Paul R. Gregory

Research Fellow

Paul Gregory is a research fellow at the Hoover Institution. He is Cullen Professor Emeritus in the Department of Economics at the University of Houston, a research fellow at the German Institute for Economic Research in Berlin, and emeritus chair of the International Advisory Board of the Kiev School of Economics. Gregory has held visiting teaching appointments at Moscow State University and the Free University of Berlin.

Gregory was the director of the Russian Petroleum Legislation Project of the University of Houston Law Center from 1992 to 1997 and has written broadly on Russian energy.

The holder of a PhD in economics from Harvard University, he is the author or coauthor of twelve books and more than one hundred articles on economic history, the Soviet economy, transition economies, comparative economics, and economic demography. His most recent books are Women of the Gulag: Portraits of Five Remarkable Lives (Hoover Institution Press, 2013), Politics, Murder, and Love in Stalin’s Kremlin: The Story of Nikolai Bukharin and Anna Larina (Hoover Institution Press, 2010), Lenin’s Brain and Other Tales from the Secret Soviet Archives (Hoover Institution Press, 2008), Terror by Quota (Yale, 2009), and The Political Economy of Stalinism (Cambridge, 2004), for which he received the Hewett Prize, awarded to works on the political economy of Russia, Eurasia, or Eastern Europe. He co-edited The Lost Transcripts of the Politburo (Yale, 2008). His archival work is summarized in “Allocation under Dictatorship: Research in Stalin’s Archive” (Journal of Economic Literature.) As a producer, Gregory worked with director Marianna Yarovskaya on the documentary film Women of the Gulag, which was short-listed for the 2019 Academy Awards.

Gregory blogs for Defining Ideas and The Hill and tweets at #PaulR_Gregory.

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Recent Commentary

Photographic portrait of the “Great and Generous Leader,” Joseph Stalin.

North Korea Follows Stalin's Script

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Wednesday, May 11, 2016

This month’s four-day North Korean Worker’s Party Congress followed the standard choreography set almost a century earlier by Vladimir Lenin and Josif Stalin: thousands of wildly-clapping jubilant delegates, decorated streets, extravagant mass parades, excited media coverage and multiple-hour speeches to an audience pretending to be attentive.

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The Rise Of American Socialism

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Defining Ideas
Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Obama thinks countries should adopt statist or market-based policies according to “whatever works” for them. He’s wrong. 

Analysis and Commentary

How The Kremlin Lies With Headlines Like 'Ukrainian Fighter Jet Shot Down Malaysia Airlines' MH17'

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The shock headline shows how Russian propaganda works. By luck or design, a news item appears in a legitimate media outlet, such as BBC, Reuters, or NBC. It gives a small opening for distorted interpretation, which is exploited in the form of a sensationalist headline in tabloids or Russian-sponsored media.

Analysis and Commentary

Putin’s Government In Donbas

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Project Syndicate
Wednesday, April 13, 2016

In March, the German tabloid Bild published an article based on a secret document that reveals how breakaway areas of eastern Ukraine are “being treated as parts of Russia’s sovereign territory.” The revelations cast the ongoing Minsk 2 peace negotiations in a new light, one that illuminates the frustration being expressed by the Ukrainian government.

Analysis and Commentary

Barack Obama Extols Cuba's Slave-Labor Medical Care

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Barack Obama, fresh from his historic opening to Cuba’s Castro brothers, was effusive in his praise of Cuba’s socialized health care system. Speaking to a town hall in Argentina, Obama gushed: “Medical care–the life expectancy of Cubans is equivalent to that of the United States, despite it being a very poor country, because they have access to health care. 

Analysis and Commentary

Putin Caught In Huge Panama Papers Scandal

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Tuesday, April 5, 2016

The dump of millions of documents leaked from Panama offshore accounts implicates Vladimir Putin’s inner circle. We already knew that Putin and his Kremlin kleptocrats were robbing Russia of its assets for personal gain, but the Panama Papers provide a proof in black and white, which Putin’s propaganda team cannot refute.


Donald Trump's Foreign Policy Plan Would Give Putin Exactly What He Wants

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Tuesday, March 22, 2016

In a wide-ranging interview with the Washington Post editorial board, Republican candidate Donald Trump showed why he is Vladimir Putin’s favorite candidate for President of the United States. 

Analysis and Commentary

Ten Reasons Why Putin Wins Big In Syria While The U.S. Gets Nothing

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Vladimir Putin’s announcement that he is pulling the main part of his armed forces out of Syria caught the world flat-footed. Putin’s word is not to be highly valued given his claims of no troops in Ukraine.

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Analysis and Commentary

Putin Changes September Election Rules To Prop Up His 'United Russia' Party

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Monday, March 14, 2016

The September 18 Russian parliamentary elections will take place amidst a deep economic crisis, with oil at $30 a barrel, and with election rules deliberately designed to blunt and conceal voter disaffection.

Analysis and Commentary

Putin Hammers Another Nail In The Coffin Of The Russian Economy

by Paul R. Gregoryvia Forbes
Monday, February 22, 2016

As a regular visitor to the USSR and Russia in the late 1980s and 1990s, I remember the utter disaster commercial aviation was back then. Moscow’s three airports seemed deliberately designed to torture ordinary passengers, whereas the elite were escorted to their flights from exclusive lounges.