A comprehensive analysis of the Soviet economy from a legal perspective, this book discusses the Soviet theory of legal regulation of economic activity and the formal structure of economic legislation. The authors argue that two contradictory tendencies characterize the Soviet economic regulatory system: reform and retreat from reform. Legal reform efforts usually result from the attempt to increase economic efficiency, which typically involves according greater independence to lower-level economic organizations. The danger that political power might be undermined, however, eventually leads to the reestablishment of the dominance of the central authorities over lower-level decisionmaking. Drs. Ioffe and Maggs also examine the tensions in labor law, which must reconcile the needs of the economy for job mobility and high worker morale with administrative ideals of strict discipline, and the legal aspects of technology transfer. In addition, emphasis is placed on the ways that economic legislation is developed and applied in practice; the authors note in particular the progress that has been made in systemization and codification of economic legislation.
Introduction -- The Fundamental Structural Elements of the Soviet Economic System -- The Soviet Legal System in Connection with the Soviet Economic System -- Ownership and the Law of Ownership -- Production: Its Legal Organization -- Production: Research and Development -- Production: Labor Force and Labor Law -- Distribution and Its Legal Forms -- Exchange: Its Legal Regulation -- Legal Protection of the Soviet Economic System -- Conclusion -- Afterword