Scientific Report 2018-2022

Our funded project has reached its end, but the partners and teams are committed to continuing their work on psychological, political, and economic inequalities and polarization. We provide below a summary of the work that has been conducted in the project. Interested readers can access the full report compiled at the end of the project HERE.

Taking into account the work of each individual partner and the joint activities, we consider that all objectives of the project were attained. The project generated a unique data set containing extensive data on psychological, attitudinal, economic, and developmental indicators, mapped on the administrative organization of the Romanian territory, which has been made publicly available on the project’s website. This data set has been the foundation for achieving the other objective of the projects but will also serve as a valuable resource for the partners and the general scientific community for future analyses on the evolution of PESH indicators across Romanian regions, for either research or policy recommendations.

The partners in the project have also generated an extensive set of maps comprising the distribution of psycho-social and socio-economic indicators across Romania. The maps have been organized both on the classical administrative and historical divisions of Romanian territory (NUTS I-III), but also based on clusterization techniques, allowing the regions to group together based on their similarities on the same indicators, or based on the convergence (correlation) of the indicators. The depth of the knowledge that has been gained about the geographical distribution of psychological, social, political, and economic indicators across Romania is comparable to the available knowledge for other developed countries were such analysis were performed in the last decade.

Perhaps the most extensive work performed by the partners is reflected in the various methods and the complexity of the analyses that were conducted to understand the relationships between psycho-social and PESH indicators, with special focus on inequalities and polarization indicators. The work conducted includes several invocations, including a aggregated regional-level analysis of the cognitive-behavior model derived from evidence-based clinical psychology, a new methodology for measuring the Sustainable Development Goals, which combines classical and progressive data sources (e.g., satellite images), a complex analysis on the impact of historical literacy and modern days development in the Romanian countries that were part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire prior to 1918, and a complex approach to modeling income inequalities using the Local Growth with Global Reset model (Biro-Neda model).

The project has facilitated the publication of a large numbers of scientific articles (58 indexed in Web of Sciences) and multiple other international and national publications in respected journals or published by reputed publishing houses. The partners also had an extensive outreach in the scientific community, with several participations at prestigious international conferences in each year of the project.

Based on the work that was conducted in the project, several public policy documents have been elaborated, covering topics such as the development of a modernity index for Romania, fake news and vaccination during the COVID-19 pandemic, post-secondary education, and the implication of international standardized tests for the Romanian educational system.

Deliverable 3 – Data analysis and modeling

In the third phase of this project, our research team analyzed the psycho-cultural data collected in the 41 counties of Romania and in the Municipality of Bucharest and tested new methods for identifying and calculating social and economic inequalities and polarization. The full report of our activity for 2019-2020 can be downloaded HERE.

Research report: The Modernity Index of Romania

In this Report we present a Modernity Index of Romania, through a dynamic and generational analysis. The Modernity Index was computed based on four dimensions: (1) Collectivism/Autonomy (Individualism), (2) Trust/Mistrust, (3) Duty/Joy and (4) Life satisfaction. The results showed that between 1993 and 2018 the Modernity Index of Romania increased by approximately 9 points. The changes of this index indicate opportunities for a better integration of Romanian institutions into the western geopolitical space of the European Union and NATO.  The full report can be downloaded HERE.  

Research report: The psychological and psychocultural profile of Romania’s regions

The research team has collected an extensive set of data regarding the psychocultural characteristics of the administrative regions of Romania. In this report we present the psychocultural profiles of these administrative regions and conduct a preliminary comparison between the profiles. The results have indicated that there is a high degree of homogeneity between regions, at most levels of the analysis. However, there are some differences that might be considered as ecologically relevant (e.g., trust, rational beliefs, positive emotions), especially when comparing the regions across NUTS II. There are also other smaller differences which are significant and might have an impact on PESH [Political/Economic/Social/Health] indicators and will be used in complex models in the final stages of the project. The full report can be downloaded HERE.

Research report: The impact of the psychological and cultural profile on the mobility of Romanian citizens during the COVID-19 lockdown

Based on the data collected as part of this project, our research team has analyzed the relationship between the psychological and cultural profile of the administrative counties of Romania and the mobility of the citizens, as reported by the Google COVID-19 Community Mobility Reports. The results have indicated that higher Autonomy/Individualism and higher Power Distance were both associated with lower mobility in public places and higher mobility at home during the lockdown in Romania, between the 16th of March and 14th of May 2020. The full report (in Romanian language) can be downloaded HERE.

Deliverable 2

The objectives for the second phase of the project were included (1) the development and preparation of the data collection instruments and methodology, (2) the implementation of the data collection process and (3) the dissemination the project. The full report of our activity for 2018-2019 can be downloaded HERE.

Deliverable 1 

The overall objective of the project is to analyse spatial-temporal developmental inequalities and polarisation in relation to psychological characteristics on the territory of Romania. The premise behind the project is that the patterns of geographical distribution of psychological characteristics underlie the observable differences in the political, economic, social, and health indicators (PESH) between different psychological and physical regions of the country. More specifically, these psychological variables act as mechanisms involved in generating the individual level behaviours, which in turn are expressed in terms of macro-PESH indicators. The project will analyse these relationships in a trans-disciplinary fashion, integrating psychological features with socio-economic disparities.

The objectives of the first phase of the project are the following:

(1) the documentation of the psychological, geographical, social, and economic variables related to socio-economic disparities and polarizations;

(2) the selection and preparation of the measurement instruments used for data collection;

(3) the dissemination of the project (at this stage through this website, which will provide a platform for the dissemination of future scientific results).

The first deliverable (available in Romanian language) contains a synthesis of the relevant scientific literature in the field of (1) psychology, (2) geography, (3) political sciences, (4) econophysics, and (5) economy as well as a selection of the indicators included in the data collection process that will take place in the next stages of the project. Download the full report HERE.