Definition of perestroika in English:



mass noun
  • (in the former Soviet Union) the policy or practice of restructuring or reforming the economic and political system. First proposed by Leonid Brezhnev in 1979 and actively promoted by Mikhail Gorbachev, perestroika originally referred to increased automation and labour efficiency, but came to entail greater awareness of economic markets and the ending of central planning.

    See also glasnost
    • ‘Both glasnost and perestroika appeared to be sweeping the whole of Eastern Europe in the direction of global capitalism, or at least towards an opening to the practices of capitalist globalization.’
    • ‘Glasnost and perestroika in the Soviet Union kicked off a debate about restructuring society in East Germany, too.’
    • ‘Perhaps the main obstacle, however, to any electoral perestroika is the party system itself.’
    • ‘The result of these tolerated conversations was that, when perestroika began, alternatives to the communist system had already been considered.’
    • ‘In the 1990s there were massive sums to be made as the economic reforms of perestroika kicked in and markets were liberalised.’


Russian, literally ‘restructuring’.