About the Conference:
The relation between autocracy and market economy has puzzledscholars ever since the breakthroughs of the 1980s in China andEastern Europe. The so called “Big Bang Model” of Eastern Europeand the gradual transformation of the PRC (the “Chinese Model”)have been contrasted both by observers from outside the regionsas well as by the elites in the region. While initially, the EasternEuropean post-socialist path was regarded as a success story thebooming economy in China later on shifted attention to East Asia.In both regions the question whether or not democracy is neededfor sustainable growth is currently heavily debated.This conference therefore aims to compare different paths of “postsocialism” in East Asia and Eastern Europe. Drawing on strongtraditions of research on East Asia, Eastern Europe and democracyat the University of Vienna, it brings together international expertsand insights from a wide range of academic disciplines, includingpolitical sciences, sinology, history, economics, and anthropology.With two keynote speeches and a public round table the eventreaches out to the interested public.The conference is a joint effort of the Department of PoliticalScience, the Department of East Asian Studies and the Departmentof East European History at the University of Vienna. It issupported by the University’s interdisciplinary research platform„Wiener Osteuropaforum“ and the City of Vienna.