Self-Governing Voivodeship as the Organizer of Regional Passenger Transport in Poland
Purpose: The aim of the article is to analyze and assess the impact of the increasing role of voivodeship self-governments on the organization of regional rail transport in Poland. Design/Methodology/Approach: The study used the desk research method in the field of statistical resources and the method of comparative analysis. The analysis included the assessment of selected indicators concerning the financial involvement in the organization of passenger transport and the impact on the mobility of the inhabitants of the region with the use of rail transport. The analysis covered in particular the years 2014-2020, although the year 2020 may not be reliable from the point of view of mobility. COVID 19 had a significant impact on the decrease in transport. Findings: The research proves that the self-regulation of rail transport in Poland has had a positive impact on the development of this passenger transport sector. In addition to co-financing transport, the influence of provincial governments on the modernization of rolling stock, involvement in the development of railway transport infrastructure and impact on the timetable was also important. All this contributed to the increase in the mobility of the inhabitants of the region with the use of rail transport. Practical Implications: The development of regional rail transport requires the involvement of voivodship self-governments. It is related to various spheres, including the organization and financing of transport. The presented statistical data clearly show that the increase in the competitiveness of rail transport is possible, but requires the active influence of the transport organizer. This is especially important if we want to look for alternatives to road transport, including passenger cars, which have such an unfavorable effect on the natural environment. Originality/value: The research results are a contribution to the discussion on the assessment of the directions of development of regional public transport in the rail transport segment. The work of regulating the railways was also carried out in other countries, e.g. in Germany. Therefore, in the course of further research, a comparative analysis of the effects on a number of similar countries can be carried out.