Case | HBS Case Collection | March 1990 (Revised May 1993)


by Willis M. Emmons III


Describes the political, economic, and social development of the USSR from 1921-90. Particular emphasis is placed on 1) institutional change, 2) the costs and benefits of central economic planning, and 3) the political economy of perestroika under Mikhail Gorbachev. Provides the opportunity for students to carry out a detailed country analysis of the Soviet Union--its goals, strategy, and performance over time. Set in March 1990 when the country is facing shortages of food and consumer goods, the Lithuanian secession, the introduction of multi-party democracy, and the legalization of some forms of private property. Students can thus evaluate the options available to Gorbachev for steering the nation through the greatest period of change since its founding.

Keywords: Country; Strategy; Cost vs Benefits; Change; Government and Politics; Russia;


Emmons, Willis M., III. "USSR--1990." Harvard Business School Case 390-155, March 1990. (Revised May 1993.)