developing the Formal Institutions of the State
Chapter IV: The Expansion of State Administration: Exploitation or Patronage?
Chapter V: Privatizing the State: Party Financing Strategies Conclusion
Appendix A: Party Organizations in Post-Communist Democracies
Appendix B: Measuring State Administration Employment
Appendix C: Anchoring Vignettes


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