Development Policy and Administration: Indian experience for solving Russian Problems
Speaking about development policy and administration in any country we can not escape characterising socio-economic system thereof.
In the case of Russia, where basic change of the system is underway, the system at the point of departure should be also characterised. Usually the system, which existed in the USSR, is called "socialism". Undoubtedly, some key features of socialism did exist in the system, such as dominance of the public property in the economy, planned development; absence of established exploiter classes, wide social guarantees for the people, etc.
But there was one basic deviation from true scientific socialism in the system. It was the absence of systematic development of self-management and self-government of the pfeople which should increasingly take functions of the state.
The other side of this deviation was overcentralization and over-bureaucratization in the socialist development and planning, the growing monopoly of the state-cum-party nomenclature in managing the state property, the economy and the state at large.
There were some objective historical reasons for this deviation from true socialism. The system was born in the relatively backward country, with the entrenched feudal remnants, monarchial and extremely bureaucratic rule, without developed institutions of democracy and civil society. It had emerged in the environment of the First World War, the Civil War and the economic dislocation caused by them. Later on, the formation of the system was under strong impact of the hostile foreign environment and the Second World War, followed by the cold war. All this demanded the utmost mobilization of all the available resources,
* Distinguished Russian economist.
Social Scientist, Vol. 27, Nos. 7 - 8, July- August 1998