Sociologický časopis
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Josef Bernard:
The Endogenous Developmental Potential of Small Rural Municipalities – The Difficulties of Searching for and Measuring Impact [745]

Bernard, Josef. 2011. „Endogenní rozvojové potenciály malých venkovských obcí – obtížné hledání a měření jejich vlivu.“ Sociologický časopis / Czech Sociological Review 47 (4): 745-776

Abstract: This article contributes to the discussion of the possibilities and limits of endogenous developmental potential in small rural communities in the Czech Republic. The article summarises some of the theoretical assumptions of developmental analyses of small rural communities, its development factors, and the current focus of contemporary Czech research. For many rural inhabitants their local community is the main space of everyday activity, and the development, stagnation, or decline of the community’s functions or changes in its socioeconomic and cultural characteristics significantly impact the inhabitants’ quality of life. However, searching for relevant developmental potential and, in particular, measuring the impact of such potential are complicated tasks because there is a lack of data for firm comparative analyses. This article aims to explore the internal structure of developmental potential and statistically measure its impact. Therefore, the author presents a model of local development consisting of structural and locality-based factors, endogenous developmental potential, and developmental indicators. The model is tested on a set of statistical data for individual small rural communities in the Czech Republic using factor analysis and multilevel modelling, where the regional data are used as independent variables on the second level. The empirical results confirm that it is possible to define several distinct types of endogenous developmental potential and to identify their impact on development, which is rather weak. The relatively high intra-class correlation coefficients of some community characteristics indicate the existence of specific regional patterns of community capacity and development in small rural communities in the Czech Republic.

Keywords: endogenous developmental potential, community development, rural communities, small municipalities, community capacity, rural development, Czech Republic.

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