The most serious economic, political, and social problems of Central Asia are all shaped by the demographic processes described by Nancy Lubin in Chapter 2. Given other economic and geographic factors, excess labor is one of the greatest potential problems. Both Western and certain Soviet scholars have long recognized the serious challenges posed by the combination of underemployment and the various limitations on economic development in the Central Asian region of the USSR. Soviet and Western observers alike recognize unemployment as one of the factors contributing to the social tension which has served as a backdrop for violent outbreaks such as those in Fergana in the spring of 1989.