This brief Paper argues that the timing and pace of Gorbachev's perestroika were significantly influenced by the changes that took place in U.S. foreign and security policy following the inauguration of Ronald Reagan in 1981 and that explanations of the emergence of perestroika that omit or heavily discount these changes are misleading.
This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.
The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.