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Sociologický časopis – 6/2009

Záznam přidán/aktualizován: 29. březen 2011 v 12.45 hod.

Obsah čísla


Pat Lyons, Tomáš Lacina: An Examination of Legislative Roll-Call Voting in the Czech Republic Using Spatial Models [1155]

Abstract: It is not clear from previous research if influential spatial techniques for analysing roll-data used in the Houses of Congress in the United States are appropriate in European multiparty systems. This is because the results of spatial analyses of roll-call data from the United States are interpreted in terms of ideological preferences. Within Europe party discipline is also a central feature of legislator behaviour. Consequently, spatial models of roll call behaviour in European legislatures should be explained in terms of party cohesion and discipline. This means that the correct interpretation of spatial models of roll-call data in places such as the Czech Republic requires access to additional sources of empirical evidence such as parliamentary survey data in order to make valid and reliable inferences about what motivates legislative behaviour. Using roll-call and parliamentary survey data from the sixth legislature in the Czech Republic (2006–2008), this research demonstrates that spatial models of roll-call data are not readily explainable in terms of party cohesion and discipline. The difficulty of making a substantive interpretation of dimensions extracted suggests the use of spatial models of roll-call voting where part discipline is strong requires more theoretical and methodological work.

Keywords: roll-call voting, spatial models, legislative behaviour, Czech Republic

Tomáš Kostelecký, Jana Vobecká: Housing Affordability in Czech Regions and Demographic Behaviour – Does Housing Affordability Impact Fertility? [1191]

Abstract: The article examines the relationship between housing affordability and fertility in the Czech Republic after 1989. An analysis of national data suggests that improving housing affordability might be a factor behind the rise of fertility that has been observed since the beginning of the 2000s. The regional variation in fertility is generally lower than the regional variation of indicators of both housing affordability and the economic situation. Although the number of children born increased noticeably, total fertility did not increase at the same pace, and its regional patterns remained rather stable. The most important factor that influences the regional variation in fertility is the education of women, particularly young women. When the education of women is controlled for, housing affordability plays an important role in explaining the regional variation in fertility – both the total fertility rate and the timing of childbearing.

Keywords: housing affordability, fertility, Czech regions

Olga Nešporová, Zdeněk R. Nešpor: Religion: An Unsolved Problem for the Modern Czech Nation [1215]

Abstract: The Czech Republic is widely known as ‘the least religious’ country in the world and most Czechs are quite proud of that fact. The authors, however, challenge both of these characteristics. Czechs might better be considered unchurched than atheist, with various forms of modern New Age spirituality steadily gaining in popularity. Moreover, their reputation for irreligiosity is somewhat questionable, since it is most often based upon communist (and other more historically deep-rooted) anticlerical notions, while people have little real knowledge of the ideas which they so readily reject. These assertions are based both on quantitative data, provided by census returns and ISSP surveys on religion, and on qualitative data, collected in local ethnographic research in the town of Česka Lipa in northern Bohemia, designed along the lines of the Lancaster University Kendal Project in Great Britain. The Czech population can be divided into three ‘blocks’, religionists, spiritualists, and atheists/unbelievers, none of which, however, can be considered uniform in terms of membership or truly mutually exclusive. The authors conclude that traditional religionists of various denominations, the followers of New Age movements, and the ‘rest’ of the population can be seen as three distinctive groups within society and that mutual understanding and acceptance are by no means the norm.

Keywords: Czech Republic, 1993–, religion, spirituality, atheism, post-communism, sociology of religion

Zdenka Šadl: ‘We Women Are No Good at It’: Networking in Academia [1239]

Abstract: In this article the author investigates networking in an academic milieu in Slovenia to obtain information on the academic staff’s perceptions of how formal and informal connections in academia influence the success of a person’s academic career. The analysis is based on ethnographic research and in-depth interviews with academics in the middle of their academic career. The results of the analysis reveal the existence of two kinds of social networks: one based on patron-client relations, and another based on equal and ‘floating’ partnership cooperation and autonomy. The article focuses on gendered dimensions of academic networking and criticises the existance and impact of a male network on male and female academic career progression.

Keywords: academia, gender, networking, informal social capital

Michal Franta, Tomáš Konečný: Stochastic Frontier Analysis of the Efficiency of Czech Grammar Schools [1265]

Abstract: The study focuses on the evaluation of the relative efficiency of Czech grammar schools (‘gymnázium’) at preparing their graduates for admission to university programmes, taking into account the relative demand for the programmes, grammar school endowments, and a number of other relevant external factors. The authors argue that a comparison of secondary schools based exclusively on university acceptance rates or other direct measures of study achievements might be misleading, given that such approaches ignore many aspects related to the educational process, such as differences in the level of non-cognitive skills of students, family background, overall living standards in a region, and the specific focus of the given secondary school. The authors derive novel indirect measures of grammar school efficiency that take into account relative demands for university study programmes. Relying on high-quality panel data that cover the period 2000–2004, and using the stochastic frontier methodology commonly applied in efficiency evaluation in a wide number of sectors, including education, the study also argues that the divergence between selected direct measures of school performance and indirect indicators has been increasing over time.

Keywords: education, secondary education, performance evaluation, technical efficiency

Věra Kuchařová: Work-life Balance: Societal and Private Influences [1283]

Abstract: This article is intended to contribute to the discussion about the possibilities for supporting work-life balance. It has two basic objectives. The first is to assess the dependence of work-life balance on economic conditions and the character of the given welfare/family regime. The second is to evaluate how much work-life balance is influenced by private-life determinants and how much by external, that is, structural and institutional, factors. The analysis is based on a comparison of the situation in the Czech Republic with selected countries. Success at achieving a work-life balance is examined both from a subjective perspective and in relation to the three basic social goals it is intended to facilitate: women’s employment, people’s reproductive plans, and gender equality. An international comparison shows that while the forms and success of harmonising family and professional roles in countries with different external factors have specific national features, people’s subjective assessments of their ability to combine these two spheres of activity vary little among economically active partners. The reason for this appears to be that to some extent people adapt (more or less voluntarily) their harmonisation strategies to the external conditions in individual countries. Also, these strategies are influenced by national socio-cultural specifics and differences in the degree of acceptance of gender inequalities.

Keywords: work-life balance, employment, reproductive behaviour, gender equality, family regime


Richard Rose: János Kornai: By Force of Thought: Irregular Memoirs of an Intellectual Journey [1311]

John A. Vincent: Achim Goerres: The Political Participation of Older People in Europe: The Greying of Our Democracies [1312]

Tim Goedemé: Tomasz Inglot: Welfare States in East Central Europe, 1919–2004 [1316]

Seán Hanley: Tomila V. Lankina and Anneke Hudalla, with Hellman Wollmann: Local Governance in Central and Eastern Europe: Comparing Performance in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Russia [1318]

Simon Smith: Martin Horak: Governing the Post-Communist City. Institutions and Democratic Development in Prague [1322]

Alice Szczepaniková: Melissa Feinberg: Elusive Equality: Gender, Citizenship, and the Limits of Democracy in Czechoslovakia, 1918–1950 [1326]

Eszter Zólyomi: Irena Kogan, Michael Gebel and Clemens Noelke: Europe Enlarged: A Handbook of Education, Labour and Welfare Regimes in Central and Eastern Europe [1329]

Jan Fidrmuc: Joseph D. Lewandowski and Milan Znoj (eds.): Trust and Transitions: Social Capital in a Changing World [1331]

Frédérique R. Hoffmann: V. Burau, H. Theobald and R. H. Blank: Governing Home Care – A Cross-National Comparison, Globalization and Welfare [1334]

Marian Gorynia, Katarzyna Blanke-Ławniczak: Jan Drahokoupil: Globalization and the State in Central and Eastern Europe. The Politics of Foreign Direct Investment [1336]

Márton Medgyesi: Manuela Sofia Stănculescu and Tine Stanovnik (eds.): Activity, Incomes and Social Welfare [1339]

Umut Korkut: Georgina Waylen: Engendering Transitions: Women’s Mobilization, Institutions, and Gender Outcomes [1342]





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