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Research

In the sphere of the scientific research activities, the Department specialises in compliance with accredited programmes and the scientific expertise of the Department members. The Department employs many experts associated with two main research centres – the Centre for Urban and Regional Management and the Centre for Political and Cultural Geography. The centres effectively solve scientific research projects, cooperating with similarly oriented foreign entities.

Scientific research activities of the Centre for Urban and Regional Management:

The main direction of the CURM research is widely understood “Governance of Land Development“ of shrinking (old/traditional) industrial regions/cities (Smart Governance of Shrinking Cities), namely from the point of view of economic and urban geography or geodemography.

In this context, the issues that are solved are those of regional development transformation; restructuralisation; adaptation/adaptability; fostering regional competitiveness; regional innovation systems, and production chains. Generally speaking, we study the role of institutions, entities or participants of regional development and initiatives they generate.

Other issues comprise the importance of economic performance and economic resilience of Central European non-metropolitan regions; research of the industry in peripheral industrialised regions of the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Germany; research of the evolution of sectoral structures of both traditional economic branches and knowledge-intensive business services, and clustering of creative industries and their interaction with urban environment.

Other research areas include the following issues: importance of soft localisation factors; automotive industry development; marketing of cities and regions; cohesion policy of the European Union; regional policy principles of the Czech Republic; tourism development; development of organic farming; application of the smart city concept, and factors influencing the property market developments.

From the point of view of geography, we direct our focus towards the city of Ostrava, the Ostrava region, the region of Moravia and Silesia, the Czech Republic and Central Europe, and the European Union. As for the methodology, we make use of the combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches and techniques.

Scientific research activities of the Centre for Political and Cultural Geography:

The main research trends comprise geopolitical, geo-cultural and geo-economic processes in the world (politics and geopolitical conceptions, religions and geo-cultural conceptions, interstate migration, conflicts, international relations and law, geo-economic trends and integration processes). Applied research is focused on the post-communist and communist area of Eurasia in the context of globalisation processes (case studies).

In this context, we focus mainly on the development of international relations and political situation in Eastern Asia concentrating on China and Japan; cooperation between selected European states and the states of Eastern Asia; the role of civil society in the transformation of conflicts; the specifics of the development in unrecognised states in the post-Soviet space, and Russian foreign policy towards the region of Eastern Partnership. Other issues comprise the area of critical geopolitics and geopolitical imaginations.

Other scientific research activities

Within smaller teams, some of the Department members specialise in the didactics of geography, ethnology, anthropology, world religions, cartography and geoinformatics.

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