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The Buchanan report and its aftermath: Implications for Irish regional planning

Abstract

The so-called Buchanan report, commissioned by the Irish government and published in May 1969, comprised a set of proposals for regional industrial development in Ireland over the period 1966–86. The main thrust of the report was the concentration of the great bulk of new industrial employment creation in Dublin and eight proposed ‘growth centres’. The plan provided for the creation of powerful planning authorities to oversee development in the regions. The government rejected these proposals and opted instead to continue with the existing policy of widespread dispersal of new industry. While meeting with initial success, this policy proved unsustainable in the long term. The paper reviews the implications of the Buchanan report experience for the regional planning process in Ireland, arguing that failure to learn from this experience served to undermine the National Spatial Strategy, with a similar fate likely for the forthcoming National Planning Framework.

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Fifty years of urbanisation in Ireland: Structural and spatial evolution of the urban hierarchy since Buchanan

Abstract

In the fifty years since the publication of the Buchanan report, Regional Studies in Ireland, Ireland has transitioned from a rural to an urban society. Although a number of spatial plans have been introduced at regional and local levels, the growth of over 1.5 million people in the urban population has occurred in the absence of any strong national-level direction of spatial or settlement policy. This paper examines the nature of urbanisation in the half-century since 1966, by looking at the development of the urban hierarchy of cities and towns. Significant long-term changes in both the structure and the spatial expression of the urban hierarchy are identified, on the basis of which urbanisation is characterised as having been deconcentrated and decentralised. The paper identifies some implications of the observed shifts for contemporary policy concerns, and in particular the 2018 National Planning Framework.

Open access
Visions and plans for regional development in Ireland

Abstract

The evolution of spatial planning in Ireland, and more widely, has been a complex process in which many narratives have been explored at different times. In 2018 the government published the National Planning Framework (NPF) to guide and support the achievement of a challenging and potentially transformative development strategy for Ireland 2040. The NPF is grounded in a vision that sets out to be disruptive of what has become embedded as the status quo in political, administrative and planning decision-making. While it is a very innovative addition to the portfolio of government policies and strategies, it is not the first time that radical visions have been proposed. This paper reviews previous visions and plans for regional development that have been proposed over the last seventy-five years, and critically compares and contrasts the approaches represented by the National Spatial Strategy (2002–20) and the NPF (2018–40), including the subsequent draft regional spatial and economic strategies. The implications of the population projections and the proposed settlement patterns for the achievement of the NPF objective of effective regional development, which is expressed as a regional parity target, are closely examined.

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The Activities of Customs and Tax Control Service in the Field of Gambling Market

Summary

Gambling activity is a multifaceted phenomenon. Gambling is a special field of business. The government authorities ascribe the right to a monopoly of this area of economic activity. The randomness and financial size of gambling foster the development of the grey market. In addition to the economic effect, the moral dimension of this type of activity is an extremely important aspect. The Customs and Tax Control Service supervises the functioning of the gambling market in Poland.

Subject and purpose of work: The article is devoted to the issue of gambling. The aim of the research was to present the activities of the Customs and Tax Control Service in the field of legal and illegal gambling.

Materials and methods: The study methods used were literature review, legal acts, documents of the Ministry of Finance, statistic data, using quantitive and systems analysis.

Results: As a result, the directions of the Customs and Tax Control Service activities were identified in the field of gambling market control.

Conclusions: The activities of Customs and Tax Control Service bring results in fighting illegal gambling, protecting players, and raising social awareness of the dangers of using services of illegal gaming operators.

Open access
The Attitude of Students from Southern Podlasie to the Region: A Civilizational Self-Identification Perspective

Summary

Subject and purpose of work: The paper addresses the issue of the attitude of students from Southern Podlasie to their region. Its purpose is to present the stance of young people who are permanent residents in the Eastern Borderlands to their civilizational identity.

Materials and methods: The results shown in the present article come from the research carried out among students of Pope John Paul II State School of Higher Education in Biała Podlaska. A questionnaire designed by the current author contained 42 closed, semi-open and open questions. It was conducted in May – 2017 in the auditorium among 214 third year students from the following areas: nursing – 48, sociology – 29, pedagogy – 41, national security – 63, tourism and recreation – 33.

Results: The study demonstrated that 83.3% of the students who identify themselves with the Western civilization and 72.0% of the respondents who identify themselves with both the Eastern and Western civilizations declare to be fully attached to the region. Slightly more than half of the respondents (51.4%) are convinced that they live in a region characterized by cultural diversity. This may suggest that the region of Southern Podlasie is characterized by the presence of the elements defining both the Western and the Eastern civilization.

Conclusions: When summarizing the attitude of the students to the region, it should be noted that over 70% of them fully identify with it. Religion has the greatest influence on the respondents’ regional consciousness. This element should be recognized as the basic factor characterizing the students, which proves that the basic feature which identifies Southern Podlasie is the diversity of denominations.

Open access
An Empirical Evaluation of Exchange Rates Changes: Economic Implications in Oil-Exporting Countries

Summary

Subject and purpose of work: This paper examines empirical implications of exchange rates in the economy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). In particular, it aims to identify and evaluate potential macroeconomic signs and symptoms of economic disturbance so as to determine macroeconomic variables that influence spot exchange rate (1GBP = SAR), and to examine how fixed exchange rate regime influences exports and imports in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA).

Materials and methods: Multiple regression and simple linear regression models were used to analyze the data from 1975 to 2018.

Results: The study found a weak and insignificant relationship between spot exchange rate and unemployment rate, inflation rate, exports, and economic growth, along with strong relations with imports, investment, and current account variation in the KSA.

Conclusions: The study recommends the adoption of a floating exchange rate regime in the KSA. It has revealed the signs and symptoms of increases of the inflation rate with decreasing exports, increasing imports, decreasing of current account (current account deficit threat), and small increases of investment.

Open access
Local Political Business Cycles and Administration Spending in Polish Local Governments

Summary

Subject and purpose of work: The purpose of this article is to verify the hypothesis of the occurrence of political business cycles at the self-governmental level in Poland.

Materials and methods: The article presents a quantitative analysis of expenditures on remuneration in the administration of Polish self-governments at the county (district) level (in the period 2007–2018) and at province (regional) level (in the period 1999–2018) with the use of Arellano-Bond and LSDVC estimators.

Results: The panel data analysis makes it possible to conclude that in Polish self-governments cyclical fluctuations of expenditure on remuneration can be observed. The increase in salaries depends on the power of the ruling coalition as well as unemployment and the output gap in a region. In the case of provinces and counties, also the increase of investment expenditures significantly affects the increase of salaries.

Conclusions: The results of the estimation of models clearly point to the presence of cyclical distortions in remuneration in public administration, which are caused by the upcoming elections.

Open access