The Baltic Region

2009 Issue №2

Introduction

Theory of Regional Studies

Clusters as a Form of Spatial Organisation of Economic Activity: Theory and Practical Observations

Abstract

This article aims at  explaining  the clustering of economic activity using instruments of new institutional economics,  taking into account well-known descriptive characteristics of the cluster, as well as recent developments in research on hybrid institutional agreements, primarily, the research conducted by Michael Porter, Claude Ménard and others.

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Trans-Border Regions in the System of the Regional Hierarchy: the Systemic Approach

Abstract

The article positions trans-border regions that are formed in the course of cooperation between the administrative, territorial and municipal institutions of neighbouring countries or have similar important characteristics, in the hierarchical system of regions. The authors prove trans-border regions to be a type of international regions and consider specific characteristics of these regions using the Baltic region as an example.

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Competitiveness of the Economies of Border Regions

Abstract

The article is dedicated to the problem of competitiveness of border regions as subjects of the Russian Federation having specific characteristics. The authors focus on the stages, during which border regions build their competitiveness, as well as analyse certain indices characterizing it. They examine the role of these regions in the development of international trade and economic relations, cross-border cooperation and international integration, taking the North-west federal district and the Republic of Karelia as a case-study. The article describes the mechanisms of building and increasing competitiveness of border regions in today’s Russia both in general and, particularly, in the Republic of Karelia as a border region of the North-west federal district.

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Cross-Border Cooperation

Perspectives of Euroregions with Russian Participation in Terms of Changes in the EU Regional Policy

Abstract

The article describes changes in the cross-border cooperation support in the framework of the EU Regional Policy. The author emphasises the role of the European Neighbourhood Policy in the development of cross-border cooperation with non-EU countries. The article outlines the main obstacles for the development of euroregions at the EU-Russia border and arrives at the conclusion that their future depends on the success of the Russia-EU integration process in general.

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Cross-border Cooperation as a Mechanism of Regional Marketing in the Baltic Region

Abstract

The article offers a pragmatic approach to certain aspects of cross-border regionalisation. The marketing component of Euroregion development and the implementation of cross-border cooperation projects are considered as key directions of the joint activity of cross-border partner-regions. The authors analyse the opportunity to apply the territory brand model to research on the mechanisms of cross-border cooperation and to the elaboration of an efficient development strategy as a promising direction of further study of the cross-border cooperation and regionalisation phenomena.

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The Baltic Sea Region and the Black Sea Area: Two Pieces of the Same Puzzle

Abstract

The Baltic Sea region and the Black Sea area are overlapping regions that have their own political, historical and cultural peculiarities. They belong to the same geopolitical system, within which they are developing two regional cooperation subsystems strongly influenced both by internal political and economic dynamics and by external actors. The aim of this research is to analyse the political and economic factors that influence the cooperation in the Baltic Sea region and the Black Sea area by means of comparative approach, which will help to determine the similarities and differences necessary to give an overview of two strategic areas in the European context.

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Good-neighbourly relations and the European Neighbourhood Policy — What is the Difference?

Abstract

The article compares the scope of two diplomatic terms, crucial for the contemporary practice of international cooperation. Drawing examples from historical and contemporary documents, the author shows the difference between the settled notion of good-neighbourly relations and the recently introduced one — the European Neighbourhood Policy. The ENP ab initio absorbs the old term, which characterises the symmetric relation of international agents in the framework of the Westphalian system and foregrounds the Euro-centred model of asymmetrical relations. It creates certain difficulties in the development of Russia-EU relations, especially, in terms of Russia’s participation in the European Neighbourhood programmes.

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Education in the Baltic Region

Economic Consciousness and the System of Values of Latvian University Graduates

Abstract

The article analyses the attitude of a Latvian university’s graduates to wealth and means of its acquisition, as well as their assessment of their own economic status and preferred moves in case of unemployment. The author estimates the university graduates’ personal capabilities; their interests, skills and qualifications, the extent of their reliance on their own initiative and resources, and their confidence about the future. The article defines the graduates’ economic interests forming motivations and approaches to practical economic behavior according to certain types of economic consciousness.

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The International Association of Teachers of Russian Language and Literature and its Activity in the Baltic Sea States

Abstract

The article offers general information about the International Association of Teachers of Russian Language and Literature (MAPRYAL) and its main lines of activity. The authors focus on the activity of MAPRYAL in the Baltic Sea States offering a detailed description of the International Festival of Russian Language in the Baltic Sea States, and the events held by MAPRYAL in Germany, Poland, Finland, Sweden, and Denmark.

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Russian Exclave on the Baltic Sea

Russian Exclave on the Baltic Sea: Evolution of Exclavity and Ways to Overcome It

Abstract

The author considers peculiarities of the emergence and evolution of exclavity of the Kaliningrad region. The article analyses the influence of exclavity on the connections of the region with the Russian mainland, its economic development, exclave administration, and Kaliningrad identity and examines the ways the existing disadvantages can be overcome. Methods of overcoming these disadvantages are suggested in the article.

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The Kaliningrad Oblast: a Unique Region and a Typical Centre

Abstract

The longstanding efforts of federal authorities aimed at the development of the Kaliningrad region did not meet the expectations. The region can be considered as depressed; it is characterised by the instability of the socioeconomic situation. The main reason for the reduced efficiency of state activity is the attempt to apply standard mechanisms of governmental regional development regulation that neglect the unique nature of this Russian territory: its enclave/exclave status, the settling history of the region, the dependence on external markets, etc. To solve the problems of the Kaliningrad region, the state should partially revise its ideology, including the views on external connections of Russia’s constituents. Moreover, Russia should coordinate its activity in the Baltic Sea States taking into account the increased sensitivity of the Kaliningrad Region.

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Cross-Border Cooperation between Kaliningrad Region, Lithuania and Poland: Obstacles and Possibilities

Abstract

This article analyses the cross-border co-operation between the Kaliningrad Region and the neighbouring Polish and Lithuanian regions. It provides, firstly, a short overview of the cross-border co-operation formation and development. The author outlines the present-day co-operation structures. Secondly, the article reviews the asymmetries that hinder the cross-border co-operation. Finally, it offers some examples of the cross-border cultural and social projects proving that the co-operation under difficult conditions can be successful. The analysis is based on the author's empirical research and interviews with regional experts.

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