Home Aims and Scope Abstracting and Indexing Editorial Board Publication Requirements On-line First Latest Issue Archive Reviewing, Ethics and Malpractice Contact

Design, maintenance and update by:


Grigore HERMAN

Abstracts - Year VI, no.1-2 / 2005


André-Louis SANGUIN

University of Paris-Sorbonne, Faculty of Geography, e-mail: alsanguin@wanadoo.fr The Euroregion process is one of the most visible and significant evidences regarding the European integration. At first, this paper deals with the definition of the Euroregions, their origins and their purposes. Then, ones emphasizes about a theory and an algorythm for the concept of Euroregion. The great family of Euroregions is scrutinized from the West to the East, all along the enlarged EU. The paper underlines the euroregional practices and experiences within the European Union. Finally, some lessons are learnt from the euroregional mechanisms. Because most of them are a matter of a „bottom up process”, all Euroregions have to take up the challenge of a true „cross-border governance”. Keywords : Euroregions, cross-border cooperation, European integration, EU's enlargement, Schengen space, bottom up process, cross-border governance



Grigor P. POP

Universitatea „Babeş-Bolyai” din Cluj Napoca, Facultatea de Geografie, Str. Clinicilor 5-7, Cluj Napoca, Romania, e-mail: grigor@geografie.ubbcluj.ro The Ethnical Structure of Romania's Population, in 2002 . In time, in relation with the ownership of the territory inhabited by the Geto-Dacian population, followed by the Dacian-Roman population and by the Romanian one, its ethnical structure have undergone some changes, ascertained by the entrance of different foreign populations in the Carpathian-Danubian-Pontic space, with the mention that the native people have always hold an absolute majority in their place of origin and a steadfast geodemographic evolution. With certain references to the previous period, that is absolutely necessary in such analyses, this study has in view the ethnical structure and repartion of the Romania's population at a county level and in the geographical-historical provinces, on the basis of the Census from 18th of March 2002. At the mentioned data, 21,680,974 inhabitants have been registered on the Romania's territory, from which 89,48 % is represented by the Romanian population, that holds the absolute majority in all the provinces and in 40 of those 42 administrative-territorial units, excepting Harghita and Covasna. Alongside with the Romanians, many other ethnical groups are to be found on the country's territory, that hold 10,55 % from the total number of the inhabitants, in whose frame the Hungarians (6,60 %, 1,431,807 persons) and the Rroms (2,47 %, 535 140 persons) are to be spotlighted. The Hungarians are predominant only in two counties, with a reduced geodemographic dimension, respectively Harghita (84,6 % from 326,222 inhabitants of county) and Covasna (73,8 %, 222,449 inhabitants). At the provinces' level, they hold 22,9 % in Transylvania, 22,4 % in Crişana-Maramureş and 7,2 % in Banat, with the mention that on the whole of those provinces, the ratio of Romanian population and of other ethnical groups – related to the Hungarian population is of 5 to 1. The Rroms ethnical group is present on the whole of the Romania's territory, being still characterized by a higher weight in Mureş counties (7 %, 40,425 persons), Călăraşi (5,7 %, 18,343), Sălaj (5,1 %, 12,544), Bihor (5 %, 30,089), Dolj (4,3 %, 31,544), Ialomiţa (4,1 %, 12,182), Sibiu (4,1 %, 17,125 Rroms), with weights of 3-4 %, being also registered an increased number of the country's counties. All the other ethnical groups, namely the 22 groups registered in the Census' data, which hold 1,45 % from the country's population, begin with the Ukrainian people (61,098 persons) and close with the Slovenians (202 persons). Keywords : Ethnic, population, Romania




West University from Timişoara, Department of Geography, 4 V. Pârvan St. 000223 Timişoara Romania Générations des établissements rurales de Banat avec une population d'ethnie allemande pendant le 18e et le 20e siècles . Après la Paix de Pssarovitz de 1718 Banat entre sous la directe administration de la Cour Autrichienne de Vienna qui initie des mésures de peuplement dans ce térritoire avec des nouveaux colloniaux allemands. Il y a trois étapes de collonisation en Banat dont la première a eu lieu pendant 1703-1740 quand 45 localités ont été peuplées avec l'élément allemand. Pendant la deuxième étape de collonisation (1741-1780) il y a 48 étabilissements qui ont été fondés par les ethniques allemands tandis que la dernière étape (1781-1790) compte 29 localités habitées par des allemands aussi. Les dernières établissements avec des etniques allemands ont été crées pendant le 20e siècle. Dans leur évolution structurale-spatiale et fonctionelle une partie des étabilssements colonisés par des ethniques allemands ont connu des périodes de prosperité, quelques autres sont entrés en declin ayant dissparu complètement ou ètant en cours de dispparition. Mots-clé : Banat, localités rurales, ethniques allemands, colonisation



University of Łódź, Department of Political Geography and Regional Studies, Kopcińskiego 31, Łódź, Poland, e-mail : marbar@geo.uni.lodz.pl Before the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact the geostrategic position of Poland did not warrant the state's security. The presence of a huge number of Soviet troops within the territory of Poland and its neighbours meant a permanent peril which became true in 1956 in Hungary and in 1968 in Czechoslovakia. These days no foreign troops are stationed in Poland. Such possibility depends on decisions of Polish government which, unlike during the period after WW II, are independent of any external influences. Russia still possesses a huge military potential in Europe and the Ukrainian army is the second strongest on the continent. Germany also has a great demographic and military potential. Belarus does not have a numerous army, nevertheless it possesses a huge armament exceeding even that of Poland. Its position is additionally strengthened by an alliance and close military co-operation with Russia. The Czech Republic enjoys at present a favourable geopolitics situation is not compelled to hold a strong army. Poland has one of the strongest armies in the region as far as the number of troops is concerned, but the armament and defence budget is insufficient compared to some neighbouring countries. The analyses of contemporary geostrategic situation in Central Europe shows that Poland does not match some of its neighbours as regards the military potential and basic arsenal. It seems that the reductions in Polish army are steps in a right direction but it must be coupled with increase in quality and quantity of modern armaments. Contemporary armed conflicts show that the technical equipment and troops training are main factors of military power rather than the number of troops. The NATO membership is a warrant of state's security. For instance in Germany some far-reaching reductions in army became possible thanks to a shift of the NATO border eastward after the admission of Poland to the pact. Likewise, accession of new members – Slovakia and the Baltic republics in particular – is in Poland's interest. It would not balance the military potentials of Central-European countries, nevertheless it would improve geostrategic situation of both the NATO and Poland.

Keywords : geostrategic, military potential, NATO, Poland, Central Europe



Andrzej RYKAŁA

University of Łodz, Department of Political Geography and Regional Studies, 31 Kopcinsbiegoul, 90-231, Łodz, Poland, e-mail: andryk@krysia.uni.lodz.pl The process of European integration depends on various interrelated factors. Religion is an important but often neglected factor that conditions processes of international relations. The influence of religion on international relations was revealed in the discussions on international integration and in the process of European integration itself. The range and character of this influence was changing according to historical epochs. In the past religious ties were of great importance for the politics. It could inspire both natural solidarity manifested, for instance, in the idea of the “family of Christian nations” and to conflict and “holy wars” between Christian and Muslim countries or between the Protestants and Catholics. Religious bonds have always played an important part in the processes of formation of nations and in preservation of national identity by national minorities. In many countries the systems of governing were based on an official state religion. Such was the position of Catholicism in Austria-Hungary and the Orthodox Church in pre-revolution Russia. Nowadays if the churches retain any political influence in European countries it is mainly in some less developed post-communist countries. The Balkan conflict provides the most striking example of interference of religion with the politics. Greece – a member of the European Union – is another country in the Balkan region where religion is of great consequence for the socio-political life. Although Greek constitution warrants a free exercise of any creed, the Orthodox religion is treated as an official state religion. The Orthodox Church is often favoured by state institutions to the detriment of other congregations, especially non-Orthodox Christians who make up 1.5% of the society. On the other hand, in Scandinavian countries, where until recently Lutheranism enjoyed a status of state religion, religious issues are rather meaningless. But These days the churches do not engage directly in politics conceding this sphere to pertinent public institutions. Preventing church institution from interfering in the politics does not mean that churches are denied the right to participate in social life. Less influential in the sphere of politics, the church has a chance to emphasise its universal dimension that transcends temporal concerns. To fulfil their mission, the churches should refer to inter-religious, interethnic and international, hence European, solidarity “for the sake of common good”. As the church is constituted as well by the clergy as by the laity, the co-operation between churches should bring the societies closer together, which is actually a foundation of European integration. Keywords : religion, international relatoins, European integration



University of Lodz, Department of Spatial Economy and Spatial Planning, 90-142 Łodz, Ul. Kopcniskiego 31, Poland, e-mail: evaklima@geo.uni.lodz .pl Kinga SEKERDEJ Jagiellonian University, Department of Sociology and Psihology, 90-142 Łodz, Ul. Kopcniskiego 31, Poland Maciej SEKERDEJ Jagiellonian University, Department of Sociology and Psihology, 90-142 Łodz, Ul. Kopcniskiego 31, Poland The article examined the attitudes of high school children and teachers in Poland towards the Germans and the Ukrainians. It was determined that the attitudes towards the Germans and the Ukrainians differ depending on the place of residence and the degree of contact. It was discovered that while contact ameliorates the attitudes towards the Germans, it leads to the opposite situation in the case of the Ukrainians. Furthermore, the respondents” image of the Germans was much more complex than their picture of the Ukrainians. Keywords : attitudes, Poland, Germans, Ukrainians



Institute of Political Studies, Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland, e-mail: jstancz@omega.isppan.waw.pl The turn of the eighties and nineties years of XX century marked the transformations in the international alignment of forces and the fall of the old order on the European continent. At the same time we started to build a new security order based on co-operation between countries and between international organisations and also based on international integration. These processes, which serve security and stability, are being continued. Thus, we are facing the essential moment – the strategic “chance” – for shaping stable and prosperous Europe. During the last years, Central Europe (without the Former Yugoslavia) was able to strengthen stability in the region and to establish efficient mechanisms of comprehensive co-operation. The integration of the Central European countries with the North Atlantic Alliance and the European Union should consolidate the hitherto achievements ands promote them to other countries of Central and Eastern Europe. The changes that started in the late 1980's in Europe proved to be crucial. They have not only affected the political systems in many countries, but also changed the political-territorial status quo of international alignment of forces, which influences the international security. The process of change the international alignment of forces has, however, brought to light some non-military aspects, the whole range of which combines in a broad positive meaning of the notion of international security. An eminent manifestation of this process is its unique character consisting in that the bipolar system of security has been undermined, to a great extent, from below, by the means of social mobilization (which is rather a rare phenomenon). Rejection of the hitherto existing European “order” (moreover, the breakdown of the bipolar system) did not necessitate a world war nor, at least, a confined European conflict (as it was the case up to our days). Keywords : European Security, Central and Eastern Europe, international alignment of forces



Raularian RUSU

Universitatea „Babeş-Bolyai” din Cluj Napoca, Facultatea de Geografie, Str. Clinicilor 5-7, Cluj Napoca, Romania

Algeria and Its Present Crises. Algeria's crisis has deep roots and some of its causes should be trace back to the Independence War. However, the paper is mainly concerned with the recent evolution of the Algerian politics, economy and society. The riots of 1988 determined a change of political system, from the centralized system of the unique party, the National Liberation Front (FLN), to a pluralist, democratic system. An Islamic party, the FIS, whose goal was to transform Algeria into an Islamic state, has won the first free Parliamentary elections, in 1991. The cancellation of elections by the military-run government determined the start of a long-lasting civil war. There is no unanimous opinion regarding the beginning and the end of this war, but we propose the date of September 11, 2001, as an end. Since then, the Western European states and the U.S.A. support the Algerian military-backed government in its fight against Islamic terrorism, and there can be only one winner… On the other hand, the terrorist attacks and slaughters have decreased in numbers since 1998, and nowadays one can speak only of “residual terrorism”. The meetings of President Bouteflika with George W. Bush and Jacques Chirac may well be a first sign of the international support of present-day Algeria, which can be characterized as an “emerging democracy”. The elections, democratic in theory, have been won in 2002 by the ancient unique party, the FLN. The economy is still depending on the oil and gas resources, but the restructuring programme imposed by the IMF is functioning well. On the other hand, large numbers of Algerians live below the poverty level because of the high rates of unemployment. Human rights are not always respected and Kabylie remains an issue to be solved.

Keywords: Algeria, crises, war, economy, society, emerging democracy




Università "G. D'Annunzio" di Chieti-Pescara (Italy), Faculty of Economics, Dipartimento di Economia e Storia del Territorio Historical heritage, geographical marginality and geopolitical constraints are making Armenian transition very problematic. From a regional point of view, Armenia suffers heavy economic consequences of Azeri-Turkish blockade, due to Nagorno-Karabakh unsettled conflict. From a domestic point of view, there's a striking constrast between the nominal growth of GDP and the impoverishment of the population, which is causing silent but abundant emigration flows, notwithstanding country's potentialities: human resources, hi-tech industrial heritage, high-quality agricultural traditions, mineral resources, great tourist potential. Unavoidable transition troubles and unfavourable geopolitical situation are therefore hindering development opportunities, as well as many other factors: "soviet" forma mentis; inefficiency and corruption of the public administration, that discourage foreign investments; a nationalist guideline in foreign affairs, that worsen international isolation; an inadequate improvement of endogenous resources; a "messianic" attitude towards external help. By considering the geographical position and the regional scenario, Armenia's operating margin is quite narrow and, as a consequence, many choices like the philo-Russian one - as well as the philo-Iranian one - are rather compelled, as weel as the so called politics of the ‘double track' or ‘complementary': according to circumstances Yerevan uses all its diplomatic wits both not to provoke Moscow's susceptibility and to gain Washington's approval (and dollars), keeping at the same time friendly ties with Teheran, Damascus and Beijing. To stop the vicious circle isolation-stagnation-emigration and to start an enduring and widespread development process, Armenia should improve at the highest level its internal resources and harmonize its geopolitical role in a regional and international context. This also means to banish nationalism from foreign policy and to strengthen democracy and transparency in the domestic one. Key-words: Armenia, Caucasus, Transition

FROM THE CITY TO THE METROPOLITAN AREA: ATTEMPTS TO DEFINE AND DELIMIT Marina FUSCHI Department of Economics and History of the Territory, Faculty of Economics, “G. d'Annunzio” University, Pescara-Chieti, Italy,e-mail: fuschi@dest.unich.it , marina.rds@inwind.it

Il dibattito sulla perimetrazione delle aree metropolitane, sia in campo politico che scientifico, ha coinvolto numerosi Paesi pervenendo a forme di regionalizzazione funzionale basate su organizzazioni gravitazionali di tipo gerarchico. A fronte del processo di metropolizzazione delle città, tuttavia, la difficoltà di conciliare un modello teorico e politico-applicativo generale con le specificità locali, comunque presenti nello spazio geografico, sposta l'attenzione piuttosto che sull' “esattezza” del confine dell'area, sulla percezione della stessa da parte degli abitanti, traducendo il problema in termini di consenso e di possibilità dell'azione pubblica a scala metropolitana. Il caso di studio sull'area urbana Pescara-Chieti bene interpreta tali processualità: attraverso una proposta di perimetrazione oggettiva dell'area, analizzata, successivamente, nelle sue dinamiche demografico-produttive, si delinea strutturalmente la transizione metropolitana che, però, si scontra con la percezione di una realtà carica di complessità, a partire dal riconoscimento di una doppia polarità urbana e dall'estremo rigidismo del ritaglio amministrativo. La necessità di un governo unitario nell'ambito di una area-progetto alimenterà un sentimento di identità metropolitana capace di evitare una urbanizzazione senza territorio e una politica senza un reale coinvolgimento dei cittadini.

Keywords : city, metropolitan area, boundary, perception, Pescara-Chieti urban area.



Institutul de Geografie, Str. Dimitrie Racovită, Nr. 12, 70307 sect. II Bucuresti, Romania, e-mail: geoinst @fx.ro

Metropolitan areas in Romania. Their attribute of territorial structures of inter-communal cooperation derives from the complementary potential of the two types of local administrative units: one type is the phase of advanced urbanisaton, represented by regional and departmental convergence nuclei, and the other type represented by the periurban zone of the former. The first category is characterised by high densities of population in the perimeter of the built-in area and small administrative territories, but enjoy the highest local budgest; the second category have limited financial resources, but an excedent of space. Using the concept of metropolitan area when speaking of Romania is quite inadequate, because with the exception of Bucharest, its capital-city, regional metropolises stand below the level of 400,000 inhabitants and polarise areas with a population under one million, they coming much closer to the periurban zones. The concept was first used when they delimited the metropolitan area of Oradea, the first inter-communal cooperation structure in this country, which based on spatial and functional complementariness brings together the administrative territory of Oradea city and of its limitrophe communes. Simultaneously, another metropolitan area, by far larger, was outlined, that of Bucharest. It encompasses 145 local administrative units. For the present, we would suggest the creation of other two metropolitan areas, quite viable in our opinion, namely, Galaţi-Brăila and Constanţa.

Keywords: metropolitan area, inter-communal cooperation, Romania




Department of Geography, Tourism and Territorial Planning, Faculty of History and Geography, University of Oradea, Armatei Române 5 Oradea 410087 Bihor România, e-mail: marius_stupariu@yahoo.co.uk Imigraţia în Statele Unite ale Americii. Statele Unite ale Americii este de multă vreme „vârf de lance” ca ţară primitoare de imigranţi şi refugiaţi pe plan mondial. Au existat, în ceea ce priveşte imigraţia, patru perioade importante. Primul val de imigranţi a început pe actualul teritoriu al Statelor Unite cu coloniştii din jurul anului 1600 şi a ajuns la apogeu înaintea Războiului de Independenţă care a izbucnit în 1775. Al doilea flux important de imigranţi a început în anul 1820 şi s-a terminat în 1870. Cel mai mare aflux de imigranţi a avut loc în perioada 1880 până la începutul anilor 1920. Un al patrulea val a început în 1965 datorită schimbării legilor privind statutul imigranţilor. Cuvinte cheie: imigranţi, Statele Unite ale Americii