Introduction: The Political Economy of Privatization

Pitelis, C.N. and Clarke, T. 1993. Introduction: The Political Economy of Privatization. In Thomas Clarke and Christos Pitelis (eds.) The Political Economy of Privatization (pp.1-28). London: Routledge.

15 Pages Posted: 7 Jan 2016

See all articles by Christos N. Pitelis

Christos N. Pitelis

Brunel University London

Thomas Clarke

University of Technology, Sydney

Date Written: January 1, 1993

Abstract

Privatization of state-owned assets became a major economic policy of many countries in the 1980s, and in some cases amounted to a conscious attempt to roll back the frontiers of the state and return to the market. This was part of a reconsideration of the nature and role of the state sector in developed and less developed market economies that was resolved in favour of the view that government involvement had been excessive. At the end of the 1980s the demise of central planning in Eastern Europe led to an attempt to create markets there and, in a sense, to privatize whole economies. It is tempting to conclude from these developments that state or government failure is the norm, and that the free play of market forces is the solution to such government failures. Much of the neo-liberal theory and ideology, which received wide acclaim and influence during the 1980s, makes exactly this point. However, careful consideration of the theory and evidence of the ‘market versus government’ issue makes this belief less self-evident.

Suggested Citation

Pitelis, Christos N. and Clarke, Thomas, Introduction: The Political Economy of Privatization (January 1, 1993). Pitelis, C.N. and Clarke, T. 1993. Introduction: The Political Economy of Privatization. In Thomas Clarke and Christos Pitelis (eds.) The Political Economy of Privatization (pp.1-28). London: Routledge. . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2711846

Christos N. Pitelis (Contact Author)

Brunel University London ( email )

Brunel Business School
Uxbridge
London, UB8 3PH
United Kingdom

Thomas Clarke

University of Technology, Sydney ( email )

Haymarket Campus
PO BOX 123 Broadway
Sydney, New South Wales 2007
Australia
+61 2 9514 3479 (Phone)
+61 2 9514 3817 (Fax)

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