The article studies determinants influencing the socially-vulnerable population of Ukraine in the period of the Russo-Ukrainian War. The research encompasses three directions: first, the study of the current number of socially vulnerable groups of the population within the boundaries of the Carpathian area; second, the study and analysis of the determinants influencing the number of socially-vulnerable groups of the population; third, the investigation of the degree of the determinants’ impact on the number of the socially-vulnerable population within the Carpathian area. The authors of the work have shaped five groups of determinants influencing socially-vulnerable population, namely national, administrative, economic, demographic, and social ones. The research confirms that before the war started in Ukraine, the number of socially-vulnerable population had been reducing both in the country and within the Carpathian area. In particular, in 2001–2021, the number of vulnerable groups of the population reduced by 23% in Ukraine, in the Chernivtsi region – by 24.5%, in the Ivano-Frankivsk region – by 10%, in the Transcarpathian region – by 8.6%, and in the Lviv region – by 6.1%. The situation has changed since the war started. Based on the conducted calculations, it is determined that the greatest impact on the socially-vulnerable population is created by the national and economic determinants, whilst the smallest one – by the demographic determinants, whereas the last ones depend on the geographic position of the region. It is also confirmed by calculations of the radar of determinants influencing socially-vulnerable population. During the Russo-Ukrainian War, the greatest impact of the determinants on socially-vulnerable population is marked in the Lviv region.
The article was published in Polish in "Studia Regionalne i Lokalne", 3/2004
The notion of replacement migration is frequently used in recent literature on migration policy and demographic forecasts. Such migration streams could theoretically compensate for the natural decrease and population ageing, observed in most of developed countries. In the long run, however, international migration can only slow down, rather than reverse these processes. In this respect, the situation in Poland is unique as its migration balance will most likely remain negative until around 2020. Nevertheless, the population outflow abroad could to some extent be offset by the population inflow. This would require, among other conditions, a reformulation of Poland`s migration policy, with an increase of provisions enabling selective legal immigration, preventing at the same time the so-called irregular immigration. Such provisions are already being implemented in some EU countries (including Germany), and in the future will probably form the basis of EU migration policy.
The authors have determined that the healthcare system is on the verge of collapse, as it is unable to meet the population’s growing needs for medical care. An analysis of demographic situation and health indices of the adult population in the north-eastern region of Ukraine (based on the example of the Sumy region) was carried out. The study confirms the number of deaths caused by COVID-19, the growth of new cases of coronavirus, and the excessive burden on primary care physicians and infectious disease specialists. It has been determined that the negative state of the domestic healthcare system is due to the shortcomings of public administration and organisation of this system in terms of COVID-19. One of the most important priorities of public policy should be to preserve and strengthen the health of the population, the development of intersectoral cooperation on the principle of ‘healthcare – in all state policies’, and the priority of the nation itself, i.e. the formation of healthy behaviour.
The article provides a comparison of the dynamic increase in the number of enterprises relative to the working-age population in the private sector in the years 2001–2004 (the immediate pre-accession period) and 2004–2007 (the immediate post-accession period). The study was conducted with regard to the main sectors of economic activity (agriculture, industry, lower-order services and higher-order services), as well as the functional diversity of municipalities, or gminas (urban and suburban categories, transportation corridors, tourism, etc., for a total of 16 categories). The study indicates a decline, inertia, spatial polarisation and tessellated spatial structure of the development dynamic of private enterprises.
The article analyzes the problem of delays in the preparation of local spatial development plans in Polish communes. Data from the annual survey sent to local governments and carried out in cooperation with the Ministry of Economic Development and Technology and the Statistics Poland were used. On this basis, the categories of communes in which there is highly possible to identify occurring of planning works prolongation (referred to in the article as delays in drawing up plans), as well as its reasons, were identified. No territorial differentiation in this scope was found. The basic differentiation is related to the population of communes, i.e. the larger the commune in this respect, the greater the delays are. The interviews obtained from 16 communes (at 68 over 50,000 inhabitants, where the highest number of delays in preparing plans was identified) show that the main reasons for delays include problems related to public consultations and arrangements of draft plans, changing legal regulations, and staff shortages in commune offices. The article shows how these issues are related to the broader problems of the Polish spatial planning system. Further research directions were also proposed.
This paper addresses the changes in the demographic development of Ukraine in the last 125 years in quantitative parameters of demographic sustainability: alterations in population size, its gender and age structure, and natural and migration movement. Demographic sustainability is considered to be the capacity of a country’s or a region’s demography to preserve a consistent population size with optimal proportions between its age categories. Eight historical-demographic stages related to specific military-political and socio-economic events are outlined and analysed. Demographic catastrophes and crises in Ukraine were directly related to the aggression of totalitarian regimes. They occurred at the initial stages of demographic transition, so Ukraine was capable of restoring the population size, albeit with deeply disturbed demographic structures. The large-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine increases the risk of the occurrence of a modern demographic catastrophe. Nowadays, the demographic sustainability of Ukraine cannot be achieved autonomously without the positive impact of external factors – the respective governmental demographic and socio-economic policies.
The accident at the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant was one of the largest in human history. It is often referred to as a global event because its effects were felt not only by Ukrainians but also by the populations of Belarus, Russia, Central Europe, the Balkans and the Scandinavian Peninsula. 2022 marked the 36th anniversary of this terrible occurrence, when the history of Ukraine in the late twentieth century was divided into two parts: before the tragedy of 26 April 1986, and after it.
Today, it is important for Ukrainian society not only to recognise the significance of the catastrophe and remember its victims but also to find ways to overcome its grave consequences. This requires comprehensive research useful for developing new approaches to minimising the environmental and socio-demographic problems caused by the Chornobyl tragedy. Thus, this research has practical scientific, humanitarian and socio-political significance. The novelty of the obtained results lies in the study’s critical rethinking of the achievements of predecessors and its analysis of historical sources concerning the environmental and socio-demographic consequences of the accident at the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant as they manifested from 1986 to 2022.
The methodological basis of the work is empirical cognition. The use of logical-analytical methods of grouping and typology allows us to classify homogeneous events and coherently present the material of the article. The study additionally uses comparative judgment, historical-statistical and problem-chronological methods. The principles of objectivity and impartiality also play an important role in the work.
The purpose of the study is to investigate the consequences of the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant accident on the environmental and socio-demographic aspects of the population of Ukraine from 1986 to 2022 based on the identified set of sources. From a historical perspective, the level of pollution in the territories of Ukraine is traced, the demographic situation is monitored, and parallels are drawn between the Chornobyl disaster and the increase in incurable diseases and mortality.
In conclusion, the authors note that although 36 years have passed, the echo of this catastrophe remains tangible for the population of Ukraine. Several issues still must be solved. The first is the return to life, namely, the safe living and management of areas that have been exposed to radiation contamination, as well as the continuation of work aimed at restoring agricultural soils. Second, purposeful work must be conducted by the state to minimise social and demographic problems resulting from the Chornobyl catastrophe. In our opinion, the government should increase expenditures aimed at providing quality medical services to the population of Ukraine, as well as conduct constant monitoring of the health of those people who are at high risk in order to better detect diseases in their early stages.
These groups of people include liquidators of the consequences of the accident and migrants. Such measures can stabilise the demographic situation by increasing birth rates and reducing mortality, as well as improve the health and living standards of the population of Ukraine.
Local governments in the Western Balkan countries are dependent on central governments’ transfers, with low fiscal autonomy and limited efforts for own-source revenue mobilisation. The paper identifies that besides central government transfers, other significant factors in determining municipal own-source revenues include central and local public investment, current expenditures, human development index, and population density. Municipal own-source revenue is adversely affected by intergovernmental transfers, implying their de-incentivising effect in collecting local revenues. Local capital expenditure is a significant and strong determinant with a higher strength than central government investments, suggesting their importance for local fiscal autonomy. The human development index as a composite measure, unlike GDP per capita, positively affects the municipal fiscal autonomy.
This article examines the potential risks of permanent population loss in Ukraine on account of Russian military actions dating back to 2014, which has hindered the ability of the stronghold territorial communities to recover. It outlines the context of displacement in Ukraine over the past eight years, assesses displaced people’s direct needs and considers both national and local policies to meet them. Finally, it forecasts factors that will impact the reluctance of displaced persons to return to the stronghold territories and details the necessary national and local responses.
This text addresses three key issues presented in the article by Perdał et al. (2020) and in the polemic by Bolesław Domański, published in this issue of Studia Regionalne i Lokalne: territorial aspects of social justice, the relationships between territorial differentiation of socio-economic phenomena and political attitudes and behaviour in Poland, and the problem of meeting the requirements of social justice in relation to territorial systems that are in a particularly difficult situation, mainly due to their depopulation.
The article was published in Polish in "Studia Regionalne i Lokalne", 3/2004
Theory and empirical literature relate educational quality to two main explanatory factors: family education (intergenerational transfer of human capital) and the quality of schools. The model proposed in this paper is intended to verify the significance of these factors in explaining territorial disparities in educational quality in Poland. The dependent variable is the test score of sixth grade pupils in 2002, averaged at municipality level. The test results prove to be strongly correlated with human capital stock in the municipality`s adult population, which points to the key role of intergenerational transfer for educational quality. On the other hand, the role of school resources (understood as expenditure on education) is rather small. Average test results differ significantly between Poland`s historical divisions. Surprisingly, the more urbanised and relatively affluent regions, like Greater Poland (Wielkopolska), Pomerania (Pomorze) and the so-called Regained Territories (ziemie odzyskane) reveal a substantially lower educational quality than the territories in the east and south-east of the country, generally less developed and with a significant share of agriculture in the economy. These differences can only be partly explained by an additional environmental factor, related to the prevalence of state-owned economy before 1990 (e.g. state farms PGRs) and today`s high structural unemployment. Interestingly, the dissimilarities between the historical regions are not only illustrated by average test score levels, but also by parameters of the determining functions for these results. It can be concluded therefore that location in a historical region has a substantial impact on the flexibility of educational outcomes with regard to different explanatory factors.
Polish farmers, including rural pensioners, make up a social group which is difficult to define. It is a diversified population, dominated (in numbers) by ‘quasi-farmers’ – those who run small subsistence farms and do not sell their products in the market. This category has many negative, economic, social and psychological features. In their political choices, farmers often choose to support populist agrarian parties. The author, referring to her earlier concept of ‘blocking development’ and ‘moderating changes’, describes the political mechanisms of slowing down the reforms, triggered by a broadly understood community of Polish farmers.
Several theories of regional development (e.g. new economic geography) claim positive relationship between administrative status of capital cities and their economic and population growth. Availability of capital goods as well as direct and indirect demand generated by administrative institutions are among factors which accelerate development. However, most of empirical studies so far have concentrated either on national capitals or on federal states. In our article we conduct empirical tests comparing the impact of reforms implemented in 1975 and 1999 in Poland on the development of cities gaining or losing their regional capital functions. On the basis of those results the article indicates differences in impacts of both reforms and attempts to explain those differences.
The article offers a multidimensional analysis of the dynamics of population ageing in Poland. To this end, the spatial dynamic shift-share method is used. The data used in the analysis include the number of people aged 65 or over per 1,000 population, based on the criteria of sex and place of residence (urban or rural areas) in 72 Polish subregions in the period from 2003 to 2016. The study analyses the pace of changes in the scale of the phenomenon and identifies structural and local factors underpinning the net effect in specific subregions. In effect, subregions with the greatest pace of change and its underpinning factors are identified.
The paper aims to discuss the major trends in changes of regional differences of economic wellbeing and the resulting spatial mobility of population as well as some regional consequences of these processes. The research is based on an empirical methodology, and visual analysis of mapped data is the main research method. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, fast decrease of employment in industry and agriculture has damaged, first of all, peripheral regions and, later, resulted in mass emigration, which is still evident in most Lithuanian municipalities. The decrease of the number of jobs in these sectors and its increase in those located in different places meant that most residents of non-metropolitan regions had to find new jobs outside the localities in which they resided. This resulted in growing mobility of the population, expressed by growing foreign emigration, inner migrations, and commuting, which continue to shape the social structure of the country to the present day, as spatial structures change more slowly than modes of production. Differences in wellbeing, which appeared at the end of the 20th century, played a role in accelerating emigration processes, which are still damaging local labour supply and economic development in many regions.
Decentralisation in Ukraine is an important factor in the development of a democratic system of government. The reform of local self-government aims to create new relations between citizens, local authorities, and the state. The aim of the article is to conduct a comprehensive analysis of the local government reform in Ukraine and other countries in order to identify its main advantages and disadvantages as well as indicate ways to overcome the existing shortcomings in this area. The study determined that decentralisation in the country leads to democratic transformations of society based on civic initiative and responsibility, as well as provides a decent standard of living and quality services at the local level. The introduction of decentralisation can be observed in almost all areas, including administrative, political, financial, and social. This significantly affects the potential of the population and increases the responsibility of public authorities to the population. There is an increase in the level of public services with regard to economic, legal, political, social, and ethnic issues. Finally, proposals were made to make changes in the field of local self-government in order to overcome the existing problems in this area.
The main purpose of this paper is to analyze depopulation processes of rural areas in Lower Silesia in the years 1995–2015. The authors intend to determine the scale, durability and spatial distribution of depopulation in rural areas, as well as to analyze the factors of population changes which contribute to population loss. It helps them to identify depopulating rural areas and to draw up their typology according to the specificity of contemporary demographic changes. With reference to the scale of depopulation, four types of rural areas are distinguished (developing, stagnating, depopulating, intensively depopulating), and according to the durability of depopulation five types are identified (constantly developing, episodically depopulating, temporarily depopulating, prevalently depopulating, constantly depopulating). The analysis shows that depopulation is a problem in the rural areas of the Sudety Mts., Sudety Foreland, and in peripheral areas, in main urban centres. What is more, the processes of depopulation in Lower Silesia should not be associated exclusively with villages located in the Sudetes. In depopulating rural areas of Lower Silesia, the population decline is compounded by negative demographic trends (low birth rate, increase in post-working age population).
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., & Brzóska, A. (2020). Demand Elasticity for Local Public Transport in Polish Cities: Do Local Policies Matter?. Transylvanian Review of Administrative Sciences, 16(61), 125-142
After 1990, the number of local public transport passengers has been systematically decreasing at the expense of individual transport, which led to an increase in traffic congestion and deterioration of air quality in cities. However, for the last few years, a reversal of this trend has been observed in some cities. The article, using the data on the present number and recent changes in the number of passengers in nearly 100 Polish cities, discusses regression models to explain the factors influencing the diversity of demand for public transport services and its dynamics. The independent variables of the model refer both to the characteristics of cities (their socio-economic environment) and the organisation of services (e.g. organisational and legal forms of local transport companies, tariff policies, etc.). The results show that the density of the public transport network is the most significant factor explaining variation of the demand, while the level of ticket prices is almost insignificant. Demand in the largest cities has also recently been on the increase, but the relationship between the demand and the population size of the city is not a linear one.
One of the most important features of Eastern Poland is its peripheral character. This region is often associated with various negative socio-economic phenomena. Population processes, including the problem of depopulation, affect a large part of rural areas of the macroregion. The main aim of this paper is to analyze the impact of the demographic changes occurring in rural areas of Eastern Poland in 2002–2015 on selected areas of socio-economic life, as well as to attempt to determine the scale of the changes and their spatial consequences in the field of education, entrepreneurship, construction, housing, and public finances.
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.
The paper analyses the changes in the scale of the rural economic activity and identifies their selected determinants. The socio-demographic characteristics of the labour resources and the economic differences between rural regions in Poland were analysed as reasons for the dissimilar levels of rural employment. Analyses have demonstrated that, in 2010–2016, rural economic activity measured by the employment rate increased from 50% to 53%, primarily as a result of the impact of cyclical determinants, reflected in the increase in the number of the employed being higher than the number of inactive persons, with a reduced scale of unemployment overall. The studies indicated similar values of the employment rate for urban and rural areas, while the differences in its level within the selected social categories were much more visible for rural populations. This reflected a persistence of territorial disparities in labour markets as well as a trend towards their convergence. The level of territorial differences in the rural employment in Poland was moderate and should be linked with regional economic characteristics. In this context, the allocation of rural labour supply could be attributed to the impact of cities and their functional areas and to the progress in economic diversification of villages located in a particular region. The discussion section of the paper outlines the institutional opportunities and barriers increasing rural economic activity. The presented conclusions were based on the Central Statistical Office data (mainly the Labour Force Survey and the Local Data Bank) and statistical and comparative analysis methods.
The results of this study substantiate and compare the trends observed in the global labour market and the corresponding trends in the Ukrainian labour market in 2017–2022. With regard to the annual trend specification, this study has established the extent to which the Ukrainian labour market participants focus on the key areas of its development and has identified the problematic aspects that hinder the socio-economic recovery of the country. These findings have important implications for substantiating the course for the strategic development of the Ukrainian labour market, which should form the base for enhancing both life quality for the population and the socio-economic growth of the country.
The aim of the study is to indicate the importance of rural areas in the system of inter-communal migrations in Poland. Internal migration in rural areas was analysed for the years 1995–2019, with particular focus on the state of migration registered in 2019. The study used basic indicators determining the intensity of migration, which made it possible to conclude that rural areas play an important role in the system of internal migration in Poland, contributing to the spatial redistribution of population. However, this influence varies due to the fact that, on the one hand, there is a strong influence of suburbanisation on migration processes in rural areas in suburban zones of large and medium-sized cities in Poland. On the other hand, migration outflows caused by an unfavourable socio-economic situation are visible in the case of external and inner peripheries.
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.