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Industry after communism

An EU-funded initiative looks at how industrial restructuring after the fall of the iron curtain has affected the economy and society in Russia and the Ukraine.
Industry after communism
After decades of communist rule, Russia and the Ukraine went through a relatively sudden transition to a market economy only two decades ago. Economists and researchers have been curious to pinpoint how industry has progressed and adapted since this radical change in direction.

The EU-funded project 'Economic and social consequences of industrial restructuring in Russia and Ukraine' (Escirru) examined how shifts in industry have affected society and the economy. It analysed how the transition to a civil society and a more capitalistic model have affected production and industrial performance. More importantly, the project closely looked at the socioeconomic impact on households and people.

Bringing together eight partners from seven countries, Escirru collected data on households and people to extract its conclusions. It then closely investigated and documented the impact of research and development initiatives on the economies of both countries.

In more detail, the project analysed how labour reallocation after the communist era affected productivity and how newly introduced technology affected the workforce. It also studied gender issues as well as how restructuring affects the workforce and employment relations. Issues such as worker displacement and informal employment, as well as those regarding compensation for downsizing and restructuring were also examined.

Escirru also looked at poverty in the Ukraine and its determinants, including coping strategies of different population groups. Project partners delved into the social systems in both countries and their relationship with the labour market, producing policy recommendations related to social security and its influence on labour market performance.

While there were several challenges in collecting data, the project successfully published 28 working papers online. Several more studies are expected to appear on the website and enlighten interested parties on the progress of industry in these two countries. The implications of the project on policymaking for all post-communist economies may be valuable to many governments.

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