This paper focuses on the link between women’s civic engagement and elected political participation. The first part presents the theoretical aspects of both concepts – i.e. civic engagement and political involvement – and combines them with another category, namely the descriptive representation of women. The second part of the paper is devoted to the methodology of the present research, which consists of both quantitative and qualitative methods. The quantitative research examines the composition of six city councils in Poland (Wrocław, Kraków, Gdańsk, Łódź, Lublin, and Poznań) as well as city mayorships after the last elections (2018). The results confirm a positive correlation between women’s elected political participation and women’s civic engagement. The qualitative research, based on 11 semi-structured interviews, aims at explaining why the civic sector is dominated by women, even though politics still remains men’s domain. Another objective is to identify particular obstacles that prevent female civic activists from further engagement in politics. Specific recommendations for mitigating the identified obstacles and increasing the number of women in politics are provided.
This paper explores the interrelationships between religious attitudes, ethnic and linguistic identities, and geopolitical preferences in three geopolitical fault-line cities in Eastern Ukraine – Mariupol, Kharkiv, and Dnipro. The research is based on data taken from a survey and the associated descriptive statistics and correlation analysis. The findings suggest that the religious divide in Eastern Ukraine does not generate additional division but instead strengthens the existing divide, which is known to be formulated in terms of geopolitical as opposed to language or ethnicity-based categories, although language and ethnicity do have an influence on geopolitical preferences. Moreover, civic-national identity appears to be more relevant than ethnic-national identity to understanding the religious fault-line in Eastern Ukraine.
The article was published in Polish in "Studia Regionalne i Lokalne", 4/2004
The paper discusses regional disparities in Poland in their many dimensions and aspects economic, social and political. Individual phenomena basically have a similar spatial representation, which can be seen as a corroboration of the well-known thesis on the existence of a strong interdependency of many phenomena in the development process. The historical underpinnings of these disparities prove once again that they are the products of "long duration` processes. Both characteristics of these differences, showing their complexity and historical factors suggest caution as to what can realistically be expected of regional policy because it can change the objective reality only gradually and only to a limited extent. The paper ends with some recommendations for regional policy.
The article analyses the participation of nation-wide parties in the elections of local authorities: municipal councils and mayors. There is no empirical confirmation of the assumption that along with the democratic consolidation in Poland, political parties strengthen their presence in local governments. Between 2002 and 2018 the overall spread of national parties in local elections decreased, even though the national party system (at the parliamentary arena) was relatively consolidated. The level of political parties’ engagement in local authorities, despite the changes in the level of parties’ support, is relatively stable – and low: no more than one third of elected local officials in Poland are affiliated with political parties. Among parliamentary parties, only four: PO, PiS, PS and SLD, maintained their significant representation in local governments, but the share of power at the local level which they were able to win varied considerably. LPR and Samoobrona rapidly lost their significance after their defeat in the 2007 parliamentary elections. The “new parties” established later failed to secure representation at the local level. The analyses confirm a positive (and stable over time) relationship between the level of party politicisation of local governments and the size of the municipality.
The article focuses on the beliefs of the regional political elites in Poland about the models of democracy, operationalised as opinions about political representation, direct democracy and elite integration. The empirical basis is a questionnaire survey of 400 members of regional political elites carried out in 2017. The sample consists of 400 councillors of the 2014-2018 term of regional (voivodship) assemblies and town councils of big cities. The data show that an incoherence of views characterises the regional political elite: they do not form a more general vision of the democratic process, and detailed opinions on representation, direct democracy and elite integration poorly correlate with independent variables, including those describing political affiliations, i.e. party affinity or location on the left-right scale. The primary explanation for this incoherent image is the thesis about the lack of professionalisation of the regional elite.