Publication Date



Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 02-79

**Published Version**

In Economics and Politics 14(1): 1-32




We analyze the role of privatization in creating a constituency for economic reform, markets, and democratic institutions, focusing on the Czech Republic. Drawing on a 1996 survey, we examine the 1459 respondents' opinions on reforms, economic policies and systems, the legitimacy of transition, and democratic values. Using ordered probit estimation, we find that receiving property through restitution is strongly associated with support for reform and markets. Concerning voucher privatization, we find positive effects for participants retaining shares, but little impact of participation alone. Our simulations suggest that policy designs have substantial consequences for citizens' support of reforms, markets, and democracy.

Issue Date

Revised April 15, 2002


Support provided by the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC), the CEU Foundation, the Institute of Sociology - Academy of Sciences (Czech Republic), the Graduate Research Fellowship Program of the National Science Foundation, the Fullbright-Hays DDRA Program, and International Research & Exchanges Board (IREX).

Subject Areas

INTERNATIONAL ISSUES; International labor comparisons; Transition economies


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Earle, John S. and Scott Gehlbach. 2002. "A Spoonful of Sugar: Privatization and Popular Support for Reform in the Czech Republic." Upjohn Institute Working Paper No. 02-79. Kalamazoo, MI: W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.