This article assesses the degree of policy responsiveness in the new democracies of post-communist Europe. Panel data on economic reform and public opinion show that public support for reform has a large and significant effect on reform progress. Where public support for reform is high, reform proceeds more quickly. This effect remains strong even when controlling for the endogeneity of public support and other economic and political causes of reform, though it is strongest in more democratic countries. These results suggest that economic reform may be better promoted by persuading the public of the beneficial consequences of reform than by trying to insulate reformers from the public, and that the quality of democracy in the region may be higher than commonly perceived.
|Journal||British Journal of Political Science|
|State||Published - 2011|