This book considers several aspects of the transformation of the former state socialist countries: social and economic outcomes; forces in the transformation process; problems of consolidation of the new regimes; and alternative scenarios. The book evaluates the course of transformation of state socialist societies. It focuses on economic change and its impact on inequality and health. Comparisons are made between the successful central European countries now members of the European Union with those of the former Soviet Union. There are detailed studies of the transformation of the (former) German Democratic Republic, Czech Republic, Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, as well as the impact on Poland. A feature of the book is the impact of the collapse of state socialism on countries of Asia and the Third World. Alternative scenarios are considered, with specific chapters on China, Cuba, and North Korea. The book contemplates the alternative types of society that might replace state socialism, particularly state capitalism and market socialism.
According to interdisciplinary theory of architecture and sociology by A. Amin and N. Thrift, presented in their book Cities. Reimagining the Urban, the light sociality is the main way of individuals interaction in city space. In this context, consumption appears to be one of the basic forms of individuals self-expression on one hand, and on the other hand - one of the basic forms of urban communication. We deal with consumption in its general meaning - as a complex of all individuals consumption-related practices that are transparent in space of light sociality. Consumption practices become agents of light sociality, producing ambivalent encounters that emotionally affect individuals realizing those practices, and those who observe them. In this way consumption takes part in governmentality of the city spaces.
The paper examines the structure, governance, and balance sheets of state-controlled banks in Russia, which accounted for over 55 percent of the total assets in the country's banking system in early 2012. The author offers a credible estimate of the size of the country's state banking sector by including banks that are indirectly owned by public organizations. Contrary to some predictions based on the theoretical literature on economic transition, he explains the relatively high profitability and efficiency of Russian state-controlled banks by pointing to their competitive position in such functions as acquisition and disposal of assets on behalf of the government. Also suggested in the paper is a different way of looking at market concentration in Russia (by consolidating the market shares of core state-controlled banks), which produces a picture of a more concentrated market than officially reported. Lastly, one of the author's interesting conclusions is that China provides a better benchmark than the formerly centrally planned economies of Central and Eastern Europe by which to assess the viability of state ownership of banks in Russia and to evaluate the country's banking sector.
The paper examines the principles for the supervision of financial conglomerates proposed by BCBS in the consultative document published in December 2011. Moreover, the article proposes a number of suggestions worked out by the authors within the HSE research team.