Project

IMAJINE - Integrative Mechanisms for Addressing Spatial Justice and Territorial Inequalities in Europe

Goal: IMAJINE is a Horizon 2020 project started in January 2017. The core aim of IMAJINE is to formulate new integrative policy mechanisms to enable European, national and regional government agencies to more effectively address territorial inequalities within the European Union, and to imagine a future for European regions in which the distribution of resources is consistent with principles of social and spatial justice.

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Project log

Mariusz Kowalski
added a research item
The demands of the Kashubians were and are of a moderate nature. Compared to other inhabitants of Poland, they perceive themselves as a group distinct in terms of culture, social capital, language, customs and the region of residence. They strive to recognize and maintain their individuality within Polish society without violating its unitary political system. Most of the activists accepted the formula of the Kashubians as a linguistic and cultural group within the Polish nation, being content with the creation of a self-governing Pomeranian Voivodship and the possibility of influencing the policy pursued it within nationwide political parties. It also gave them the opportunity to gain a fairly significant position (lobbying) in central institutions (parliament, government). A much smaller number of activists, especially of the younger generation, did not fit into this formula. They consider the Kashubs as a separate nation, postulate - within the framework of the current legal regulations - to recognize the Kashubians as an ethnic minority and to obtain linguistic and cultural autonomy within the Polish state and the Pomeranian Voivodship. They also see the need to form their own political party. Even they, however, do not postulate territorial autonomy, realizing that in an ethnically homogeneous and unitary Polish state, such a postulate is impossible to implement.
Mariusz Kowalski
added a research item
The Kashubs are a West Slavic ethnic group in Pomerelia (Eastern Pomerania), the north-central part of Poland (Pomeranian Voivodship). Analogously to their linguistic classification, the Kashubs are considered either an ethnic or a linguistic community. Regardless of that, the Kashubs are closely related to the Poles. Most Kashubs declare Polish national identity and Kashubian ethnicity, and are considered both Polish and Kashubian. The number of Kashubs ranges from 228,000 to 500,000, of which only 5,000-17,000 (up to 7.5%) are considered as a separate nation. In recent years, the interests of the Kashubian community have been represented by two organizations: the Kashubian-Pomeranian Association and the Kashubian Unity. The first is moderate, perceiving the Kashubs as a separate ethnic group, but forming part of the Polish nation. The second is the slogan of the existence of a separate Kashubian nation. Only the Kashubian-Pomeranian Association (ZKP) was involved directly (rarely) or indirectly (more often) in elections. The Kashubian Unity was established only in 2011 and so far did not participate in the elections. Direct involvement was limited to the start of the candidates of the Association in the Senate (upper house of parliament) elections in 1991 and 1993 from the Gdańsk electoral district (identical with gdańskie voivodship). This district included a larger part of the Kashubian ethnic area, however Kashubians constituted only about 25% of the total population there. In 1991, the then chairman of the Association, Józef Borzyszkowski, gained 155,694 votes (30.8%), took the second place, and became a senator (each voter had two votes and the senators became candidates with the two best results). Two years later, another candidate of the Association, Edmund Wittbrodt (from 2016 the chairman of the Association), received only 75,038 votes in the same district (13.4%) and took 5th place. In the later elections, the Association activists chose a different tactic and joined the nationwide political movements in the Senate elections. From the very beginning they did the same in other elections: regional, parliamentary, European and presidential. Political divisions between Kashubians show that they were strongly woven into nationwide political divisions. Kashubians from urban areas voteed more often for Liberals, Kashubians for rural areas more often for Conservatives. A significant representation of Kashubian parliamentarians, and their willingness to act for the good of the region and its community, caused that in 2006 a Kashubian Parliamentary Group formed of members and senators associated with Kashubians, belonging to different political options. The strength of this group lies in the fact that it has a real influence on many financial, social and political decisions.
Denis Cerić
added a project goal
IMAJINE is a Horizon 2020 project started in January 2017. The core aim of IMAJINE is to formulate new integrative policy mechanisms to enable European, national and regional government agencies to more effectively address territorial inequalities within the European Union, and to imagine a future for European regions in which the distribution of resources is consistent with principles of social and spatial justice.