Coping during transition in rural areas: The case of post-Soviet Southern Kyrgyzstan

Research output: Working paper


This paper focuses on the transition process in the agricultural sector in post-Soviet Kyrgyzstan. Kyrgyzstan is a republic in Central Asia which embarked on a reform program after independence in 1991 and has been struggling with structural impoverishment since. This paper is to look into the following questions: how do households organise their survival in this radically changed environment; how did they come to their new coping mechanisms; and where do the latter come from? Besides analysing existing literature, this paper is based on field research among farmers conducted in the province of Džalal-Abad in Southern Kyrgyzstan between February and April 2005. The paper aims to show that even if most households now have an income from farming, this income is too small to support all household members. Therefore, additional incomes are needed but mostly lacking. The country now has a dual economy: a formal sector, which can be seen as the successor of the Soviet state economy but is too small to provide all inhabitants with jobs; and a large informal, self-employment sector which is essentially a continuation of the ‘shadow economy’ that already existed in the Soviet era.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationGhent
PublisherGhent University
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Publication series

NameConflict Research Group Working Paper


  • Transition
  • Coping mechanisms
  • Rural development


Dive into the research topics of 'Coping during transition in rural areas: The case of post-Soviet Southern Kyrgyzstan'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this