University of Rochester

Professor Wins Grant to Study Post-Communist Countries

October 1, 1997

Randall Stone, assistant professor in the Department of Political Science, has been awarded a Social Science Research Council Advanced Research Grant for his work on the politics and economics of post-communist countries.

During the next three years, Stone will use the $24,000 award to study the interactions between the International Monetary Fund and post-communist countries. "I plan to spend parts of each of the next two summers in Russia, Ukraine, Poland and Hungary, conducting interviews and gathering documents," he said. Stone will combine mathematical modeling, statistical analysis and historical research to determine when international institutions are able to constrain the economic policies of the new democracies of Eastern Europe.

"Austere economic reforms are politically risky," he said, "but the evidence is that high inflation is even riskier. The question is whether international lending agencies have enough influence to help weak governments resist the temptation to follow policies that are popular, but shortsighted."

Stone, who has been teaching at the University since August 1996, spent a month last summer traveling in Poland and Russia and interviewing high-level government officials.