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A taxonomy of state capitalism

The developmental phases of Russia, Kazakhstan, South Korea and Singapore - a comparative institutional analysis


Axel Wölk

What is the economic order of state capitalism? Furthermore,how can its significant performance differences be explained? The firstquestion is tackled with the help of New Institutional Economics by developinga model of state capitalism. This topic is furthermore dealt with in Chapter 3 wherea taxonomy of state capitalism is presented. This chapter already explains someof the performance differences. In the last chapter with the help ofsemi-structured interviews and literature surveys – in four case studies –propositions are forwarded as to why state capitalist orders vary so widely intheir performances. Two points stick out: the quality of the bureaucracy aswell as a varying degree of commitment of the political leadership to adevelopmental course. 
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5 Conclusion: Comparative Analysis of Case Studies


“There is hardly anything more stupid than talking about lessons of history. From history we only find out something about the historians, whether they have style or spirit etc. And about those, who take themselves too serious we have to laugh.”

Paul Valery


In this final chapter conclusions are drawn as to how the four state capitalist countries performed under its respective structural and policy approach. It becomes clear that the developmental state with a huge degree of cohesiveness was superior to that of crony capitalism and even dual economy state capitalism. As main factors for diverging economic and social performances qualities of the bureaucracy as well as the degree of credibility of political leaders’ commitment to development emerge.

Keywords: Structure, Policy, Performances, Developmental State, Crony State Capitalism, Credibility of Commitment to Development, Quality of the Bureaucracy

Thus far, the entire approach to tackling the research question of what is state capitalism and how its profound performance differences can be accounted for was positive. Value judgments for instance were missing. By now this perspective will be shifted up to a certain extent. First of all, it is postulated that development with all its advantages and disadvantages is a goal that ought to be aimed for. In this regard as illustrated throughout this study of all state capitalist variants the developmental state has proven to be the most efficient and best performing in terms of economic development.

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