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Cuba's Socialist Economy Today: Navigating Challenges and Change

Paolo Spadoni
Cuba's Socialist Economy Today: Navigating Challenges and Change
ISBN: 978-1-62637-064-7
2014/241 pages/LC: 2013049961
Also of interest: Cuba Under Raúl Castro: Assessing the Reforms by Carmelo Mesa-Lago and Jorge Pérez-López and Entrepreneurial Cuba: The Changing Policy Landscape by Archibald R.M. Ritter and Ted A. Henken
"A must-read for everyone seeking to understand the changes in Cuba today. Cuba's Socialist Economy Today is simply the best academic summary of the Cuban economy in transition— period."—Johannes Werner, CubaNews

"A comprehensive, fully documented, and objective analysis. The chapters on hard currency and foreign investment are truly remarkable. Highly recommended."—Carmelo Mesa-Lago, University of Pittsburgh

"A masterful work ... rigorous and up-to-date. I urge all those who want to understand the changes taking place in the Cuban economy to read Spadoni's book."—Omar Everleny Perez Vilanueva, University of Havana

"A rigorous and well-researched analysis of Cuba's recent economic transformations.... Required reading for anyone interested in Cuba."—Mario A. González-Corzo, Lehman College, CUNY


What does Cuba's socialist economy look like today, after a half-century of fluctuating strategies? Are the reforms instituted by Raúl Castro improving living conditions and boosting production and efficiency? What challenges does the government face in crafting policies to address the country's most critical problems? Paolo Spadoni offers deeply informed answers to these questions as he traces the evolution of Cuba's economy, explores the current state of affairs in key sectors, and assesses the likelihood that government efforts to cure Cuba's economic woes will be successful.


Paolo Spadoni is assistant professor of political science at Georgia Regents University. He is the author of Failed Sanctions: Why the US Embargo Against Cuba Could Never Work.


  • Introduction.
  • The Cuban Economy Today.
  • In Search of Hard Currency.
  • The Role of Foreign Investment.
  • Surveying the Key Sectors.
  • Raúl Castro's Reforms.
  • The Road Ahead.