Challenges of Transition: the Post-Communist Experience(s)
Bucharest, 24-25 May 2013

In 1990 Ralf Dahrendorf argued that it takes six months to create new political institutions; to write a constitution and electoral laws. It may take six years to create a half-viable economy. It will probably take 60 years to create a civil society. To what extent can we still talk about post-communism? Has the process of transition come to an end?

The organizers of this event believed that the topic of transition continues to be a current domain of interest for researchers in the field of social sciences. We were confident that many young political scientists, economists and sociologists are very interested in the study of a phenomenon which marked their existence, offering a first-hand, fresh approach to post-communism, and one which was in no way influenced by the communist experience. We were interested in the analyses and perspectives of those young researchers who have, oftentimes, been educated throughout Europe and have had the opportunity to compare the democratic experiences of the countries in Central and Eastern Europe.

For this reason, we organized the first edition of an international interdisciplinary conference that gathered over 80 participants from Romania and abroad, interested in discussing the extent to which we can still talk about post-communism, debating numerous presentations on the challenges of transition as experienced in the aftermath of the collapse of communism and the dissolution of USSR. They were grouped into thematic sections and spent two days discussing various aspects of the process of transition. Most of them submitted an article that emphasized the most important points of their research, articles which were later on submitted to a peer-review process, taken on by the faculty staff at the Faculty of Political Science, University of Bucharest and published in a bilingual collective volume.