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The Demographic Perspectives of Baranja – Results of a Field Study
Puni tekst: pdf (355 KB),
Str. 111 - 121
The paper analyses the results of a field study, based on a questionnaire survey, conducted in order to assess the present state and the demographic perspectives of the Baranja region (in East Croatia). The questionnaire was conducted among pupils in Baranja’s secondary schools, the population expected to effectuate the future demographic and overall socio-economic revitalisation of this region. Despite the respondents’ ambitions, expressed in their answers to the question regarding further schooling, it is difficult to imagine an improvement of the region’s educational (and age) structure, one of the basic preconditions for its social and economic revival, since as much as three quarters of the respondents expressed a desire to depart from the area and work in other parts of Croatia or abroad. This, indeed, would make us doubt the successfulness of present and future attempts, both economic and demographic in nature, to revitalise this part of Croatia. Such a strongly expressed wish to depart on the part of the respondents certainly does not leave much room for optimism in regard to this region, i.e. in regard to its demographic and economic perspectives, especially taking into consider the age of the respondents. Their vision of the present situation and of the future in this part of Croatian Danubia is reflected in their answers to the question why they wish to leave Baranja. Dissatisfaction with the present situation is clearly indicated, as is their lack of conviction and hope that something will change. Their answers evoke feelings of resignation and pessimism, certainly not typical for persons of their age. Discontent in regard to the neglected and undeveloped municipal and social infrastructure adds to the depressive atmosphere, making nearly half of the respondents dissatisfied with the quality of life, with life’s realities and with the possibilities at their disposal in the settlements in which they live. On the basis of the results received in the survey, it is possible to claim that population decline and economic weakness will for a long time remain characteristics of this part of Croatia.
population decline; Baranja; socio-economic development; demographic perspectives; revitalisation
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