The article presents intersectoral partnerships forming Local Action Groups, and analyzes the mechanisms of emergence of such partnerships in the Podkarpackie region, particularly factors contributing to their emergence, their initiators and partner-recruitment methods, as well as the relations of partnerships with their social milieu, decision-making inside partnerships and expectations regarding their future. The theoretical framework of the study is rooted in the neoinstitutional theory with its historical, normative, rational-choice and network approaches. Based on them, the authors formulate some hypotheses referring to the innovativeness of the partnerships, the supremacy of local authorities over other partners, the utilitarian character of partnerships and the assumptions concerning their future. The hypotheses are then verified on the basis of the results of quantitative research of Local Action Groups in the Podkarpackie region.
This paper includes the general overview of the architectural and urban order issue in respect to Polish space. It focuses both on the problems of large cities as the peripheral and rural areas. Also the problems of rural areas losing their traditional character are discussed. Special attention was paid to the historical reasons staying behind the urbanization processes and their influence on the current situation. In this respect both the diagnosis of the current situation as well as the proposal for building the complex upgrade strategy were presented. Also the set of available implementation instruments were presented as a part of this proposal. Finally, the concept of urban regeneration was discussed. This concept can become the key element in the process of upgrading the condition of the Polish space. As a summary, a set of conclusions concerning the possible actions leading to desired change in the spatial order was presented.
The article describes the important problem of increasing regional competitiveness through the international (interregional and cross-border) cooperation. Activities supporting the competitiveness of companies and whole regions are described in the article using the examples of transregional projects carried out by different partners dealing with logistics. The first project ECO4LOG carried out in the framework of interregional cooperation programme INTERREG III C promotes the usage of the intermodal infrastructure located in the transport corridor along Polish and German border and further through Austria, Hungary and Slovenia to the Adriatic sea. One of the main tasks of this project is the improvement of cross-border cooperation in goods transport among bodies which are interested in such cooperation (also public authorities). Another important target of ECO4LOG is the increase of effectiveness of the existing transport network through the improvement of information flows. The second project has the acronym CORELOG and is carried out in the framework of INTERREG III B CADSES. Its target is the development of logistics solutions favourable for enterprises, logistics operators and the whole region – propagating co-ordination of activities of different organisations, feasibility studies of developed co-operation models. Analysis and evaluation of the most important factors influencing the strategies of supply chain management and evaluation of activities carried out by administrations (of the national, regional and local level) affecting transport development and economic growth in the region will provide background for the implementation phase. Several pilot actions will test the ideas for coordinated regional logistics development.
Tourism can cause changes in various areas of life of receptive societies. Each of them can be of functional or dysfunctional character. A lot depends on the type of tourism and the visited society itself. Tourism is seen as a vital development factor in the Podhale region. It is therefore crucial to know what the local people think about tourism. Their negative attitude to this particular sector of the economy can hinder or limit its development.
The method and rules of elections of village heads and village council-members, which are conducted at meetings of village residents, are one of the last examples of direct democracy. Even though this form of democracy has been studied and described previously, the electoral rivalry within rural communities is marginalized; therefore, it is little known. The paper tries to define the features of electoral competition and analyze rivalry at this level of government. It has been based on a case study of one commune and three research methods have been used: direct observation, document analysis and personal interviews. Additionally, the paper presents sociological and demographic studies on some of the newly elected village heads and their councils.
Marek S. Szczepański, Małgorzata Tyrybon
The purpose of this paper is to determine whether connections within cyberspace are in any way related to borders in the geographical sense. The author assesses the connections between the websites of local authorities and destinations that can be reached by hyperlinks. He analyzes 29 counties in Lower Silesia and shows that the activity of local self-government units in cyberspace covers their real-life territory. On the whole, it can be said that connections existing in cyberspace largely reflect actual borders. However, the main functional node dominating cyberspace is the country’s capital city.
The revitalisation process in Polish cities – here by the example of Poznan – is still rather on a modest level. Nevertheless the needs are urgent if we consider the continuing degradation of inner-city areas, the insufficient quality and quantity of housing resources and increase of suburbanisation. The legal, financial, and socioeconomic conditions do not allow the application of Western patterns. Yet there exist in Poznan various examples of renewal of old housing stock as well as of revitalisation of whole inner-city areas. They may be regarded as starting points for the realisation of future revitalisation ventures, also with regard to expected European funding.
The aim of the article is to describe the phenomenon of non-partisanship of local governments in large Polish cities. It is a report from a research conducted in Wroclaw, Gdynia and Katowice. The article contains a description of typical justifications of non-partisanship, an identification of differences between partisan and non-partisan city councillors and a description of quasi-partisan organizations functioning as political support for non-partisan mayors. The results of the research confirm the existence of a specific category of local activists consistently rejecting party politics and very often having no political ambitions concerning higher levels of government; this category is typical for quasi-partisan organizations. The research demonstrates that non-partisanship can be a means of institutionalization of a particular manner of understanding and making politics. One of the final conclusions is that the problems of partisanship and non-partisanship at the local level are derivatives of a vague relationship between public administration and politics at the local level.
In general, political marketing is a collection of activities, techniques, methods and means that at least facilitate and at most make possible electoral success on the part of political entities. At present political marketing represents an indispensable part of politics, since only with its help do candidates have a chance of gaining and then holding on to power. After every election we can observe yet-greater competition. Political entities apply different and more elaborate methods and techniques which are aimed at increasing chances of electoral success. During the last ten years in Poland (since the new voivodships were established), it has been possible to observe the professionalization of marketing operations, particularly at municipal elections and especially at those on the regional level. In this article distinctions are therefore drawn between regional political marketing operations and those at either nationwide or local levels. The findings are based on investigations conducted by means of questionnaires distributed among the councillors serving on the voivodship regional assemblies (sejmiki) for the 2006–2010 term of office.
The main question of this paper is a problem of importance of the National Strategy of Regional Development (NSRD), as a leading instrument for strategic planning of regional policy in Poland. I present the main characteristic of recent NSRD arranged for period 2001–2006. My basic interest is focused on structure of this document, its main priorities and basic implementation instruments. Particularly important is the analysis of effectiveness of the main NSRD priorities in practice. It is crucial problem, especially for Polish central-government regional policy which was implemented basically by voivodship contracts. My research proves that effectiveness of the NSRD implementation by the voivodship contracts was low. Recommendation for future Polish government regional policy is given.
The paper shows the basic problems of implementation of the cross-sector cooperation, in the frame of area-based partnerships, for specified rural areas in years 2001-2004 in Poland. In this period partnerships were created with international sources support and with appreciable participation of non-government organisations. The main obstacles to their actions were: the insufficient financial resources, the lack of legal form of self-governments, NGOs and entrepreneurships cooperation with equal rights, tendencies for leaders` domination in group`s actions, weak organisational structures and the lack of long-term strategies. The first effects of cooperation are little; they deal with social affairs and tourist promotion, but they show the positive role of such type coalitions in local development.
Convergence is one of the key issues of cohesion policy. The European Union applies different instruments of regional development to reduce disparities between regions and countries. Due to the discussion on the effectiveness of this policy, a research in this area seems to be required. The purpose of this article is to assess the diversity of wealth in the regions using the methods of measurement of sigma convergence. The main parameter used in the calculations is GDP per capita in 2000–2007 at the sub-regional level (NUTS-3). The research shows that income inequalities among some groups of Polish regions have increased after the accession to the EU. Convergence patterns vary in cities, rich sub-regions and poor sub-regions. In some cases, convergence is correlated with the dynamics of GDP, whereas in other there is no significant relationship between convergence and the economic situation.
The purpose of this article is to analyse opinions and attitudes of inhabitants of a Silesian town of Tychy toward the civil society and local democracy. Basing on sociological research done in the spring 2003 and reinterpretation of sociological research of the town, the article shows an activity related to and awareness of these issues among the local community in times of democracy and free market economy. The example of Tychy is specific because during the socialist period sociologists emphasised the fact that it was a socialist town. After political transition, scientists and researchers have pointed that urban community has a disintegrated character and that social bonds must be created in order to cope with regional development. The present article is especially focused on changes which have taken place over the past few years in Tychy.
The concept of economic resilience is a relatively new subject of debate within the framework of regional studies. In the first part of the paper, the authors present two main concepts of resilience, i.e. an evolutionary approach and an agency perspective. On the example of Wight European regions, they describe the actions taken to mitigate the adverse effects of the economic crisis and the strategies that build economic resilience. The final section identifies the key effective tools used in most analyzed regions.
Rock mining is popular and characterized by the exploitation of local deposits, which are used as a bargaining chip in local economic and socio-political politics. The aim of the paper is to analyze the impact of rock mining on the local economy of Polish communes. A contextual analysis was performed of inflows to the communes’ budgets resulting from the exploitation of rock minerals, the contribution of rock mining in the creation of local jobs was assessed, and the benefits from reclamation and development of post-mining areas were estimated. To do all that, the Author used the method of indicator analysis of local government units and stochastic methods of data analysis, as well as inference based on collected data. Studies have shown that rock mining is a factor supporting the local economy. Benefits from the exploitation of rock minerals should be taken into consideration in the development of plans concerning mineral rock deposits.
The reform of the EU cohesion policy for the period 2007–2013 resulted with policy adjustments in member states. The changes, as showed by the analysis for EU 15, new member states (with particular attention given to Poland) and Norway – take various forms, depending on specific local factors. Some of discussed reforms seem to be the consequence of changing the paradigm of development. The authors offer a review of the most important issues and define the subjects requiring further studies.
In the past twenty years, research on the measurement of social capital has been among the leading areas of interest in social sciences. The impact of ethnic diversity on the level of social capital is an interesting aspect of this research. According to Robert Putnam, in the U.S. context, ethnic diversity has a negative influence on the level of social capital. Various research initiatives implemented in Europe indicate, however, that ethnic diversity does not have a significantly negative correlation with social capital, and, that examples of its positive impact on social capital can be found. The article presents a quantitative analysis conducted in 20 municipalities of the Opolskie Voivodship (10 of them ethnically homogeneous, and 10 – ethnically diversified) in order to analyse this relationship. On the basis of the data collected in the analysis, it can be stated that in the surveyed region, ethnic diversity is not a factor with a negative impact on the level of social capital, and it is also highly probable that it is a factor that enhances social capital, at least its bonding dimension.
The article presents intraregional convergence processes in different types of European metropolitan macro-regions in the years 1995–2004. The typology is based on factor analysis using principal components methods as well as cluster analysis using the Ward method. The results of the analysis indicate the presence of a specific situation in particular types of macro-regions. On the one hand, a clear internal divide of capital city regions of Central and Eastern European Countries was observed, as well as large interregional differences in the level of development in other peripheral macro-regions. On the other hand, Northern Italian and Southern German macro-regions, dependent on modern industry, were internally quite coherent regarding their level of development. The situation was similar also in some regions that experience problems and undergo restructurisation processes. Capital city regions of smaller European countries, especially from the former EU15 (but not constituting any particular type), were the most differentiated group of macro-regions.
Tourist sector belongs to most dynamic sectors able to absorb large and different human resources. Its chances to get developed depend not only on natural and cultural resources, but also increasingly on necessary infrastructure and appropriate development policy. While Polish natural resources were mostly overvalued, the cultural ones were seemed to be underestimated. In general most of the Polish territory does not have significant touristic resources and its chances to develop touristic sector depends to a large extent on ability to create touristic products and on involvement into networks with other, better equipped regions. The state policy should concentrate scarce development resources on 1. areas already touristically developed in order to improve their competitiveness and 2. support to diffusion processes and cooperation network creating.
This article discusses a particular type of social conflict, which is NIMBY (Not In My BackYard) syndrome. It has been very well studied and described by American sociologists. Although NIMBY syndrome has been present in Poland for relatively short time it is de?nately a sign of organising different types of local communities against interfering processes. Although usually depicted as negative phenomenon in most con?icts in the region of lodz it has proved to increase local activity, created new channels of social communication and leaders. It can be also stated that NIMBY syndrome has its source in omitting or separating local community from decision-making procedures and insufficient information on affair/venture being planned. The research revealed that NIMBY protests were characterised by violent beginning, significant time of existence and appearance of sudden, violent and often abrupt reactions of community during time of the con?ict. Dominating forms of activity were petitions and letters being written form. Another activities covered blockades, manifestations, demonstrations and destruction of construction machines or construction site itself. Most frequent form of extinguishing the con?ict was arbitrage which is forcing administrative decision against community which resulted in increasing distance between the community, local authorities and investor.
Article is devoted to identification of towns endangered by socio-economic degradation (marginalisation). Using the example of 10 selected towns it shows their weak and strong points and complex sources of developmental problems. Authors present and evaluate activities undertaken by town authorities. Town of Bilgoraj serves as a benchmark (positive example of successful local transformation after 1989).
Michael Danson, Ewa Helińska-Hughes, Geoffrey Whittam
If architectural heritage in cities is recognisable for the masses, it does not raise doubts as to its value. However, if the architecture is controversial, relatively young, or can be associated with a problematic legacy and difficult past, its valuation raises ambiguities. Unconventional valuation methods can help resolve these uncertainties, making it easier for local decision-makers to make sounder decisions. This paper presents a proposal for valuing Warsaw’s modernist WKD Ochota train station, using a combination of cost-benefit analysis and a Delphi panel. The study carried out for the purposes of this article revealed that such architecture, although ambiguous, is treated by the local community as valuable not only in economic terms, but also in social and cultural terms.
There are three Social Economy Support Centres (OWES) operating in the Łódzkie region. The basic role of such centres is to provide advisory services to the existing social economy entities and train people interested in setting up a social enterprise. The aim of the article is to present the activities of social economy support centres aimed at supporting social enterprises and promoting the development of social economy in the Łódzkie region. Evaluation of their activities and conclusions from this analysis may be of practical importance for the development of social economy. The research material is based on the desk research for the projects: “OWES – support to social economy”, “Social Economy Support Centre in Łódź”, “Social Economy Support Centres KLUCZ”, “OWES – development of social economy” implemented in 2016–2017, research of the Regional Centre for Social Assistance in Łódź and CATI interviews conducted with coordinators of social economy support centres operating in the Łódzkie region.
The ecological activity of municipalities can be a very important element increasing their attractiveness. Modern digital technologies offer intelligent solutions and help fulfil many economic and social demands related to environmental issues. The study primarily looked at the degree of activity of municipalities in the implementation of optional ecological projects and revealed a low level of participation of municipalities in cross-border projects. A questionnaire survey was designed as a universal tool for studying digital maturity in a cyclical, low-cost manner, which provides extensive information by verifying various areas of municipal activity and then formulating conclusions for climate and regional policies, etc. On the one hand, the study fostered the need to implement ecological projects, especially of a cross-border nature, and on the other hand, it disseminated knowledge and indicated various possible solutions.
To assess the development level of Polish regions, it is necessary to observe changes in the country taking into account its sustainable development. Differences between regions are due mainly to their nature, their social, economic and institutional conditions and their political functions. The character of a region has a strong impact on the direction and the pace of development of individual spheres of sustainable order. Research shows that regions with big urban areas have much higher economic and social points than non-industrialised areas. However, agricultural and tourist regions deal with environment problems better. That is why all actions concerning region development and meant to decrease disproportions have to depend on the type of region. The taxonomical analysis can be a base for further research.
The aim of the paper is to examine the level of application of the partnership rule in the process of implementing regional operational programmes (ROP) in Poland in 2014–2019. It has been assumed that the Monitoring Committees (MC) operate as the institutional manifestation of the partnership principle. The scope of comparative analysis includes practical aspects of the functioning of MCs within ROPs in three voivodships: Kujawsko-Pomorskie, Lubuskie and Świętokrzyskie. The analysis focused on five institutional factors: number of Committee meetings in the financial perspective 2014–2020, number of circular voting events, percentage of socio-economic partners in the total number of Committee members, number of working groups within the MCs, as well as the number of meetings of working groups. The research hypothesis adopted in this article assumes that the regulatory activities expressed in the preparation of guidelines for the application of the partnership principle under the regional operational programs in the 2014–2020 financial perspective turned out to be insufficient for disseminating developed partnerships under ROPs.
The article presents the history of decentralisation reforms in Ukraine beginning with the last decade of the 20th century until the end of the year 2021, with a special focus on the territorial-administrative reform implemented in 2015–2020. The level of local autonomy in Ukraine is compared to the local autonomy index in other European countries, which was created on the basis of the same methodology.
In the article, the authors present the distribution of human capital in Poland in general and in the Podkarpackie Voivodeship in particular with respect to demographic and socio-economic characteristics. In the analyses, they applied a composite indicator of human capital. In order to construct, validate and test the reliability of the indicator, its authors carried out an exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis and a principal component analysis for categorical variables. They used data from the Social Diagnosis 2009. The results show that human capital in the Podkarpackie Voivodeship was slightly higher than the average for Poland, but more dispersed according to selected demographic and socio-economic characteristics than in the whole country.
The article deals with determinants of efficient absorption of European Union`s structural funds by local authorities entities. It focuses on factors connected with civil society that distinguish different regions. As it was broadly recognized and explored, the "basis of civil society is the social capital of a region. Social capital includes networks and relationships between people that transmit their shared attitudes and values and therefore influences on structures of common initiatives undertaken by individuals and different groups
in order to fulfill local societies` needs. The author studies to what extent social capital of different regions conditioned by cultural factors influences institutional efficiency of local authorities in Poland in relation to absorption of pre-accession fund SAPARD.
Planned large-scale animal farms are often the subject of protests by local communities due to the nuisance they generate. The active participation of local residents occurs at an early stage of the investment process, namely the proceedings for issuing an environmental decision, because it is at this stage that location and characteristics of the facility are determined. The article analyses 52 cases of proceedings to set the environmental conditions for the construction of animal farms in which there were documented protests of local residents. The aim of the paper is to determine the course of environmental proceedings for animal farms under the influence of residents’ protests, as well as to determine whether environmental conditions are eventually established. The statements of protesting residents are presented by means of references to the category of knowledge in decision-making (Glicken 1999, 2000; Edelenbos 2011). The study showed that despite the binding rule that public opposition cannot be the basis for refusing to set environmental conditions, the protesting residents indirectly influence the final, usually negative, result of the environmental impact assessment. By blocking the realisation of unwanted investments, they have a real impact on the shaping of the local space.
This paper presents analysis of different connections between institutional participants of three area-based partnerships (LEADER Local Action Groups) that have been created in rural areas to coordinate actions which contribute to social and economic development of the respective regions. The relations in three partnerships located in different historical-cultural regions of Poland were analysed in the context of the social capital concept, using basic network relation indexes. Various types of interactions between agents (coordination, conflict, co-operation, control and competition) and flows (information, financial assets, human resources and tangible resources) have been analysed.
The article is devoted to the role of the local political elites in the process of local commune (gmina) development. The research was made in three municipalities that differ in terms of economic development and their location on the territory of Poland. The author discusses the relation between the social-economic awareness of the councillors and the commune development strategy. She confronts the strengths and weaknesses of the municipalities in question as perceived by the local decision-makers with their communal development strategies and the course of action undertaken. The analysis of the development strategies of the three communes shows different approaches to strategic planning that result from differing attitudes of the councillors towards the creation of economic progress which, in turn, have a fundamental influence on the functioning of local structures.
This article aims at creating the foundations for a coherent theoretical concept of cluster structure, meeting high requirements of a continuously changing area of social sciences. Such a concept should provide an opportunity to make comparisons between clusters of various branches and at various stages of development. To construct such a theory, a modified and supplemented Pierre Bourdieu’s concept of capital was used, putting large emphasis not only onto stricte economic sources of influence in the cluster but also onto human beings and their activities, which influence the operation of cluster structure to the greatest degree.
Human capital stock affects the economic growth by raising the productivity of labour or by improving the ability of the economy to create and absorb innovations. In the scale of the local economy of an academic city, this process can be reinforced by attracting students and researchers to study and work at the local universities. To do this successfully, the city needs not only a high quality academic institutions but also the wider labour market for the educated individuals and – more generally – the ability to attract the creative class to settle down. The article provides the comparative analysis of the ability of the largest Polish cities to attract and absorb human capital. The research is based on the unique dataset coming from nasza-klasa.pl website (allowing users to contact their former class mates). The research concludes with the typology of the Polish cities with respect to the scale of benefits from performing the academic function.
Municipal authorities should implement measures in order to balance their ecological, economic and social development. In order to do that, they need a method of assessing the environmental impact and a decision regarding the environmental conditions. The aim of this paper is to assess the impact of such a decision, issued by the municipal executive authorities, on the local development management. The author attempts to explain all of the above-mentioned problems: he analyzes the number and object of decisions regarding environmental conditions in twenty-three municipalities. In addition, he carries out a survey among the representatives of municipalities in order to assess the impact of the decision on the system community management.
The article presents the course of the territorial and administrative changes ongoing in Warsaw from the inter-War period to the present day. It draws upon many documents and studies from the period during which the system by which the capital city was administered changed many times, with different innovative ideas being put forward very often. Although the present shape of Warsaw is still very much based upon that set out in the Act of 18 May 1990, every new Act relating to the administrative system of Warsaw has meant major changes for the way the city is administered and functions. The modifications and transformations in question are discussed in detail in the article, along with their consequences.
The subject of the paper is the participation of non-partisan candidates in local elections in Poland after 2002. The analysis of the prevalence of non-partisanship provides information on the political parties’ performance at the local level. The paper presents analyses of electoral data from the local elections held in 2002, 2006, and 2010. We have used various indicators of non-partisanship which demonstrate the performance of non-partisans in municipalities of different size, the domination of non-partisan mayors over other candidates, the strength of their clubs in councils, and the disproportions of political support between them and their committees. The results of the research show that although the share of non-partisans in local authorities is still very high, it has been gradually decreasing since 2002.
The paper reviews issues related to traditional food from the perspective of its producers and region development. Research conducted during the Poznan International Fair “Polagra 2006” among producers was used in the paper. This examination brought attention to problems stemming from the functioning of such basic ideas as regional and traditional products, including consumers awareness of such products, as well as the current possibilities of epidemiological – veterinarian rules and norms. A separate issue discussed in the paper concern barriers in the development of rural areas and possibilities of eliminating them by means of financing from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.
EU Funds received by the Polish economy in 2007–2013 in some part have also been used for revitalization activities. However, the rank of these activities was not the same in particular regions, as evidenced by, among others, the rank of revitalization in the Regional Operational Programmes and the amount of funds earmarked for regeneration. A significant difference was observed in relation to the selection process of the projects. This procedure examined on the examples of the Lower Silesia, Lesser Poland and Podkarpackie voivodships determined the final result of the revitalization at the regional scale, varying the type of beneficiaries, as well as the number and size of co-financed projects. Conclusions that follow from the analysis become particularly important in view of the new programming period 2014–2020.
One of the challenges for the contemporary Polish village is the transformation of its economic structure. It is necessary not only to create new jobs in the non-agricultural sector, but also to increase the competitiveness of enterprises. In their activities, entrepreneurs may use local resources in an innovative way. The author of the present article focuses on the following question: “What is the potential of entrepreneurs as far as the innovation based on local resources is concerned?”. Innovation is defined as a way of using local resources which emphasizes the specificity of an area. In her research (undertook in 2012), the author analyzed the local resources of the Pilica River Valley and the applications for support (from Rural Development Programme 2007–2013) submitted by the entrepreneurs to the local action group. The entrepreneurs (in their activity) do not use the resources which have been identified in the local development strategy. The additional funding allowed them to increase the competitiveness of their companies, but was not used to make their activities more innovative.
The main aim of this article is to apply the concept of “identity” to the analysis of phenomena and processes associated with the formation and functioning of clusters and cluster initiatives. Cluster structure is a kind of social group, and therefore should be subject to the same trends as other social groups. One of its most important characteristics (directly related to identity), observed particularly in groups whose aim is to survive for a long time, is their willingness to create mechanisms that distinguish the group and its members, and that build internal coherence and a sense of belonging of its members to the structure as a whole, and their attachment to each other.
European regional support has grown in parallel with European integration. The funds targeted at achieving greater economic and social cohesion and reducing disparities within the EU have more than doubled in relative terms since the end of the 1980. making development policies the second most important policy area in the EU. The majority of the development funds have been earmarked for Objective 1 regions, i.e. regions where GDP per capita is below the 75% of the EU average. However, the European development policies have come under increasing criticism based on two facts: the lack of upward mobility of assisted regions and the absence of regional convergence. This paper assesses, using cross-sectional and panel data analyses, the failure so far of European development policies to fulfil their objective of delivering greater economic and social cohesion by examining how European Structural Fund support is allocated among different development axes in Objective 1 regions. We find that, despite the concentration of development funds on infrastructure and, in less extent on business support, the returns to commitments of these axes are not significant. Support to agriculture has short term positive effects on growth, but these wane quickly, and only investment in education and human capital which only represents about one-eight of the total commitments has medium-term positive and significant returns.
Tri-City, with the suburban area, like other Polish urban centres with metropolitan aspirations, has real chances for becoming metropolitan area of European importance. According to some European concepts, Tri-City is recognized as a member of the group of European metropolises and regarded as a link in the zone of high dynamic development in the Baltic Sea Region. The main problem for the functional efficiency of Tri-City agglomeration is cooperation and competition between cities and municipalities. The lack of common activities can be the reason of efforts and effects to squander in the field of spatial planning, programming of regional development and functioning of the whole settlement system of the metropolitan area. Pursuing the integration of Gdansk, Gdynia and Sopot and thus creating an integrated metropolitan space of the highest ability to compete in the global economy, is a real challenge for the Tri-City.
The aim of the article is to present an outline of the concept of revitalisation as a public intervention aimed at strengthening local cohesion. The concept emphasises the multi-faceted, participatory and inclusive nature of revitalisation. The article contains arguments in favour of the following theses: (1) Revitalisation should be not only an ad hoc reaction to the accumulation of crisis levels, but also a long-term action for local cohesion; (2) The long-term success of revitalisation depends on the scale and quality of the involvement of residents, especially residents from disadvantaged or excluded communities; (3) The inclusion of social economy entities in the revitalisation process is an important factor in strengthening local cohesion
In many European countries local governments, in particular on the municipal level, search for new solutions to improve the governing process. The aim of this paper is to present an innovative model, based on the idea of New Public Governance management, which operates in the city of Tampere, situated in southern Finland. Introduced in 2007, the model is based on three main pillars – strong leadership, effective and responsible service provision, and citizen involvement in the decision-making process. The paper describes each of these elements and indicates its practical advantages and disadvantages. The analysis has been conducted on the basis of official city documents and interviews conducted with experts in Finnish local government as well as leading local politicians from Tampere. In conclusion, it is pointed out that although the Tampere model should certainly be labelled as innovative, the solutions adopted generate some difficulties. These include tensions between politicians and administrators as well as problems related to the coordination of city services and the attitude of politicians and administrators towards citizen participation.
Horizontal transfers in the local government financial equalization system have been raising a lot of controversies in Poland during the last few years. The paper shows similar instruments functioning in other European countries: Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. The paper discusses two mechanisms of equalization: that of revenue and of expenditure needs. European experience is discussed in a way which makes it possible to draw comparisons with regulations in Poland as well as with current debates in Poland.
Discounts and rebates in local taxation are a very media-friendly topic, yet the opinions on the stimulating function of taxation are not supported by meaningful research. The article presents the impact of local governments’ decisions regarding reductions in the tax on means of transport on the location of entities subject to such a tax within the community. The article has a multi-dimensional character, as it is impossible to limit oneself to researching a simplistic relation between tax rates and the number of registered payers of the tax. One must consider additional factors, e.g. the location of new tax payers within a community will also indirectly impact estate taxes, CIT revenues, even the additional revenues from the personal income tax paid by employees. Therefore, it is vital to approach the consequences of local government decisions relating to changes in transport taxation multi-dimensionally.
The study focuses on the mutual relations between the quality of government and the implementation of the EU Cohesion Policy in various regional contexts. The research shows quite significant differences in this respect between “convergence-oriented” regions and „competitiveness and employment-oriented” ones. The quality of government has a positive impact on the efficiency of spending of EU funds in both groups of regions, although the dependence is much stronger in the „convergence-oriented” regions. In turn, the scale of EU funds contributes to the improvement of the quality of government, but only in the „convergence-oriented” regions. In this group, changes in the quality of government took place immediately before and after accession to the EU, when the process of adapting the institutional system to the needs related to the implementation of Cohesion Policy occurred. Although the differences in the quality of government between the two groups of regions have decreased, the research shows that in the „convergence-oriented” regions, the potential causative power of EU funds was rather poorly used in this respect.
The article attempts to identify and analyze the actions undertaken in the cities of the Wielkopolska Voivodeship in the area of urban renewal in the 1999–2005 period as well as the direct and indirect effects of these actions. In order to reach this objective, we analyze the local renewal programmes as well as other strategic documents launched in the investigated cities. In addition, we employ the survey technique and conduct numerous in-depth interviews with the local actors of the renewal process in order to get better insights into the economic, societal and spatial context of the renewal process. As a result, we show that the actions undertaken by the cities of the Wielkopolska Voivodeship in the realm of urban renewal are hardly integrated (they are not comprehensive and do not complement each other in a given area) and dominated by infrastructural investments. In contrast, the economic and social projects remain rare and their consequences ambiguous. We also identify some unexpected, positive as well as negative, consequences of the renewal process, such as increasing engagement of local property owners, entrepreneurs and associations in the renewal actions as well as the problem of profiteering on the renewed areas.
The paper presents the basic consequences of the introduction of single-member districts (the FPTP system) in municipal elections in Poland. The authors analyze the results of the 2010 and 2014 elections (before and after the electoral reform). Basing on the difference-in-differences research scheme, the paper presents changes in the municipalities where either block- -voting or proportional representation systems were replaced by the FPTP. The empirical analyses demonstrate that the change from the BV to the FPTP system brought only marginal effects. The replacement of the PR system by the FPTP was more visible. Quite paradoxically, it increased the number of committees competing in the elections. However, the disproportionality and the share of wasted votes increased significantly, while the fragmentation of local councils decreased. In the municipalities previously using a proportional representation system, the number of candidates decreased visibly; contrary to the initial assumptions, its impact was neutral to the share of elected female councillors. The introduction of the FPTP system significantly limited the already weak presence of nation-wide political parties in local councils.
The paper attempts to analyze the intensity and regional differentiation of uses of the noble heritage and its social reception. It is based on a survey conducted on representative groups of students in the Kraków, Poznań, and Warsaw urban areas. The key question of the study was the scale and reception of the milieu of the direct heirs of the landowning and aristocratic elites in the three main Polish cities. The results point to the largest presence of that group in Warsaw, which may be seen as a paradoxical finding given the image of Warsaw as the most socially open city, with the highest rate of social advance based on meritocratic principles. The paper proposes two interpretations of that phenomenon, in particular one based on the crucial role of the cultural capital in the former Russian zone of the 19th-century Poland. It is also related to the fact that the results point to successful integration of the old feudal elites in the modern intelligentsia elite.
The article aims to verify the relationship between the value of real estate and urban renewal. The analysis was conducted for undeveloped land properties traded between 2006 and 2014. In that period, a time trend was set for the real estate from the areas covered by the Local Revitalization Programmes and the areas located in their immediate vicinity. The observed trends of the changes were compared with those occurring at the same time throughout Krakow, as well as in the areas specified in the Urban Revitalization Programme for Krakow as potential revitalization complexes, for which no local revitalization programmes were eventually prepared. In addition, the author analyzed how transaction prices were distributed in space over the specific years. The obtained land value maps were compared with the records of the documents which formed the basis for the urban renewal of Krakow.
Migration management is one of the key tasks faced by regional authorities in Poland, which experience deepening processes of shrinking and ageing of population. The aim of the article is to determine whether policy makers are aware of the role of migration processes and migration policy, to show their presence in demographic development strategies, and to describe the activities undertaken at the regional level in response to the ongoing demographic processes. The analysis is based on the example of the Łódzkie, Opolskie, and West Pomeranian voivodships. The article proposes an analytical model assuming a gradual process of decision-makers’ reaction to demographic changes. An analysis of documents and interviews with people responsible for regional demographic policy confirms they are aware of ongoing population processes and their consequences, at the same time, however, there is a lack of actions aimed at stimulating inflows of foreigners. The initiatives aimed at stopping the population from emigrating are more important.
Uptade from 2.03.2021: Parts of this article were subsequently used in the following publication: Swianiewicz, P., & Łukomska, J. (2016). Local tax competition in Poland?. Miscellanea Geographica, 20(3), 37-43
The paper considers the usefulness of the tax competition theory for the analysis of local tax policies in Poland. The concept has been successfully used for analyses conducted in several European countries, but it has not been systematically tested in Poland yet. There are two types of competition discussed in the paper: classic competition for mobile tax base and yardstick competition, in which local politicians compete for political capital related to a comparison of tax rates with neighbouring municipalities. Due to the limited size and types of local taxes in Poland, it is expected that yardstick competition is more important than classic competition for mobile tax base. The paper also examines regional variation in the intensity of local tax competition, and it formulates the hypothesis that it is more visible in regions with higher bridging social capital. Results of the conducted research indicate that the theory of local tax competition is a useful concept helping to explain the variation in tax policies among Polish municipalities.
The aim of the study was to analyse the change in the level of sustainable development of Silesian Province districts. The choice of the unit was determined by the high degree of urbanization of this area. The study was based on 72 statistical indicators describing sustainability of districts in 2011–2014. The data was collected using the Central Statistical Office application Sustainable Development Indicators. To determine diagnostic features the parametric method was used. The Hellwig’s development measure, which is a linear ordering method, was used for the analysis. The results showed that the units were highly differentiated in terms of their characteristics. Therefore, regional authorities should take multidirectional actions and monitor the level of sustainable development of districts on the on-going basis.
The problem of centralization and decentralization is very interesting and important in management science, political science, sociology, political economy, economics and regional sciences. The discussion over the centralization versus decentralization is a never-ending one. It is an age-old battle of standardization versus autonomy, corporate efficiency versus local effectiveness and pressure on costs and resources versus accommodation of specific local needs. The advantages of each model are, in essence, the disadvantages of the other. Decisions to decentralize or centralize must be derived from a careful cost–benefit analysis. The debate over whether to centralize or decentralize is not so much over which type of strategy is more effective but the degree to which each strategy is used in combination with one another.
The right to the city is being able to co-decide about the city by its inhabitants. It can be implemented by means of urban participation that consists of two elements – a formal framework created by municipal authorities that enables city residents to join decision-making processes as well as readiness and willingness of the inhabitants to engage in such processes. In recent years, we have witnessed a “participation boom” that manifests itself through an increasing number of public consultations. In this context, the aim of the article is to describe the category of urban participation and offer a critical analysis of participatory processes and their determinants. At the same time, it should be emphasised that the article is theoretical in nature, and the analysed factors determining participation should be treated as a set of the author’s hypotheses that require empirical verification.
This article analyzes the commitment of village residents to creating a village council fund. The research is based on 28 villages which have been adopting the fund in the past 4 years. The author describes the residents’ interest, or rather, the lack thereof, in the village matters and looks to answer why the residents of a given commune hardly execute their rights to take part in village meetings and decide about allocating resources from the village fund. The theoretical framework of the research is based on the rational choice theory and the theory of small groups by M. Olson.
Revitalisation, which is defined as a planned process of restoring deprived areas, entails the difficult challenge of achieving long-lasting spatial, economic and social effects. In Poland, the accompanying inflow of European Union funds not only fosters a wide range of activities for entities involved in urban renewal, but also raises a question about the potential dysfunction of investments in deprived areas. Based on the experiences of Kraków, the paper presents some undesirable effects of projects implemented under the Local Revitalisation Programmes (LRP) in the years 2007-2013. The goal of the LRP projects was to promote the rehabilitation of deprived housing areas. The initial results, however, indicate that these projects are characterised by specific pitfalls, which include touristification, uniformisation, gentrification and social polarisation.
The objective of this paper is to present the role of the relationship between the location and financial performance of local government units. One of Poland’s largest voivodships, Wielkopolskie, was used as an example. Recent acceleration of suburbanisation processes not only results in socioeconomic changes in municipalities surrounding cities but also affects their financial performance. To attain the aforesaid objective, this study used variance analysis to investigate the significance of the differences in the financial ratios between the units analysed by location (measured as the distance of rural municipalities from district towns and from Poznań, the region’s capital). The research proved that the closer a municipality is to an urban centre, the greater its financial autonomy, liquidity and investments, yet at a higher level of debt. Also, the proximity to Poznań is a better determinant of the differences in financial performance than the location close to smaller urban centres.
The authors consider the problem of limited supply of candidates for mayors. Since 2002, most electoral committees in Polish municipalities have only participated in the elections for municipal councils and not for the principal executive office. Between 2002 and 2010, there was also a growing share of municipalities in which only one candidate ran. The logistic regression analysis demonstrates that the electoral committees’ decision whether or not to nominate a candidate is influenced by their size (popularity), as well as the size of the municipality. If there is a dominating committee and competing incumbents, it is less probable that another candidate would run. It is evident that the well-known effect of incumbency advantage works not only during the elections but also before them (when candidates are registered).
The aim of the paper is to analyze the processes of localization and globalization of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in rural areas in Wielkopolska. The author discusses the problem of rural economy as the place of localization of internationalized and globally active enterprises. First, she analyzes the potential factors of enterprises’ localization in the condition of open economy. Then, she focuses on shares of foreign capital and foreign exchange of enterprises operating in urban and non-urban environments and in agricultural and non-agricultural areas. The author analyzes the data reported in the years 2008?2011 by the Polish Statistical Office GUS concerning entities with foreign capital and firms with capital abroad. She shows that the pace and advancement of the globalization processes in the investigated enterprises differ according to the level of urbanization and the economic structure of different localizations. The results show that globalization leads to polarization of the development of regional and local economy.
The article describes a local conflict which arose when the decision on the establishment of the Brzeziny district (powiat) had been waived at the last moment. This resulted in strong protests of the inhabitants, who hoped that the district authorities would be located in Brzeziny. The conflict impaired the local community`s ability to exercise its political function and to execute public tasks. Two opposed groups emerged in the local community: representatives of the local authority and people connected with them on the one hand, and the protest committee, later the Teraz Brzeziny (Time for Brzeziny) association, on the other. The consequence of this local conflict, taken as a model, is mutual adaptation of both opposing sides. In Brzeziny, the adaptation took the form of a compromise negotiations between the government authorities and local community`s representatives, which brought a solution to the problem. As a result of the compromise, the Brzeziny district has been established, however not within the originally planned boundaries.
The aim of our research is to evaluate the level of economic independence and its influence on political system changes in different groups of local government. The research shows that the decisive factor in differentiating economic independence of local governments is the level of urbanization. In urban self-government, its own revenues surpass 50% and sometimes even 60%, whereas in rural areas (defined as rural communes and land districts) they reach about 30%. Such marked differences can cause local governments to develop in two structurally different directions.
The aim of the following article is a comprehensive review of the cluster theory. Article starts with the discussion on the new approach towards regional and local development. In the first part author presents and discusses spectrum of concepts related to clusters such as: Marshallian industrial district, Italian industrial districts, new industrial spaces, mezo-systems, local innovative milieu, learning regions, and regional innovation systems. The core of the article is the analysis of the cluster approach: its theoretical inspiration and background, definitions, its specificity, effects of clusters described in literature, strength and weaknesses of this approach. The last part of the article is devoted to the practical issues – examples of cluster-based policies. This short review covers the initiatives undertaken in the countries of European Union.
The aim of this article is to analyze the odds to find a job and the assessment of the duration of long-term unemployment. The data base is the 2007–2011 records from the Local Labour Office in Sulęcin. The authors of the article make the hypothesis that the impact of the determinants on the odds and rate of finding a job by the long-term unemployed is the same as in the case of the all the unemployed. The authors present a thesis that the determinants of long-term unemployment in the period of study are: the place of residence, age, the level of education, gender, seniority and the year of leaving the register. To analyze the data they use such nonlinear regression models as: the logistic model and the Cox hazard model. The former enables them to compare the odds to leave unemployment and the latter – to assess the time spent on finding employment. The designated odds ratios and hazard ratios are used to study the differences between subgroups of individual characteristics of the long-term unemployed as compared with all the unemployed.
The paper begins with an analysis of policymaking principles and responsibilities of local authorities in Poland. Next, outputs of local policies at the level of the gmina are presented in a case study of the suburban area of the Gdansk agglomeration. Chosen features of local policies are pointed out as a basis for comparison of the local districts. The decisions taken by local governments allow to classify types o local policy. For instance, while some of the local districts prefer investments in social infrastructure, other are more inclined to invest in technical infrastructure. Only two out of seven local governments create and implement policies which can be identified as sustainable.
The paper focuses on the institutional solutions adopted in different Polish urban regions as a response to the requirement to create the so-called ITI instrument in the framework of 2014–2020 EU financial perspective. This phenomenon is analyzed in the light of the mechanism of launching and functioning of metropolitan cooperation structures and the concept of Europeanization. The authors assume that former – more or less successful – attempts to institutionalize such cooperation in Polish urban functional areas influence the process of creation and functioning of ITI cooperation.
This paper provides a review of structure and contents of Local Economic Development (LED) programmes. It also offers a list of data and information necessary to develop and implement such programmes. The author emphasises the difference in approach to LED by the researchers (theorists) and the practitioners, dealing with LED on every day basis. This gap, according to the author is in part a legacy centrally managed economy and is typical for the countries in transition period.
The aim of the study is to examine the impact of the amendment to the Municipal Self-Government Act (hereinafter: MSGA; Journal of Laws 2018, item 994) on the implementation of participatory budgeting (PB) in 2019 and 2020 in Polish voivodship cities. Using the desk research method, 36 PB regulations and over 3.4 thousand projects were selected for implementation in 10 categories: 1) sports (investment and other), 2) leisure and recreation (investment and other), 3) construction or modernisation of sidewalks, 4) construction or modernisation of streets, 5) pedestrian walkways, 6) parking lots, 7) lighting, 8) city bicycles (bicycle infrastructure), 9) modernisation of buildings, and 10) other (e.g. educational, cultural, training). Detailed studies were carried on the influence of legislative changes on: 1) financial mechanisms; 2) principles and organisation of the budgeting process; 3) generic structure of projects; 4) participatory budgeting model. In order to verify the results obtained, changes in the PB regulations not resulting from the MSGA provisions were additionally analysed. It was shown that the amendment to the Act had a significant impact on the implementation of PB in all the analysed cities. The changes mainly concerned the financial and formal-organisational aspects of participatory budgeting process. The most crucial ones include: increase in the size of the overall subsidies (in 15 cities), modification of the distribution of the financial means (9), introduction of letters of support at the stage of project submission (7) and appeal procedure (9). Among the “non-statutory” activities, the abolition of age limits in the remaining 7 cities should be mentioned. These activities brought positive effects on the increase in turnout (15), the number of projects selected for implementation (12) and their average value (13). On the other hand, the changes in MSGA did not affect the generic structure of the projects (in both years, in 10 cities the category “leisure and recreation” prevailed, and 1149 projects from this category were selected for implementation). The final unification of the PB implementation model in Polish voivodship cities has been completed. Finally, three modes of PB implementation according to the new rules were indicated: financial, procedural and combined.
This paper analyses the shifts in the system of governance of Kyiv in 2008–2014 as a crucial element of the resilience capacity of the region. The consequences of the economic crisis and the ongoing security crisis demand new approaches and solutions from the city’s leadership and community. For years Kyiv suffered from poor municipal leadership and unprecedented control by the central government, which undermined the resilience of its socio-economic system in the aftermath of the global economic crisis. However, new forms of community initiatives that bring together private and non-governmental actors are becoming widespread, and are becoming critical knowledge networks that are essential for successful long-term development. Changing institutional frameworks, and the firm commitment to decentralisation proclaimed by the country’s current leadership, open new avenues for harnessing the city’s potential. The challenge is in finding ways for constructive collaboration between formal and informal leaders of the city while building a new base for sustainable and competitive economic growth.
Warmia-Mazury region, one of the poorest in Poland, faces the deepest (as compared to all regions of the EU) labour market crisis. The mixture of social and economic problems represents a huge challenge for regional authorities. The chances for fast improvement are limited by several factors, such as low quality of transport infrastructure, low innovation potential and productivity, large share of unskilled labour force, etc. One necessary condition of the improvement is the reform of public finances at country level. Nonetheless, regional authorities should undertake the activity in order to increase the potential of human capital in the region, e.g. by improving the quality of schools. While directly fighting unemployment more effort should be put on stimulating the demand side of the labour market and co-operation with NGOs.
The global economic crisis that hit all the national economies in the EU area stimulated the need for new approaches in the planning and implementation of regional development policy. This paper investigates the debates about the role of the city of Riga and its development potential as the biggest city in Latvia, whilst also looking at the challenges and opportunities created by the need to respond to global changes. The article discusses the relevance of certain factors and demonstrates the actions taken by national authorities to promote the more balanced development of Latvia, as well as the opportunities to apply a place-based approach in promoting the development of Riga as the capital city of Latvia.
The concept of the political cycle was originally formulated with regard to decisions taken at the central level, but it may be also applied to the local level. Most of the previous empirical studies have focused on expenditure (how its size and structure change depending on the electoral cycle). The applicability of the concept to local tax policy has also been studied, although more rarely. In Polish studies of local public finance, the concept of political cycle has so far been rarely used. In this article, the authors check whether the theoretical frame of the political cycle is suitable for interpreting decisions relating to tariffs on local public services. It is empirically tested on tariffs on water and sewage, rents in municipal housing, tickets for local public transport and parking charges. The second research question concerns factors influencing the likelihood of the political cycle in different services. In this respect, the article puts forward four specific hypotheses. The authors have to face a methodological problem: the distinction between the influence of the electoral cycle and of other factors, such as inflation, or the change in the financial situation of local governments, and economic growth rate. The applied quantitative methods refer to panel logistic regression and linear regression models in which the impact of the electoral year is controlled by other variables.
The article concentrates on vehicle tax, which is interesting not only due to its efficiency, but also high mobility of the tax base. The study aims to examine the correlation between fiscal results and municipal policies, from the perspective of such criteria as the type of municipality and taxpayer category. The study is based on correlation analysis, in which Pearson’s independence test and Spearman’s rho coefficient are used. The results confirm that the tested correlations do exist. Municipal tax policy influences tax revenues of the studied tax, though the results in each unit are different between the current and later periods. Moreover, in the case of vehicle tax, municipal authorities’ main action was to lower the upper tax rates. For municipalities in which these relations were the most visible, econometric models were built. These illustrate the effects of tax policy in relation to certain taxpayer categories.
After the fall of communism local communities in Poland stress the history of their own. This phenomenon is still going up, being a part of a larger rebirth of local communities’ life. Even small communities are building monuments of people with local or national merits, who lived in this place. The pope John Paul II (a pope from Polandl) is frequently remembered in this context. His monuments are built – especially when he visited a given town as a pope and/or had some contact with it when he lived in Poland.
The main objective of this paper is to analyze the reasons of development of the Integrated Territorial Investments in the new 2014-2020 period in the context of EU reforms, and to describe the creation process and the threats this experimental approach may encounter in Poland. The Author’s main thesis is that the experimental ITI concept causes additional conflicts between management authorities and beneficiaries who are used to the fact that declared and implemented intervention aims are different. The Author also assumes that there exist important factors that could potentially hinder the radical reforms and re-establish the status quo (or “domesticate” the policy). The main methods (desk research and involvement in preparatory works as a Ministry expert) determine the structure of the sources used. The paper offers some conclusions.
Strengthening economic cohesion of regional economies is usually considered as one of the major goals of regional policy. At the same time, metropolitan cities are recognized as main centres of economic growth, influencing the development perspectives of more peripheral areas. It is therefore important to know the range and the mechanism of spillover of socio-economic development from metropolises to their surroundings, as well as to identify the areas which are economically lagging as a result of missing functional links with metropolises. The authors apply the local spatial correlation measures (local Moran’s statistics – LISA) in the analysis of municipal revenues in order to delimit the diffusion and polarization of economic development in Poland.
The Act of 11 January 2018 amending certain acts in order to increase participation of citizens in the process of selecting, functioning and controlling certain public bodies (Journal of Laws 2018, item 130) obliged all local government units to establish a citizens’ resolution initiative and to regulate the basic procedures related to the preparation and submission of applications by a resolution of their law-making body. The article analyses the implementation activities undertaken in cities with county rights. It indicates that before the entry into force of the Act, 55 cities out of 66 had already implemented such an arrangement, and, in their case, the Act helped unify the procedures. The article also points out that some cities did not implement these regulations before the beginning of the 8th term of office of local governments, and in several cases there were problems with the implementation, which prevented citizens from exercising their resolution initiative. The article presents the legal status as of 31 December 2019.
Article presents results of the analysis of 15 regional innovation strategies prepared by the Polish regions in the years 2002–2005. The stress was put on their conformity with the standards. In particular, adequacy of the diagnosis and objectives and character and scope of the first implementation activities were taken into account. The strategies in question turned out to be quite different as far as methodology and conceptual underpinnings adopted or objectives and activities proposed are concerned. The efforts put into RIS preparation were not in vain, however, there is a need to upgrade them up (wider use of qualitative criteria in diagnosis, improved compatibility of methodology used) and first of all to get full picture of innovativeness of Polish regions. And this is what cannot be achieved on the basis of those 15 strategies. Strongly recommended nationwide research on regional innovativeness may serve as a starting point to create national Innovation Support and Technology Transfer System SWIFT which is considered by Authors a precondition for effective utilization of regional efforts for the benefit of the country as a whole.
The article analyzes decision-making councils of Local Action Groups operating in Axis 4 LEADER Rural Development Programme in three Polish regions which were described in the literature as differing significantly in terms of their historical and cultural backgrounds. According to the concept of governance, implemented in programmes such as LEADER, the influence of representatives of various sectors of the economy on local decisions should be balanced and, in accordance with the rules of the support programme, no more than 50% of council members should represent the public sector. This provision, included in formal documents of Local Action Groups, is designed to ensure that non-public sectors do have some impact on council decisions. However, in the three studied regions, the real participation of mayors, officials and executives of the public sector was from 15 to 21% higher than in the official data, and in about one-third of the surveyed organizations it exceeded 50%, which gave the public sector representatives the dominant role in decision-making and selection of eligible projects. This practice was very similar in the studied regions, and is discussed in the context of the concept of governance, as an example of tokenism.
The impact of ICT use is an important aspect of studies concerning the transformation of contemporary democracy. The paper presents results of the research project on the development of e-government in Polish self-government institutions, carried out between 2005 and 2012. Websites of all Polish territorial counties as well as all the communes in two voivodships were analyzed within the project. Results of the research indicate that the sophistication of the ICT use grows at both levels of self–government. At the same time significant regional differences in the development of e–government can be observed. Thus, the mode ICT is used by self-government institutions is the additional dimension of digital divide at local level.
The purpose of this article is to define the phenomenon of regionalism from the sociological perspective. Regionalism as such appeared in Europe around the mid-nineteenth century, and since then has become an object of scientific research. The article proposes an integral definition of regionalism and describes its four dimensions: identity, institutions, ideology and practice. It also identifies the cultural, economic and political types of regionalism and outlines the process of shaping regionalism in the long-term perspective. The article describes the influence of the nation state on the evolution of regionalism and analyses the relationship between regionalism and processes of state decentralisation. It also describes mutual relations of the European Union and its policies with regionalism, which is being transformed due to globalisation.