Munich Personal RePEc Archive

Divergence in the Socioeconomic Development Paths of Hungary and Slovakia

Bartha, Zoltán and Szita Tóthné, Klára (2016): Divergence in the Socioeconomic Development Paths of Hungary and Slovakia. Published in: Regional Statistics , Vol. 2, No. 5 (February 2016): pp. 125-143.

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Abstract

This study aims to provide a comparative analysis of socioeconomic development in Slovakia and Hungary. For this purpose, we use the State of the Future Index (SOFI) to measure and forecast the socioeconomic well-being of both the countries from 1995 to 2015. The SOFI methodology has many characteristics that are in line with the 2009 Stiglitz–Sen–Fitoussi report. We find that during 1995–1999, Slovakia had a higher overall SOFI total, signifying a higher level of well-being; subsequently, however, Hungary pulled ahead between 1999 and 2005, after which Slovakia overtook Hungary yet again. Our predictions suggest that Slovakia will continue to pull ahead in the 2015–2025 period. The areas where Hungary has scope for considerable improvement are life expectancy, GDP per capita, renewable energy resources and CO2 emission and government debt. In some areas, both countries perform poorly: level of corruption and demographic trend. However, Hungary seems to have an advantage in R&D expenditure, unemployment level and voter turnout.

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