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Crisis and Sustainability: Responses from Different Positions

14th Annual Conference of the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Sofia, 7-8 October 2011

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Edited By George Chobanov and Jürgen Plöhn

The volume contains an editorial and nine contributions to the proceedings of the 14 th international conference of the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration at Sofia University. The first part reflects on the persistent monetary, fiscal and economic crisis in the EU and other OECD countries. The second part deals with specific answers to economic challenges by municipalities and enterprises, treating clusters, NPM and M&A. In a broad sense, the third part is dedicated to sustainable development, including a theoretical, a predominantly political and a practice oriented contribution. The articles are written by authors from five nations: Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Switzerland and the USA. In the background of each position, there is a certain national tradition; the authors use theoretical as well as empirical approaches. The volume encompasses ten figures and eleven tables.

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DIETER FLÄMIG: SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC STRATEGIES FOR A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY

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SOCIAL AND ECONOMIC STRATEGIES FOR A SUSTAINABLE SOCIETY DIETER FLÄMIG (BERLIN, GERMANY) 1. European responsibility in times of globalization The question of developing a sustainable and viable society demands a deep examination of the roots, potentials and risks of our present day societies and economies. Within the context of globalization these are constantly forced to align their reasoning and acting stronger with the constraints of international economic competition. In his book “Globalization and its discontents” Joseph Stiglitz, Nobel Prize winner in Economics, sees the danger of a world-wide, at some point uncontrollable destabilization, which will have an effect on all im- portant areas of life within our modern civilizations: „Unfortunately, so far, those responsible for managing globalization, while praising these positive benefits, all too often have shown an in- sufficient appreciation of this adverse side, the threat to cultural identi- ty and values ... If globalization continues to be conducted in the way that it has been in the past, if we continue to fail to learn from our mis- takes, globalization will not only succeed in promoting development but will continue to create poverty and instability“ (Stiglitz 2002: 247- 248). He wrote this in 2002, thus well before the culmination of the last major financial crisis and before the urgent appeal from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change of 2007 to significantly curb global warming through world-wide efforts (see IPCC 2007: 4. Progress Report). Stiglitz opts for a world-wide “multipronged strategy of reform” (Stiglitz 2002: 251), in order to...

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