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Gorbachev's export of Perestroika to Eastern EuropeDemocratisation reconsidered$
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Helen Hardman

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780719079788

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719079788.001.0001

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The Conference as a Policy Choice: The CPSU Conference, 1905–41

The Conference as a Policy Choice: The CPSU Conference, 1905–41

(p.53) 2 The Conference as a Policy Choice: The CPSU Conference, 1905–41
Gorbachev's export of Perestroika to Eastern Europe

Helen Hardman

Manchester University Press

This chapter reviews conferences held between 1905 and 1941 for the purpose of projecting what the conference represented as a policy choice for Gorbachev in 1988. As discussed in Chapter 1, in the absence of formal rules constraining institutions, procedures naturally evolve that essentially ‘stick’ as informal rules, setting a precedent for future practice. These informal rules can prove at least as ‘sticky’ as formal ones. This survey of conference outcomes indicates that as a policy choice the conference was convened by the General Secretary as a forum at which he could consolidate his own power by more easily engineering his desired outcome and publicly defeating rivals and opposition. A historical review reveals this pattern for all eighteen conferences between 1905 and 1941.

Keywords:   Party Conferences, Rules of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin

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