Our five case studies offer a detailed view of Poland’s EH&S regulatory institutions at work. This chapter presents a systematic analysis of those case studies. We offer several conclusions—few definite, many unexpected and several in the form of hypotheses for further work. But first, a cautionary note about the limitations embodied in our cases.
Although our case studies focus on precisely the kind of medium-sized enterprises that constitute the core of Poland’s growing private economy, it is important to note some ways in which these firms do not represent the whole of that economy.
First, the firms that we studied all have between 200 and 1,000 employees. None is the sort of very small enterprise that might, at least temporarily, escape the notice of local or regional EH&S officials. And none is an EH&S dinosaur of the sort that might, like the fading steel industry, attract the personal attention of central authorities in Warsaw. Rather, these are the kind of firms whose EH&S performance is the daily professional concern of local and regional EH&S officials.
Second, the firms that we have studied are all located within 200 kilometers of Warsaw. Despite the fact that they are in four different voivodships (and so enabled us to study and compare four different sets of regional authorities), none of these firms is located in the relatively pristine Northeast or the heavily polluted Southwest. It is possible that local or regional EH&S officials in those regions might approach the balancing