Zdanowska NATALIA, Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research, Luxembourg
Yann RICHARD, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, UMR PRODIG, France
Poland – a member of the European Union (EU) since 2004 –, has been hit by a wave of Euroscepticism and populism (Krakovsky, 2019). The rejection of the European integration process by a part of Polish voters can be perceived as a paradox, as Poland is the first beneficiary of European structural funds and aids of the common agricultural policy (KPMG, 2016). At the same time, even if its GDP per capita has more than doubled since 2004, economic inequalities between cities have deepened considering the distribution of the wealth produced by foreign companies since 2004 (Zdanowska et al., 2020). Is there a relationship between this dynamic and the strengthening of the anti-European conservative vote, especially in small and medium-sized towns and in more rural areas? Is there a correlation between the geography of Euroscepticism and the geographic inequalities of wealth production?
In this paper, we describe the geographical distribution of capital produced by foreign companies in the Polish urban system, from EU membership to the present day. This study is based on the observation of investment flows, revealed by capital control links of Polish companies by foreign firms, and the turnover they generate in cities in 2004 and 2017. The analysis of the structure of these flows is linked to the evolution of the electoral geography in 2005, 2010, 2015 and 2020 – four major electoral years – in Polish municipalities. The first results confirm the existence of a relationship between the conservative vote – populist and Eurosceptic – and a lesser presence of foreign capital investments in firms. They also reveal a correlation with long-lasting geographic features of the Polish urban system and the persistence of phantom borders in the electoral behavior (Von Hirschhausen, Grésillon, 2019).
Mots clés : urban economic inequalities|urban system|euroscepticism|phantom borders|Poland