INTELLECTUAL ECONOMICS 2007, Number 1(1)REVIEWS
REGIONAL ECONOMICS, POLICY AND GOVERNANCE IN LITHUANIA
Mykolas Romeris University Publishing Centre. Vilnius. Lithuania 2007 Nr.1(1), p. 90-91
Regional economics and Policy (REP) is a distinct sub-discipline which draws on economic theory in an attempt to explain
divergent economic performance across space and provides an interface between Business Administration and Economics.
Therefore, it is a suitable deepening subject for both courses of studies. On the one hand, REP augments economic theory with the important area dimension. It abolishes the microeconomic fiction of punctual, perfect markets and allows for phenomena like local monopolies, inhomogeneous locations and the limited mobility of goods and factors of production. Thereby, economic problems like international, better to say – interregional, location competition, regional infrastructure and environmental policy, tax competition and financial adjustment become theoretically ascertainable. Thus, REP is not a special subject, but rather a generalization of economics. It builds bridges to related subjects like Economic Geography and Administration Economics. This contributes to the many practical references of.
On the other hand, REP focuses on the techniques used to evaluate the effectiveness territorial policies, which include local and regional economic development initiatives as well as the territorial policies of central government. From this microeconomic perspective, multiple references to business administration can be found. There is a strong emphasis throughout the volume on the application of economic theory to gaining a better understanding of how spatial problems arise and what policy makers can do to tackle these problems.
Due to the further reduction of trade barriers and the increasing factor mobility, REP becomes more and more relevant in explaining
international division of labour. Classic trade theory, which does for the most part abstract from the mobility of the factors of
production, falls short of reality more and more. Concerning Europe, after the completion of the Single European Market and the
monetary union the location competition is taking place ever less between the states than rather between the individual regions.
Thus, REP will not only gain importance in science, but also in economic practice.
The intent of this book is intended to equip students with a toolkit of theoretical, informational and practical skills for regional analysis and to expose the student to concepts, theories, and analytical techniques in the field of regional economics, policy and governance. The book is divided into five parts. The initial first section addresses the 3 key questions raised by introducing spatial aspects into economic analysis. In effect, each is based on the regional facets of economic demand, supply, and externalities. Applied topics such as regional multipliers, input-output models, growth models, inter-regional trade and migration, spread of technologies and innovations, clusters and entrepreneurship, globalization and regionalization are explored in this part of the volume. The principles, instruments, the history and review of regional disparities and specific regional problems within Lithuania and EU are explored in the second section; the main principles of public administrations and legal framework of the governance of regions and devolution of regional policy in Lithuania are covered in the third section. The final fourth and fifth sections focus on assessment of past and layout of future regional policy in Lithuania. Each section first introduces core topics, and then briefly surveys modern theories, methods and empirics. Empirical evidence is used throughout the volume to illustrate the issues under discussion. Tutorials are used to develop problem-solving skills and to apply regional methods to current problems.
An undoubted advantage of the volume lies with the vast literature that has been reviewed, contributing in most parts to the soundness of the theoretical and practical argument. The dominance of theoretical parts is also purposeful. In short, Economics, policy and governance of regions in Lithuania is certainly a timely and long awaited contribution to the slowly emerging discussion on the territorial and social cohesion in Lithuania. Providing path-breaking theory and practice in the fields of regional science, policy and governance, this highly original, multidisciplinary study will prove invaluable for students, academic and practitioners. Regional policy makers will also find much to interest them within this book.
Author Gediminas Mačys, Associate Professor of Regional Economics and Development, Department of Economics, Mykolas Romeris University, Member of Regional Studies Association (the International Forum for Regional Development Policy and Research), London, UK, Expert of Association of Municipalities of Lithuania, Vilnius, Lithuania.