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The Russian Orthodox Church 'Discovers' the Market Economy
This essay seeks to open a debate on certain aspects of the first economic and social document approved by the Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church, whose role in the transition of Russia has been somewhat neglected. The debate is a constructive one both in view of the role which the Church has to play in shifting Russian society from plan to market and in the ecumenical reuniting of churches of Christian faith and tradition. The two authors conclude that this journey has already been embarked upon, but that it will be a long and complex one. It is a journey that deserves to be encouraged, and one way of doing this is to help bring the Russian Orthodox Church closer to neo-institutional economic thinking, which appears especially helpful both for an understanding of the dynamics of the transition from plan to market and for the identification of the role which intermediate bodies such as churches can play to help it.