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This volume makes JEC-commissioned expert studies of economic developments in East-Central Europe available to business people, educators and students. Coverage includes economic, political and social reform issues, regional relations, and the impact of Western assistance programmes.
Since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, Central European economies have been moving rapidly toward a common set of goals: political democracy, market-oriented economies and integration into the European and international business community. For businesses, Central Europe offers a unique window of opportunity and, in particular, two comparative advantages: a low-cost qualified workforce and stronger growth rates than mature Western European economies. This opportunity, seized by local entrepreneurs and foreign enterprises alike, is a significant competitive threat to companies not present in the region, or who have not found alternative strategies for increased growth and competitiveness. This book addresses economic transitions in Central Europe and analyzes the problems of Central European integration in the European Union.
Eastern and Western Europe continue to change in their relationship to one another and in their ongoing dynamic with the post-Soviet states. Economic development, electoral upheaval, and the Bosnian crisis all color the transition from communism to democracy and from a Cold War outlook to a new global order still taking shape.In this fully revised and updated edition of his popular and critically acclaimed text, David Mason brings the revolutionary events of 1989 into context with the transitional yet turbulent 1990s. We see new parties, new politics, new constitutions, and new opportunities in light of economic shock therapies, “left turns” in recent elections, and dissolving sovereignties and alliances. Despite savage ethnic conflict, economic scarcity, and political insecurity, Mason shows us that East-Central Europe is consolidating and reemerging as a region to be reckoned with on the global stage.
The transition process from a centrally planned to a market economy followed a very different path in East Germany compared to all other former communist countries. The German Democratic Republic acceded the Federal Republic of Germany in 1990, while other former socialist countries in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) had to start from square one after becoming independent from the USSR. In contrast to other post-soviet countries, East Germany subsequently received massive transfers from the Western part of the country. A significant part of these transfers was invested into infrastructure improvement, while a larger share was spent for consumption, raising the purchasing power in the East of Germany, allowing it to sustain a higher wage level and living standard than would have been economically possible without aid from the West. Twenty years after the breakdown of the iron curtain and the reunification of Germany, the infrastructure in the Eastern part of the country is en par with the West. The East German wage level remains only slightly lower than the Western level (as does productivity), but is significantly higher than in neighbouring post-communist CEE-countries. Because of these differences in economic transition, it can be expected that East Germany attracts a different kind of foreign direct investment compared to other CEE-countries. The objective of this dissertation is to empirically identify the factors affecting foreign direct investment into the region and to discuss the implications of the empirical findings for regional and national economic policy. The "region" is represented in this book by East Germany and three of its Central-European neighbour-countries, the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary.
Changes in East-Central Europe have been happening so rapidly that it is difficult for academic publishing to keep abreast of them. This volume brings together some of the most recent research in progress about the impact of transition and social policy responses to it. It represents the best papers selected from a workshop series which takes place in Prague and is designed to bring together researchers undertaking empirical work to discuss their findings. The various authors tackle some of the most pressing problems of the region; unemployment, health care, child care policy, labour migration, the role of the informal economy and directions in social policy generally. Here are up-to-date findings which can tell us about these issues. The volume is organized into three sections: the nature of restructuring and its effects; the restructuring of social institutions and the impact of restructuring. Together these papers make an important contribution to our understanding of East-Central Europe today.

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