More or Less Pro-Liberal? A Comparative Analysis of the Attitudes of Young People Entering the Labour Market
Purpose: This publication compares the attitudes of young Poles entering the labour market with regard to the economic system and social issues. The attitudes were diagnosed on the basis of a set of views reflecting the pro-liberal or non-liberal stance. Attempts were made to determine whether the changing attitudes are in line with the direction that was postulated – from the point of view of political transformation in Poland “towards liberalism”. Design/Methodology/Approach: The research was carried out with a multi-criteria method using critical literature analysis, logical construct method as well as statistical research. The empirical research was conducted four times, in 2003 (325 persons), in 2008 (379 persons), in 2013 (368 persons) and in 2018 (371 persons). Findings: The assumption that each next generation will accept, to a greater extent, the principles of the free market economy and will show understanding towards the limitation of the welfare and intervening function of the state proved false. Pro-liberal attitudes did not intensify “from survey to survey” and more complex patterns were observed. Their indicators were in many cases relatively higher in 2008 and 2018 and lower in 2003 and 2013. Practical Implications: The analysis of society’s attitudes is of great practical importance. The attitude of people to political changes is an important factor affecting their course and effectiveness. Originality/Value: In the four-stage studies described above, attitudes towards free competition and the independence of the private sector from the state and foreign capital investment were considered. The researchers as well elaborated on the views of the respondents towards the consequences of the introduction of market relations, free market in the sphere of employment, unemployment, differentiation of society in the economic dimension and limitations imposed by the state on welfare system.