List of issues

Contents of issue 7-8/2010

Krzysztof Bartosik - Labor Productivity and Its Impact on Employment in Poland’s Manufacturing Sector, abstract, article

Sylwia Roszkowska, Aleksandra Rogut - Wages, Prices and Unemployment in Poland, abstract, article

Paweł Kumor - Wage Inequality and the Level of Economic Development, abstract, article

Krystyna Przybylska - Born Globals: A New Generation of Small Polish Businesses, abstract, article

Andrzej T. Szablewski - The Implications of the European Union’s Climate Policy for the Power Sector, abstract, article

Edyta Dworak, Maria Magdalena Grzelak - R&D Expenditure and GDP in EU Countries, abstract, article


Book Review: Uskali Mäki, The Methodology of Positive Economics: Reflections on the Milton Friedman Legacy, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge 2009, 382 pp. - reviewed by Łukasz Hardt

Book Review: Paweł Marszałek, Koordynacja polityki pieniężnej i fiskalnej jako przesłanka stabilności poziomu cen (Monetary and Fiscal Policy Coordination as a Factor Behind Price Stability), Wydawnictwo Naukowe PWN, Warsaw 2009, 200 pp. - reviewed by Marek Lubiński

Book Review: Bohdan Jeliński, Polityka współpracy z zagranicą (International Relations Policy), Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Gdańskiego, Gdańsk 2009, 573 pp. - reviewed by Marian Gorynia

Book Review: Bożena M. Dobrzańska, Planowanie strategiczne zrównoważonego rozwoju obszarów przyrodniczo cennych (Strategic Planning for the Sustainable Development of Natural Areas), Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu w Białymstoku, Białystok 2007, 160 pp. - reviewed by Bazyli Poskrobko


The Track Record of Socioeconomic Changes in Central and Eastern Europe - Tadeusz Smuga

Krzysztof Bartosik - Labor Productivity and Its Impact on Employment in Poland’s Manufacturing Sector

The paper analyzes the influence of labor productivity on employment in various branches of Poland’s manufacturing sector in 1993-2007. The author attempts to determine if changes in labor productivity and employment were substitutive or complementary in nature and whether the relationship between these processes was stable or liable to change. The analysis, using the Pearsoncorrelation coefficient (which measures the strength of the linear relationship between two variables), shows that the relationship between labor productivity and employment turned from substitutive to complementary and that an improvement in labor productivity had no distinct impact on employment in the short term, while in the long term it promoted an increase in employment. The relationship between labor productivity and employment varied because the ways in which labor productivity improved tended to change. In the 1990s institutional changes led to an improvement in labor productivity, including the introduction of market economy mechanisms, privatization and greater competition in the wake of opening the economy. At the time the simplest method was used: employment reductions. With time this option petered out and companies began to improve labor productivity (and competitiveness) by investing, modernizing their fixed assets, and introducing product rather than process innovations. This had a favorable influence on employment, the author says.

Keywords: labor productivity, employment, industry, Pearson correlation coefficient, total factor productivity
Article: PDF

Sylwia Roszkowska, Aleksandra Rogut - Wages, Prices and Unemployment in Poland

The paper aims to analyze long-run relationships between labor market trends, wages, prices, interest rates and the exchange rate in Poland. We use a research approach known as cointegrated VAR analysis, which makes it possible to identify long-run tendencies and common stochastic trends as well as estimate the adjustment dynamics of the system (the pulling and pushing forces). The results show that we can find stable long-run cointegration relationships between the unemployment rate, wages and prices. We can confirm our two main research hypotheses formulated on the basis of theoretical formulations. First of all, increasing product market competition seems to be the main driving force behind the convergence of the Polish economy with more advanced European economies during the analyzed period. Second, we can confirm that the Polish inflation rate has adapted to the European purchasing power parity level over the long run, and we can also confirm a kind of Balassa-Samuelson effect on consumer prices.

Keywords: cointegrated VAR model, labor market in Poland, price adjustments
Article: PDF

Paweł Kumor - Wage Inequality and the Level of Economic Development

International economists are divided over whether income inequalities can be explained with the use of an approach known as the Kuznets hypothesis. Some researchers criticize the Kuznets hypothesis while others support it in their reports. According to Kumor, the Kuznets curve (which is the graphical representation of Russian American economist Simon Kuznets’ hypothesis that economic inequality increases over time while a country is developing, and then begins to decrease after a certain average income is attained) accurately reflects income inequalities only when there are distinct processes of change in the economy.
The author sets out to check if the Kuznets hypothesis holds true for Poland. The research covered the period of 1974-2007 with two different economic systems: central planning in 1975-1988 and the market economy in 1990-2007. The processes of economic change in both systems were represented by GDP per employee. The author modified Gini coefficients (measures of the inequality of a distribution developed by Italian statistician Corrado Gini) characterizing wage inequalities. He also applied the method of least squares, a standard approach to the approximate solution of sets of equations in which there are more equations than unknowns.
The results of the research seem to confirm a modified version of the Kuznets hypothesis, separately for both economic systems, according to Kumor. In the last analyzed year, 2007, the Gini coefficient was close to its maximum value, the author says.

Keywords: Kuznets hypothesis, Kuznets curve, Gini coefficient, income inequality, economic development, central planning, market economy
Article: PDF

Krystyna Przybylska - Born Globals: A New Generation of Small Polish Businesses

The article proposes a new approach to the process of internationalization of the firm. According to the author, international economists are increasingly critical of the traditional, stage approach to this process. Both theoretical discussions and empirical evidence question this approach, according to Przybylska. A growing number of companies, especially small and medium-sized ones, are going international in their operations far sooner than suggested by the traditional approach to internationalization. Firms that that compete internationally from their earliest stages, often bypassing the domestic market, are referred to as born global firms. The traditional approach to the internationalization process fails to explain why born global firms decide to compete on foreign markets immediately or soon after launching their operations. This means that born globals challenge the traditional theory of internationalization, Przybylska says.
The author proposes a new approach to born globals to explain why a growing number of Polish small and medium-sized enterprises decide to compete internationally from their earliest stages. The author also sets out to highlight the characteristic features of this process. An additional aim is to show the differences between the traditional and new approaches to the internationalization of the firm. To achieve these goals, Przybylska formulates two research hypotheses. The first hypothesis holds that the traditional models of internationalization do not fully explain this process, especially with regard to small and medium-sized businesses. The other hypothesis is that there is a growing number of born globals among small and medium-sized enterprises in Poland.
To confirm these hypotheses, the author conducted a survey. The obtained data proved both research hypotheses right, the author concludes.

Keywords: internationalization of the firm, stage approach, born globals, small and medium-sized enterprises
Article: PDF

Andrzej T. Szablewski - The Implications of the European Union’s Climate Policy for the Power Sector

The European Union’s carbon policy, designed to prevent climate change, is a key determinant of the bloc’s energy policy, along with the security of energy supply and market liberalization. While the EU’s energy security agenda is beyond dispute, its carbon policy priority can be questioned in two ways, according to Szablewski. First, the soundness of the policy’s fundamentals raises some serious doubts, and second, the policy can be questioned in the context of its extensive economic implications, especially for the coal-based power sector. Considering that 95 percent of Poland’s electricity is produced from coal, the latter issue is too rarely raised in the ongoing debate on the future of Poland’s power sector, the author says. His analysis focuses on available mechanisms and means of supporting the deployment of low-carbon technologies, which, Szablewski says, are grossly uncompetitive with regard to the traditional coal and gas generation technology. The paper aims to show how low-carbon technologies can be deployed in an effective and economically efficient manner—an issue that has been hotly discussed in international research reports over the past few years.
The analysis starts with sketching out the main points of the key mechanisms of supporting low-carbon technologies, i.e. picking winners and level playing field. It then focuses on two economic instruments applied in this area—carbon tax and cap and trade schemes. The conclusion is that there is a conflict between economic efficiency and political considerations.

Keywords: carbon policy, low-carbon-technologies, picking winners mechanism, level playing field mechanism, cap and trade schemes, carbon tax
Article: PDF

Edyta Dworak, Maria Magdalena Grzelak - R&D Expenditure and GDP in EU Countries

The changes that have taken place in the global economy in recent years have testified to a transformation of an industrial economy into a knowledge-based economy, using technological and innovative potential. This transformation has highlighted the competitive advantages of countries and regions specializing in the production of high-tech products. Innovativeness is considered to be one of the most important factors determining the rate and quality of economic growth. Consequently, highly developed countries are conducting research to seek new sources of innovativeness and methods for creating innovative potential. The key determinants of the innovativeness of an economy are expenditure on research and development and the results of R&D efforts embodied in the form of innovations.
The article aims to check a theory by Norwegian economist Jan Fagerberg that the technological potential of an economy, expressed as a relation of R&D expenditure to GDP or as a number of patents per capita, determines positively the rate of GDP growth. In the article, the authors analyze the influence of R&D expenditure on GDP per capita in EU countries in 1999-2008. Panel model estimation methods are used in the research. The results of the analysis show that R&D expenditure determines GDP per capita in the studied countries, the authors conclude.

Keywords: innovation, innovativeness, R&D expenditure, GDP growth
Article: PDF

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