Eastern Journal of European Studies

e-ISSN: 2068-6633 | ISSN: 2068-651X

Volume 3  |  Issue 1  |  June 2012

Globalization and social inequalities in Europe: assessment and outlook

Authors: Carmela MALTONE, Bernard Yvars, Hannah Brady
Abstract: The purpose of this article is to consider the social cohesion of the European Union which is today subjected to significant constraints by globalization and by the growing economic divergence between member States, especially in the Euro zone. The statistical assessment of this situation allows us to clearly establish the ascent of poverty and exclusion in Europe. The European Commission as well as the civil society is trying to remedy this crisis notably by means of European syndicalism whose propositions are closely analyzed in the following article. That being said, the macro-economic context is very damaged today and it unequally affects the member States of the Euro zone. A strength or even a mutation in European regulation seems necessary to promote a new economic and social regime in the Union.

: social and economic cohesion, poverty, European trade unionism, Euro zone, twin deficits, European governance
Pages: 5-30 | Full text (PDF)

The Europeanization of official development assistance: EU governance by cooperation - communication and domestic change

Author: Štìpanka ZEMANOVA
Abstract: Development policy and official development assistance belong to domestic policies where Europeanization has appeared almost from the very beginning of the European integration process. However, the official development assistance (ODA) has been Europeanized in the cooperation - communication governance mode which is less intensively studied by scholars than other, more strict governance patterns. Based on a three-dimensional governance Europeanization model, the paper hopes to capture the key trends in the evolution of the cooperation - communication governance mode within the area, as well as related changes in volumes, geographical assistance, and thematic focus of national ODA programmes. In doing so, it emphasizes the relationship between the form of the cooperation - communication mode (which is showed to change considerably over time) and the up-loading, cross-loading, and downloading of ODA patterns within the EU.

: Europeanization, official development assistance, governance, cooperation - communication governance mode, policy coordination.
Pages: 31-48 | Full text (PDF)

The EU as an actor at the WTO: its strengths and weaknesses throughout history

Abstract: During the last decade, many reforms took place in the European Union legal and policy framework. Some of those reforms were motivated by the participation of the European Union and its member States in the World Trade Organization. This paper aims to analyze the role of the European Union as an actor in that organization, paying special attention to its mixed legal nature - EU and Member States. With that purpose, the evolution of the relationship between the EU member States and the EU itself as simultaneous actors at the WTO is studied. The division of competences is also reviewed. Finally, the analysis of the EU position in different negotiation rounds (Uruguay, Doha) for the agricultural sector is reviewed as an example of the evolution in the protection of European interests. The paper shows that some changes in the Treaty of Lisbon have strengthened the legal framework for the EU to be heard with a unique voice in the WTO.
Keywords: World Trade Organization, European Union, Common Commercial Policy, Uruguay Round, Doha Round, Common Agricultural Policy, mixed agreements, competences
Pages: 49-66 | Full text (PDF)

Balance of payments adjustment mechanisms in the Euro area

Authors: Martina JIRANKOVA, Pavel HNAT
Abstract: The article aims at analysing the current situation in the Euro area with respect to the balance of payments adjustment mechanism that should normally be at place. Internally, the Euro area membership represents a combination of the fixed exchange rate, capital mobility and no monetary policy autonomy; externally, the Euro area countries apply floating exchange rates with high capital mobility, and autonomous monetary policy. Member states thus cannot use the monetary instruments to prevent external influences; they can only use fiscal policies, which are limited by the Stability and Growth Pact and debt constraint. When external imbalance occurs (such as today), the economies of member states are exposed to the price and income adjustment processes as well as to their own fiscal and ECB policy impacts. This article shows that all these factors interfere and influence real effects of automatic adjustment mechanisms which in some cases cannot come forth at all. Factors within domestic economic policies that limit the restoration of external balance within the Euro area thus create an important outcome of this paper.
Keywords: Euro area, balance of payments, income and price adjustment mechanisms, external imbalance, global imbalances, Mundell-Flemming model
Pages: 67-86  | Full text (PDF)

The European Union and the Cyprus problem: a story of limited impetus

Author: George KYRIS
Abstract: This article discusses the role of the European Union (EU) in the Cyprus problem before and after accession in 2004. It is argued that, before 2004, Brussels provided limited incentives to the Greek Cypriots to contribute to resolution but, on the other hand, triggered a pro-solution/ EU trend amongst the Turkish Cypriots. On the contrary, in the post-accession era, the EU's aptitude to contribute to a solution has further decreased: Greek Cypriots remain with inadequate EU-induced motivation to pursue resolution, while the pro-solution/ EU feelings of the Turkish Cypriots have receded, also due to Brussels' failure to fulfill their expectations. While most of the literature on Cyprus has focused on the pre-accession period, the article offers a much needed insight into the EU's role before and after Cyprus' EU entry. The article draws on a variety of data, including a series of elite interviews conducted in Belgium and Cyprus.
Keywords: Cyprus problem, Greece, Turkey, European Union, enlargement, accession, Annan Plan
Pages: 87-99 | Full text (PDF)

Consistency between innovation indicators and national innovation performance in the case of small economies

Authors: Tiiu PAAS, Helen POLTIMAE
Abstract: The paper bridges two approaches to assess national innovation performance based on the European Innovation Scoreboard (EIS) composite indicators as well as on innovation indicators elaborated by us with implementing a factor analysis. The main focus of the study is on analysing the innovation performance in the case of Baltic countries - small economies, which have similar post-socialist path dependence. The paper aims to explore what factors have been the most influential in the innovation performance of these countries, and whether these are correctly captured by the EIS indicators. We conclude that EIS methodology based assessment results are robust and, as a rule, consistent with real innovation performance of the countries. The results of our study also show that some measuring problems may occur when elaborating composite indicators of national innovation performance, e.g. the inability to sufficiently capture the quality of human capital, small economy effect, i.e. high dependence on single enterprises of a sector, data availability issues, self-reporting problems, etc. A common problem for the Baltic States is the weak link between science and enterprises, which is also not fully captured by the EIS indicators.
Keywords: national innovation performance, innovation measurement, composite indicators, small economies
Pages: 101-121 | Full text (PDF)

Labour market adjustments in Estonia during the 2008/2011 crisis

Author: Sandrine LEVASSEUR
Abstract: This article provides an assessment of labour market adjustments occurring in Estonia during the 2008/2011 crisis. The strategy of internal devaluation succeeded in shrinking the real (hourly) unit labour costs by 25 % per year in 2010 and 2011, thus helping Estonian enterprises gain international competitiveness. The whole gamut of tools available in terms of flexibility was used, at least in the worst time of the financial crisis: massive lay-offs, reduced working time and wage cuts. In 2011, Estonia stood as one of the most dynamic EU countries to recover with exports growth. On the social side, however, the track record is not positive: the purchasing power of workers has been reduced and unemployment still remains strong and persistent despite economic recovery.
Keywords: labour market, crisis, Estonia, internal devaluation, wage cuts
Pages: 123-143 | Full text (PDF)

The antecedents of satisfaction with pay in teams: do performance-based compensation and autonomy keep team-members satisfied?

Author: Ana-Maria GODEANU
Abstract: This paper aims to investigate the effects performance-based compensation and autonomy on satisfaction with pay in the context of team working. I develop a complex perspective that considers the influence of different monetary and non-monetary rewards on satisfaction with pay. Drawing from the agency theory, equity theory and theory of cooperation I predict that both piece rates and team-based rewards are associated with higher pay satisfaction. Moreover, I claim that both individual and team-based autonomy contribute to increased satisfaction with pay. Using a cross-sectional dataset of randomly selected European employees who are asked about specific working and living conditions, results confirm that both productivity-based rewards and autonomy are important for employee satisfaction. Managers should know when to introduce rewards based only on individual merits and when to give to use autonomy as a buffer to compensate for the potential lack of fairness in the payment system.
Keywords:  performance-based compensation, agency theory, equity theory, pay satisfaction, employee autonomy
Pages: 145-168 | Full text (PDF)

The social network of actors influencing age discrimination in the human resources recruiting process

Author: Aurelian SOFICA
Abstract: The aim of the paper is to map the area where the social construction of age discrimination in the recruiting process is perceived as taking place, especially those individuals or organized groups with enough power and interest to influence this unethical reality. The research was carried out in 2010 and 2011 in Cluj-Napoca, Romania; it uses multiple qualitative methods (focus-group and interviews) and covers three layers of perception: candidate's perception, employer's perception and recruiter's perception. Usually, the main social actors publically perceived as influencing age discrimination in the recruiting process are the employers (as the main responsible), some public institutions (as guardians) and the candidates (as victims). The findings of the paper show that the number of social actors perceived as interested and with power by the main social actors (employers and candidates) is much higher than the number classically targeted by researchers, reaching 20 or more.
Keywords: age discrimination, social actors involved, human resource recruiting, critical theory, public policy
Pages: 169-188 | Full text (PDF)

The main characteristics of the Romanian illegal drug markets

Author: Loredana MAFTEI
Abstract: Narcotics trade has known a real transformation over time, which is also due to the great influence of globalization. Placed among the most profitable businesses in the world, the illegal drugs market has evolved very much on the Romanian territory in the last years. The purpose of this paper is to highlight the current situation of Romanian illicit drugs market, the symbiosis between supply and demand, the general prices of the main drugs, as well as the consumption problem and transit routes. Based on theoretical aspects, on recent surveys and investigation launched by UNODC, EMCDDA and ANA, the article provides some relevant answers regarding the Romanian illicit drugs market. Compared to the European countries, Romania remains a small costumer, cannabis and SNPP being the most consumed drugs among young people. Despite the political and economic situation, Romanian authorities are better prepared, a position that may help in dealing with further drug changes.
Keywords: drug trafficking, the Balkan Route, SNPP, cannabis, drug prices
Pages: 189-204 | Full text (PDF)


Barry Tomalin, Mike Nicks, The World's Business Cultures and How to Unlock Them. Special Chapters on: China, USA, Germany, UK, Russia, India, Brazil, France, Italy and Japan, Thorogood Publishing London, 2007

Author: Andrea HAMBURG
Pages: 205-208 | Full text (PDF)

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