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Reforms and counter-reforms in Bolivia
Fernando Candia et al.
Source of the information:
Inter-American Development Bank
This paper analyzes reforms and counter-reforms in Bolivia in recent decades and their effects on the policymaking process (PMP) and productivity. Bolivia’s PMP has shifted from a formal representative democracy to a 'participative and direct type of democracy' where street protest and other non-conventional forms of political participation have become dominant.
The author discusses issues such as:
Reforms, Counter-Reforms and Productivity Performance in Bolivia: the trends of overall and sectoral productivity in Bolivia.
Policymaking Process: the dynamic nature of the PMP in Bolivia over the period studied.
Underlying Factors Affecting PMP Shifts: dramatic changes over time, essentially moving from congress to the streets.
The Magic of Politics: Traditional political parties have lost legitimacy and representation.
Though reforms have increased productivity, they have failed to secure the political support necessary to assure long-term sustainability.
Counter-reforms have so far enjoyed extensive political support, but productivity has stagnated since this process started with declining economic growth and job creation developments likely to undermine support for the counter-reform process.
The reform process produced some positive effects, such as the consolidation of macroeconomic stability.
Bolivia urgently needs to develop a new PMP that is both more inclusive and places a greater emphasis on productivity and employment creation that will make that PMP sustainable in the long run.
Bolivia must build a new institutional order capable of unifying the country’s diversity according to a common vision of a shared future.
Traditional political parties have lost legitimacy and representation, and social movements have become paramount players - regional organizations and regional governments have acquired significant leverage.
Policy objectives have become essentially short sighted and productivity goals have been largely neglected.
Finally, representative democracy system has lost ground to a “participative and direct type of democracy,” where results of a “cabildo,” a referendum or an assembly drive the PMP.