Katharina Bluhm

Capitalism theory in Central Eastern Europe. A critical review

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Abstract

Abstract

At the beginning of the new century, a fundamental shift in the analysis of the political economy of Central and Eastern Europe occurred. The analysis moved away from a simple, more-or-less monolithic view of the transition from a planned to a market economy, with variations in the extent, speed, and role of historic legacies, towards attempts to grasp the patterns of institutional consolidation.  This shift was accompanied by a recombination of theoretical ideas and approaches showing the limits of the original approaches and new insights, whose implications might extend beyond the post-communist space.

 

Eduard Klein

Post-Soviet anti-corruption reforms in higher education: Explaining the success of external independent testing in Ukraine

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Abstract

Abstract

Corruption during university admission has become an endemic phenomenon in many post-Soviet states. In the last decade, most countries in the region reformed their admission system and implemented external exams to combat corruption and provide equal access to qualitative education. Ukraine introduced its External Independent Testing (EIT) in 2008. Despite a non-favourable socio-political context, experts and the majority of citizens regard the EIT as one of the most successful reforms in Ukraine. How can this positive outcome be explained? The paper argues that in addition to the distinctive political will of key stakeholders and the involvement of domestic NGOs in the reform implementation, external democracy promotion programs which fostered capacity building were a decisive factor for the success. To prove this claim, the article traces the reform process, focusing on the impact of the main external actors.

 

Justyna Stypińska

Age discrimination in the labour market in Poland – A socio-legal perspective

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Abstract

Abstract

Sufficient scientific evidence exists, along with everyday experience, to support the conclusion that age is of substantial importance in modern labour markets. Several empirical studies have confirmed that older age can be an obstacle to finding a job. Among the solutions to the problem of the unequal treatment of workers based on age, many authors point to anti-discrimination legislation as the primary framework to effectively address the issue.  However, despite the availability of such measures, their de facto application remains questionable. Taking the existing legal solutions as a point of reference for the analysis of age discrimination in employment, this article attempts to answer the following research questions: what is the efficiency of implementation of the European anti-discrimination legislation in Poland from a sociological perspective? How is the prohibition of age discrimination encompassed and interpreted in the current law and policy measures in Poland? The paper also addresses issues related to different types of age discrimination practices which are predominant in Poland. Lastly, the paper concentrates on the question of the level of awareness regarding the anti-discrimination legislation among older workers and the possibility of putting the law into practice. The empirical analysis is based primarily on quantitative data gathered in a telephone survey in the Małopolska region in Poland in 2010.

 

Svetlina Koeva

The Open Method of Coordination (OMC) and disability policies in Bulgaria

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Abstract

Abstract

This article deals with the most prominent soft law instrument in the European social policy, namely the Open Method of Coordination (OMC) and its influence on the social inclusion of people with disabilities in Bulgaria.  The paper focuses in particular on the introduction and the functioning of the OMC in the pre-accession period: it offers an analytical overview of the Bulgarian legal framework and examines, at the same time, the impact of the OMC on the main policy discourses and actors’ networking in national disability policies, using the concepts of policy transfer and policy learning.

 

emecon No 1/2014