Vol. 1 No. 1 (2007)

Published December 31, 2007

Applied Studies in Agribusiness and Commerce is the official
periodical of the International MBA Network in Agribusiness
and Commerce for the discussion and dissemination of
applied research in agricultural economics, agribusiness and
commerce done within the International MBA Network.
Universities belonging to International MBA Network
expose students to the latest theoretical and applied
knowledge about international politics, economics,
sociology and law. Participants develop management skills
grounded in finance, organizational behaviour, negotiation
skills, project management, and strategy. Prospective
managers are given the opportunity to directly apply these
skills in relevant professional settings. Managers must be
able to use business management knowledge and skills
appropriate to the distinctive setting of their institutions.
To fulfil the expectations of both participants and
prospective employers, the International MBA Network in
Agribusiness and Commerce has worked intensively with
internationally renowned Universities, business executives,
and MBA students to design and improve multidisciplinary
curriculum and have also developed Applied Studies in
Agribusiness and Commerce to address a major need of
training professionals and pursue careers of students in the
institutions and companies that work with the MBA Network.
Applied Studies publishes high quality contributions on
topics related to Agribusiness and Commerce and provides
managers, researchers and teachers with a forum, where they
can publish and acquire research results, case studies and
reviews, which are important to the global food chain.
Submitted manuscripts should have a relationship to the
economics of agriculture, natural resources, environment, or
rural development. Papers should have a practical
orientation and demonstrate innovation in analysis,
methods, or application. Topic areas include production
economics and farm management, agricultural policy,
agricultural environmental issues, regional planning and
rural development, methodology, marketing of agricultural
and food products, international trade and development.
Research on a significant economic component, analyses of
problems connected to research, extension, and teaching of
the International MBA Network in Agribusiness and
Commerce are also encouraged.
Applied Studies publishes practical research and case
studies, as well as papers discussing policy issues. Shorter
features include book reviews and comments on previously
published articles. In addition, the journal publishes the
Annual report of the International MBA Network in
Agribusiness and Commerce enabling the members of
International MBA Network to have immediate access to the
Editors of Applied Studies in Agribusiness and
Commerce want to make theory and practice come together
and feel privileged to have access to them. The Editors hope
Applied Studies will be a forum to evaluate the impact of life
sciences and modern technology on business strategies in the
food chain. Applied Studies will exchange views, develop
strategies and evaluate the impact of changes taking place
throughout the integrated food chain, and provide an
opportunity to establish priorities in the development and
direction of the global food system.
Editors of Applied Studies in Agribusiness and
Commerce would recommend this journal to anyone who
wants to better understand the agricultural economy and
international trade. They want to access information on food
quality, food production and manufacturing practices.
Editors of Applied Studies in Agribusiness and Commerce
discuss important issues of food and agribusiness and
improve communication with colleagues in food and
agribusiness programs throughout Europe.



  • In search of clusters

    The aim of this article is to present the ‘regional cluster quick scan’as an efficient and objective tool to scan a region of interest for the presence, nature and development phase of regional clusters. The ‘tool’developed in this research is based on the relations between the state of cluster development in regions, competitiveness, and economic growth. First, a theoretical model is developed and then this model is applied to a real case to test the validity of the model. The results indicate the possibility of identifying regional clusters and their competitiveness by using Shift and Share analysis.

  • The economic value of grassland products

    The economic value of grassland products is not always clear. In addition to demonstrating the social benefits of grassland products, the objective of the present study is to present the value of their diverse forms of utilization and their definitions in practice. This study groups marketable and non-marketable grass products and introduces a new category, the animal husbandry value of grasses. Among other factors, economists differ from researchers in other areas of science, as they are basically motivated by three issues The first question economists always raise is: “What can it be used for?”, the second is: “What is it worth?”, and the third is: “How can it (its value) be determined?” Any answers to any further questions are subordinated to the answers to these three.

  • Learning for the Knowledge Society

    With sustained use and creation of knowledge in the centre of the economic development process, an economy essentially becomes a Knowledge Economy. A Knowledge Economy (KE) is one that utilizes knowledge as the key engine of economic growth. It is an economy where knowledge is acquired, created, disseminated and used effectively to enhance economic development.

  • Agri-environmental management and rural development: Hungary after EU accession

    In Hungary, similarly to developed countries, the share of agriculture in the GDP has declined. Even so, preparation of the sector’s long term strategy is crucial, as the role of agriculture exceeds the results represented in the GDP. Environmental and social functions of agriculture are revaluated in developed countries, and consumers at the end of the food chain actually govern the entire process. This is why information plays an increasingly important role, and gives signals (Verbeke, 2005) to the actors in the economy and society. This research area is diverse (including agricultural policy, environmental policy, rural development and sustainable development), and so I applied an interdisciplinary approach and conducted an integrated examination. The results show that in recent decades, the pressure of agriculture on the environment has been lower in Hungary than in the EU-15 and agri-environmental measures have taken hold in all types of land-use systems, even though they are more important in protected areas. Although this development provides a good basis for a long term strategy social capital has lost strength (Csath, 2002), so fostering the creation of internal and external rural networks – one instrument for this could be the Leader programme – is essential for sustainable rural development.

  • Examination of leader communication in agriculture

    My doctoral and research topic was significant in the examination and analysis of leader activities in the framework of a functional, modularly constructed empirical research program of the Department of Management Sciences. I could make statements and correspond about leader activities; these exercises and the influential factors on these activities were studied by the examinations and analyses of leader communication. In this article, I will demonstrate the research I made in on agricultural communication, as a Ph.D. student in the Department of Management Sciences.

  • Analysis of the expected income of several family types

    In this essay, I deal with the problem of expected income of family holdings. Despite the fact that expected income is mentioned in numerous specialist publications and in political declarations, its definition and method of calculation are not detailed. On the basis of my research, I define the notion of expected income and I determine its scale concerning different family types for the year 2006, on the basis of a survey I carried out among 198 agriculturists.

  • Key aspects of investment analysis

    This paper reviewed principally accepted methods applied to investment analysis. To describe every aspect of investment analysis fully would require far more space than available here, so we highlight only of few of its aspects. This study collects several well-known bibliographies, contrasts them with each other and provides explanations for having done so. There are many questions about which authors and companies agree, including about how to apply certain methods, but on others there is disagreement. Four dynamic methods (Net Present Value, Internal Rate of Return, Profitability Index, and Discounted Payback Period) are demonstrated from the viewpoint of application. Moreover, this study clarifies several sensitive questions, such as handling income taxes, inflation and uncertainty. Other examined issues are only mentioned at the end of this paper, and we will publish on these more thoroughly at a later date.

  • Land regulation in the European Union and Hungary

    Land, as it constitutes one of the bases of agricultural production, has a special position in the economic-judiciary surroundings of states. In Hungarian history, land ownership has undergone many radical transitions. The decade starting from the political and land regulation reform is a short time in land tenure. In spite of it, there have been several important changes in land ownership structure. In the 1970s and 80s, large agricultural firms, especially co-operatives and state farms, were common in Hungary. State hegemony was typical of land ownership and use, with rather small, privately owned parcels. Since privatization began after 1989, this tendency has changed, with land owned by farmers. In the following article, I am going to review the laws regulating land ownership and land use in Hungary and in the European Union.

  • Opportunities for the inclusion of less-favoured areas in the Northern Great Plain region

    Agricultural economics and its part, rural economics plays a determining role in Hungary. Most rural families perform self-sufficient farm production for a living. In the present conditions of infrastructure and human resources, there are regions where the only rural alternative for employment is agriculture. There are significant differences among the regions considering natural resources and equipment available for farm production, and these differences affect potential income (Vöröset al. 1999). The primary aim of the European Union is to reduce such differences among the regions.The new research program of the University of Debrecen tackles the fundamental questions of regional development through the research and management of social asymmetries by using economic and other relevant tools. This program also provides suggestions for facilitating the development of less-favoured areas.

  • Risk and risk management in Hungarian sheep production

    The aim of this paper is to give an overview of the risk attitudes of Hungarian sheep producers regarding the changes they have had to go through since the political changes of 1989–1990. Moreover, the objective of this study is to strengthen the empirical basis for risk analysis by identifying the importance of farmers’ risk attitudes. The results of a nationwide survey of over 500 sheep farmers presented a framework of risk attitudes, risk sources and applied risk management techniques of livestock producers.

  • „Green” Public Relations (Public relations in the sector of products and services for Polish agriculture)

    The field of Public Relations has undoubtedly been assuming growing importance in Poland. Understood as an element of marketing communication or a function of company management, it has a significant impact on company’s external and internal environment. According to Puls Biznesu3 the value of the Polish PR market amounted to 250m PLN in 2005, which is a 20% increase as compared to 2004. According to the author Urszula S ´wiatl⁄owska, “the turnover of PR agencies is growing and even smaller companies demonstrate their interest in the services”. Considering this, it can be assumed that PR activities will soon be initiated by many smaller Polish companies, often connected with the agricultural sector. The change discussed by the authors of the article reflects the phenomenon of PR’s growing importance among other communication channels in Poland.

  • MBA education at Debrecen University Faculty of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development

    Debrecen is the capital of the Great Hungarian Plain, the centre of many institutions, organizations and business companies just in the heart of Europe. It has provided an ideal setting for higher education since 1538. With this past of more than 450 years, the University of Debrecen is the oldest higher educational institution in continuous operation in Hungary based in the same city. Higher education in agriculture began in 1868, when the National Higher School of Agriculture was formed in Debrecen. The University of Debrecen has more than 26 000 students, and more than 1700 instructors teach at the University, which has 13 faculties, 2 independent institutions, 20 doctoral schools and offers the widest choice of higher education. This outstanding intellectual centre, with a vast research and development capacity, has a growing importance in the economic and social development, cultural progress of the region. It devotes special attention to serving the needs of a knowledge based society more efficiently, and it strives to become the knowledge centre of the region, which also preserves traditions and values.

  • Master training in Agribusiness and Rural Development at the University of Zagreb

    The title of the proposed JEP project is: “Agribusiness Higher EducAtion Development” with the acronym AHEAD. This curriculum development project – in case of acceptance – will last for three years, from July 2005 and June 2008. The primary project site is the University of Zagreb, Croatia; the contractor and the co-ordinator institution is the University of Debrecen, Hungary. In the consortium, 3 further European universities (University of Hohenheim, Wageningen University and Scottish Agricultural College) will participate, from the Croatian side the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management and an additional 7 Croatian institutes will also be involved. The total number of members in the consortium is 13.
    The main objective of the AHEAD project is to establish new BSc and MSc programmes in Croatia at two Faculties of the University of Zagreb. These are as follows: Agricultural and Rural Development, Food Safety and Quality Management and pilot MSc training in Agribusiness and Rural Development. These are preceded by faculty retraining programmes in food safety and quality management, as well as agribusiness and commerce within the framework of a MBA programme accredited by the International MBA Network. The professional content of the project is a modernised curriculum and training palette that would be available by the end of this project at the University of Zagreb, serving not only the higher education of the country, but the demand of the Croatian national economy as well, in line with the basic principles of the European Union.

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