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Analyzing the Competitiveness of Balmazujvaros on the Basis of a SWOT-Analysis, Emphasizing Tourism
Published May 4, 2004

My study examined the competitiveness of Balmazujvaros, in regard to tourism. The town is situated in the Northern Great Plain region, in Hajdu-Bihar county, 22 km from Debrecen, together with Egyek, Hortobagy and Tiszacsege joined the statistical subregion of Balmazujvaros. Comparing with the neighbouring settlements, it has similar features and posesses thermal water that was determined to be medicinal, which is a feature of the region. Balmazujvaros as a typical country town as it has a dominant agricultural character. It gained town status in 1989. Part of the town is situated in the National Park of Hortobagy.
The first part of my study is to determine the number of rival settlements from the viewpoint of tourism. I will analyze the results of a questionnaire given to tourists in Balmazujvaros between June 15 August 31 2003, and introduce the primary results. The SWOT analysis will show the primary and secondary information and the examination of the results.
If we take into account the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of this town, we can make the following conclusion: tourism is an opportunity with a well-developed infrastructure, a third sector, subsidies and improved local interest. A sound and well-defined marketing strategy is essential for Balmazujvaros, in order to overwhelm its strong rivals

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Ecological Factors in Settlement Marketing Projection for Balmazujvaros
Published November 26, 2003

Marketing is a crucial tool for regional and local governments, and should be better employed before Hungary joins the European Union.
In my article I refer to the five-step process of environmental and situational analyses indispensable for a strategic plan, which serves as the basis for a marketing concept for a settlement. Furthermore, I ...present the necessity of the macro, mezo and local levels of environmental analyses. This part of my article is aimed at clarifying the notion of ecological marketing. My objective is to discuss its relation to settlement marketing.
The second part of my article investigated the emergence of ecological factors in settlement marketing, in its process, using the example of Balmazújváros. I presented the correlation between Balmazújváros and Hortobágy National Park, from which I investigated primarily important areas focusing on the protection and development of natural values.
In the course of strategic planning and the everyday operation of the town, ecological aspects have to be highlighted, and this process needs the development of the appropriate system of institutions and relationships. Now we can only see certain elements of environmental protection in the strategic settlement planning of Balmazújváros, and we seek to further enhance this process in the future.

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The Natural, Social and Economic Conditions and Opportunities for Development of Balmazujvaros, Especially in the Case of the Co-operative Kvaliko
Published May 12, 2002

Balmazujvaros as a settlement near Hortobagy has to cope with both advantages and disadvantages. Its natural and social conditions are mainly given, the agricultural characteristic is dominant, and the number of the employed is the highest in the agricultural firms and processing industry. Developing the third sector, including hosting, tourism..., eco-tourism, thermal-tourism, may be an opportunity for the city. The subsidy for rural development relating to the SAPARD-programme may contribute to this, as the city is the member of the Association of Hajdu Towns.
The agriculture plays an important part in Balmazujvaros in which production and marketing of vegetables and fruits excel. Several farmers realised this opportunity and founded the Marketing Co-operative of Vegetable Producers in Eastern Hungary, that is the Kvaliko. This PO works in a Corporation form and is constantly developing, spreading and expanding its choice making use of the local natural, social and economic conditions and applications for realising its investments. This PO may set an example for the other entrepreneurs and farmers of Balmazujvaros to co-operate and it may be considered as an already realised opportunity.

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Connections of the Economic, Ecological-Environmental and Social Functions of Rural Development in Communities Bordering the Hortobágy
Published May 4, 2004

investigated the economic, ecological-environmental and social functions of rural development in communities bordering the Hortobágy National Park, such as in Balmazújváros, Hortobágy, Tiszacsege and Egyek. My purposes focused on four issues: (1) to work out a method on the basis of the examined and cited literatures, which defines the deve...lopment of communities from economic, ecological and social aspects of rural development; (2) to reflect the changes in the role of agriculture; (3) to analyse the effects, advantages and disadvantages of Hortobágy National Park in relation to the economic, ecological and social lives of the examined communities; and (4) to make an economic analysis on the alternative income sources of Hortobágy, such as rural tourism, herb production and bio-farming in a family farm structure. When measuring the development of the communities I concluded that complex indexes hide the real consideration of the three functions of rural development and the possibility for comparing them on a community level. Furthermore, these 19 indicators are not enough to evaluate the situation, thus I raised the number of indicators and handled them on the basis of the three functions of rural areas. I classified the economic, ecological and social indicators into indicator groups within each functions, which make the determination of causes for underdevelopment possible. While only Tiszacsege and Egyek were considered to be backward on the basis of the complex index of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office, my investigations showed that even Balmazújváros and Hortobágy proved to be lagged behind from both economic and social aspects. The methodical development justified the hypothesis that few indicators are not enough to establish decisions objectively. New developmental orders emerged. Measuring development of communities may be all-rounded and more established by using this new method, which may result in objective preparation of decisions in rural development and more rational spreading of subsidies.

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Measuring Development of Settlements by Using Category Numbers
Published September 15, 2003

Several approaches are used to define the development and disparities of settlements. The investigation of four settlements in the County of Hajdú-Bihar, such as Balmazújváros, Hortobágy, Tiszacsege and Egyek, suggests that previous methods using few indicators are not suitable enough to measure economic, social and ecological development. ...My starting point was the complex index of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office (HCSO). I examined the economic, ecological and social development of the communities by separating the 19 indicators and determined that complex indexes or indicators hide the real consideration of the main functions of rural development and opportunities for comparison in a community level. Furthermore, I established that the 19 indicators were not enough to analyse the situation, in this way I raised the number of indicators. I used more indicators, altogether 116 ones, than the previous research. I handled these indicators from economic, ecological and social aspects and carried out a method development. While only Egyek and Tiszacsege were considered to be backward according to the complex index of the HCSO, even Balmazújváros and Hortobágy proved to be lagged behind from economic and social aspects on the basis of my calculations. The methodical development justified the hypothesis that few indicators are not suitable for establishing decisions objectively. New developmental ranges evolved. Using this method this method, determining development may be more realistic and may contribute to strengthening decisions in rural development and help in spreading financial subsidies.

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Economic Aspects of Rural Tourism
Published November 26, 2003

necessary to ensure the livelihoods of those leaving the agricultural sector and to supplement the incomes of those working in agriculture. I research rural development in four settlements in Hajdú-Bihar County, in Balmazújváros, Hortobágy, Tiszacsege and Egyek, all bordering Hortobágy National Park.
There are many alternative income so...urces in settlements in the Hortobágy area, such as organic farming, production herbs, hungaricums, small animals and arts and crafts, as well as rural tourism. Rural tourism is not for subsistence, but a supplementary income source, mainly available during the summer time. I made a survey of rural hosts in the four examined settlements, and according to my results, I constructed a model reflecting the cost-benefit relation, as well as the payment period conditions of rural tourism. I am going to show whether it is worth dealing with rural tourism, and if yes, under what conditions. Rural tourism contributes to the maintenance of rural modes of living, in this way it has significant cultural, economic, ecological and social aspects, as well. It is crucial for settlements to create the appropriate conditions needed for joining rural tourism, if it is worth joining at all, and to realise investments for all these. Rural tourism has strict requirements for the levels of environment, infrastructure and services. Studying the Western-European practices, Hungary is lagged behind in the conditions of rural tourism and rural hosts have done their activities mainly out of necessity and not to maintain traditions. Rural tourism may result in success only by co-operation and over the long-run.

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Alternative Income Sources in the Agriculture of Settlements Along the Hortobágy
Published May 11, 2003

Agriculture has played a dominant role among the income sources of population living along the Hortobágy just like in any other rural areas. I represent the situations of settlements along the Hortobágy by studying four of them, such as Balmazújváros, Hortobágy, Tiszacsege and Egyek. Big companies having worked in the examined settlements ...had significance in ensuring local working facilities, and restraining people from leaving. Acts dating back to the beginning of the 1990’ies, privatisation, transformation of the state farm and co-operatives have decreased the rate of employment in agriculture. Alternative income sources relating to agriculture, such as bio-farming by alternative plants, herb production and rural tourism will determine the future of agriculture in this area due to the closeness of the Hortobágy National Park, the unique but unfavourable natural conditions for agricultural production, financial aids by the National Agricultural Environmental Programme and the imminent EU-membership. In this way supporting these activities may ensure the livelihood of ex-agricultural workers and alternative income for those working in agriculture.
I am going to deal with two issues in this article:
• with the change of the role of agriculture in the examined settlements,
• with economic analyses of alternative income sources by a model of a family farm.

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