Obstacles to Modernization in the Economy and Science of the GDR (Mod-Block-DDR)

Emergence and Consequences - an inner-German comparison and a comparison to neighbouring countries in Central Eastern Europe

Information about the project

In the year 2017, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) published the call for project proposals in the field of “GDR Research” in order to support social scientific research about the “heritage of socialism” in the German university landscape and to strengthen the research structure in this field of expertise on a competitive basis.

The research consortium “Hurdles to modernisation in the economy and science in the GDR” (Mod-Block-DDR) was selected for funding as one out of 14 projects in total. The project will run empirical and comparative analyses focusing on the question in how far the hurdles to modernisation in the GDR impact the economic development and structures of East Germany until today. Four universities in Germany together with their international cooperation partners participate in the research consortium. Jutta Günther from the University of Bremen, Faculty of Business Studies and Economics, is head of the interdisciplinary research team. Young researchers are actively participating in the research and will be promoted through a PhD or postdoc career. Further, the results of the research will be disseminated broadly in the scientific community, policy, economy and general public. Especially the transfer of new knowledge about the GDR into society will be paid special attention.

The consortium started its work on December 01, 2018 and will be supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research in a first stage until the year 2022.

In the context of the research project and in order to strengthen sustainable research structures, the Faculty of Business Studies and Economics of the University of Bremen filled a professorship position in economics with the specialisation “Institutional Change”. This newly established professorship is an additional action, financed by the University of Bremen and will work in close cooperation with the research consortium on complementary topics. It will particularly engage in research about institutional factors, which impact the economic catching-up process in transition economies until today.

Press release of the BMBF

Press release of the University of Bremen


Gefördert vom BMBF
Der Wirtschaftswissenschaftler Michael Rochlitz hält einen Vortrag.

Michael Rochlitz in an interview on the regional elections in Russia

In WDR 5 Morgenecho, Michael Rochlitz answers questions about the regional elections in Russia. According to Russia expert and institutional economist Michael Rochlitz, the rejection of the admission of opposition candidates by the election commission, which led to mass demonstrations, impedes the…

The participants of the Summer School next to the cottage house in Orilampi (Finnland)

Presentation of "Mod-Block-DDR" at the 4th International Summer School of the FRRESH Network

From 26 to 30 August 2019 Heiko Pleines, Mareike zum Felde and Charlotta Cordes participated in the Summer School of the Network for Russian and Eurasian Studies in Orilampi (Finland). This year's topic was the radical changes since the beginning of the 1990s in the former socialist states.

Michael Rochlitz grinst in die Kamera

Interview with Michael Rochlitz and Gabor Steingart

"20 years Putin: Why China trumps Russia" is the title of the interview in which Gabor Steingart asks Bremen economist Michael Rochlitz questions about the economic conflict between Russia and China.

[Translate to English:]

PhD course “Innovation in Transition Economies” – Summer School Teaching by Jutta Günther

From July 21st to August 2nd 2019, the 13th Summer School on “The Economics of Innovative Change” takes place at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany. The Summer School is organized annually by the Chair of Microeconomics of the Faculty of Business Administration and Economics.

Book publication: Federalism in China and Russia

Michael Rochlitz, newly appointed professor of institutional change at the Faculty of Economics, has published the book "Federalism in China and Russia: Story of Success and Story of Failure?", co-authored with Prof. Dr. Alexander Libman (LMU Munich).

Exciting topics for master theses in the Mod-Block-DDR research project

The Chair of Innovation and Structural Economics is part of a large research network working on a project to investigate whether and to what extent socialism and transformation in the new federal states continue to shape economic structures and developments today.

Picture of team Mod-Block-DDR on conference "Surviving during dictatorship". From left to right: Dr. Falk Flade, Prof. Dr. Dagmara Jajeśniak-Quast, Jarina Kühn, Konrad Walerski, Dr. Anna Steinkamp

Attendance of the kick-off conference of the research project "Landscapes of Persecution"

On June 20, 2019, the kick-off conference of one of the 14 BMBF-funded joint projects on the subject of "DDR Research" took place. Titled "Over Life in the Dictatorship", scientists from various disciplines presented research projects on the topics of repression, legitimacy, coping and perspectives…

Profilfotos Ann Hipp, Mareike zum Felde, Charlotta Cordes

Ann Hipp, Mareike zum Felde and Charlotta Cordes are new research associates involved in the Mod-Block-DDR project

We warmly welcome these three new employees to the project "Modernisation Blockades in Industry and Science in the GDR" at the Department of Economics.

Mareike zum Felde and Charlotta Cordes started on May 1, 2019 as research assistants and doctoral students as part of subproject 7: "Political…

Jutta Günther

Jutta Günther in the “heute journal” on reconstruction in eastern Germany

On the occasion of the East German Economic Forum 2019, the ZDF produced a broadcast on the topic of the "Extended Workbench East Germany" on the 20th of May 2019. In it, people from business, politics, and science were given the opportunity to express their views. Jutta Günther explains why the…

Lutz Schneider

Economic Colloquium - Presentation by Prof. Dr. Lutz Schneider

On May 21st Prof. Dr. Lutz Schneider will give a presentation at our faculty titled "Can the decline of traditional industrial sites explain people's election behaviour in German regions?".

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