Economic well-being in the Ballymote rural area: myth and reality
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Grimes, S., ODonohue, B. (1996) 'Economic well-being in the Ballymote rural area: myth and reality'. Studies: An Irish Quarterly Review , 85 (340):351-361.
Despite the many negative indicators such as falling population and high emigration which are characteristic of the Northwest, the town of Ballymote appears to be booming. In explaining this apparent contradiction, three questions suggested themselves; (a what influences at the EU, national or local levels have enabled the town to survive (b given the apparent failure of traditional socioeconomic indicators to reflect the underlying reality, what new indicators would accurately reflect the economic well-being of the area; and (c given that Ballymote had survived, and indeed thrived against the odds, what lessons could be applied to stimulate economic growth in other areas Since one of the authors had been a bank manager in the town for a number of years certain insights into the functioning of the local economy were available to the researchers at the outset. In addition to the usual range of published data sources, the study was primarily based on a series of confidential interviews. It is not too surprising, therefore, that 600ey was chosen as the key to unlock the workings of the local economy, with particular emphasis on disposable income, savings, and participation in the black economy. While it is com600place for countries to count their income in terms of Gross National Product, there is no available mechanism in Ireland to assess levels of income for localities. One of the objectives of this study, therefore, was to explore ways of assessing major 600ey flows and the overall income of a locality. A600g the questions to be examined were the effects of savings and of the black economy on the localit