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President NicolГЎs Maduro attributed the defeat of the Chavista candidates in Decemberв??s National Assembly elections to the в??economic warв?ќ waged against his government by powerful interests, but the rank and file of his movement is calling for a thorough examination of errors committed, as well as accusations of corruption. Three factors explain the defeat and the pressing economic and political challenges facing the government: the plunge of international oil prices; the в??economic warв?ќ unleashed by the private sector; and government errors, including its failure to maintain a manageable ratio between official prices of goods and the dollar, on the one hand, and open market prices, on the other. What is the relative weight of each one of these factors? In addition the panel will address the following issues: the extent to which unsustainable в??populistв?ќ measures have contributed to economic problems; the validity of the self-criticisms coming from within the governing PSUV as well as social movements; the effectiveness of strategies of negotiations with sectors of the opposition including the private sector; the role of the в??old stateв?ќ in promoting transformation or holding it back.