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The results of happiness analysis are presented in the form of a World Happiness Report that covers 156 countries and 17 different indicators. In the article model-based clustering ensemble is built to determine what selected European countries have similar patterns of happiness. The results are analyzed using multidimensional scaling and a decision tree to find out what factors determine cluster memberships. In the empirical part, three clusters were detected The first contains countries: Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. They have the highest values for all the variables, except the negative affect. The second cluster contains seven countries: Bulgaria, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania and Slovakia. This cluster is also the most homogeneous one. The third cluster contains eight countries: Cyprus, the Czech Republic, France, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia and Spain.
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The present study investigates the degree to which imperfect competition in the oil sector affects end retail prices. Specifically, we test how positive and negative price shocks in the oil market translate to final retail prices for petrol, diesel, and heating oil prices, focusing on the asymmetry of the price changes. We assume that the higher the level of imperfect competition, the more asymmetric the price change between the initial oil and final retail products will be. In addition, we also test the degree to which uncertainty, or oil price volatility, affects the final prices for these same products. We find that our proxy for market power does affect retail price asymmetries and that increasing volatility lowers retail price asymmetries.
Using competencies to manage business organizations and to base a competency model on attributes of a preferable organizational culture is a common practice in business. Competency criteria allow improvement of workers’ performance by informing them what behaviors further achieving the required organizational goals. Public organizations, faced with challenges of being a part of the European Union, have been learning how to use competencies to pursue new goals and create new organizational cultures of the offices.
The goal of this article is to present practices of the competencies evaluation usage in the Customs Service to shape behaviors accordingly to its preferable organizational culture.
Alina Petronela Alexoaei and Raluca Georgiana Robu
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