The emergence and subsequent expansion of a self-employed sector in former state socialist countries is an integral part of the transition from planned economies to market economies. Self-employment and entrepreneurship have played a crucial role in shaping post-socialist inequality stratification. Based on longitudinal data collected during the 1990s in three former or reforming state socialist countries, China, Russia, and Vietnam, this project adopts a comparative approach to examining the similarities and variations in the patterns of entry into and exit from self-employed businesses since the 1990s, with a particular focus on the changing status of cadres and political connections in the dynamics of the transition. The differing transition paths within each country's institutional legacy have led to different stratification outcomes. The study will contribute to understanding the labor market inequality in emerging markets from former state socialist economies.
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