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Photo: “Viktor Orbán adressing the House of Commons – 2015.09.21 (1)“, by Elekes Andor, licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0. Hue modified from the original

Scheiring, Gábor. “The Competition State.” In The Retreat of Liberal Democracy, pp. 95-132. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, 2020.


Starting from the reforms of the late socialist era, this chapter analyses how the growth model based on the extensive accumulation of transnational capital became the dominant, institutionally preferred accumulation strategy in Hungary. Relying on a new dataset exploring the revolving doors between the economic policy elite and the business class in the 1990–2014 period, the chapter shows how economic policy professionals passed in and out through the revolving doors and contributed to the establishment of transnational capital’s hegemony. Finally, based on the analysis of press materials related to the business advocacy organisations of transnational companies, the chapter also highlights the tensions between transnational capitalists’ economic policy preferences and the accumulation strategy of the competition state, showing that the competition state outperformed the expectations of transnational capital.

The Illiberalism Studies Program studies the different faces of illiberal politics and thought in today’s world, taking into account the diversity of their cultural context, their intellectual genealogy, the sociology of their popular support, and their implications on the international scene.