List of issues

Contents of issue 1-2/2009

Jerzy Wilkin - The Political Economics of the Common Agricultural Policy Reform, abstract, article

Gabriela Ziewiec - The Future of the Capitalist System According to Wallerstein and Fukuyama, abstract, article

Bogusław Guzik - The Ownership Structure and Technological Efficiency of Poland’s Largest Banks, abstract, article


Justyna Ostaszewska - The Use of EU Structural Funds by Entrepreneurs, abstract, article

Wanda Karpińska-Mizielińska, Tadeusz Smuga, Magdalena Echaust - Structural Funds and Their Influence on the Competitiveness of Enterprises, abstract, article


Rachel M. Mccleary, Robert J. Barro - Religion and Economy, article


Book Review: Elżbieta Mączyńska, Zdzisław Sadowski (eds.), O kształtowaniu ładu gospodarczego (On Economic Governance), Polskie Wydawnictwo Ekonomiczne, Warsaw 2008, 217 pp. - reviewed by Marian Zalesko

Book Review: Marian Gorynia, Barbara Jankowska, Klastry a międzynarodowa konkurencyjność i internacjonalizacja przedsiębiorstwa (Business Clusters and the International Competitiveness and Internationalization of Enterprises), Difin, Warsaw 2008, 228 pp. - reviewed by Przemysław Deszczyński

Book Review: Eric D. Beinhocker, The Origin of Wealth: Evolution Complexity, and the Radical Remaking of Economics, Harvard Business Scholl Press, Boston 2006, 527 pp. - reviewed by Łukasz Hardt

Changes in the Competitiveness of Regions - Tadeusz Smuga

Jerzy Wilkin - The Political Economics of the Common Agricultural Policy Reform

The paper describes the evolution of the European Union’s Common Agricultural Policy from the perspective of political economics. This important EU policy is analyzed in the context of political and social mechanisms, policy objectives and instruments, as well as the division of benefits.
The paper shows that there are growing differences between individual EU member states in agricultural policy objectives, instruments and the amount of funds available. The author focuses on the latest attempts to reform CAP and highlights the need to reorient the policy to improve the competitiveness of European agriculture and pursue other priorities important for EU citizens.

Keywords: political economics, CAP, EU, agricultural subsidies
Article: PDF

Gabriela Ziewiec - The Future of the Capitalist System According to Wallerstein and Fukuyama

The paper uses hermeneutic and comparative methods to analyze the notions of the capitalist system developed by Francis Fukuyama and Immanuel Wallerstein. The author highlights the differences between these two models.
The article focuses on two theoretical approaches to the contemporary stage of globalization. Under the first approach, liberal democracy and capitalism are seen as the most perfect system and the only one free from internal contradictions. The existing economic and social differences are seen as a quantitative and transitional feature rather than a quantitative and permanent one. In the perspective adopted by Wallerstein, heterogeneity is seen as a permanent feature of the modern world, and capitalism is defined as a system full of inherent conflicts leading to an imminent decline.
The analysis of world systems discussed in the text makes it possible to trace the ideological foundations of the contemporary stage of globalization. It also puts a question mark over the theory of modernization, which had its heyday in the 1990s and under which social changes take place in an identical, linear way in all societies, while the Western economic and political model is meant for universal application.

Keywords: capitalist system, ideological foundations, globalization, dependence theory, ECLAC, Annales School of History, world systems, accumulation, capital
Article: PDF

Bogusław Guzik - The Ownership Structure and Technological Efficiency of Poland’s Largest Banks

Using data on Poland’s 50 largest banks—ranked by Bank Miesięcznik Finansowy in June 2007—the author calculated indicators of efficiency for 23 Polish banks.
These indicators were calculated for 2006 according to a key Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) model known as the SE-CCR. On the basis of data on the banks’ shareholding structure by country of origin and type of ownership—as well as data on when the banks were established—the author checked if individual groups of banks differed from one another in the average level of efficiency. Guzik used the Kruskal-Wallis test to this end. He also developed a model to explain the relationship between efficiency in the sense of CCR super-efficiency and the ownership structure of banks and their age.
Overall, the paper shows that privately held banks controlled by foreign shareholders and established after 2000 are far more efficient than banks owned by domestic shareholders and established before 2000, especially if they are controlled by the state.

Keywords: DEA (Data Envelopment Analysis), SE-CCR, efficiency, banks, ownership structure, econometric efficiency model
Article: PDF

Justyna Ostaszewska - The Use of EU Structural Funds by Entrepreneurs

The paper examines the process of absorbing European Union funds earmarked for Polish enterprises for 2004-2006.
The research is based on an in-depth analysis of statistical data obtained by institutions responsible for managing EU programs in Poland as well as the country’s Central Statistical Office (GUS). Reports, opinions and surveys prepared by Polish business executives were also taken into consideration.
In the paper, Ostaszewskachecks if Polish companies benefitting from EU funds were in a position to absorb these funds properly and use them to build their competitive advantage. She notes that too few enterprises in Poland have taken advantage of EU funds. Besides most these funds have been invested in non-innovative projects, she says.
On the plus side, Ostaszewska says, preliminary calculations show that all the EU funds earmarked for Polish enterprises for the 2004-2006 period have reached their beneficiaries, which means there is no threat that Poland could lose part of the EU support.
Polish enterprises are only beginning to learn how to put EU structural funds to good use, Ostaszewska notes. This means that some mistakes in the 2004-2006 programming period were inevitable, she says. In the years ahead, Polish businesses should be able to learn from their mistakes and absorb new funds in a better way-one that will be more beneficial for the economy as a whole, Ostaszewska concludes.

Keywords: European Union structural funds, programming period, Sectoral Operational Program, Improvement of the Competitiveness of Enterprises
Article: PDF

Wanda Karpińska-Mizielińska, Tadeusz Smuga, Magdalena Echaust - Structural Funds and Their Influence on the Competitiveness of Enterprises

The paper aims to determine how projects carried out as part of Poland’s National Development Plan for 2004-2006 have influenced the competitiveness of enterprises. The analysis applies to the situation in this area as of the end of December 2007.
The authors use available research results including Regional Development Ministry reports on the implementation of operational programs and reports evaluating these programs.
The analysis covers the results of selected measures undertaken as part of the following operational programs: Sectoral Operational Program Improvement of the Competitiveness of Enterprises, Integrated Operational Program of Regional Development, and Sectoral Operational Program Human Resources Development. The authors zeroed in on projects financed with the use of structural funds and identified measures with the greatest influence on the competitiveness of enterprises. The analysis involved issues such as the scope of assistance, the effectiveness of applying for regional funds, the structure of beneficiaries for structural funds, indicators of implementation, the influence of individual projects on the operations and competitiveness of enterprises, and the opinions of entrepreneurs about access to structural funds.
The analysis showed that, despite the possibility of obtaining additional funds for development, the competitiveness of Polish enterprises has remained almost unchanged. The problem is that companies benefitting from structural funds account for a small percentage of the total number of enterprises operating in Poland, the authors say.
The analysis made in the paper confirms that EU structural funds have made a difference—but mainly at the microeconomic level. They have benefited specific enterprises rather than the economy as a whole. Overall, the authors conclude, many positive changes have taken place in businesses that have used EU funds to boost their competitive potential.

Keywords: National Development Plan, structural funds, competitiveness, enterprises, operational programs, measures
Article: PDF

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