Published online by Cambridge University Press: 04 May 2020
This chapter is a review of the early debates on how best to do the transformation from socialist central planning to a market economy with private capitalist owners sets the stage. It is noted that the popular euphoria generated by the fall of the Berlin Wall permeated the world academic community with numerous papers and conferences on the subject, and a broad consensus on the main changes was reached; however, a wide rift occurred on two key points: should this be done rapidly or gradually, and what should come first: market liberalization or development of new institutions? An important clarification is made that criticisms of the Washington Consensus for ignoring social costs of liberalization and institutional development were unfounded straw-man depictions. All relevant documents or statements of international institutions clearly include both of these elements; at most, such criticisms could justifiably note IMF and others paid insufficient attention to these elements.