cover vol 11 no 2

Abstracts

Wojciech Orłowski

Polish Regionalism — Present Challenges and Threats

(article in English)
After the accession of Poland to the European Union our country started to be defined as a decentralized state with a regional structure. The aim of this paper is to compare Polish legal solutions to the Italian and Spanish solutions regarded as classic models of regionalism. The effect of the analysis is the conclusion that the biggest obstacle for the development of regionalism in Poland is the lack of proper legal regulations including constitutional regulations. It is responsible for the fact that Polish voivodeships do not have guarantees of territorial integrity. Theoretically there is even a possibility to replace them with other units of territorial division. Other restrictions for regional development are: insufficient level of financing and the lack of formed social ties in newly formed voivodships. Due to these factors voivodships do not play their own political role. The situation could be changed as a result of an enlargement of regional competences and granting voivodships limited autonomy similarly to the situation in Italy and Spain.

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Keywords: classic models of regionalism, Poland, Italy, Spanish, legal regulations, territorial integrity
JEL: H7, R5

Jerzy Bański, Małgorzata Flaga

The Areas of Unfavourable Demographic Processes in Eastern Poland —
Selected Aspects

(article in English)
Population factors are the most important elements of the socio-economic development of regions. Contemporary structure of population in Eastern Poland is the result of post-war changes, mainly in the field of natural growth and migration. The goals of this article are to assess the present trends of population change in the regions of Eastern Poland and to identify the areas that are characterized by negative effects of selected phenomena. It is also an important research issue to identify the main causes of negative processes shaping the population.

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Keywords: Poland, eastern regions, problem areas, population, development
JEL: J11, J13, J61, R23

Beata Namyślak

Creative Clusters in Poland

(article in English)
The article describes the idea of cluster formation with particular emphasis on creative industry clusters. In first part the concept and the basic definitions of creative clusters were presented. The second part of the article is devoted to experiences in establishing creative clusters in Poland, which in reality are not significant (five formed clusters and 13 cluster initiatives countrywide). and other European Union countries, and to establish the position of Poland within the EU with respect to these indicators.

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Keywords: creative economy, forming of creative clusters, Poland
JEL: R11

Marta Mulawa

Classification of the Tasks of Local Governmental Units in Poland
in the Light of Fundamental Legal Acts — Discussion of Selected Aspects

(article in English)
The purpose of this article is the presentation of a summary of tasks which local governments in Poland perform and to illustrate their diversity and specificity. The article deals with local government and its specific tasks, which every level of self-government carries out. It is true that self–government is a very important institution operating in most democratic countries in the world. The proper structure of local governmental bodies, as well as the rules of their work and how they make decisions, support the performance of tasks by individual units. The issue of local government concerns its tasks. It is very extensive. These elements are regulated by the Constitution of the Republic of Poland and laws, especially the Act on Commune Self-Government, the Act on County Government and the Act on Voivodship Government. Self-government is the most democratic form of government as an instrument of socialization in the exercise of public authority. Emphasing that local government is a fundamental cell in public administration is one of the aims of this article. Local government carries out tasks in appropriate forms, supported by the European Charter of Local Self Government and national legislation. Being fundamental, universal and compulsory, local government creates a community. Otherwise of an administrative nature, local government is a political phenomenon. The essential feature of the structure of local government in Poland is the fact that local government performs a substantial part of public administration at the level of commune as well as those of district and voivodship. Tasks of local government in Poland are dualistic. Local authorities have powers of their own while performing the tasks assigned to them by law and government. Moreover an important part of this article is about local government as a form of decentralization of public authority.

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Keywords: self-government, self-governmental unit, commune, county, voivodship, task, public administration, decentralization, act
JEL: H7, K3

Marcin Wójcik

Non-Agricultural Economic Functions of Rural Areas
in the Łódzkie Voivodship (1999–2009)

(article in English)
This article addresses the issue of functional development of rural areas in the Łódzkie Voivodship. Empirical research was preceded by a description of directions in the functional research of rural areas. There are two methods of functional research in geographical studies of rural areas. The first tradition has developed on the basis of settlement geography, while the second lies within the area of agricultural geography where the efforts were concentrated on identification of the functional structure of rural areas. Functional research operating within the concept of a rural area as a multifunctional space differs considerably from the concepts based on the theory of a settlement network or a system concept. In the concept of multifunctional areas, a function is a certain quality of this area, whereas in the theory of a settlement network a function is understood as an activity which describes the rank of a settlement and its relation to other settlements. The article attempts to identify functions of rural areas within the framework of a system concept. In settlement geography functional studies include primarily a description of the settlement structure by the means of depicting a place and explaining the meaning of certain elements within the whole (i.e., in the settlement system). In the research, functions of rural areas are identified within the scope of the functional whole, which in turn is a commune’s settlement network. Indirect methods of dividing the functions of this entity into those endogenous and those exogenous simultaneously describe their local (endogenous) and specialised (exogenous) meanings. The results of the research, and the conclusions drawn, prove that the methods of direct measurement of economic base complements, within the concept of multifunctional space, rural studies very well. The division of employment into exogenous and endogenous and identification of its areas of concentration provides a way to illustrate the rate of a commune's economic openness, and therefore, the connection with other settlement systems. Among the most important conclusions emerging from the results of the research the following should be noted. There is a systematic growth of the importance of non-agricultural functions in the rural areas of the Łódzkie Voivodship (1999–2009). The most important system-forming element among non-agricultural functions is manufacturing, trade and transportation. Non-agricultural functions are characterised by relatively high spatial concentration, especially in the Łódź Agglomeration and in the suburban zones of medium towns.

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Keywords: non-agricultural activity, economic base theory, rural areas, Łódzkie Voivodship
JEL: R12

Paweł Cebrykow, Mirosław Krukowski, Mirosław Meksuła, Adrian Zarański

Changes in Administrative Borders and Their Stability in Lubelskie Region
in 1949–2010

(article in English)
The article presents the problem of changes in administrative borders in the Lubelskie region throughout the past 60 years, since the end of World War II. In this period Poland experienced four major reforms that transformed the system and structure of administrative division. In five periods between the reforms there were also certain minor changes along the national borders. The analysis of changes was primarily based on cartographic materials presenting the administrative divisions, which allowed for efficient analyses of the border routes. Using the archive maps the authors prepared analytical maps from 8 temporal perspectives. Consequently, synthetic maps presenting all the observed changes in voivodship (Polish: województwo), county (Polish: powiat) and commune (Polish: gmina) borders were drafted. Such materials were the base for preparing the final maps illustrating the stability of the border routes between voivodships, counties and communes. The analyses of the materials allowed number of conclusions to be drawn. Firstly, the borders of Lubelskie Voivodship are relatively stable, particularly the fragments which run along the Vistula and the Bug Rivers. In the case of county borders, their permanence is much lower. At the lowest level of administrative division, variability is the highest, yet the share of permanent borders reaches 40%. Generally, it can be stated that the higher the level of administrative division, the higher the stability of borders. The present article may constitute a basis for further research on the causes and effects of borders between administrative units. Along with the analysis of border permanence, another problem that the authors addressed is the method of linear presentation of object changes. In order to analyse border changes effectively, the authors propose an indirect presentation of border stability by showing the stability of the area marked within these borders. Such a device substitutes the troublesome analysis of overlapping linear structure with an analysis of a clearer image of stability, presented with contour lines.

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Keywords: Lubelskie, administrative borders, administrative division, border stability
JEL: R14, R52

Teresa Szymura, Danuta Barnat-Hunek

Against Corrosion Caused by Moisture

(article in English)
The paper aims to present the most important issues concerning the nature of protection of masonry materials against moisture. The paper describes the parameters which influence the effectiveness of these protection methods such as porosity, salinity, and surface state. Special attention is devoted to the ecological aspect of hydrophobizing preparations available on the market. Also technical criteria and practical advice for the use of these preparations to prevent damage are extensively discussed in the paper.

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Keywords: protection against moisture, porosity, salinity, surface state, hydrophobization
JEL: N6

Tomasz Pilewicz

The Role of Subregions in Modelling Regional Competitiveness —
a Case Study of the West Subregion in Śląskie Voivodship

(article in English)
The article elaborates on the role and possible actions to be taken by subregions in order to influence regional competitiveness. The objective of the article is to find the answer to the question of how the subregions defined as associations of smaller territorial units can contribute to investment competitiveness at a larger, regional level. Desk research and literature review analysis of the West Subregion in Poland shows that subregions can not only effectively support development of territorial units, which they embrace, but also contribute to the development of bigger territorial units, like a voivodship. Taking into account the fact that subregions in mature and complex organizational form, as in the example of the West Subregion, are a relatively rare phenomena in Poland, they provide a tapestry of good practices to follow. With relatively small operational costs the subregions’ role in providing information, lobbying for development issues, stimulation of local engagement and providing training, strategic management and cooperation development, is an example of modelling regional competitiveness based on the model of the region acting as an entrepreneurial organization.

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Keywords: region, subregion, development, competitiveness, entrepreneurship, organization
JEL: O18

Julia Gorzelany-Plesińska

E-Services as a Part of Implementation of the Strategies
for Computerization of the Country (Case Study of Zabierzów Commune)

(article in English)
The information and communication society is becoming increasingly important due to the growing demands of civilization, which are entailed by the process of globalization. Currently, we are witnessing the development of e-services in public administration in Poland, in response to the strategy of informatization. Thus, the objective of this paper is to indicate the way an information and communication society can develop by the introduction of electronic public services. Based on research conducted in the Zabierzów Commune, an attempt is made to establish the level of the introduction of e-services at a local level.

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Keywords: electronic public administration services, e-office, e-government, e-documents, information and communication society, informatization strategy
JEL: O31