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Krystyna Buchta, Monika Jakubiak, Małgorzata Skiert and Adam Wilczewski

Abstract

Changes in the socio-economic environment of universities require its tasks and social roles to be constantly reviewed and redefined. The present paper attempts to assess universities’ responsibility for the outcomes of educational process. The outcomes are measured on the basis of graduates’ preparedness for undertaking professional work. The paper’s aim was to indicate the main discrepancies between employers’ expectations regarding graduates’ occupational training and the level of competences acquired by graduates in the course of their studies. A premise was made that the comparison of the views presented by the main stakeholders will enable the level on which the individual competences match the needs of labor market to be determined, and the strengths and weaknesses of university curricula to be indicated. The analysis encompassed both hard occupational skills, which are subordinated to the content-related educational profile, and key soft competences.

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Jan Woleński

Abstract

The paper discusses the concept of adequacy central for Pertażycki’s methodology. According to Petrażycki any valuable scientific theory should be adequate, that is, neither limping (to broad with respect its actual scope) nor jumping (too narrow with respect to its actual scope). Consequently, adequacy of a theory is a stronger condition than its truth. Every adequacy theory is true, but not conversely. However, there is problem, because scientific laws are conditionals (implications). This suggests that adequacy is too strong conditions, because the consequence of an implication has a wider scope than its antecedent. Thus, laws should have the form of equivalence. The paper shows how model-theoretic characterization of theories allows to recognize truth and adequacy, consistently with Petrażycki’s claims.

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Todd J. Barry

Abstract

This paper puts forth a new scholarly approach to trade negotiations, for practitioners of international agreements, or simply to business students attempting to understand Ricardian trade theory. The paper hypothesizes that matrices can provide a simpler conceptual framework for considering Ricardo’s comparative advantage, especially when multiple goods and multiple countries are involved, in order to determine which countries should produce which goods. Numerous theoretical examples are presented, singularly, and jointly, as are different possible flaws and assumptions, additional applications, and alternative uses of the matrices, such as employing matrices to increase production of certain goods needed during crises or shortages. The article also argues that “terms of trade” should not be “assumed” in trade models but be based upon indifference curves, and addresses other influencing factors such as neoclassical changes in utility or in production. Found valid, the paper applies this method of trade simplification to pressing international situations, the question of “Brexit,” the sobriquet for the United Kingdom’s effort to withdraw from the European Union, which creates interesting possibilities for new trade deals, and the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The conclusion conceptually compares bilateral and multilateral trade, singularly, and with all countries together.

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Anna Irene De Luca, Nathalie Iofrida, Giovanni Gulisano and Alfio Strano

Abstract

Cooperation activities between Local Action Groups (LAGs) have been introduced into EU LEADER (Liaison Entre Actions de Développement de l’Économie Rurale) initiative to provide rural areas the opportunity to exchange experiences and best practices, as well as to realize common activities by pooling human and financial resources. The main purposes are to overcome isolation and add value to local development strategies. The benefits of cooperation are widely recognized but, undeniably, it can be also a difficult and time-consuming process. For this reason, evaluation is a necessary tool to measure the success of cooperation and to help actors address their strategies for the future. In this paper, an evaluation methodology is proposed and applied to an EU LEADER+ case study, the ‘Integrated Project for Rural Tourism: Environment and Qualified Hospitality’, a transnational cooperation experience led by LAG Aspromar, based in the province of Reggio Calabria, Southern Italy. Quantitative and qualitative data have been collected through the integration of three typical methods of social research: two techniques based on surveys, namely interviews with privileged actors, and a semi-structured questionnaire, and a technique based on non-survey data and the study of documents. Results can be useful to highlight pros and cons of the management of a cooperation project and to stimulate projects’ leaders on activating improvement processes.

Open access

Alejandro López González and María Jesús González-González

Abstract

The third demographic transition, barely mentioned by some authors and implicit for others, refers to changes in the demographic structures of the most developed countries promoted by the most recent migratory flows, with repercussions in aspects such as age structure or the composition of the labour market. The concept of the third demographic transition revolves around the increasing presence of foreigners, many of whom take up jobs that nationals reject, as well as other more skilled posts. Using the panel data methodology, we try to explain the third demographic dividend whose impact can be seen in the labour market. The results enable us to conclude that the foreign worker differential puts downward pressure on salaries, which affects other groups. If workers are available and policies are constructive, this leads to positive results and social wealth.

Open access

Anna Sączewska-Piotrowska

Abstract

The aim of the paper was to assess differentiation of the occurrence of households’ income affluence in Poland between subregions. An analysis was conducted using two-level logit models without explanatory variables (null model) and with explanatory variables at household level (random intercept model and random slope model). The variables were related to the characteristics of the household and its head. The conducted analysis allowed to state that the occurrence of affluence is differentiated between subregions in the null model as well as in the model with explanatory variables.

Open access

Jelena Jermolajeva, Tatiana Bogdanova and Svetlana Silchenkova

Abstract

The article presents the results of the international study of the professional identity of schoolteachers of Russia and Latvia. In the study, the six component model of the content of the teacher professional identity (TPI) is used. According to this model, in 2017, the questionnaire “School Teacher Professional Identity” was created and international survey organized, in which 437 schoolteachers from Latvia and the Smolensk region of Russia participated. The aim of this article is to analyze the data of the two national samples for the 6th component of TPI: “Professionally Determined Social Behavior”. This behavior is not connected with the implementation of direct professional duties, but corresponds to the philosophy of the profession: taking up the mission of educating community, active involvement in social life, participation in formulation and solution of social problems having pedagogical aspects and unselfish professional help to those who need it. To process the data, statistical methods were used. On the whole, items of the component received relatively high scores in both national samples. Certain differences in the data of Latvian and Russian teachers as well as urban and rural subgroups of both countries are observed. High dispersion of data shown in this component indicates that the professionally determined social behavior is the most acute and controversial aspect of TPI; therefore, the elaboration of optimal ways and tools to strengthen TPI should be based on an in-depth study of social behavior of schoolteachers.

Open access

Elżbieta Roszko-Wójtowicz and Jacek Białek

Abstract

The consumer price index (CPI) is acommon measure of inflation. Similarly to the harmonised index of consumer prices (HICP), it is determined using the Laspeyres index, thus data on the consumption of the basket of goods do not have to be current. The Laspeyres index, using weights only from the base period, may not reflect changes in consumer preferences that occurred in the studied year. This is the reason for the formation of the so-called substitution bias in the measurement of inflation. The aim of the article is to assess the impact of the level of innovativeness of a given country’s economy on the occurrence of the substitution effect. The empirical part of the article is based on basic innovation indices, i.e. the SII, IOI, and GII. The assessment of the relationship between the level of innovativeness and the scale of the substitution effect was carried out based on the methods of multidimensional statistical analysis (including cluster analysis, the PROFIT method).

Open access

Justyna Brzezińska

Abstract

The aim of a correspondence analysis is the graphical representation of the categories of variables in one frame of reference. This visualization is possible due to the decomposition of the basic matrix with the use of Singular Value Decomposition (SVD). There are three matrices used in the process of decomposition: right singular vectors, left singular vectors, and a singular value diagonal matrix. The aim of this paper is to compare four different approaches and algorithms of SVD methods used in a correspondence analysis. In the literature, four approaches are known to singular value decomposition, defined by: R.A. Fisher (1940), M.J. Greenacre (1984), E.B. Anderson (1991), and J.D. Jobson (1992). Those computational procedures will be presented and compared in this paper. Also, methods of determining the coordinates of the category column and line matrix, as well as the values of inertia will be defined for these approaches. A key problem is to compare the well-known approaches, since in the literature only one approach ‒ proposed by Greenacre ‒ is used for singular value decomposition. The reason of the superiority of this algorithm over the others may be the simplicity and ease of the mathematical calculations. Greenacre’s algorithm is also used in R statistical software, making its availability and popularity growing, however, other algorithms are worth presenting and focusing on.