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Browsing by master's degree program "International Masters in Economy, State & Society"

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  • Lu, Sijie (2022)
    In the past 10 year, the inequality discourse has been greatly shaped by Piketty’s capital accumulation theory presented in Capital in the 21st Century. Although it has popularized the capital-income dichotomy in inequality research, the missing role of institution has severely restricted the model’s explanatory power. Illuminated by the concept of factor concentration and the decomposition analysis in recent literature, this thesis will analyze the role of one special form of capital -housing- in inequality formation. The omnipresent influence of government (or institution) in housing welfare allocation will be explained. Moreover, it will pay extra attention to the Nordic countries who are arguably featured with high degree of equality and deep state intervention. It will be shown the inequality measured by some indices is surprisingly high in those societies. However, after taking into consideration their welfare regimes the measuring methodologies, the results do not seem so gloomy. The universalistic embodied in their system and a relatively stronger macro level welfare state are not reflected in the data but are effective in defending housing-related welfare. The thesis aims at incorporating welfare states theory and housing economics literature into inequality discourse. It will be demonstrated that the welfare institution in a society has strong effect on shaping wealth and ultimately welfare distribution. Through this empirical discussion, the importance of including qualitative literature in interpretating quantitative results will be emphasized.
  • Tian, Yun (2020)
    This thesis explores how national identification is represented in nineteenth-century Finnish artworks. More specifically, it focuses on the paintings of Akseli Gallén-Kallela. Akseli Gallén-Kallela was an active artist who devoted himself to constructing and disseminating the notions of a “Finnish” and “Finnish nation”. The main objective of this study is to understand how Gallén-Kallela managed to construct and circulate the ideas of nation and national identification in his paintings. My theoretical framework is based on Anthony D. Smith’s ethno-symbolistic approach and W.J.T. Mitchell’s notion of “landscape as a cultural medium”. The former insists that each nation has an ethnic core that not only provides cultural conformity but also a lasting sense of continuity. It advocates a study of ethnie and nation from a visual analytic perspective. The latter claims that landscape also serves as a cultural practice that helps the formation of social subjects. The main finding of this study is that Gallén-Kallela managed to create a Finnish ethnoscape, that is, a landscape attached with Finnish physical characters and spiritual qualities. Moreover, by authenticating his experience of nature and rural life, Gallén-Kallela attempted to represent and promote what he believed to be nationally unique and valuable for Finnish people. He attempted to translate the abstract notion of nation and identity into something tangible and accessible to common people. Gallén-Kallela’s love for his homeland and his rural friends became the initial inspiration of his artistry. His work is a complex of ethnos and wilderness. They contain power to raise one’s sentiment and sympathy. The artist himself, as an artist and cultural communicator, managed to paint down and promote Finnish ethnic distinctiveness with his profound love and loyalty to his homeland.
  • Zhong, Huishan (2020)
    Abstract Introduction. International migration is one popular and challenging issue in Central Europe for decades, especially after the collapse of the communist bloc. This thesis explores, how international migration correlates with the level of economic development in six Central European countries (Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia) during the years 1995-2019. In this context international migration is divided into two types: immigration and emigration. This thesis aims to help policymakers to determine the international migration policy by understanding the correlation between international migration and economic development better. Methods. This study explores the correlation between international migration and economic development in Central European states and reflects it against the historical, political, and economic context. National-level migration and macroeconomic data related to Central European states were collected from the World Bank, Eurostat, OECD, UNCTADstat, WIID, UIS, UNHCR and ETH Zurich databases in the period 1995-2019. The endogeneity issues in panel data analysis were noted. Macro-econometric models and spatial autoregressive models were conducted through Stata. Results. The empirical analysis confirmed the following hypotheses: (1) an increase in immigration correlates with a higher level of economic development in receiving countries. (2) An increase in emigration correlates with a lower level of economic development in sending countries. As expected, the empirical results further displayed a positive (negative) correlation between female immigrants (emigrants) and the economic development of receiving countries (sending countries). Conclusion. This thesis presents that (1) an increase in immigration strongly correlates with a higher level of economic development in receiving countries; (2) an increase in emigration significantly correlates with a lower level of economic development in sending countries. This study also emphasises the correlation between female migration and economic development in Central Europe.
  • Zheng, Yan (2022)
    Corruption, which affects the development of human society nowadays, has been called the “cancer” of international politics. Currently, countries worldwide are faced with corruption to varying degrees, which diverts funds for development to private individuals or power groups, makes the poor poorer, affects the rule of law in the entire country and traps the country in an “inequality trap”. This dissertation attempts to interpret, through a comparative study, why corruption rates remain high in China. The starting point is examined in this dissertation is why the corruption rate in Finland is much lower than in China. This study compares and analyses the anti-corruption ecology and mechanisms of the two countries, including the definition of corruption, the current state of corruption, the causes of corruption, the legal framework, the institutional set-up of anti-corruption, and the set-up of prevention mechanisms and the differences in social supervision. The comparative approach allows for quick identification of institutional and legal differences between the two countries. The results show that there is rarely a motive for Finnish officials to be involved in corruption, that the Ministry of Justice has collaborated to build an anti-corruption network that allows all departments to participate, and that the existence of an Ombudsman and Chancellor of Justice system allows for oversight of government operations. The transparent and open government allows the public to participate in social supervision. China is more diverse in terms of the causes of corruption, with incomplete legal constructs and over-powered anti-corruption agencies, leading to the involvement of anti-corruption officials in corruption. Mechanisms to prevent corruption lack national-level guidance, and the government is not transparent enough, resulting in the public’s right to know not being guaranteed and making it difficult for social oversight to function. This is why the corruption rate in China is higher than that in Finland.
  • Ziyu, Xing (2022)
    This thesis is aimed to investigate the long-run and short-run relationship between renewable, nuclear energy consumption, economic growth and CO2 emissions in Finland. The historic development and current situations of the energy consumption, economic growth and CO2 emissions are discussed. Then Johansen cointegration test and Vector Error Correction Model (VECM) are applied in the empirical analysis to further exploit the causal relationships between the variables. There are four variable employed in this thesis: renewable energy consumption (REC), nuclear energy consumption (NUC), Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and CO2 emissions (COE). The data of the variables span from 1977 to 2020 and mainly come from official databases and reports from the Finnish government and international organizations, such as Statistics Finland, Our World in Data, World Bank, etc. The results indicate that there is the positive bidirectional long-run relationships between NUC, REC and GDP. Also, the unidirectional long-run relationships of GDP, REC, NUC with COE are estimated. The increase in GDP and NUC are estimated to increase COE in the long run, while REC is estimated to decrease COE. Furthermore, the negative short-run relationships between REC, NUC and COE are found, which shows that, in the short run, renewable and nuclear energy consumption in Finland is estimated to reduce the CO2 emissions. The findings from the thesis indicate renewable energy consumption is both economic and environmental-friendly. Nuclear energy is also good for economic growth in the long run and environment in the short run, but needs to be cautiously treated with regard to environmental protection in the long-run strategies. Also, there has been the trend of impact decoupling in Finland in the short term. However, further research is needed to test the EKC hypothesis and its turning point.
  • Zhao, Youxuan (2022)
    Since the 1990s, the international capital flow between countries has shown a sharp rise. Most of the transition economies such as Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) have adopted new measures to reform their financial systems, which not only brought important sources of overseas capital for their own economic development, but also guided their financial systems to develop in a more rational direction. However, such a model that relies heavily on the foreign capital has also brought serious financial hidden dangers. The declining trend of international capital flows after the financial crisis further confirms the existence of the "Lucas Paradox". Based on the sorting and research of previous literature, this dissertation takes CEE and CIS countries with unique background and status in transition economies as research objects. After summarizing the transition background and characteristics of these two types of transition economies, each aspect of financial development and transition is analyzed (banking, securities, financial regulation). Then, it analyzes the situation of international capital inflow in different stages in detail. In addition, the international capital flow data and financial development data of 19 transition economies from 1995 to 2019 were selected, and macro-control variables were considered. Meanwhile, this dissertation establishes a panel data model rely on FGLS estimation and systematic GMM method to discover the quantitative relationship between financial development and international capital flow. The empirical results show that with the improvement of the level of financial development, direct investment and international loans show a positive inflow, while indirect investment has a reverse outflow phenomenon. At the macroeconomic level, real economic growth rates and real interest rates affect total capital inflows, and the quality of national institutions affects direct and indirect investment inflows. In addition, increased financial development can significantly boost indirect investment and debt-based capital inflows in EU-acceded countries (CEE), but non-EU-acceded countries (CIS) are somewhat unattractive for international indirect investment.
  • QIU, XINGYUAN (2020)
    This paper investigates the economic implications of the 2018 US-China trade war on the EU, and measures the trade restrictiveness of non-tariff barriers by applying the Trade Restrictiveness Index methodology under the framework of Kee et al. (2009). A cross-sectional OLS regression was applied to estimate the ad-valorem equivalent of NTBs in 2017 and 2018, which were then used to construct the TRIs and deadweight loss. The paper depicts empirical evidences that NTBs tend to play a more crucial role than tariffs in the EU countries, as their NTBs make, on average, an additional contribution of more than 83% to the overall protection level measured solely by tariffs. Besides, the results suggest that both the restrictive level of NTBs and the overall protection level imposed by the EU fell from 2017 to 2018. In addition, a more-developed EU country tends to impose a lower restrictive level of NTBs than a relatively less-developed EU country during the US-China trade war. Moreover, the decreasing TRI, OTRI, MA-OTRI and DWL during this period reveals that the US and China have both held out the olive branches to the EU, while the EU also seized the opportunity to strengthen bilateral trade and cooperation with them. Especially, the reason for the decreasing DWL can be resulted from the backspin that the positive benefits brought by strengthening relationships and seeking deeper cooperation with alternative trading partners in 2018 outweigh the negative impacts caused by the US-China trade war and broken-down confidence of global investors in 2017. From a sectional level, there is evidence supporting the advice that the EU should try to avoid export products that with the highest AVEs imposed by the US and China to these two countries respectively, such as miscellaneous manufactured articles, rubber and plastics in my case.
  • Chen, Zhijie (2022)
    Obtaining advanced technology through FDI technology spillover is generally regarded as a crucial channel for transition economies to achieve technological progress. However, in the actual research, the efficiency of technological progress and the intensity of FDI technology spillover in Central and Eastern Europe exhibit noticeable spatial differences, closely related to different countries’ different innovation capacities. Existing literature has proved the existence of FDI technology spillovers and theoretically discussed the implications of innovation capacities on FDI technology spillovers. Nevertheless, this moderating effect’s nonlinear characteristics and threshold effects have not yet been sufficiently explored in transition countries in Central and Eastern Europe. Therefore, this study utilises the macroeconomic data of 11 transition countries in Central and Eastern Europe from 2005 to 2019 to construct a threshold regression model to analyse the moderating effect of innovation capacities on FDI technology spillovers. According to the empirical findings, the country-level innovation capacity of transition countries in Central and Eastern Europe has a significantly and positively moderating effect on FDI technology spillovers, with an apparent single threshold characteristic. This moderating power diminishes when the innovation capacity crosses the threshold. A striking finding is that the threshold effect of the innovation capacities’ moderating effects on FDI technology spillovers disappears when differences in resource endowments between countries are considered.
  • Musanovic, Alisa (2021)
    This thesis concerns the Polish institution of the dom kultury (house of culture). A dom kultury is an arts centre housing activity ranging from music clubs to film screenings. Under Poland’s state socialist regime, it was envisioned as a space for the implementation of socialist ideals, although such goals were not always realised in practice. Since the end of state socialism, houses of culture have been less defined by such programmatic socialising content; nonetheless they continue to occupy a key part in Poland’s cultural landscape. This thesis explores local people’s memories and perceptions of the institution, tracing the different frameworks people use to make sense of the world around them. It also uses the theoretical frameworks of culture, temporality and postsocialism to explore people’s opinions. The study utilises an oral history methodology, with the source material consisting of ten interviews conducted with inhabitants of one town in Poland, Chodzież. The research builds on the growing interest in narrations of the everyday rather than trauma in the oral history of ex-socialist countries. A thematic analysis of the material was conducted according to the research focus of ideal roles and lived experiences of the house of culture. Remote methods had to be adopted due to the ongoing pandemic, which impacted on the data collection process by slowing down participant recruitment, while also enabling greater flexibility in the research process. The first main finding of the study pertains to the role played by the house of culture over time. While the dispersion of cultural activity since socialism means that it no longer provides the novelty that it once did, the house of culture plays a growing role in the community in accommodating local organisations’ activity. Secondly, the study found that while reference to socialism has its place in people’s narrations of the past, it is not necessarily the dominant framework, with reminiscences about individual life biographies intersecting with macro-level periodisations. Finally, the importance of the local community that houses of culture are situated in was underscored in participant’s narrations, surfacing in the themes of cultural loyalty and rivalry. The study supports the findings in previous studies of houses of culture concerning the normative ideal of culture. Discussions surrounding cultural authenticity defined perceptions about degrees to which culture is performed ‘correctly’, whether it concerns the institution’s role as provider or people’s role as consumers (and co-creators). Even for those who engage with the institution sporadically, it remains an important part of the Polish cultural landscape, providing locals with access to artistic culture and beyond. This underscores the main theme that runs throughout the findings, concerning the interplay between importance for the individual and the collective.
  • Luo, Linzi (2022)
    The EU has undergone three eastern enlargements since 2004, resulting in a significant increase in the total population of the member states. Citizens of new member states are then allowed to move freely within the EU territory, and we can see a rise in migration from the East to West Europe. High-skilled workers are important component of human capital and are typically considered positively correlated to the productivity. Countries all want the higher skilled workers and they adopt skill-biased immigration policies. In this dissertation, I use matching model of skills to tasks to interpret how regional economic disparities can influence the mobility of workers of different skill levels, especially the high-skilled workers, and how the distribution of skills then influence the regional economic development and the changes in wages of workers. Skills matching is important as the mismatch of skills can be detrimental to the self-development of individuals and economic development due to brain waste. The implication of matching model to real-world European Union case can partially explain socio-economic phenomenons, such as overqualification, brain drain and offshoring. Even if EU has made great achievements in promoting the mobility of people, the matching model can only be used in an ideal senario that free movement of workers are allowed. In reality, there are still barriers that negatively influence the mobility of EU citizens. Therefore, in the next chapter, I will analysis the factors that hinders the people’s movements.
  • Geyer, Lukas (2020)
    Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Kyrgyz society got entangled in discussions about what it means to be Kyrgyz. Even though Kyrgyzstan has experienced a surge in nationalism over the last decades, it is only since recently that non-heteronormative sexualities are increasingly constructed as a threat to the continued existence of the Kyrgyz nation. Based on five in-depth interviews with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) individuals, I explore how they rationalise the increasing homophobia in Kyrgyz society and what kind of behavioural strategies they adopt to cope with the hostile environment. In particular, I assess whether the discursive exclusion of LGBT individuals from the Kyrgyz nation alters their relationship with the nation and the state. The research participants demonstrate an awareness for the connection between increasing nationalism and worsening attitudes against LGBT people and report corresponding adjustments in their behaviour, ranging from adaptation and hiding strategies to activism and emigration. While all respondents have a negative relationship with the Kyrgyz state, most report a decreasing sense of belonging to the Kyrgyz nation amid growing homophobia as well. These results suggest that the increased emphasis on the purportedly heteronormative nature of the Kyrgyz nation succeeds in redefining individual belonging to the nation and shifting the imagined boundaries of the nation.
  • An, Ziwen (2022)
    This dissertation explores the relationship between regime types, credible commitment institutions and FDI, aiming to answer the puzzle—how do autocratic countries solve the commitment issues and attract a high level of FDI. To achieve this aim, the dissertation was designed to include two empirical chapters and two additional chapters for the introduction and the conclusion. The first empirical chapter examines the effect of regime types and property rights institutions on FDI. The empirical analysis presents a significant and surprising finding that the regime type is not what foreign firms necessarily care about, and what really matters to foreign investors are specific institutional features of the host country—in the present chapter, the effect of property rights institutions is tested. In other words, countries with sound institutions are not necessary democracies. Autocratic countries with well-established institutions to protect property rights and enforce contracts can also attract high level of FDI inflows. The second empirical chapter only focuses on autocratic countries. No longer view all autocratic countries as a single type opposing democratic countries as in the previous chapter; the great institutional differences among autocratic regimes will be witnessed and discussed. I argue that, besides the property rights institutions, some other institutional features—the power-sharing political institutions in some autocratic regimes, as well as the additional protections from international commitment institutions could help autocratic countries attract more FDI inflows. These effects can also complement property rights institutions and jointly affect FDI. Overall, the major contribution of this dissertation is that it verifies what matters for FDI inflows is not regime types but certain credible commitment institutions. The autocratic countries that can solve commitment issues by establishing strong credible commitment institutions can also attract a high level of FDI.
  • Hou, Yaxing (2022)
    The 2008 financial crisis was a disaster for people around the world, which caused the downturn of the world economy and ruined the lives of countless people. However, the Nordic countries stood out with the resilience they showed during the crisis. They were capable of controlling the unemployment rate even during the crisis and recovering from the recession quickly. The reasons behind this are worth digging. Combining literature analysis and interviewing experienced scholars in the field of the welfare state, this thesis aims at providing a unique perspective, analysing the welfare scholars’ views on the performance of the Nordic welfare state in the context of the 2008 financial crisis, to explore the possible sources of the resilience power of the Nordic welfare state and the challenges for the Nordic welfare state during and after the crisis. As a result, several essential elements of the Nordic welfare state are identified. Among them, a high level of social security, strong labour unions and heavy investment in human capital and education are found to be essential sources of the Nordic welfare state’s resilience power. Funding issues stood as a significant challenge during the crisis. Other than that, the privatisation of public service, the ageing population, and migration also lay a great burden on the welfare state in the post-crisis era. Finally, the results also suggest that the 2008 financial crisis also have an impact on the status of the welfare state in Nordic branding.
  • Chen, Cichao (2022)
    As a new pattern of international trade, Cross-border e-commerce (CBEC) has quickly captured the market with its convenience. Nevertheless, compared to total international trade, the volume of CBEC is relatively small. The non-efficiency of trade hinders the development of CBEC. As a major global economic power, China has an important position in the global CBEC and is committed to improving trade facilitation to better develop CBEC. The thesis aims to study whether and how trade facilitation in 16 Central and Eastern European Countries (CEE countries) affects China’s CBEC transaction scale with them. This thesis assesses trade facilitation in four dimensions: institutions, infrastructure, market, and technologies. Through principal component analysis (PCA), this paper calculates the trade facilitation index for China’s 16 CEE trading partners from 2011 to 2019. Based on some estimation techniques, this thesis regresses China’s CBEC trade scale on trade facilitation index, GDP per capita, weighted geographical distance, and total population and compares the different performance of the two income groups and (non-)EU membership. It is found that there is a positive correlation between the trade facilitation in 16 CEE countries and China’s CBEC transaction scale, and there is also a relationship between GDP per capita, weighted geographical distance, income group, EU membership, and CBEC transaction scale. The impact of infrastructure, market, and technologies in trade facilitation on the CBEC transaction scale is significantly positive. Finally, it provides some possible implications to promote CBEC.
  • Lai, Weimin (2022)
    Belt and Road initiative (BRI) has provided by the Chinese government's global infrastructure development strategy in 2013. The New Eurasian Land Bridge (NELB) is the core of the land route of BRI across Eurasia. The main purpose is to build the modern railway infrastructure lines in the Eurasian region. The thesis hypothesis NELB effectively strengthens the capacity of Russia and China for railway transport trade. It influences the further participation of China and Russia in Global Value Chains (GVCs). The study has used the Eora MRIO database on GVCs' output in China and Russia, which takes the data from 2000 to 2018 as a sample. It has combined with the World Integrated Trade Solution (WIST), World Bank and OECD database on the country's trade volume of the export sector and NELB-related indices. It has applied the combination of panel data and time series. The thesis has found that NELB contributed differently to China and Russia. In general terms of GVCs participation, NELB has absorbed Foreign direct investment (FDI) and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) input to China and Russia trade. NELB has benefited China by strengthening its soft infrastructure in financial investment. Moreover, it has benefited Russia's hard infrastructure in the railway transit stations or port establishment. In terms of bilateral trade on GVCs participation. It has conducted China's export and transport of large-scale machinery and equipment to Russia. It also has enhanced Russia's export and transport of energy materials or raw materials to China. Furthermore, NELB has shown the influence on the China and Russia's main export sectors' upgrading and governance in GVCs.
  • Zhang, Xueqi (2022)
    From the perspective of economic growth, this research observes the relationship between the trade between Eastern Europe and Germany and the economic growth of Germany since 1998. Since the drastic changes in Eastern Europe, the economic and trade cooperation and industrial integration between Germany and Eastern Europe have become increasingly close. After the European debt crisis, Germany's manufacturing advantages were combined with the higher level of productivity and consumer market in Eastern Europe, and a differential phenomenon appeared in the trade between different Eastern European countries and Germany. This research attempts to find out the factors that have an impact on German economic growth from two perspectives: the trade between Germany and Eastern European countries and the trade between Germany and the EU member states in Eastern European countries. By analyzing the data over the years by using VAR model, this research finds that Germany's economic growth has increased imports from Eastern European countries. If only focus on the EU member states in Eastern European countries, the EU has indeed promoted Germany's economic growth to a certain extent. Through data analysis, it can be seen that exports to Eastern Europe will not promote Germany's economic growth, while imports and exports to eastern and central European member states can promote Germany's economic growth. Therefore, European economic integration is a better choice. Considering the promotion mechanism of German economic growth, it can be found that Germany is more dependent on machinery manufacturing and agricultural product manufacturing. In order to better promote the trade, Germany has made a lot of efforts, such as improving product quality, increasing scientific research funds, paying attention to talent training, improving innovation mechanism, etc. What is more, Germany has continuously adjusted its economic policies to suit its foreign trade.
  • Xie, Xuan (2022)
    The quantitative easing monetary policies released by the Big Four central banks since 2008 were expected to save these major developed economies from the financial recession, but there is a possibility that these policy changes have a spillover effect on other parts of the world. This thesis constructs a financial systemic risk index from stock market, money market, bond market and foreign exchange market for two groups of economies including 10 developed economies and 10 emerging economies and explained the hypotheses mathematically to prove that an increase in domestic interest rate will cause foreign systemic risks to decrease, while an increase in domestic money supply will cause foreign systemic risks to rise. Then, this thesis builds a time-series dynamic panel data model to evaluate the difference between the spillovers on the two groups, the difference among the Big Four spillovers and the difference between the spillovers of price-based and quantity-based monetary policies, thus answering the research questions and accepting the hypotheses which is consistent with the mathematical explanations. Moreover, the thesis provides possible suggestions for financial supervision and multilateral cooperation in the final part.