About the Journal
Warsaw Forum of Economic Sociology (WFES) is a refereed journal published in print as well as online that aims to be a discussion forum for scholars interested in theoretical and empirical issues in socio-economic studies, with a particular emphasis on questions related to Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). Warsaw Forum of Economic Sociology seeks articles that focus on theoretical and empirical aspects of socio-economic transformations and current socio-economic reality. WFES is published at the Warsaw School of Economics but is international as far as authors and readers are concerned. Papers are welcomed from all parts of the world, although contributions focused on subject related to the CEE region are of primary interest. Such focus is a result of realisation that the number of English-language scholarly publications situated in the field of socioeconomics with CEE-related content is relatively small. On the other hand, we are well aware of intensive research conducted in our part of Europe, bringing very interesting results, both on theoretical and empirical level. Unfortunately, vast part of the research findings from CEE is published in local languages only, which effectively limits the number of potential and actual readers, thus weakening the impact on the global academic discourse. As a consequence, not only authors suffer little recognition of their works but also international scholar community is denied access to valuable sources of knowledge due to language barrier.
Warsaw Forum of Economic Sociology aims at filling out the gap and has aspirations to become a transmission belt bringing regional issues into global dimension. Our motivations are complex, because we not only concerned with breaking communication barriers but also maintaining and enhancing research interest in the region, which over past three decades have undergone profound, sometimes sudden social, economic and political changes. One of the key drivers for development of social science in the 19 th century was a desire to understand and explain the turbulent changes, which Karly Polanyi labelled the ‘great transformation’. What has been happening in the CEE since 1980s can arguably be called another great transformation. From the collapse of the authoritarian state socialism, through EU enlargement until the present day, the countries in the region have been walking a path into unknown, and subsequent structural reforms have often produced unexpected effects along those envisaged. CEE may be treated as a separate universe – not quite a part of the West – not only due to historic circumstances (running deeper in the past than 1945) but also social and economic reasons.
Despite progress made, the road to full convergence with the UE-15 in economic and social terms is still long for the moist of European post-socialist states. At the same time, the New Member States from the CEE remain very different from one another, contrary to stereotypical views which surprisingly often come to the surface of Western public and academic discourse. So it is another objective for the journal: to demystify such views and show the diversity of the region. Yet another aim is to build an interdisciplinary platform for socio-economic debate on and in CEE. As mentioned above, it is not a low number of publications on socio-economic issues but rather absence of viable channels of communication which result in scattered, hence less visible, data. By offering such a channel to international scholars, we hope to integrate the socio-economic academic community at the regional, European and global levels. Drawing on popular concepts of stemming from the Wallerstein tradition, we aim to share the experiences of the CEE ‘semi- periphery’, hoping it could become an important source of knowledge and frame of reference for other semi-peripheries of the modern world e.g. in Asia or Latin America.