FEAR THE OUSTED! HOW VESTED INTERESTS FIGHT BACK The Case of Georgia
The literature that discusses the anti-corruption reforms' failure in transitional countries departs from the assumption that the vested interests represent one of the critical stumbling-blocks for the reforms. The previous researches demonstrate that the political elite's reluctance towards the reforms significantly underpins power elites' success to preserve their vested interests. While some authors suppose that the reform-oriented political elite can break the vested interests' resistance in the long-run, Georgia's case highlights that the vested interests remain viable even when the reform-oriented new political elite directly attack and oust them from the profitable administrative and political positions. The thesis intents to respond research questions to what extent do the ousted power elites try to fight back to restore their lost privileges and profits; what types of methods do the ousted power elites use to restore their lost privileges and profits; and to what extent is the resistance of the ousted power elites linked to the backsliding of the anti-corruption reforms. The thesis built upon the qualitative research methodology, precisely, the process-tracing method and employs archival data.