The post-communist transitions in Europe are both economic and political reforms. Experiences with the economic reforms and attitudes about them might undermine support for the democratic reforms, a possible contradiction embedded in post-communist transitions. We examined first trends in support for the market and democratic reforms in the Czech Republic with eleven national surveys from 1990 to 1998. We then asked if respondents' economic experiences and their attitudes about the market reforms were associated with their support for democracy. Market support was measured by a pro-market index. A pro-democracy index, opposition to strong-hand government, and a political orientation toward the right measured support for the political reforms. Trends in market support and those for political reform are somewhat different. Support for the market declined over time as the Czechs passed from one phase of the reforms to another, particularly toward the end of the survey period. Support for the political reforms either remained stable after the first phase or it, too, dipped toward the end of the survey period, depending on the measure. Next, we found in regression analyses that respondents' economic experiences predicted their support for the market reforms and both predicted their support for the political reforms. Economic strain and insecurity and low support for market reforms did undermine support for democracy, even after controlling for demographic characteristics and time.
Peer-reviewed journal article
Hraba, Joseph, Rehan Mullick, Frederick O. Lorenz, Jiří Večerník, Sangmoon Lee
Trends in Czech attitudes toward the market and democracy
Hraba, Joseph, Rehan Mullick, Frederick O. Lorenz, Jiří Večerník, Sangmoon Lee. 2001. „Trends in Czech attitudes toward the market and democracy.“ Journal of Political and Military Sociology 29 (2): 200-220. ISSN 0047-2697.