Issue 49 – Spring 2021


European Regional Policy

Halina Waniak-Michalak, Jan Michalak, Maciej Turala

Performance of nonbanking organisations granting guarantees within cohesion policy

The debate on cohesion policy has recently intensified due to the increasing tensions within the EU and requires constant inputs with regards to various instruments which are applied. In Poland, a unique mechanism for guarantee distribution was adopted – the guarantees are mainly distributed through NGOs (nonbanking organisations granting guarantees – NOGG).
Thus, the article aims to investigate the relationship between the level of regional development, the experience of nonbanking organisations granting guarantees and their performance which leads to observations and recommendations with regards to the functioning and assessment of guarantees as cohesion policy instruments. We have used panel regression for 156 observations covering 26 NOGG in Poland.
The results confirm that there exist positive associations between the level of regional development, NOGG size (measured with guarantee capital) and experience and some financial performance measures. We posit, that a prerequisite for the high performance of these organisations is to ensure that they have an adequate level of guarantee capital and experience. We call for future EU-wide comparative research allowing deeper understanding of various guarantee distribution mechanisms performance.

Keywords: nonbanking organisations; guarantees; performance; regional development; cohesion policy

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Alejandro Esteller-Moré

Optimal Taxation and Decentralization: The case of the PIT

Given the tax power in hands of the Autonomous Communities (ACs) in the PIT, we wonder whether decentralization might be welfare-enhancing. To asses this, we focus on a paradigmatic legal element: the top marginal tax rate on labor income. Taking advantage of the theoretical framework of the recent optimal tax theory (Saez, 2001), we compare – from microdata of the Survey of Life Conditions (conducted by the Spanish National Statistical Institute – the real rates with the optimal ones. There is a discrepancy for all ACs; being for all of them the optimal rate above the real one. The average discrepancy is 10 percentage points (p.p.), being maximum (minimum) for the AC of (Navarre), 23 (2) p.p. In any case, taking the tax rate in absence of subcentral legislative action as the benchmark, all but four ACs have set their tax rate closing the gap with their optimum.

Keywords: decentralization; optimal taxation; Autonomous Communities.

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Juan de Lucio

Advanced estimation of regional growth using LSTM neural networks

This paper studies the incorporation of Artificial Intelligence techniques to the set of tools available for the analysis of the regional situation. The estimates using long-short-term memory, LSTM, neural networks are compared with the most common instruments in the analysis of conjuncture (time series, synthetic indicators and dynamic factors). Results show that advances in neural networks can be incorporated into the tools used in regional economic analysis reducing the estimation error. They are complementary tools, with greater flexibility to capture the diversity of situations in the real economy and with a higher estimation capacity (lower mean square error). The document suggests the use of these types of techniques to solve a variety of problems in regional research.

Keywords: regional analysis; neural networks; artificial intelligence; LSTM

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Angeles Cámara, Ana Medina

Measuring the economic impact of immigrant workers exit from Madrid region labor market

This paper analyses the economic impact of the loss of employment suffered by the immigrant population in Madrid’s regional economy during the years of the latest economic crisis, specifically during the period 2010-2016. First, it examines the labour characteristics of the immigrant population, a community mainly employed in unstable and low-skilled jobs and overrepresented in economic sectors that are sensitive to fluctuations in the labour market. Financial crisis forced these workers exiting labour market and the present work focuses on the modelling of this phenomenon by means of the construction of a multisectoral model of the supply-side type, also known as Ghosh model. This analytic approach provides estimates of the direct impacts of the immigrant working population leaving the labour market, and of its indirect and induced impacts on the greater economy.

Keywords: Economic integration of immigrants; multisectoral model; economic impact

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Ana-María Ríos , María-Dolores Guillamón , Antonio-José García , Bernardino Benito

Is there a political bias in the municipal distribution of regional funds? The example of the Region of Murcia

The weaknesses of the local funding model mean that in some municipalities a debate has arisen as to whether the distribution of funds from upper levels of government is based on proper principles or is simply the result of strictly partisan criteria. In this context, this paper aims to analyze the criteria that determine the amount of funds received by the 45 municipalities that comprise the Region of Murcia, where there is no local funding law, from the autonomous government during the period 2009-2017. Our results show that, contrary to expectations, no political factors are sufficiently relevant to determine the transfers received. On the other hand, it is found that budgetary criteria of sufficiency, investment and per capita debt are the most important ones to explain the transfers received by the municipalities. Finally, it should be noted that the level of income, unemployment, the percentage of dependent population, territorial dispersion and the tourist nature of the municipality have also revealed significant socio-economic factors to determine the amount of current and/or capital transfers obtained by the municipalities.

Keywords: regional funds; local financing; distribution criteria

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Francisca J. Sánchez-Sánchez, Ana M. Sánchez-Sánchez, Noemí Pulido , Diego V. Borrero

Measuring the labour efficiency in Andalusia (Spain): A DEA approach

This paper analyses the labour efficiency in Andalusia, and takes into account labour and demographic characteristics of the Andalusian municipalities. Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) is the methodology employed. The results obtained indicate differences at the municipal level that depend on the geographical arrangement, with the provincial capitals being the least efficient. An inverse relationship is established between the size of the municipality (in terms of number of inhabitants) and its labour efficiency: the smaller the size of the municipality, the greater the efficiency. The distance to the capital is also important in establishing the efficiency: the greater the distance to the capital, the greater the efficiency.

Keywords: Efficiency; Employment; Municipalities; Andalusia; DEA

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Valeria Arza, Emanuel López

Obstacles and innovation capabilities from a regional perspective: the case of Patagonia in Argentina

We compare the effect of external obstacles and internal capabilities on firms’ innovation and productivity in Patagonia versus the rest of the country for 2014-2016. Our hypothesis is that the regional context influences those effects. We find that in that region external obstacles affect, not only the decisions to invest in innovation, as it happens nationally, but also its intensity. Internal capabilities are lower than in the rest of the country but have a greater impact to encourage innovation decisions. These findings suggest that the regional dimension should be considered in innovation policy.

Keywords: Patagonia; regional innovation; obstacles to innovation; internal capabilities; productivity.

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Eloy Gil Cordero, Francisco Javier Rondan Cataluña, Manuel Rey Moreno

Regional analysis of the private label in online shopping

The main objective of this work is to analyze regional consumer behavior when purchasing a private label product online, based on the relationships of the PL with respect to the online PL quota by regions in Spain, assortment of online PLs and purchase online of PLs. In this study, a total of 17,484 online purchases of PL and 92,094 online purchases of manufacturers’ brands were analyzed. With these data, latent class regression models have been developed. The results confirm that the relation between PL purchase amount and the variables total purchase amount, purchase of unbranded products and manufacturers brands in the online channel varies between regions, not having an equal behavior for all online users, even using the same retail environment.

Keywords: Private label; E-commerce; food industry; latent class; regional analysis

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