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 purpose of the article is to provide political analysis of European Groupings of Territorial Cooperation (EGTC), which are being currently established on the Polish-Slovak borderland. First, the author presents the essence and legal basis of this new instrument of the European Union, and describes the origin of the first EGTCs. Second, in the main body of the text, he discusses two Polish-Slovak EGTCs, i.e. Tatra and TRITIA, focusing in particular on their documents of incorporation, internal organization and the planned scope of activities. The article is supplemented with a comparative analysis of previously active euroregions. In the summary, the author offers some conclusions and recommendations regarding further formalization of Polish-Slovak trans-frontier cooperation.
In Western Europe, the model of local government has been changing in the previous decades: from a council-committee model to more executive-oriented ones, like the parliamentary and the presidential models. Political leadership lies at the heart of many of the recent institutional reforms of local government. An explicit aim of these reforms has been to strengthen the executive power, and to provide strong, visible and effective leadership. For example, the position of the mayor in Britain and Germany and of the board in the Netherlands has changed. The direct election of mayors is one of the ways to strengthen the political executive. Not all countries are undergoing such kind of transformation. In some of them, changes have been restricted to few municipalities. Others have been relatively immune to this international trend towards institutional reforms.
The aim of the French territorial reform from December 2010 was to change the structure of the French local political and administrative system thanks to institutional solutions that would strengthen the biggest agglomerations and lead to their progressive metropolization. The announced changes were meant to adjust the model of territorial organization to the requirements of contemporary economy and to enhance national economic growth of the country in stagnation. The introduction in the law of metropolises as new local-government territorial units that took over the most important competences of municipalities and departments was meant as a “territorial revolution”. Unfortunately, it failed. Meanwhile, the regulations that would make it possible to create a rather loose form of interterritorial cooperation, a so-called Metropolitan Pole, that were inserted into the project at the last moment, gave results unexpected by the legislator. This situation shows the growing importance of flexible solutions regarding competences and territory, solutions that use multilevel governance as an effective tool for inter-territorial management in the situation of inertia of the classical territorial structure and obstacles to its reform.
The article analyzes the economic basis of Pax Americana over the next 10?20 years and describes the future position of Eastern Europe (New Europe) in the American constellation of interests. The main factors of geopolitical power are wealth – total and per capita, the production of leading goods, and innovations. An analysis of the position of different countries in the advancement of the new economy (knowledge-based economy) proves that in the next 20 years the US will be the most important power of the Western world. The position of Eastern Europe (New Europe) in Pax Americana will be the result of its rather poor impact on the national interests of the US.
New Public Management – inspired reforms have influenced implementation of management principles in local government, the marketisation and outsourcing. These reforms were mostly visible in the United Kingdom but appear also in other European countries, for example: Ireland, Sweden, Germany, the least in France (among described in this article). There is a risk that NPM-led reforms may come to lose sight of the underlying social purpose of public services. NPM has not became a new, universal model of public sector management. The debate about public service reform has moved (particularly in UK) beyond the concerns of NPM to an emerging concept of networked community governance.
Regions can get involved in international-relations activity defined as paradiplomacy. It is similar to state diplomacy as it is subject to its law and policy and uses similar tools such as diplomatic protocol, but is not pursued by professional diplomats. Regional paradiplomacy needs to be analysed as a source of new international relationships. Consequently, regions should be perceived as new actors in international relations. The article focuses on the paradiplomacy of Polish regions (voivodships, or województwa) and Croatian counties (Hrvatske županije). The case study discusses the cooperation between the Warmińsko-Mazurskie Voivodship and the Split-Dalmatia County.
The article presents the main topics of the European debate on the EU Cohesion Policy after 2013, i.e. a discussion of territorial cohesion, the new EU economic strategy 2010-2020, and the next EU financial perspective after 2013. The debate has been continuing in the shadow of the financial and economic crises (2008-2010) and the trouble in the Euro zone (2010), which were caused by continued structural differences between the Member States. The Cohesion Policy is too weak an instrument to solve these problems. The author’s analysis focuses on the main proposals of changes in the Cohesion Policy put forward during the debate, which were shaped mainly by political interests of the dominant actors, and based on experts’ opinions and scientific concepts. In the conclusion, the author presents some recommendations for future Cohesion Policies.
The main purpose of this article is the analysis of differences in dynamics and directions of development policy between Eastern Poland and the rest of the country. The authors analyze the structure and value of investments supported by EU structural funds in the years 2004–2006. The results obtained allow to identify some regularities characteristic for this region, namely high territorial and capital dispersion of the investments and a lower general financial value of all EU-supported projects. The tendencies may have a negative impact on the expected results of the cohesion policy. There is no significant qualitative change in development policy in Easter Poland. Most of the investment projects entrench the existing socio-economic structures.
The aim of the following article is to review the literature on financial evaluation of local governments and to emphasise the need of creating new methods of evaluation in this sector. The author makes references to the indicators applied by the financial institutions to business sector and points out the possibilities of adapting those experiences in assessing local governments.
The majority of major local actors of the city of Mielec have united in the idea of creating the Special Economic Zone (SEZ) in the 1st half of 90s. The informal coalition of representatives of various bodies and institutions quickly started to have access to institutional resources, that enabled them to control the decision-making and took over the social leadership. The young coalition managed also to gain the support from the government. Such informal deal was characterised by the most typical features for urban regime of symbolic type and develop to all actors a great mobilisation for finding new progress tendencies of the city. The strength of the coalition and the success of the regime may be measured by the first SEZ in Poland that has been created in 1995 in Mielec. The legal regulations for functioning of SEZs in Poland were developed mainly by participants of this regime having a visible stigma of local city problems.
Financial independence is considered to be a crucial instrument of self-governance. This issue is treated in a dynamic and structural approach. The aim of the research was the evaluation of the level of changes in local government units` financial independence. The highest level of independence is found in the cities with poviat rights, whereas the lowest is found in self-governing voivodeships and in poviats. In the communes, the level is average, but there are big differences between them in this aspect. The urban communes and those situated near big cities have a much higher level of financial independence than rural communes, situated far away from major cities.
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.
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.
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.
Transport policy requires greater territorial differentiation; at the local level, it should be closely integrated with education, health and social policies. This approach to transport policy contributed to the research and determined its area – the research was carried out among school students, and its aim (and that of this article) was to determine the accessibility of secondary schools in the Wągrowiec district via public transport. Many inhabitants of villages and small towns are forced to have a car or else face a whole host of difficulties. The most common difficulties include access to education, health care or better paid work.
Local referenda are a special form of direct democracy in Poland. As a result of some legal solutions and in the light of practice, now reaching back for over ten years, they must be considered as a populist and ineffective instrument. This refers primarily to the referenda on recalling local authorities such as city council and mayor, accounting for 85%-90% of all such events. The practice of local referenda in Poland embraces approximately 400 cases. During the first three terms in office of the territorial self-government (1990-2002), 347 referenda concerned recalling the communal councils. Such referenda may be initiated only by the residents of the commune. Only 37 of these referenda proved to be decisive, as their attendance turnout exceeded 30%. The effectiveness of referenda is limited mostly to small towns (up to 20 thousand residents), where the threshold turnout is usually reached.
The aim of the present research is to describe the role of the Warmia and Mazury University in the formation of the functional macroregion in the Olsztyn agglomeration. The main criterion used to delimitate the macroregion of Olsztyn is the range of educational services of the biggest university in Warmia and Mazury. The authors use data relating to the place of living of the candidates who registered during the recruitment process in 2011 and 2012. They also analyze the impact of selected factors on the size of the area of Olsztyn university’s spatial influence. The research results show that the functional macroregion of the Olsztyn agglomeration covers, apart from the Warmia and Mazury voivodship, also the neighbouring districts of the Podlaskie and the Mazowieckie voivodships.
Andrzej Pawluczuk, Małgorzata Wasiuk
The Information Society’s phenomenon is a subject of interest of many scientific disciplines, among them geography, economy and sociology. The ESPON 1.2.3 project differ against a background of research on the Information Society because of its thematic and spatial scope of the analyses. The operational objective of the project was not only the description of Information Society’s state and trends in Europe from the territorial perspective15, but also analysis of Information Society’s effects on spatial development in different types of regions and formulation on that basis of policy recommendations for macro-, meso- and microlevels. The project has been the first attempt to include the issues of the Information Society into research conducted in the field of spatial development within the enlarged European Union and it should be conceived as a pilot study for the future research.
Poland as a rightful member of European Union has got a chance to participate in structural funds and Cohesion Fund as well. Taking into consideration the limited financial opportunities of territorial self-government units in projects co-financed by structural funds, presence of private sector means may be considered as a crucial factor. The scope and typology of public-private partnerships PPP have been presented in this study. The chances as well threats which may occur during the execution of investment ventures within the framework of public-private partnership have been presented there as well.
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 absorption the European Union structural aid, available in 2007–2013 period, provides Poland the opportunity of fast development and improvement of life quality. A regional policy that will effectively use the structural funds may contribute to the improvement of infrastructure, development of entrepreneurship and restructuring of rural areas. The issue of absorption ability has to be considered with particular attention. This study – on the basis of experiences in implementing the Integrated Regional Operational Programme – points out some threats and bottlenecks limiting the potential absorption of funds. The barriers have been identified using the questionnaire based research on the experiences of local governments in the swietokrzyskie region.
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 military aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, which started in 2014 and came to another active phase in February 2022, may change Ukraine’s foreign trade in terms of both its geography and product structure. The regions of Ukraine will not only have to recover from the consequences of destruction, but also to seek new directions of foreign economic activity and build connections with reliable partners such as the European Union and the United States. The paper presents an analysis of changes in the foreign trade of Ukraine and its regions since 2014 and examines shifts in trade flows in the direction of Western leaders of global trade. The case of Georgia, another target of Russian military intervention, in the reorientation of its trade flows, is also considered.
Researchers do not study territorial origins of students very often. However, it is a very important determinant of connections between universities and their social surroundings. A regional character of a university may be an essential value for local communities, who need well-educated employees capable of working in local administration, economy, education, social care, security, culture, research etc. In the article, territorial and social origins of the Szczecin University students were analysed and it was proved that several regional ranges of recruitment existed. A range is determined by distances between students’ houses and the university, although evidences of local loyalty can be also seen.
Creditworthiness, similar to the ability of generating profit and efficient disposal of financial resources, is one of the basic elements of local governments’ financial potential, since it enables gaining additional funds for investment purposes. However, the possibility of obtaining credit is limited not only by law regulations, but also by economic restraints, which determine creditworthiness. Each time, before deciding about incurring debts or about financial involvement, banks as well as local governments themselves should analyze thoroughly the current and future budgets in respect of credit facilities.
The aim of the paper is to analyse the allocation of resources from the Cohesion Policy provided to individual regional programmes in the European Union’s 2021–2027 financial scheme. In addition to the European Regional Development Fund and the European Social Fund Plus funds, funds from the Just Transition Fund distributed under the European Funds for Just Transition programme, as well as funds from the European Funds for the Eastern Poland programme were also analysed. The analysis covers the proposition of allocation of funds to regions in the context of the experience gained so far in Poland in the implementation of regional programmes. The carried out analysis confirmed the decrease in the importance of regional programmes in shaping the Regional Development Policy in the 2021–2027 perspective due to the reduction in allocation.
This article shows the profiles of people who hold at least the second cadence on the position of village mayor, mayor or president of the city. According to the paradigm New Public Management, the person who manages the community is often antidote on its problems, the key for its economical success and the chance of better life its inhabitants. Doubtlessly, it is connected with a charisma of the leader. What is hidden under this term? The aim of this article is to answer the question whether it is possible to show some personality features and the model of management which decide on the chance of holding the position of the mayor of community on the next cadence. The method of the studies contain the interpretation of the personality test NEO-FFI and the questionnaire concerning the model of management of the community. The results show that the people which are the managers of the community must have some level of the main personality features in fact. Only then it is possible to hold the next cadence. It relates mainly to extraversion and conscientiousness. The model of management chosen by them is of great significance too.
This article presents new risk analysis technique. The People and Property Hazard Analysis (PPHA) is probabilistic, semiquantitative technique, uncomplicated and easy to use. It provides more precise estimates of a risk level than preliminary hazard analysis – probably the most commonly performed technique by local governments in Poland. PPHA is applicable to the analysis of all types of communities and organizations. The purpose of the new technique is to provide a tool that can assist decision-makers in effectively allocating limited resources across the vast array of potential investments that could mitigate risk.
The reforms driven by New Public Management (NPM) led to the introduction of management principles in local governments, marketisation and outsourcing. They made the greatest impact in the United Kingdom, but were also put in place in other European countries such as Ireland, Sweden, Germany, and – to the least degree – in France (compared to other countries discussed in this paper). There is a risk that NPM-inspired reforms may come to lose sight of the underlying social purpose of public services. NPM has not however become a new, universal model for public sector management. Issues tackled in the debate concerning the reform of public services have moved (mostly in the UK) beyond the concerns of NPM towards the emerging concept of networked community governance.
Competitive advantage of a region, beside its natural resources, is determined to a large extent by the quality and competence of local and regional authorities. In order to benefit from region`s full potential, it is essential to involve the authorities into efficient information policy. It is reflected by the results of a Poland-wide research, where 67% of respondents perceived that it was the creation of an information system enabling fast and accurate decision-making that was the key factor determining efficient management of a company. It is therefore important to analyse how the Western Pomeranian companies see the role and activities of local authorities in this aspect. Local governments play a unique part in information delivery as they represent a group of entities which should actively affect development conditions for companies in the region, within existing legal and administrative system. The paper presents results of the research on information policy in local governments in Western Pomerania.
The author investigates the citizens perception of the impact of Polish-German border on local economies and communities in Western Poland. The research, based on the survey conducted in selected municipalities, reveals also the attitudes of the citizens towards the protection of natural environment and their opinion about the neighbours at both sides of the border. Finally, it attempts to assess the degree of citizens identification with the border area.
The article provides the analysis of bottlenecks related to public private partnerships (PPP), and the methods of avoiding them. The study is based on the history of Private Finance Initiative (PFI) in Great Britain, and the changes introduced to this programme in the last years. It is shown, that there are similarities between PPP in today’s Poland and PFI in the UK at the beginning of 90’s. British experience can be helpful in creating better environment for PPP, to avoid (or at least minimize) the potential threats.
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.
This paper focuses on the changes in transport accessibility at the regional scale in terms of individual car transport due to the introduction to the regional road network of the bypasses of Łódź in the meridian course. The changes are determined on the basis of measures of the time and potential accessibility of the network, conducted before and after the ring roads were implemented. The results are presented in both relative and absolute terms for each of the 4956 settlement units and 177 communes of the Łódź region. The author determines that the construction of motorways and expressways, especially those representing bypasses of large urban centres, helps to increase the cohesion of a region and increase accessibility of peripheral areas, while the size and spatial extent of the impact of road investments are clearly differentiated.
The paper deals with the issue of filling seats without voting in elections to councils in municipalities with up to 20,000 inhabitants. In comparison to the local elections held in 2014, the number of such cases increased by 77% in the 2018 elections. It appears that the applicable election law, in particular Article 418 § 1 (the division of municipalities into single-seat constituencies), Article 434 § 1 and 2 (the election organisation rules applicable when the number of candidates equals the number of available seats), and Article 478 § 2 (the procedure for proposing candidates for the position of municipal leader or town mayor) of the Electoral Code, combined with the conditions determining local electoral competition, may facilitate the occurrence of the phenomenon of non-competitive elections that results, among other things, in low voter turnout.
The article discusses the differences in the mayors’ political strength in European countries and the implications of their role in horizontal power relationships for the operation of the local government scene. First, it shows how the role of the mayor is measured, taking into account various institutional settings such as the election system, the scope of competences vis-?-vis the legislative body and possibilities of recall before the end of the term of office. Second, it demonstrates how such dissimilar contexts of the mayor’s political strength impact on several selected aspects of their activity, including the propensity to be formally affiliated with a political party, perception of the mayor’s autonomy in their day-to-day management of the municipality and the possibilities to keep the mandate for several terms in a row.
The purpose of the article is open to debate. It presents the main conclusions from a study made in March 2017 for the Office of Analysis and Expertise of the Senate of the Republic of Poland on the merits of changes in the territorial division of the Warsaw Metropolitan Area. In this study was carried out a synthesis of the research conducted mainly by the author on the development of Warsaw Metropolitan Area and the Mazowieckie voivodship, including the impact of the capital and delimitation of its functional urban area. In its summary were formulated the most important conclusions, arguing for finding a compromise solution, aimed at establishing a new administrative division system, taking into account both the daily urban system, spatial cohesion needs, and the interests of residents and entrepreneurs. Due to the importance of the area, including Warsaw’s functions as a capital city, the conclusions apply to the whole Poland.
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.
Theory and empirical literature relates educational quality to two main explanatory factors: intergenerational transfer of human capital and the quality of schools, school composition and economic conditions. Based on these findings a model explaining territorial differentiation of educational quality is proposed. The dependent variable is test score of 6th grade students, averaged at municipality level. As it turns out, educational outcome is highly conditioned on local human capital stock. The role of traditionally meant school quality (resources) is minor (although higher in rural areas than in cities. Average school outcome differs significantly along historical divisions of Poland, not only in levels, but also in parameters of determining function. Legacies of the past and related socioeconomic processes have a substantial impact on the sensitivity of educational quality to different explanatory factors.
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.
The article presents the role of territorial units in enterprise stimulation, discusses the factors that encourage local authorities to promote entrepreneurship or discourage them from using supporting instruments. The authors assess the current activity of local governments in the domain and they suggest potential changes in local policy regarding entrepreneurship stimulation. The article points out areas where improvement is possible despite the obstacles due to the existing legal framework
The aim of the article is to present the local government in Georgia. Among post-Soviet, non-EU states, Georgia may be praised for the greatest progress in reforming local and regional authorities. It does not mean, however, that the decentralisation process is over. It has been blocked mainly by the lack of own incomes of local governments and limitations of a political nature. In order to assess the state of development of local government in Georgia, the author has made a review of legislation and an analysis of press releases, statistical data and reports of experts. He also used a case study of the former mayor of Tbilisi, Gigi Ugulava.
The paper summarizes the activities, carried out in Poland in the period 2011–2016, which led to the delimitation of Functional Urban Areas of Voivodeship Centres (FUA VC) in the scope of the implementation of Integrated Territorial Investments (ITI). The first part of the paper presents the principles of implementing ITI in Poland, and the results of the delimitation of FUA VC proposed by the central authorities. In the second part, they are confronted with the results of studies conducted in all Polish regions. This makes it possible to assess their mutual relations, and to observe five variants of works related to the delimitation of FUA VC for the implementation of ITI, namely I. Ministerial, II. Cooperation, III. Strategic Planning, IV. Expert, and V. Interim.
As a consequence of the global financial crisis which began in 2008, the amount of debt of the local government sector in OECD countries has remarkably increased. In Poland, the debt of local governments has started to fall gradually after reaching its peak in nominal terms in 2014. In this article, we examine how the ability of local governments to repay their debts changed over the 2007-2016 period. The analysis reveals that, despite their considerable nominal indebtedness, local governments had already returned to a strong debt repayment capacity at the end of 2016, observed formerly at the end of 2009. However, at the end of 2016, one in eight local governments had become overindebted in terms of their repayment capacity, despite the rigorous statutory debt limits imposed in Poland. The most worrying situation is in towns with county rights: in 33% of these entities, the debt repayment period is estimated at longer than 15 years. This category represents 33% of Poland’s population, and therefore it is of a systemic importance.
The issue of political leadership is widely studied and described in the literature. It should be noted that this problem can be analyzed both at the institutional and the individual level. The institutional factors determine the way of selecting local leaders and the scope of their competence. The individual features, on the other hand, create a leadership style. Cities have a presidential system with a strong mayor. In the case of cohabitation, though, this system can be destabilized because, instead of peaceful institutional co-existence, the institutions may be in conflict. After the local elections of 2014, half of the Polish municipalities had to confront the problem of cohabitation. The aim of this paper is to present the question of local leadership in the context of cohabitation.
The purpose of the research presented in the article is to assess the effects of the 2015 amalgamation of the Zielona Góra city with the rural commune of the same name on the quality of local democracy. The second goal is to examine the phenomenon of free riding on the common pool in the context of the local-level territorial reform. The analysis, based on a quasi-experimental scheme using the synthetic control method, unlike previous studies, did not confirm the free riding hypothesis. The results of the study also indicate that the strategy implemented in Zielona Góra can be useful in achieving an intermediate political goal, which is to ensure the residents’ approval of the reform and legitimization of its results.
After 10 years of discussions about the need to empower the metropolitan areas in Poland, finally a metropolitan union law for the Śląskie Voivodeship [Silesian region] has been adopted. Defining two million people as a population level required for the creation of the metropolitan union confirmed that the legislator’s intention was to establish the first metropolitan union in Poland specifically in the Silesian conurbation due to its unique territorial structure. The establishment of the Upper Silesian and Zagłębie Metropolis [Górnośląsko-Zagłębiowska Metropolia] should be seen as an important social experiment and significant innovation in the Polish local – government system. The large territorial delimitation of the metropolitan union with 41 local units is a courageous step that proves a high level of mobilisation and strong involvement of Silesian local decision makers. The specific decision-making procedure based on double majority voting should entourage dialogue between the large and small member cities of the metropolitan union. The generally formulated competences of the metropolitan union allow considerable freedom to the authorities in prioritising tasks and projects. The author’s analyses the institutional architecture of the first Polish metropolitan union, which is a hybrid organisation combining an inter-municipal association and a local government unit, from the perspective of turning the Upper Silesian metropolitan area into an efficient system of metropolitan governance.
Many authors claim that regional differences in average student achievements in Poland are partly determined by the cultural factors and cannot be fully explained by uneven spending on education or by reproduction of human capital between generations. The aim of this article is to better understand this phenomenon by studying the institutional aspects of Poland’s education system during its formation back in the 19th century, when Poland remained partitioned between the three empires: Prussian, Russian, and Austrian. It turns out that one fundamental difference between the early education system under the Austrian, Russian, and Prussian rule may concern the degree of social acceptance of the school, teacher status, and the role of education as a lever of social advancement. Another important factor is the perception of educational goals either in terms of acquisition of practical skills, or of personal formation. In this respect, there was a clear difference between Galicia (Austrian partition), where the curriculum was focused on the humanities, and other partitions (particularly Prussia), where schools were more linked to the economy.
The article discusses political leadership in local government. Change from traditional local government to local governance requires also institutional changes and new roles played by local leaders. The notion of political leader is limited to persons having democratic legitimacy for their role played in local politics. It excludes people, who might be influential but remain outside formal democratic institutions of local government. The article distinguishes between type (which depends on formal institutional settings) and style (more dependent on personal characteristics) of leadership. The article discusses selected theoretical concepts of type and style of leadership and tries to refer them to Polish local governments. Recent Polish reforms have brought a change from the type which was close to a collective model to one closer to a strong mayor form. Analysis of four initiative in 2 Polish cities (Poznan and Ostrow Wielkopolski) allows to formulate some conclusions on citizens’ perception of actual styles of local political leadership. The largest proportion of citizens in analysed cities prefers a style which is close to consensus facilitator. But in a real behaviour of leaders, citizens see more of city boss style, which might be characterized by the implementation of an own vision with internal resources existing within local government structures. Comparison of citizens’ preferences with the perception of actual behaviour of leaders allows to compute an Expectation Gap Index. The gap is usually quite narrow in initiatives focused on the construction of broad development programmes, but it becomes wider if we turn to more concretely focused projects.
The author explores the problem of territorial reorganization of the metropolitan area within the Canadian evolutionary federal system, taking as an example the cities of Toronto and Montreal. The results of the research indicate that adaptation strategies, applied by states aiming at empowering the metropolis, depend on the general level of the territorial units’ autonomy. The existence of strong local self-government favours creation of intercommunal cooperation structures without dissolution of current local territorial units. Territorial reorganization in the case of states with a low level of local autonomy may facilitate elimination of former local units by theirs amalgamation in new, larger metropolitan self-government structures. As far as this context is concerned, Canada constitutes a very interesting study case. Taking into consideration Canadian evolutionary federal system, highly limited local autonomy of the cities, and its mix of European and American traditions, one can observe almost all the above-mentioned dimensions of reform and adaptation strategies. Advanced and institutionalized intercommunal cooperation, developed in Toronto and Montreal in the middle of the 20th century, was interrupted by amalgamation imposed by provincial government, which resulted in creation of new, enlarged metropolitan cities of Toronto in 1998 and Montreal in 2002. In both cases the amalgamation has not been accepted by a part of the population and destabilized cooperation in these metropolitan areas. The trouble with amalgamation led to abandonment of further structural and territorial reforms, which were replaced by functional ones, taking the form of special agreements between Toronto and Montreal and their respective provinces (Ontario and Quebec), giving them both new competences and financial resources. Regardless of any difficulties in pursuing an appropriate metropolitan regime and the suitable position for the metropolis in the structure of a political and territorial system, both cities have achieved strong economic performance and high quality of life.
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.
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.
A high ranking position of Lower Silesia among Polish voivodeships based on its competitiveness, attractiveness for investors and accessibility as well as on its innovative potential is a good starting point for achieving the goals of the Renewed Lisbon Strategy as well as for making it a Region of Knowledge. Innovativeness and attractiveness for investors however are a dynamic status which a region has to compete for in an incessant rivalry with the best ones involving institutional and social partners. The Structural Funds – aptly streamed to and implemented – are only some efficient tools and not a goal itself. An apt profiting by the strong position of Wroclaw agglomeration as well as by experience of Wroclaw Technical University being a local leader of innovation, combined with wider than up till now learning from the experience of Lower Silesia’s partner regions and building an attractive offer for investors in high tech and services will make it possible to achieve final goals indicated in strategies.
The paper focuses on issues related to the impact of quality management in local government at the municipal level on the use of EU funds supporting local development. Poland is one of the greatest beneficiaries of structural funds provided for regional development and strengthening cohesion within the Community. Local governments are one of the groups which absorbed most of the funds for 2007–2013. The paper describes how and to what extent the implementation of New Public Management tools in local government administration can guarantee efficient use of EU funds. Three areas of such impact are taken into consideration – the amount of acquired funds, efficient implementation of the projects co-financed by the EU, and the quality of these projects.
The debt of local government units (LGU) is part of the public debt. Therefore, the analysis of the phenomenon of local government debt is important for the financial security of the state. In Poland, in the period 2007–2013, the debt of local government units rapidly increased, in particular in the major cities with poviat rights – metropolises. Due to the dual nature of metropolises, they perform many important tasks in the social and infrastructure sphere that determine the quality of life of their residents and contribute to the socio-economic development of the region and metropolitan areas. However, an excessive increase in debt of the metropolis may in the future be a barrier to achieving a high rate of socio-economic development. The aim of the paper is to analyze the phenomenon of indebtedness in the largest cities with poviat rights – metropolises – in Poland in the years 2007–2013. The study draws on publicly accessible databases compiled by the Ministry of Finance (Wskaźniki do oceny sytuacji fiansowej jednostek samorządu terytorialnego).
The global Post-Fordist economy based on permanent flows changes the way we use space. It modifies the processes of functioning of cities, some of which take the role of global hubs or regional networks. It is an open question whether and how the changes concerning territorial and competence range of cities influence institutions and institutionalizations of contemporary city authorities. Although it is difficult to establish a general answer to this question, the author bases his reflection on the case of the evolution, unprecedented in the French conditions, of the local government system of Grand Lyon Urban Community. On 1st January 2015, after 45 years of its existence, Grand Lyon became a Metropolis of Lyon, establishing a new unit of local government with extended range and new competences, combining the prerogative powers of municipalities, an urban community, and a department.
Referring to the Polish regionalization from the perspective of European integration and globalization, the paper proposes a model of regional analysis based on theoretical conceptions of Pierre Bourdieu and Anssi Paasi. Region as a social field of new generation, regional habitus constructed within it and an imago regionis as a new type of regional identity are the key concepts of the proposed model. Multi-stage institutionalization of region, which results in an idiosyncratic regional identity, is the main process analysed by means of the model. The identity functions on the one hand at the level of territorial marketing, on the other it interacts with mental and behavioural patterns constitutive of regional habitus, conditioning adaptive and innovative potential of regional communities. The proposed approach enables to see region in the perspective of global change on the one hand, while on the other, it draws attention to possibilities of local modification of the conditions, within which it is implemented. While it sustains the weight of socio-cultural factors in regional analyses, at the same time it makes it possible to reach beyond narrowly conceived perspective of cultural identity, dominant in sociologically minded studies of regions.
The aim of the research was to identify and measure the level of economic freedom across the EU at the turn of the 20th and 21st centuries. Special attention was paid to the changes in (i.e. liberalization of) the Polish economy. The basis of the comparative analysis between the 25 EU countries (excluding Malta and Cyprus) was provided by data acquired from the annual economic freedom study conducted by the Heritage Foundation and the Wall Street Journal in the years 1996–2008. The overall economic freedom index consisted of the average from marks for 10 different features – more detailed criteria. The average index acquired from all 10 features was the basis of a country’s mark for the level of liberalism (economic freedom) or statism. The proposed methodological approach, in which the two main currents of statism and liberalism are exposed, was especially useful in evaluating the processes occurring in the Polish economy. The results of the research show that, in the group of 15 countries of the “old” EU, 10 can be considered more liberal. This group includes, as the most liberal EU state of all, Ireland. The second group is formed of 5 countries apparently less liberal, i.e. Spain, France, Portugal, Italy and Greece. Poland is found to be the most statist country anywhere in the EU, notwithstanding its status (along with the Czech Republic and Estonia) as one of the three leaders of liberalism in the first years of transformation. In this situation it is hard to identify the Polish economy with advanced or even excessive liberalism. It is – according to the present standards – a rather state-controlled economy, albeit with certain but scarce elements of liberalism. The research shows that the economic crisis which occurred from mid 2007 cannot be identified only with the liberal economy, even though the implemented methods of dealing with the crisis seem to point to such a source. Statist solutions prevail here, but some liberal methods appear as well. A solution to this dilemma can only be anticipated after several years have passed.
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.
The article presents an overview of opinions on climate change and the ways of adapting to it held by representatives of Polish local authorities (political leaders and local administration representatives) in a recently conducted survey. The author briefly describes the institutional context in which the new field of local policy has emerged and local adaptation strategies are established. The empirical analyses, based on survey data, demonstrate that local authorities in many municipalities remain relatively sceptical about the human impact on climate change: 32% feel convinced by the existing evidence. The analyses also demonstrate that there is a relationship between attitudes of local authorities towards climate change and the population size of the municipalities, as well as its previous exposure to extreme weather events. The results suggest that local adaptation policies have more chance of being developed in municipalities with specialized environmental administration.
The article presents the regional differentiation of several phenomena economic, social, political of the Polish space. It is striking to notice that the patterns of these differentiations are very similar, which proves a well-known thesis of mutual interrelationships that exist between several dimensions of development. The historical underpinnings of these differentiations prove once again that they are the product of "long duration". Both these characteristics the similarity of differentiations and their historical roots lead to a conclusion that the regional policy should assume a modest attitude, since it can change the objective reality only gradually and to some extent. The article ends with some extent. The article ends with some suggestions for this policy.
The paper is an attempt to analyze the reform of the local government electoral system introduced by the Act of January 11, 2018. The authors of the study describe the most important changes from the point of view of the citizens mentioned in the title of the act as well as of the institutions involved. Among the most important changes the authors list those related to passive voting right, seat allocation method and the structure of constituencies. Because of the lack of an appropriate time perspective, the authors limit themselves to legal and political analysis, pointing only to their possible consequences.
The aim of the paper is to analyze the factors determining the likelihood of reelection of Polish mayors. In order to identify the factors impacting the likelihood of reelection, the author estimates the parameters of the binomial model. The results show that spending in the election year, especially on housing, is greatly appreciated by the inhabitants of cities. The mayors who are very likely to be reelected are leaders of cities that are successful in acquiring EU funds, where the labour market is stable, and the material situation of inhabitants and businesses does not deteriorate during their term. Cities that are capitals of voivodeships offer a greater likelihood of reelection, as do those formerly in the Austrian partition or on the so-called Reclaimed Lands of Western Poland. Variables belonging to the domain of sociology of politics have an equally significant impact on the analyzed likelihood.
The subject of the paper is the discussion on horizontal redistribution of public revenues among local self-government units. The assumed aim of this redistribution is to equalize the different levels of income and burden of expenditure. The paper lists desirable features of this redistribution, motives for its application, and arguments of its opponents. The analysis of the latter shows that while part of the criticism refers to the essence of horizontal redistribution, significantly more of it concerns the dysfunctions of its mechanism which became apparent after 2008. The criticism focuses, for example, on the criteria for making compensatory payments, the structure of tax revenue indices, the so-called reference period, the amounts of compensatory payments, the criteria for the distribution of the collected amounts. The paper includes suggestions concerning recommended directions of changes in the mechanism of this redistribution.
The local government plays a huge role in supporting local development. In this paper, the authors present the results of conducted research concerning the impact of selected aspects of financial policy of the local government units on their development on the example of cities affiliated with the Union of Polish Metropolises. Therefore, firstly, they construct a synthetic indicator of local development and use it to assess the relative development of the analyzed cities. Then, they measure the relationship between the level of the cities’ relative development in the years 2007?2012 and the values of major categories of the units’ financial management in those years (per capita), in particular the amount of their debt, total and investment expenses, and expenditures on individual groups of local government tasks.
Dynamic tourism development has resulted in equally dynamic growth of tourism industry, being the major source of income. Tourism development strategies are based on different concepts of economic growth which do not answer all questions. Among them is the issue of success factors: what makes certain localities enjoy fast tourism development while other similar places have problems? Against many beliefs on the significance of natural resources, more important are cultural assets and in particular development of tourist infrastructure and products. Having this in mind one should look for success factors in quality of human resources, elites and leadership.
The article focuses on objective predictors of voting behaviour in the EU referendum and confronts them with the actual outcomes of the referendum. Major dependent variable is support for EU entry on a county (powiat) level. The aggregate data for counties show territorial distribution of support. The differences between counties are analyzed in terms of employment in agriculture, historic regions, and unemployment. Analysis reveals an absolute dominance of employment in agriculture in explaining territorial differences in EU support. Nevertheless, historic regions preserve their significance, and, to a lesser degree, unemployment rate.
Endogenous growth theories presume knowledge plays the key role in economic growth (1). Yet, new economic geography along with empirical findings suggest the possibility of divergence occurring in development processes (2). Combining (1) and (2) indicates the importance of studying knowledge factors’ distribution. To obtain the fully fledged picture of a given economy one shall go beyond simply analyzing knowledge factors but include also their spatial location. The article touches upon this issue. It is devoted to Germany and examines three territorial and administrative levels: one referring to former country division (DDR & BRD), the second relating to NUTS 1 (16 Bundesländer) and third represented by 41 Regierungsbezirke (NUTS 2). Results are obtained by investigating 5 factors (e.g. expenditure on R&D, human resources in S&T, patent applications) and applying 4 measures (Gini, Rosenbluth, Ellison–Glaeser and Herfindahl–Hirschman Coefficients). This paper is meant to supplement earlier studies as well as a good starting point for further research devoted to country’s knowledge landscape.
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.
The article is demonstrates the differentiation of the intensity and characteristics of entrepreneurial activities in Belarus. With respect to many features, Belarus seems to be divided into the western and eastern part, that is, between the territory belonging before World War II to Poland and USSR. The eastern part is more urbanized (76% of urban population comparing to 60% in the west), includes largest cities and has better education indicators that the western part. As the entrepreneurship is highly correlated with education level and the degree of urbanization, it is not surprising that small business is most intense in Minsk and eastern Belarus. However, of the areas characterized by similar urbanization and education level, but located at different sides of the pre-war border, the entrepreneurship is decidedly more developed in the west. The research was conducted in the two regions: Grodziensk (western Belarus) and Witebsk (eastern Bealrus). It showed that the entrepreneurs from the western part of the republic are more free market oriented. While they main request from the central government was simply: less regulations, their counterparts in the east demanded rather more direct support from the state. This difference is the legacy of historical divisions and closer links of the western Belarus with the market economies of Poland and Lithuania.