Challenges of Contemporary Economics

Issues

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Volume 14 (2020) Volume 13 (2019) Volume 12 (2018) Volume 11 (2017) Volume 10 (2016) Volume 9 (2015) Volume 8 (2014) Volume 7 (2013) Volume 6 (2012) Volume 5 (2011) Volume 4 (2010) Volume 3 (2009) Volume 2 (2008) Volume 1 (2007)

Volume 14 Issue 1 (2020)

Editorial editorial

pp. 1-2 | First published in 9 March 2020 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.328

Virginia Simón-Moya

Abstract

Editorial



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Learning Lessons from the Economic Crisis in Self-employment original article

pp. 3-21 | First published in 11 March 2020 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.329

Alfonso Jesús Torres Marín

Abstract

The main objective of this article is to test the hypothesis that the economic crisis has resulted in significant changes in the socioeconomic and labor profile of the new self-employed in Spain between 2008 and 2013. Additionally, it is intended to determine if there are homogeneous pro- files of new self-employed workers that allow to set clusters, and, if so, to check how these clusters have changed in the studied period. To verify the above-mentioned hypotheses, it has been carried out a descriptive analysis followed by a Cluster Analysis, using the Continuous Sample of Working Lives data. The research concludes that the economic recession has been accompanied by a fall in the number of new self-employed between 2008 and 2013, along with a significant change in their socio-demographic and occupational profile. There is also evidence of the existence of sev- eral clusters of self-employed, with heterogeneous sociodemographic and labor characteristics. The composition and features of these clusters evolved in parallel to the economic situation, showing an intense increase in the educational level and a reduction in the job stability between 2008 and 2013.

Keywords: entrepreneurship, self-employment, economic crisis, Business cycle, self-employed workers profiles

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Modelling Natural Capital: A Proposal for a Mixed Multi-criteria Approach to Assign Management Priorities to Ecosystem Services original article

pp. 22-37 | First published in 11 March 2020 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.330

Mónica de Castro Pardo, Pascual Fernández Martínez, José Manuel Guaita Martínez, José María Martín Martín

Abstract

Investment in natural capital is increasingly necessary and urgent considering the increasing loss of global bio- diversity and the associated social and economic losses. Ecosystem services are tools for quantifying the stock of natural capital and there is great concern about their assessment and valuation. However, there remains a substantial gap between the large amount of information available about ecosystem services and the infor- mation required to support decisions and this undermines the efficiency of their management. Multi-criteria analysis techniques can be very useful to efficiently develop decision-making processes to properly channel investment and optimize the costs associated with conservation. This paper proposes an innovative mixed methodology for multi-criteria analysis to assign priorities to ecosystem services in protected areas in terms of importance and vulnerability. The model was applied by a group of experts to prioritize 20 ecosystem services in the Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park. In order to collect and analyze the individual valuations, a mixed method of Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) and Goal Programming (GP) was used, and to aggregate the valuation criteria, a Joint Relevance Index (JRI) was used, which presents the relative importance of each service in an aggregated way. The results show that conservation policies should be primarily directed towards lifecycle maintenance and water conditions. Depending on the vulnerability of the services, conservation poli- cies should be channeled towards provisioning services related to wild animals and wild plants. Considering the relative importance of services in the park, priority should be oriented to lifecycle maintenance, water conditions and intellectual interaction with the environment.

Keywords: natural capital, ecosystem services, conservation management, AHP, GP.

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Economic Growth and Investment in R&D: Contemporary Challenges for the European Union original article

pp. 38-57 | First published in 11 March 2020 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.331

Rūta Banelienė, Borisas Melnikas

Abstract

This paper presents new approaches to investigating economic growth and innovation activity as well as analyzing investment in R&D needs and efficiency in the context of contemporary challenges for European integration. Our research modeled the impact of R&D investment on GDP growth under broad conditions of globalization. In addition to capital and labor factors, we took into account factors that influence climate change, keeping in mind their relation to economic activity. Additionally, we paid particular attention to other factors driving sustainable economic growth, such as consumption of scarce resources as well as in- equality and poverty. Herein, we proposed new modeling conceptions for evaluating the impact of R&D investment on economic growth. The suggested method was adapted to analyze the case of development processes in the European Union. Our research confirmed the hypothesis that R&D expenditure has a positive impact on economic growth, and the impact is much higher in well-developed EU economies under condi- tions of sustainable economic development and globalization. The research was based on the case of the European Union economies. The panel least squares method was applied for the modeling and estimations.

Keywords: economic growth, R&D investment, European Union, sustainable development

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Brand’s Country-of-origin Effect on Demand for Hotels: An Exploratory Study original article

pp. 58-72 | First published in 11 March 2020 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.332

Giorgio Ribaudo

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to explore the effects of a brand’s country-of-origin for a hotel on its geographic markets. The globalization of tourist markets has recently increased the importance of foreign demand for most European destinations, and the role of brands in attracting foreign de- mand is growing as a consequence. The brand is one of the key assets of multinational companies in tourism. Among the several determinants of consumer brand knowledge in the global competi- tive arena, country-of-origin (COO) effects remain among the most researched. Through an explor- atory study, based on a survey of 95 branded hotels located in Italy belonging to 16 brands having USA, Spain, France and UAE as COO, we investigated the relationship between the hotel brand’s COO and the top 5 geographic markets for the hotel. Our exploratory study demonstrates that in over 95% of cases the brand’s COO market is one of the top 5 feeding markets for a hotel, thus in- dicating that, for a hotelier, choosing a certain hotel brand as franchisor or management company will significantly determine the geographic provenience of its hotel’s guests..

Keywords: Hotel chains; sales performance; country of origin; brand strategy

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Static and Dynamic Price Effects Motivated by Innovation and Imitation: Novel Insights Using the Barone’s Curve original article

pp. 73-89 | First published in 11 March 2020 | DOI:10.5709/ce.1897-9254.333

Friedrich L. Sell

Abstract

Luigi Barone’s famous curve offers an excellent framework for the study of the microeconomic and macroeconomic implications of innovation and imitation. However, neither Barone nor his epig- ones have been able to sufficiently “exploit” his contribution to date. Complementing his analysis of supply (covering unit costs and marginal costs of production) to the forces of aggregate demand provided by the macroeconomic aggregate demand–aggregate supply model (AS-AD) analysis would be required in order to identify the determinants of the equilibrium price level in the econ- omy. Moreover, a dynamic interpretation (provided by an inhomogeneous difference equation of the second order) of Barone’s key economic growth factors (innovation and imitation) makes it easier to identify the cyclical properties of the macroeconomic price changes. These cyclical price movements have proven to be empirically relevant in the case of Germany (2000–2017), while patent record (as an indicator for the occurrence of innovation) appears to follow a random walk (Germany, 2000–2017).

Keywords: Innovation, imitation, Barone’s Curve, static and dynamic modeling of macroeconomic price (change) formation

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