Vol. 3, No. 1, March 2015

Editor: Joost Platje

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Wydawnictwo dofinansowane ze środków Ministerstwa Nauki i Szkolnictwa Wyższego

Vol. 3, No. 1, 9-38, March 2015

From Independence to the Euro Introduction: varieties of capitalism in the Baltic States
West Saxon University of Applied Sciences, Zwickau, Germany


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Abstract: The Baltic States, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, are very successful in transformation. From 1991 to 2015 they regained independence and transformed their economies from socialist central planning into functioning mar-ket economies, joined the EU in 2004 and became member of the Euro zone. Estonia introduced the Euro al-ready in 2011 while Latvia followed in 2014 and Lithuania in 2015. Thereof follow two questions. First, why all three Baltic countries are so successful? And secondly, do we really find everywhere the pattern of the “Shining star” Estonia, followed by Latvia and at least Lithuania? According to modern Varieties of Capitalism theory all three economies can be classified as Central and Eastern European Countries in the style of Liberal Market Economies (CEEC-LME). As can be shown, there are also differences in the institutional setups of all three Baltic States. During the period of transformation a pattern of Estonia followed by Latvia and at least Lithuania evolved which is also reflected by the sequence of joining Euro area. But institutional patterns are not determined in the long run. Since the crisis of 2008/09 the pattern within the Baltics changed. While Estonia remains on the first rank Lithuania overtook Latvia in terms of growth and wealth. Deregulation in Lithuania – which may be observed by the development of the Economic Freedom Index of the Heritage Foundation within the last ten years – may be the main reason. But also, the low sophistication of the Lithuanian banking system as well as Latvia’s massive suffering from the crisis may explain the last change of the pattern in the Baltics. There are several possibilities to illustrate the different paths of development of the Baltic States. While Geography Hypothesis is not able to explain the differences, the extractive political institutions in Estonia and Latvia can illustrate the lead of both countries in contrast to Lithuania till the crisis in 2008/09. Additionally, different basic values in all three Baltic States are responsible for the different developmental paths. They can also be traced back to the different history and culture of the three Baltic countries.

Keywords: VoC, Baltics, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Euro introduction

JEL: P16, P20, P51

Vol. 3, No. 1, 39-50, March 2015

Knowledge Management System in Polish Public Hospitals – research results and improvement directions
Agnieszka KRAWCZYK
Opole University, Poland


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Abstract: The paper aims to present the progress in building a knowledge management system in Polish public hospitals and as well as recommended actions improving it. It describes a fragment of the multi-annual research of the author with regard to knowledge management in public hospitals.
According to the research at least 1/3 of the surveyed hospitals are advanced in terms of building a knowledge based system which means it comprises all areas of management as well as applies more advanced methods and procedures of managing the knowledge. The issue of improving knowledge management systems, assuming they always exist even in a chaotic and not well-ordered form, is problematic not only for public hospitals in Poland.
A correct operation of a knowledge management system depends on many factors which makes its implementation and efficient usage extremely difficult. All actions must be carefully thought over and duly undertaken. A team of hospital employees in charge of knowledge management should be appointed and supported with information technologies. Great importance must be attached to building an organization culture encouraging knowledge sharing. Similarly, appropriate relations between particular elements of the knowledge management system operating in a hospital and its environment are vital.

Keywords: knowledge management system , public hospital

JEL: D83, H75, I00

Vol. 3, No. 1, 51-69, March 2015

The importance of Occupational Safety and Health in Management Systems in the Construction Industry: Case study of Construction in Hermosillo
University of Sonora, Mexico


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Abstract: Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) are concepts not fully integrated into management systems in the construction industry. This article shows the results of a research study conducted in two construction sites in the city of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. The objective of this research is to identify and evaluate occupational risks in their activities. As a result, it is intended to demonstrate the importance of including occupational health practice into the management systems and potentially prevent, reduce and / or eliminate occupational risks and hazards in construction activities of buildings. Case study was used as a methodological design. Integrating OSH practices in management systems will facilitate construction industry move toward sustainability patterns and consequently increase the quality of life of its workers.

Keywords: sustainability, occupational health, sustainable management systems, construction, risks in construction
JEL: L7, L74, Q55, I130

Vol. 3, No. 1, 71-83, March 2015

Indebtedness of Polish Enterprises Compared to Selected Countries

Wrocław School of Banking, Poland


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Abstract: This elaboration aims to analyse and compare the debt of Polish enterprises compared to selected European countries which underwent (like Poland) a system transformation in 90s of the last century. The paper makes use of statistical comparable measures of basic indicators of corporate debt during the transformation up to 2012 and the analysis is based on official statistical data of the Central Statistical Office in Poland and EUROSTAT as well as bases published by OECD. Despite the fact that the system transformation proceeded in a similar way, Czech, Hungary and Poland struggled with much the same problems at the beginning of their „democratic” way, however basic behaviour in the economic sphere began to diverge. The differences translated, first of all, into an image of particular countries in view of potential investors. The way entrepreneurs behaved is not without significance as their activities in particular markets including the risk of doing business which involved applying financial leverage. The recent crisis revealed that Polish enterprise do much better than businesses in Czech or Hungary. One of the reasons might be the level of debt and the risk of conducting a business. It is worthwhile examining differences among the particular countries.

Keywords: finance management, capital structure, corporate debt, post-communist countries
JEL: G30, G32

Vol. 3, No. 1, 85-95, March 2015

Thomas Piketty’s ‘Patrimonial Capitalism’ of the Twenty-first Century: political economy rediscovered or how to tame the beast?
Wrocław School of Banking, Poland


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Abstract: The core of market economy is misconceived when it is construed purely in economic terms (cf. Breuer 1999: 8). The purpose of this article is to hint at some possible alternative paths of deliberating the concept of capitalism which would not be dominated by classical economic paradigm. While recognising the multiple faces of capitalism stemming amongst others from historical, geo-political, ideological and even economic variables, the author conceives of contemporary capitalism in terms of a sum total of certain macro-features which differentiate this economic model from centrally-planned economies. The point of departure for the developed argumentation is the main trend recognisable in the recent decades (end of the 20th and the beginning of the 21st century) which consists in accumulation of primarily hereditary capital in the hands of the few, which phenomenon is referred to by Thomas Piketty as “patrimonial” capitalism. Since that development results in a limited or no opportunity of the majority of the world population to accrue wealth through their work, a question arises whether such economic system may be regarded as legitimate. In this context the author attempts to shed some light on the potentials and limits of the role of national, transnational and /or international governance to mitigate the negative impact of the unabashed divergence forces observable in the contemporary economy. The overall conclusion of the paper is that, however reluctant the national authorities may be to see further intervention of transnational and international entities in the organisation of global economy, it is necessary if the healthy foundations of the global market are ever to be achieved and as long as long as the states remain idle themselves.

Keywords: patrimonial capitalism, market economy, legitimacy, political economy, regulatory measures
JEL: P11, P16, P17