Vol 6, No 5 (2012)

Published December 31, 2012

Issue Description

24th November 2011, a Ph.D. conference was
organized at the University of Debrecen,
Hungary. The main objective was to assist young
doctoral school students in presenting and
publishing their first scientific results. The
conference was successful both in terms of
number of participants and the broad variety of
topics. Doctoral students from all around
Hungary and abroad attended the conference.
Through a process of selection the editors
arrived at 24 papers that are published in this
special issue of Apstract.
The authors are at the beginning of their
scientific career. I am convinced that in the future
we can read more of their articles in the Apstract
or other scientific journals. I wish them success
in their future scientific career.



The examination of the profitability and competitiveness regarding the energy plantations of woody plants in the region of Észak-Alföld

Due to the decrease in the quantity of traditional energy sources, in the future an alternative energy production should be sought which provides minimum environmental burden and offers an opportunity to generate energy. The use of biomass provides another option to resolve this problem. The most important features of the biomass are that the q...uantity doesn’t decrease during conversions and are reproduced by natural processes. The main raw materials of the biomass are considered to be the energy plantations, which are economic in areas where the farmer, during the traditional production, can’t or with difficulties can cover the expenses, so that profitably sustainable cultivation branches can come to the forefront with less material and energy input. Those cases in which the cultivation of agricultural areas are not economically feasible, there is a possible utilization in our country which is the installation of plantations with energetic aim.

Show full abstract
Relationships between competitiveness in the Northern Great Plain and the organisational culture of local authorities

One of the five basic factors in the Lengyel-type pyramid model – institutions and social capital – is essential in the economic growth of the region. Economic success however, does not only depend on participants in the economy, but on social factors such as the roles played by local authorities, including their functions, operation and or...ganisational culture, all of which are crucial factors. Based on the results obtained regarding organisational culture it can be stated that performance orientation, dominant motivation based on calculated risk, forward planning and regular feedback are expected values at local authorities in all three counties. All local authorities emphasise the importance of the need for forecasting. Respondents find it important that organisations encourage and reward individual action and contributions as expected values. The degree of human orientation expected by local authorities reflects the fact that respect for colleagues and attention to their well-being should be at the highest level. Reinforcing these organisational culture values (dimensions) is the basis for the efficient and successful operation of organisations (local authorities). The study examines the organisational culture of local authorities in the Northern Great Plain, looking for any relationships it might have with the competitiveness of the region. This study is an element of the wider research into organisational culture. We used the GLOBE (Global Leadership and Organisational Behaviour Effectiveness) survey, which had been successfully applied in the research programme In Competition with the World at the Corvinus University of Budapest. Koopman, Den Hartog, Konrad et al. (1999) examined the culture variables of 21 European countries in organisations. Based on Hungarian and international literature it can be stated that a similar survey of local authorities has not yet been conducted.

Show full abstract
Relationship between the qualification and labour market situation of disabled workers in Hungary

My PhD research focuses on special rehabilitation firms (they are specialised to employ disabled people) and their employees. Two questionnaires for the above mentioned firms and their employees were created in order to gather information on their activities as well as to explore the relationship between the firms and their employees. Altogethe...r 1030 employees and 109 employers filled in the questionnaires. The current study shows the results of this survey. It can be stated that this paper shows the risk of finding a workplace after a certain time period. According to the latest trends I analyse the labour market situation of people living with disabilities with survival analysis. The survival analysis is able to manage partial information, as well. After summarizing all claims of participants we can make an impression in this area and demonstrate the problems for the labour market generally. I use the Log-rank, Breslow and Tahane-Ware probe.

Show full abstract
Analysis of the producer price of Hungarian raw milk in international comparison

Although the dairy market crisis eased in 2011, Hungarian dairy farmers still find it difficult to produce milk profitably. As a result of the crisis, many dairy farmers abandoned milk production or reduced the size of their dairy herds in 2009 and 2010. Today, many of farmers are also considering ceasing production, in spite of the fact that t...he global dairy industry is facing an upturn. A dairy farm can operate profitablyy in three ways: 1) if it can reach a relatively high level of producer price 2) if it can increase milk production per cow 3) if it can achieve a relatively low cost of production. In the present study, I primarily analyse the development of the Hungarian producer price of raw milk in international comparison. Next, I list those factors which directly or indirectly influence the producer price of raw milk. Finally, I examine the relationship among disposable income, milk consumption and milk price. Since the start of 2009, the dairy market has been confronted with a period of extraordinary law prices. After bottoming out, prices had begun to slowly stabilise during the second half of 2009. By the end of that summer, international prices had started to strengthen and the last quarter of 2009 was characterized by a steady rise in prices. The strong recovery in prices experienced after 2009 was triggered by increased demand, mainly from oil exporting countries, but also from China.
The price increase, however, reflected a significant increase in input costs in Hungary; the high level of feed prices and the unfavourable change in the macroeconomic environment must be stressed. The rising excise duty on diesel fuel and the VAT increase had a direct impact on Hungarian dairy farmers. These negative factors have increased the costs of the sector, narrowing the ability of those active in it to operate efficiently.

Show full abstract
The economic and social role of private farms in Hungarian agriculture

The situation and importance of private farms in Hungary have significantly changed and are still changing due to the political and economic regime change of 1989-90 and subsequent events. The aim of this study is to provide – unlike the practice of the last two decades – an impartial review of the social and economic role of Hungarian priv...ate farms. To demonstrate the changes occurring in private farms, we rely on the data of the Hungarian Central Statistical Office (HCSO-KSH)such as the General Structure Surveys, the Farm Structure Surveys, and tables from the online stADAT database.
From the point of view of methodology, time series analyses (2000–2010) were performed in the framework of this secondary research. Our hypothesis that private farms in Hungary deserve much more attention than previously, from the perspective of the output of Hungarian agriculture, food consumption and, last but not least, employment (the environmental factor was not examined this time) has been clearly confirmed. The role and significance of this group have also been exceedingly important since EU accession, particularly in the fields of horticulture and animal husbandry, and the strengthening of these positions is indisputably a national economic interest.

Show full abstract
Issues in the economic development and utilization of EU funds in a disadvantaged sub-region of the Southern Great Plain region

The development period between 2007 and 2013 had a historical significance for Hungary as the funds that were provided by the European Union and were supplemented by the domestic and public sectors naturally offered great possibilities for the country’s sub-statistical regions and regions to inspire their development and innovation. In order ...to use these funds efficiently it is essential to incorporate the developments into the area’s capabilities, to harmonize them and to increase the role of the sub-statistical regions and regions. This study ranks the sub-regions of the Southern Great Plain Region in terms of their economic characteristics and identifies the most disadvantageous ones. Using as an example a specific sub-region it determines the local effects of EU payments with the application of different statistical methods.

Show full abstract
Payback analysis of E85- and CNG-powered vehicles in Hungary

As a result of my analysis it was found that when purchasing a new alternative fuel car only a CNG-powered vehicle could be a reasonable choice, the extra cost of which (depending on its scale) ensures a return within 2 – 7 years, i.e. over the real expected duration of use of the car. However, the spread of these cars is determined by the la...ck of CNG fuel stations in Hungary. The E85-powered so called FFVs could become a competitive alternative with lower ethanol prices or moderate government support (for example a registration fee allowance similar to that enjoyed with hybrid vehicles, or reduced taxes).

Show full abstract
The effects of global real economic crisis on the markets for fossil and renewable fuels

The 2008/2009 world economic crisis had significant impact on the oil and fuel markets. The crisis developed from the meltdown of American and European mortgage and financial markets and rapidly involved the global real economy. As each country reacted differently to the crisis, the changes in the fuel market also showed significant geographic ...variation. In our present research, the actions of the US, German and Hungarian fuel markets were analysed for the answer to the reasons for the differences in crisis reactions. We examined the tendency of fuel consumption, the changes of price elasticity for gasoline and diesel and the possible effects of the crisis on the regulatory system.


Show full abstract
Analysis of demand for wellness and medical tourism in Hungary

Health tourism in Hungary holds major opportunities. When analysing medical and wellness accommodation data, it can be stated that the Hungarian population is keenly interested in health-related tourism services. From the aspect of further development, health tourism based on medical services can be a take-off point for Hungarian tourism. In my... opinion, the next few years will be crucial for Hungary’s ranking among health tourism destinations. The country’s initial circumstances are rather favourable, whereas the revaluation of the quality aspects of these services and the fact that the surrounding countries have also recognised the opportunities in health tourism led to an intensified competitive environment. Consequently, if Hungary does not take advantage of its current opportunities, there will be even less chance to develop the country into the primary thermal and medicinal waterbased health tourism destination of Europe in ten years. Yet, this is one of the foci of the objectives set out in the New Széchenyi Plan.

Show full abstract
Economic modelling and analysis of Hungarian wheat production in the marketing year 2011

In the framework of the present study I analysed the wheat production sector. In order to evaluate the situation prevailing in the sector I conducted an economic analysis which I based on primary data collection. The year of investigation was the production year of 2011. Long-term implications for different crop sectors can only be based on mul...ti-annual analysis, so in this article I only attempted to analyse the sector with respect to 2011. To evaluate wheat production I compiled its cost structure and assessed it. To evaluate its position in comparison to other crops I also carried out calculations to determine the gross margin (revenue minus variable cost)1 By gross margin I mean the gross margin (C), which is production value (PV) minus direct cost (DC), by definition (C=P-DC). of maize and rape. I observed that the gross margin attainable on one hectare was the lowest in the case of wheat. I applied two types of gross margin, because I consider it important that a given sector should also be profitable without subsidies. In the case of the gross margin including subsidies it is essential to emphasize the role of subsidies, since their ratio varied between 30 and 47% of the total revenue. The importance of subsidies was the most significant in the case of winter wheat.


Show full abstract
Integration at the workplace studies within multinational pharmaceutical factories in Hungary

The primary objective of this essay is to assign a gap in Human Recourse Management literature. Many studies and resources are known about hiring and maintaining people and their loyalty to organizations. Work socialization is the first step to keeping people; however, most of the literature on integration at the workplace focuses primarily on ...organizational commitment and not on the individuals. Various perspectives of work socialization have been discussed including socialization stages, guidance and carrier development. This essay focuses on the approach of Human Resource Management, but the scope is expanded to the individual as well. In this paper, the reasoning, the methods and the questions of my future doctoral research on integration at the workplace are analysed. First, the issue is discussed from the perspective of social changes in Hungary. The next part of this essay illustrates varying definitions from the literature, providing then my own view of how to explain the integration process in the workplace and through which what I would like to focus my research. This article also aims to show possible methods (in-depth interviews with Human Resource Managers and document analysis) for examining the topic at multinational pharmaceutical factories in Hungary, while highlighting the most important questions for which my research aims to find answers.

Show full abstract
A comparison of the Hungarian mangalitza and dutch organic pork chains

The aim of this paper is to present the Hungarian mangalitza pig and Dutch organic pig supply chains and, in interrogating the differences between the two sectors, to make suggestions for the efficient operation of the Hungarian mangalitza breeding sector. The information about the two was sourced by a depth interview and literature reviews. It... is established that there are few similarities between the two segments. In both sectors, the pigs are kept outdoors in large paddocks, there are also National Associations: in Hungary, the Association of Mangalitza Breeders (NAMB), in The Netherlands, the Organic Pork Growers. They hold a general meeting every year, where they discuss issues such as volume, quality, price, marketing and the future challenges and opportunities. There is strong demand both for the mangalitza and also for Dutch organic pork products on foreign markets. The main difference between them is their information systems. In The Netherlands, information flows via FarmingNet, but in the mangalitza sector, no such system exists. Yet, such a system would represent a breaking point for the adequate flow of data and efficient production for the NAMB, because then, Hungarian farmers would be forced to supply data.

Show full abstract
Structured commodity finance

Over the past years, the financial stock market – providing the capital demand that is the result of stockpiling and the characteristic strong seasonality observed in the agricultural sector – has increasingly grown and become more “used” by market participants. Its size had reached an annual value of 200 billion HUF, of which agricultu...ral products had received the largest proportion through the various market participants (producers, integrators, traders, feed producers, mills). In the meantime, this market had become part of the competition between the commercial banks that are the largest financers of the sector, due to which the financing credit institutions had undertaken increasing risk levels, with respect to both degree of financing and the VAT financing related to stockholding. The practice of commodity financing by banks display a rather varied picture at present. Considering the exceptional degree of fall in prices and the actions of companies totally disregarding business ethics in 2008, it seems necessary to reveal the full scope of risks inherent in commodity financing. The primary aim of such an exercise is to ensure the prudent operation of refinancing activities for commercial banks. The inherent risks in trade financing – as has been proven by the experiences of previous years – are not found primarily in the goods themselves, but rather at the actual storage facility and also emerge in relation to clients, as well as the inadequate and ineffective risk management of price volatility by the financers. Therefore, the establishment of banking risk management and risk prevention techniques, including the development of new financing procedures become indispensable, minimizing all types of risks that had emerged in previous years.

Show full abstract
The responsibility of marketing and legislation in childhood obesity

The purchasing power of youth is considerable; they are the market of the future. , the young generation is the most influenced and vulnerable segment of the economy. The greatest problem of the influencing of our children is the rising cost of childhood obesity. The health care system cannot keep up with the pressure of obesity. Today, the ris...k of obesity is a bigger problem than smoking or alcoholism. The greatest problem is that youth underestimates the cost and risk of consumption of foods with high levels of fats, sugar and/or salt.

Show full abstract
Aspects of the sustainable utilization of renewable energy sources

The aim of this paper is to analyze the main approaches to sustainability and to present an alternative interpretation for the issues involved in the utilization of RES. The utilization technologies can be described by the average values of several technological parameters. Some significant parameters were chosen which are the most relevant for... the issue of sustainability. The group of attributes was composed of these parameters in the analysis, which was conducted by the choice experiment (CE) methodology. The examination of each attributes’ influence on the individual’s preferences and choices was made possible by this method and the preferences of the relevant experts were determined. The weight of the attributes was defined by experts according to the importance of each attribute regarding RES-based technologies. The importance of sustainability attributes implies the significance of sustainability in the case of RES technologies, which thus highlights the characteristics of the more prosperous technological parameters regarding sustainable development.

Show full abstract
Methodological questions of a survey of civil organizations

Today, the non-profit sector, and especially the role of civil organizations, has become significant in society. In Hungary there has been a large development in the past 20 years, in the non-profit sector, as the number of such organizations has quadrupled. The number of classic civil organizations (foundations and associations) makes up more ...than 80% of the non-profit sector. The social attendance, economic significance and affect often raise the issue of the true intensity of the sphere and also the question of why there are such vast differences between the conditions of function, human resources and how successful they are. For years now, with management related examination, we have been searching for the answers to the above questions, within the confines of the functional aspect research program of the Institute of Management and Organization in University of Debrecen, Centre for Agricultural and Applied Economic Sciences, Faculty of Applied Economics and Rural Development. Above all, we made an attempt to find general, management- related results and answers, with the use of probability sampling, a low number of samples and surveying.
In the selection process of organizations to include in our research, we relied on the data base of the Court of Hajdú-Bihar County and with K-aspect systematic sampling, and we also questioned more than 140 managers from different organizations. With this research, we acquired a diverse collection of information, which now we intend to summarize within this article. With this article, we aim to find out how realistic a picture the database of the Court gives regarding the civil activity of the county. Even the sampling was not trouble free, since the entire database is not accessible.
The survey also revealed some problems that confirmed the statement of the Central Statistic Office (KSH), i.e. that some organizations either do not function at all or function in name only.

Show full abstract
Investigation of the effect of flooring on the living performance of sows using survival analysis

Pig-farming has a long tradition in Hungary, most significantly within the Alföld region. In my analysis I studied the lifespan of sows in two nucleus pig herds on the Great Plain, also examining the probability of the occurrence of different reasons for culling. During my research I collected data (from 2001 to 2010) relating to more than 10,...000 sows from the farms conducting a breeding programme and I searched for the answer to the question of whether can I find a significant difference in the lifespan of sows with the same feeding and the same genotype if the floor type of farms is different (Herd A has a solid floor with straw and Herd B has a slatted floor). Regarding the reasons for culling ANOVA was used to investigate mean differences in logarithms of the lifespan of sows in each herd. Between the herds the seven most common culling reasons were estimated with the Kaplan-Meier method and the significant difference was demonstrated with the logrank test. The results of the log-rank test showed that there was a significant difference in leg problems as a cause of culling and deaths (p < 0.05) between the two farms, which is the consequence of different floor types.

Show full abstract
The role of trust in cooperation between farmers – the outcomes of a survey in Békés county

Local socio-economic cooperation arrangements can contribute to the development of adequate solutions which can compensate the negative impacts of globalization. One of the specific areas is agriculture. Capital-intensive technology is the key element in the competitiveness and viability of firms. The present paper reviews the factors affecting... the joint machine use arrangements of agricultural producers, with special regard to the role of trust. The questions of trust are examined in two dimensions: contractual and competence trust. On the basis of the survey carried out among farmers a positive connection was detected between the level of trust and the farmers’ activity in cooperation arrangements. Our results also pointed out that the trust needed in different areas of cooperation is very different. The experiences indicate a tendency, according to which contractual trust is more important in intensive cooperation arrangements which result in higher dependence, while competency trust is more emphasized in more extensive solutions.

JEL Code: Q13

Show full abstract
Efficiency analysis of dairy farms in the Northern Great Plain region using deterministic and stochastic DEA models

Running any dairy enterprise is a risky activity: the profitability of the enterprise is affected by the price fluctuation of feed and animal health products from inputs, as well as by the fluctuation of end-product prices. Under these circumstances, it is essential for the cattle breeders, in order to survive, to harness the reserves in manage...ment as effectively as possible. In this research the efficiency and risk of 32 sample dairy farms were analysed in the Northern Great Plain Region from the Farm Accountancy Data Network (FADN) by applying classical Data Envelopment Analysis (DEA) and stochastic DEA models. The choice of this method is justified by the fact that there was not such an available reliable database by which production functions could have been defined, and DEA makes possible to manage simultaneously some inputs and outputs, i.e. complex decision problems. By using DEA, the sources that cause shortfall on inefficient farms can be identified, analysed and quantified, so corporate decision support can be reinforced successfully. A disadvantage of the classical DEA model is that the stochastic factors of farming cannot be treated either on the side of inputs or outputs; therefore, their results can be adopted with reservations, especially in agricultural models. This may have been because we could not discover that many agricultural applications. Considering the price of inputs and outputs as probability variables, 5000 simulation runs have been done in this research. As a result, it can be stated that at which intervals of the input and output factors can become competitive and the fluctuation of these factors can cause what level of risk at each farm.

Show full abstract
Impact of economic globalization on the human trafficking in the Greater Mekong Sub-region countries

This study examines the impact of economic globalization on the human trafficking inflows into the Greater Mekong Sub-region (GMS) countries. The paper empirically tests for a cross-section of six countries, including Cambodia, the Yunnan Province of the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PRD), Myanmar, ...Thailand, and Vietnam. Employing the Pooled OLS estimator, as the theory predicts, the economic globalization increases trafficking inflow into the GMS. However, only foreign direct investment (FDI) affects the degree of trafficking of persons, while the effect of trade is insignificant. Moreover, Exchange rate, Migration, Population and Democracy induce higher rates of trafficked persons, whereas Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and other factors, such as education, vocational training and micro-finance through village development funds decrease this problem in the region. Gross National Income per capita (GNI per capita) and rule of law do not have any significant effect on human trafficking.

Show full abstract
Members of a supply chain and their relationships

Today, companies do not compete individually on the market, but as members of a supply chain, delivering their goods or services to customers through shared collaboration. The main objective of the members in the chain is to satisfy customer needs, in the interest of which they cooperate in value adding processes. The main objective of the pres...ent study is to characterise the members of a supply chain, their relationship and to measure performance. The most relevant literature published on this topic states that investigation of the performance measurement in supply chains from the side of relationships is considered ‘uncharted territory’. However, the operation of a supply chain cannot be described without investigating its relationships.


Show full abstract
Wellness habits of Hungarian youth

A health conscious person might contribute to the preservation of her health and to the prevention of illnesses by her lifestyle, health conscious nutrition and regular exercise. Wellness helps to reach these goals with its complex services aimed at both the improvement of one’s physical state, stamina and maintenance of mental agility. The i...ntention to develop a health conscious lifestyle is perceptible in the ever increasing demand.

Show full abstract
Factors influencing the gross value added in the sheep production chain

The competitiveness of the sheep sector in East Europe has been decreasing from year to year. The value added in the sector is not generated in the countries as a high proportion of the lambs are exported. For example, in Hungary, 95% of the lambs, unnecessary for replacement, are sold at an average weight of 21 kg and are slaughtered abroad. A... stochastic model was constructed to investigate the connections between the cycle phases of the mutton production. Three modules were distinguished, the lamb production, fattening and slaughtering-processing sub-modules. The aim of our study was to identify the gross value added generated in the three sub-modules and to analyse the main factors influencing its volume using the conditions in Hungary as an example. The major hypothesis of our research was that the profitability of the production chain is mainly determined by the breed. The results showed that, considering market prices, the gross value added in the processing module was mostly influenced by the number of lambs sold per ewe per year at the bottom level of the mutton product chain. The next most important factors were the weight gain in the lamb producing and fattening sub-modules and dressing percentage in slaughtering-processing sub-module. Contour plots were constructed which help to describe the relationship among analyzed factors. Using the contour plots, the gross value added for different combinations of these factors might be forecast.

Show full abstract
Comparison of fisheries sectors of Japan and Turkey in production, consumption, trade and future possibilities

The purpose of this study is to show some view-points such as the expansion of the mutual trade scale in fish and/or marine products, and newly effective use of edible marine bio-resources in each country. Total quantity of fisheries production, consumption (per capita), export and import quantity of Japan and Turkey based on 2010 were reported... as 75.27 million tons, 653 thousand tons; 8.5 kg, 70.9 kg, 566 thousand tons, 55.1 thousand tons,; 473 thousand tons, 80, 7 thousand tons respectively. Turkey- Japan total amount of fisheries trade was more than 56 million US $ in 2011 and, but in 2000 was just over 14 million US $. Japan and Turkey bilateral relations are friendly and cordial, and they are steadily improving. Therefore, they should prepare business plans or obtain funding for business plan development to identify new markets and explore business expansion opportunities.

Show full abstract
View All Issues