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  Publication Date : 12/2003
  Price : $21
  ISBN : 0972762582
  Number of Pages : 116 
 
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The Collapse of Soviet Communism : A View From The Information Society
by Manuel Castells & Emma Kiselyova
 
 
Author Biography   Book Description  

Manuel Castells holds the Wallis Annenberg Chair of Communication Technology and Society at the Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California, Los Angeles. He is, as well, Research Professor of Information Society at the Open University of Catalonia, Barcelona, and Professor Emeritus of Sociology and of Planning at the University of California, Berkeley.

Emma Kiselyova is Coordinator of International Partnerships at the Annenberg School of Communication, University of Southern California, Los Angeles. She is, as well, Head of International Relations at the Open University of Catalonia, Barcelona. Formerly, she was Assistant Director for International Relations at the Institute of Economics and Indutrial Engineering of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Siberian Branch, in Novosibirsk; Deputy Director of the Siberian International Center for Regional Development; and Research Associate at the University of California, Berkeley.

 

This book, based on field work in Russia during the years of perestroika, analyzes the collapse of the Soviet Union as a result of the inability of a system based on the control of information to manage the transition to the Information Society. The subsequent lagging of the Soviet Union in information technology and its applications undermined economic growth and military power, prompting Gorbachev’s reforms. Because the roots of the problems that Gorbachev tried to address were embedded in the interests of state bureaucrats and party leaders, the reforms spiraled out of political control, paving the way for the disintegration of the Soviet Union. The book offers an original interpretation of one of the most important experiences in history. It also sheds light on the institutional factors conditioning the transition from industrial to information societies.