Gorbachev's Challenge: Economic Reform in the Age of High Technology

Marshall Goldman, Author W. W. Norton & Company $16.95 (296p) ISBN 978-0-393-02454-8
Since only 40% of Soviet farms have storehouses, many of the crops rot. Goldman (U.S.S.R. in Crisis cites this incredible example to illustrate the inefficiency of an economy mired in vested bureaucratic interests, corruption and waste. The Achilles heel of the system, he writes, is the Stalinist legacy of rigid centralization. He charges that the central planning system is especially ill-suited to the age of ""high technology.'' Among the reasons for this are the absence of small start-up companies, lack of reward for innovators and resistance to radical experiment. In order to satisfy the demand for consumer goods and motivate workers, Gorbachev will have to reverse his country's emphasis on heavy industry and the military concludes the author, who is associate director of Harvard's Russian Research Center. Goldman suggests a Chinese-style economic liberalization as a possible action. (June 1)
Reviewed on: 06/01/1987
Release date: 06/01/1987
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-0-393-30549-4
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