The Puzzling Success of Uzbekistan's Heterodox Development


Beginning early in its transition to a more market-based economic system, Uzbekistan became well known for its heterodox economic policies. But since it has insisted on charting its own development path, it has incurred a continuous stream of criticisms from international financial institutions and mainstream economists.

The country has been repeatedly barraged with prophecies of its imminent failure. And yet it has managed—judging by many standard economic measures—to enjoy a significant degree of success. This has been a source of repeated puzzlement in orthodox circles.

The publication was prepared by the Centre for Development Policy & Research (CDPR) of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, in collaboration with the expert group of the Center for Economic Research. Mr. Terry McKinley analyzes Uzbekistan's process of economic transition and development, referring it as "a frustrating puzzle" to many orthodox economists.

The Centre for Development Policy and Research (CDPR) draws on the broad range of development expertise at the School of Oriental and African Studies to engage in innovative policy-oriented research and training on crucial development issues. CDPR also collaborates with an extensive global network of researchers, based principally in developing countries, to carry out projects. 

Leonid Polishchuk, Deputy Director, IRIS Center, University of Maryland, USA

"Indeed, CER is a “collective resource” for donors and international development agencies in Uzbekistan. The Center maintains strong leadership among public policy analysis units. It has reached organizational maturity and accumulated valuable professional and institutional assets, including strong reputation, trust and credibility with stakeholders, good outreach channels, capable team of policy analysts, and necessary project management expertise."