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Does European cohesion policy reduce regional disparities? An empirical analysis

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  • Joeri Gorter
  • S. Ederveen

Abstract

European cohesion policy entails predominantly the funding of infrastructure and employment projects in lagging regions of EU Member States. It involves the distribution of more than 35 billion euro annually, making it the second most important EU policy in budgetary terms. Its main aim is to reduce regional disparities in regional welfare. This paper investigates to what extent European cohesion policy achieves this aim. The data reveal poorer regions do tend to receive more cohesion support. The policy thus satisfies a necessary condition for its effectiveness. It remains, however, unclear whether cohesion support significantly increases economic growth. In particular, the more independent convergence one presupposes, the less well cohesion support appears to work. This points at a clear trade-off: either one accepts that regional disparities are here to stay, or one concludes that cohesion policy fails.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis in its series CPB Discussion Paper with number 15.

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Date of creation: Oct 2002
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Handle: RePEc:cpb:discus:15

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Cited by:
  1. Juan González Alegre, 2010. "Fiscal decentralization and intergovernmental grants: the European regional policy and Spanish autonomous regions," Working Papers 2010/6, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  2. Kutan, Ali M. & Yigit, Taner M., 2007. "European integration, productivity growth and real convergence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(6), pages 1370-1395, August.
  3. Ed Dammers & David Evers & Aldert De Vries, 2005. "Spatial Scenarios and the Lisbon Strategy," ERSA conference papers ersa05p321, European Regional Science Association.
  4. Forte, Francesco & Magazzino, Cosimo & Mantovani, Michela, 2010. "On the failure of European planning for less developed regions. The case of Calabria," MPRA Paper 25527, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Oldřich Hájek & Jiří Novosák & Petr Zahradník & Pavel Bednář, 2012. "Regional Disparities and Financing of Regional Policy - Some Lessons from the Czech Republic," Politická ekonomie, University of Economics, Prague, vol. 2012(3), pages 330-348.
  6. Floro Ernesto Caroleo & Gianluigi Coppola, 2006. "The Impact of the Institutions on Regional Unemployment Disparities in Europe," Discussion Papers 4_2006, D.E.S. (Department of Economic Studies), University of Naples "Parthenope", Italy.
  7. Floro Ernesto Caroleo & Gianluigi Coppola, 2005. "The impact of institutions on Regional unemployment disparities," ERSA conference papers ersa05p758, European Regional Science Association.

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