Marek Więckowski

Articles

Can a pandemic stop or slow the Anthropocene?

Marek Więckowski

Geographia Polonica (2020) vol. 93, iss. 4, pp. 475-494 | Full text
doi: https://doi.org/10.7163/GPol.0183

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Abstract:

The entire Earth system consists of fully dynamic conditions. Humankind’s manifold large and small influences on the planet are now very well-documented. Changes are now so vast, their traces so significant, that we have come to term this as if it was genuinely a new Epoch in that history – as the Anthropocene. Recently, however,the COVID-19 pandemic has shown us how an ostensibly small event at a single locality can take just a few weeks or months to change the world, and in some real sense to stop it. The author in this article in particular seeks to inject a further dose of far-reaching reflection on our pandemic, its influence on life on Earth, and its possible future consequences. Ultimately, then, it seeks an answer for a key question – as to whether COVID-19 is really in a position to stop, or at least slow, the runaway Anthropocene.With a view to encouraging reflectionon humankind’s potentially reduced impact on the planet the Author suggests priority areas of study in the near future.

Keywords: Geography, Anthropocene, pandemic, COVID-19, IGU, globalisation

Marek Więckowski [marekw@twarda.pan.pl], Instytut Geografii i Przestrzennego Zagospodarowania im. S. Leszczyckiego PAN

Political borders under ecological control in the Polish borderlands

Marek Więckowski

Geographia Polonica (2018) vol. 91, iss. 1, pp. 127-138 | Full text
doi: https://doi.org/GPol.0105

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Abstract:

In Central and Eastern Europe, including Poland, many protected areas are situated in the borderlands. Borders (e.g. between states), boundaries (of protected areas), and frontiers (e.g. an eco-frontier) are produced by humans and underline control and ownership of land (territory). These borderlines overlap with each another – can be visible or not, and function as barriers to the flows and economic activity of human beings, with their juridical consequences. In this paper the focus has been placed on the role of that borders play in the construction of space, especially in relation to attractive natural areas in the borderlands of Poland, whether or not they are protected. Additionally the author proposes and tries to illustrate the role of the ‘periodisation’ of nature protection in the borderlands and the relationship between them.

Keywords: Poland, border, national park, transboundary cooperation, protected area, eco-frontier

Marek Więckowski [marekw@twarda.pan.pl], Instytut Geografii i Przestrzennego Zagospodarowania im. S. Leszczyckiego PAN

Border changes in Central and Eastern Europe: An introduction

Vladimir Kolosov, Marek Więckowski

Geographia Polonica (2018) vol. 91, iss. 1, pp. 5-16 | Full text
doi: https://doi.org/10.7163/GPol.0106

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Abstract:

The objective of this paper is to consider the main border issues and cross-border relationships in Central and East Europe (CEE) in the context of changing theoretical approaches to border studies. The authors start by analysing the impact of the impressive progress in the theory of borders on studies of CEE. Fundamental political changes in this part of Europe after 1989 were associated with the opening of borders and the intensification of cross-border cooperation, which have radically transformed the functions of boundaries. Emerging cross-border regions became spaces of communication, interaction, innovations and development. The EU enlargement to the east and the inclusion of most CEE countries in the Schengen zone accelerated the processes of re- and de-bordering and the diversification of the functions and regime of borders. The powerful waves of migration to the European Union over recent years have again greatly modified the situation in border areas and provoked the construction of new walls. In conclusion the authors propose eight research questions forfuture studies of borders and bordering in CEE.

Keywords: border studies, border, Central and Eastern Europe, European Union, integration, external border of the European Union, post-Soviet countries, geopolitics

Vladimir Kolosov [vladimirkolossov@gmail.com], Institute of Geography Russian Academy of Sciences Staromonetny pereulok 29, 119017 Moscow: Russia
Marek Więckowski [marekw@twarda.pan.pl], Instytut Geografii i Przestrzennego Zagospodarowania im. S. Leszczyckiego PAN