Determinants of the Socio-Economic Situation of Living Standards in Areas Previously Occupied by State Farms in Poland: A Case Study
Purpose: The research objective was to diagnose the socio-economic situation in areas formerly occupied by a state-owned farm in Poland, using the Province of Warmia and Mazury as an example. Design/Methodology/Approach: Both a quantitative method and a qualitative one was employed. The research was conducted among residents of areas previously occupied by state-owned farms using a poll approach and a questionnaire designed by the research authors. Findings: A combination of factors, individual, cultural, and macrosocial ones, contributed to the situation when former state-owned agricultural farms in Poland are now an area where many negative, interconnected issues, such as unemployment, poverty, marginalization, lack of prospects and hope for the future, are concentrated. One of the major problems in these territories' labor market is the low occupational activity level among residents. Despite the high unemployment rate, nearly ¾ of the surveyed persons were not interested in improving their labor market position. Practical Implication: The practical implication arising from the research is the possibility of using the results in creating a regional policy in areas affected by the negative consequences of the operation and subsequent dissolution of state-owned agricultural farms. Originality/Value: It is still necessary to conduct studies in the areas formerly dominated by state farms in agriculture and search for new system-scale solutions, especially because the current interest in residents' situation in these areas is now waning. Rural areas, with their specific characteristics, for example, the occurrence of hidden unemployment, are distinguished by a large untapped human potential.