On-going research

MAximised MoBility and Accessibility of Services in Regions Affected by Demographic Change (MAMBA) - EKOSOC-LV

Research project "MAximised MoBility and Accessibility of Services in Regions Affected by Demographic Change" (MAMBA) is implemented in within Interreg Baltic Sea Region programme.

Project summary: Demographic change and limited public finances endanger the accessibility of services, goods and social life in remote and rural areas of the Baltic Sea Region (BSR), contributing to an ongoing process of peripheralisation. in this context it becomes increasingly difficult for regional and local authorities to ensure Individual "people-to-service" mobility (i.e. enabling inhabitants to reach services and public goods) as public transport options are thinned out and services are concentrated In urban centres which are difficult to reach for villagers. At the same time, services which rely on mobility (e.g. home care, delivery services), i.e. "service-to-people" mobility, are becoming difficult to sustain in sparsely populated regions. Furthermore, there are prob!emetic patterns and structures of mobility that aggravate the situation: Mobility is often sector-specific and purpose-oriented (delivery, welfare, public transport etc.), and there is usually no sound concept for coordination of different mobility options, involving both transport operators and service providers. MAMBA aims to address these issues by giving both dimensions, people-to-service and service-to-people mobility, a new perspective through improved integration of mobility structures. To this end, different forms of regional and local °Mobility Centres" (MC) will be created in nine regions throughout the BSR that are all affected by demographic change, austerity and other socio-economic challenges. Based on specific mobility needs in these regions,The MCs will integrate eAsting mobility options by introducing enhanced management capacities in transport administration, providing digital and non-digital information systems for residents, creating platforms for public and private enterprises to pool transport services and facilitating cooperation between public transport actors and service providers. Selected new mobility solutions (e.g. rural carpooling, fieetsharing or mobility ass service (MaaS) wit be Initiated by the MCs as pilot actions. The transnational MAMBA partnership will exchange knowledge and test and evaluate different operational concepts for MCs which are transferable to other regions. These will be promoted to public authorities, transport and service providers through a publicly accessible knowledge database and a "rural mobility compendium". As the involvement and commitment of residents Is paramount for the sustainable success of innovative mobility solutions, MAMBA partners will monitor the acceptance of services provided or facilitated by the MCs. Furthermore, MAMBA aims to promote residents' participation In rural mobility design and to strengthen civil society by compiling a "manual for self-organized mobility" directed at grass-roots mobility Initiatives throughout the BSR. The findings regarding legal, economic and sociocultural barriers are also pointed out to policy-makers at the regional and national level with a guidance document.

Project partners: Diaconie of Schleswig Holstein (Germany), Nordregio (Sweden), Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences HESPI (Latvia), Vidzeme Planning Region (Latvia), County of Ploen (Germany), County of Cuxhaven (Germany), Regional Council of South Ostrobothnia (Finland), South Ostrobothnia Health Technology Dmelopment Centre (Finland), Regional Council of North Karelia (Finland), Vejle Municipality (Denmark), Municipality of Trelleborg (Sweden), Bielsko District (Poland), Bielsko-Biala Regional Development Agency (Poland), Institute for Climate Protection, Energy and Mobility-Law, Economics and Policy (Germany), Road Transport Administration (Latvia).

More information on the project:

HESPI director and researcher Agita Līviņa (agita.livina@va.lv)

Practical Approach for Teaching Circular Economy - EKOSOC-LV

The project “Practical Approach for Teaching Circular Economy” is implemented with the support of Nordplus programme.

Project period: 15.06.2017. - 01.10.2018.

The aims of the project are to develop a joint curriculum for teaching circular economy, find out best pedagogical practices and connect labor market to development work and teaching of circular economy. Created different sized circular economy modules and best pedagogical solutions will be gathered into a common toolbox. Modules and didactic solutions can thereby be used in appropriate combinations for specific purposes.

The coordinating institution: Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, Finland. 

Partner institutions:

EE-TTK University of Applied Sciences, Estonia

LV-Liepaja University, Latvia

LV-Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences, Latvia

LT-Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania

On September 27 – 28, 2017, Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences researchers A. Liviņa, V.Zaķis and Knowledge and Technology Centre (ZTC) project manager L.Fišere organized an international seminar for the participants of the project on the topical issues and challenges of circular economy in order to prepare an intensive study course on the circular economy. The first day of the seminar was held at the company ZAAO waste landfill in Daibe, where the company's project manager Mārtiņš Niklass introduced the participants with the company and highlighted the problems and challenges in the circular economy development. Natālija Cudecka-Puriņa from the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development explained the twists and turns in the policy development of circular economy. While the professor of Riga Technical University Tatjana Tambovceva (jointly with the professor of Banking Institution of Higher Education Dzintra Atstāja) presented the study on the circular economy in the content of business management study programmes in Latvia. Thus, triple helix model was used in practice.

The second day of the seminar took place at Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences Smart Lab with the main task of developing the content for the international study course, defining the knowledge and skills to be acquired. The work was led by ViA researcher Jana Simanovska and ViA student Armands Aivo Astukevičs helped by taking the notes during the brainstorm.

The University of Liepaja attended the seminar in a large number, as it provided the opportunity for acquiring knowledge and experience to four Master's students, including two students from Pakistan. Students were especially pleased with the opportunity to visit businesses.

The next project partners’ meeting will take place on November 13 – 15, 2017, in Kaunas in order to learn the most appropriate methods of teaching circular economy.

The programme for the seminar in ViA

Economic Policy Analysis of the USSR Occupation Period - EKOSOC-LV

Full title of the project: Information collection, evaluation and analysis, data entry, verification and revision for the identification of the number of victims and mass graves of the USSR totalitarian communist occupation regime,  for gathering information on repressions and mass deportations and for the calculation of the losses caused to the Latvian state and its people.

Project manager: HESPI researcher Dr. hist. Gatis Krūmiņš

New Forms of European Citizenship in Migration Era - EKOSOC-LV

The project is funded by the programme “Europe for Citizens” (EACEA).
The involved staff: HESPI researcher A.Karaseva, ViA lectureres V.Silkāne un L.Ločmele.

European project NECME “New forms of European citizenship in migration era” has started in 16 different European countries. The project, funded under the Europe for Citizens programme of the European Union, involves 17 Civil society organizations from 16 different countries, and is coordinated by the Italian Foundation “Giovanni e Francesca Falcone”, managed by relatives and colleagues of the anti-mafia judge Giovanni Falcone who was killed in 1992. The project is aimed to explore how migration phenomena is affecting European civil society in terms of new experiences of civic engagement and active citizenship.

To had better understanding of the current situation, an international survey was launched, and almost 4000 responses were collected in all project partner countries. The results of the survey are available here: http://www.fondazionefalcone.it/files/1080_Press%20Release%2021%20April%...

The survey, elaborated by Palermo (Italy) and Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences (Valmiera – LV), made it possible to record and analyze the perception of migration and migrants in European society, also focusing on how migrants are victims of organized crime or are involved in it.

“Consistent migration flow during last years have influence on European Civil society – said Maria Falcone, president of the “Falcone Foundation” – and all of us must take an active role to overcome xenophobic, intolerant and discriminating behaviors.

Through the involvement of different stakeholders (teachers, representatives of associations and European agencies, administrators of public institutions, journalists, law enforcement, …) and the adoption of different methodologies, participants of the project will be stimulated to act, as single citizens or as organized civil society, to facilitate migrant inclusion in European society and will create synergies between civil society and public bodies, also by promoting the role of volunteering.

Besides the survey project partners will meet several times to gain better understanding of how the integration of immigrants can be achieved through the active commitment of public institutions working at local level and of organized civil society and volunteers.

More information on the project:

HESPI researcher Agnese Karaseva (agnese.karaseva@va.lv)

State Research Programme EKOSOC-LV

5.2.6. Social and political transformations in Latvia in the post-crisis period - EKOSOC-LV
Project manager - Dr.sc.pol. Felicana Rajevska, Institute of Social, Economic and Humanities Research of Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences.
Involved researchers from our instituion are A.Broka, D.Stāvausis and master students.
5.2.8. Cultural environment development, preservation of the nature diversity and urbanisation processes within the context of the balanced development of Latvia - EKOSOC-LV
Project manager - Dr.sc.pol., Dr.oec. Agita Līviņa, Institute of Social, Economic and Humanities Research of Vidzeme University of Applied Sciences.
Involved researchers from our instituion are J.Buholcs, J.Kalnačs, B.Paškevica, L.Veliverronena, J.Smaļinskis, I.Grīnfelde and our master students.
5.2.2. The Development of Innovation and Entrepreneurship in Latvia in compliance with the Smart Specialisation Strategy - EKOSOC-LV
Project manager - Dr.oec.. Nataļja Lāce, Riga Technical University.
Involved researcher from our instituion is M.Leščevica and our master student.
5.2.3. Processes of Latvian rural and regional development and possibilities within the framework of economy - EKOSOC-LV
Project manager - Dr.habil.oec. Baiba Rivža, Latvia University of Agriculture.
Involved researchers from our instituion are S.Rozentāle, G.Krūmiņš, M.Ore, V.Melbārde and external researcher I.Krūmiņa.
The project results include a publication "Smart people: region process analysis"  in 9th International Scientific Conference “New Challenges of Economic and Business Development – 2017: Digital Economy”: Riga, Latvia, May 18-20, 2017. Proceedings of Reports. Riga: University of Latvia, 2017, pp. 347 - 356
5.2.9. Impact of social awareness changes on sustainable provision of ecosystem services - EKOSOC-LV
Project manager - Dr.biol. Inese Kokina, Daugavpils University.
Involved researchers from our instituion are A.Klepers and I.Druva-Druvaskalne.