The discussion will focus on the lessons to be drawn from the experience of the transition countries in Eastern Europe. This topic has been significant to CASE since its founding in 1991, and we believe it continues to be an important issue for discussion. During the meeting, our three distinguished guests: Prof. Anders Aslund, Prof. Leszek Balcerowicz and Prof. Christopher Hartwell, will analyze the key problems facing the transition countries of Central and Eastern Europe, and the need for further reforms. The speakers not only have academic backgrounds, but they also advised governments on economic policy issues. Prof. Anders Aslund is a leading specialist on economic policy in Russia, Ukraine and East Europe. He has served as an economic adviser to several governments, notably the governments of Russia (1991-94) and Ukraine (1994-97). Prof. Leszek Balcerowicz is a key architect of Poland’s economic and financial reforms in years 1989-91 (known as “The Balcerowicz plan"). He served as both Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Poland from September 1989 to December 1991. The moderator of the discussion, prof. Christopher Hartwell, is a leading scholar on the evolution of institutions. His research concerns transition dynamics, the economics of institutions, and financial sector development. In addition to his academic work, he has advised governments and the private sector on economic policy issues in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Poland, Croatia, Bosnia, and Kosovo, among others. The discussion will be based on the book “Present at the Transition”, authored by the late Prof. Oleh Havrylyshyn, CASE Fellow and a former official in the post-independence Ukrainian government. Grounded in three decades of data, along with experiential research gleaned from nearly thirty countries, his book contains the most up-to-date assessment of economic transitions in post-communist regions. His work critically examines questions of gradual versus radical reforms, the relationship between democracy and market liberalization, and how history, individual personalities, and foreign influence determined political choices.