The Soviet Tank Industry during the 1940s: From War-Time Mobilization to Reconversion

The article focuses on the tank industry, particularly the development of the People’s Commissariat of Tank Industry and its production base, to analyze two related processes: the mobilization of the civilian industrial base for wartime production, and then its subsequent conversion for purposes of postwar economic reconstruction and development. The sources of economic mobilization came from theoretical ideas developed during the interwar period, from mobilization readiness in the 1930s to their practical realization after the outbreak of the war. By analyzing the main programs of conversion, this study finds them far less centralized and top-down than one could have expected. The entire process of conversion, reorganization of production, and development of new technologies was frequently driven by interdepartmental rivalries between various state agencies and decisions initiated by middle-level managers. The article also discusses the economic outcomes of the conversion under postwar reconstruction and the establishment of the industrial foundation of the USSR as an emergent superpower.


Recommended bibliographic description

, The Soviet Tank Industry during the 1940s: From War-Time Mobilization to Reconversion, Voprosy Istorii Estestvoznaniia i Tekhniki [Studies in History of Science and Technology], , p.  289–305

    © Studies in the History of Science and Technology: Quarterly scientific journal of the Russian Academy of Sciences (2015)
    ISSN 0205-9606. Индекс 70143