Honors Theses

Date of Award


Document Type

Undergraduate Thesis


Croft Institute for International Studies

First Advisor

Joshua First

Relational Format



The transition economies, in making their way from a command economy to an integrated market economy, experience vastly different levels of development. This work proposes an influence of inclusive, democratic institutions on increased economic complexity. This project reviews the history of diverging political and economic policy decisions across the region. Case studies for Poland, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan review trade data and democratic policies to better understand groups of development across the region. This paper utilizes Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson’s institutional developmental theory as a basis for the creation and sustainability of democratic and economically diverse structures.


A thesis presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for completion of the Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies from the Croft Institute for International Studies and the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College.

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