No.393 Re-thinking of “Chintanakan Mai” (New Thinking): Perspective for Understanding Lao PDR
To date, many previous studies have viewed “Chintanakan Mai” (New Thinking), which was introduced in 1986, as one of the most important factors required for understanding present-day Laos. They tend to see the year 1986 as a watershed in Lao history and divide the history after 1975 into two periods before and after 1986: a period of socialism and a period of reform or market economy, respectively. Therefore, they are likely to see the current changes in Laos as the result or achievement of the reform started in 1986. The year 1986 is always a starting point for understanding Laos today. However, I suggest a different perspective and attempt to re-examine “Chintanakan Mai.” “Chintanakan Mai” is not a watershed in Lao history, but rather a temporary slogan to advance postwar reconstruction. In this paper, I try to establish a new perspective for understanding Laos today.
Keywords: Chintanakan Mai, New Thinking, Lao PDR, Laos, Socialism, Transition
JEL classification: P20, P21, P30
Please note that discussion papers are works in various stages of progress and most have not been edited and proofread and may contain errors of fact or judgment. Revised versions of these papers may subsequently appear in more formal publication series. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s). The IDE does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included and accepts no responsibility for any consequences arising from its use.