From grandmotherliness to governance: The evolution of IMF conditionality

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In the 1990s, this view of the IMF and its role changed dramatically. In large part, this was a consequence of reflections on the collapse of communism and on the links between political and economic reform. In the 1980s, many political scientists believed that economic reform was more easily achieved by authoritarian regimes. The experience of Central Europe, in particular, completely reversed the general understanding of the link between economic liberalization and political democratization. In the new picture, only a country whose government was sustained by a deep reserve of legitimacy would be able to bear the pains associated with adjustment. This change had repercussions for the concept of conditionality. If there was less room for a benevolent authority in imposing economic reform, this would also mean questioning the traditional role assigned to the IMF. Instead, the issue of 'ownership' became central.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages4
Specialist publicationFinance and Development
StatePublished - 1998

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development
  • Finance


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