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Regional Income Inequality and Convergence Processes in the EU-25


  • Tiiu Paas


  • Friso Schlitte



The paper investigates income inequality and convergence among the EU-25 countries and their regions at NUTS 3 (Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics) level during the period 1995-2002. We measure the level of income inequality and its decomposition distinguishing the between and within country inequality as the components of the overall income inequality of EU-25, EU-15 and the new member states (NMS) of the EU recent enlargement in May 2004. In order to assess the inequality in living standards GDP in purchasing power standards (PPS) is used. In the empirical analysis of the convergence processes we consider the effects of interactions among neighbouring regions implementing spatial econometrics techniques. The estimation results are sensitive to the control for national effects. While the EU-25 and the EU-15 experienced a slow but significant process of absolute convergence there is no evidence found for regional convergence when national effects are considered. In the NMS the process of conditional convergence across regions even turns out to be significantly negative. This indicates that there were some divergence tendencies in the NMS during the period of 1995 – 2002.

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  • Tiiu Paas & Friso Schlitte, 2006. "Regional Income Inequality and Convergence Processes in the EU-25," ERSA conference papers ersa06p229, European Regional Science Association.
  • Handle: RePEc:wiw:wiwrsa:ersa06p229

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    2. Schwengler, Barbara, 2013. "Einfluss der europäischen Regionalpolitik auf die deutsche Regionalförderung," IAB Discussion Paper 201318, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    3. Zwiers, Merle & Kleinhans, Reinout & van Ham, Maarten, 2015. "Divided Cities: Increasing Socio-Spatial Polarization within Large Cities in the Netherlands," IZA Discussion Papers 8882, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Kertész, Krisztián, 2014. "A nemzetgazdasági és a regionális konvergencia mérése az EU-ban
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    5. Christ, Julian P., 2010. "Geographic concentration and spatial inequality: Two decades of EPO patenting at the level of European micro regions," Violette Reihe: Schriftenreihe des Promotionsschwerpunkts "Globalisierung und Beschäftigung" 32/2010, University of Hohenheim, Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg, Evangelisches Studienwerk.
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    7. Dahl, Juliana, 2013. "Innovation and growth in regions with specific geographical features," Kiel Advanced Studies Working Papers 463, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    8. George Petrakos & Panagiotis Artelaris, 2009. "European Regional Convergence Revisited: A Weighted Least Squares Approach," Growth and Change, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 40(2), pages 314-331.
    9. Barbara Pertold-Gebicka, 2014. "Job Market Polarization and Employment Protection in Europe," ACTA VSFS, University of Finance and Administration, vol. 8(2), pages 133-148.
    10. Eckey, Hans-Friedrich & Türck, Matthias, 2007. "Convergence of EU-Regions. A Literature Report," INVESTIGACIONES REGIONALES - Journal of REGIONAL RESEARCH, Asociación Española de Ciencia Regional, issue 10, pages 5-32.
    11. Egle Tafenau & Tiiu Paas, 2011. "Regional inequality and economic growth: interactions of the relationship with the level of economic development and speed of growth," ERSA conference papers ersa10p938, European Regional Science Association.
    12. Tiiu Paas, 2012. "Regional Disparities And Innovations In Europe," ERSA conference papers ersa12p80, European Regional Science Association.
    13. János Pénzes & Zoltán Bujdosó & Lóránt Dávid & Zsolt Radics & Gábor Kozma, 2014. "Differing development paths of spatial income inequalities after the political transition — by the example of Hungary and its regions," Economy of region, Centre for Economic Security, Institute of Economics of Ural Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences, vol. 1(1), pages 73-84.
    14. Laixiang Sun & Eunsuk Hong & Tao Li, 2010. "Incorporating Technology Diffusion, Factor Mobility And Structural Change Into Cross-Region Growth Regression: An Application To China," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 50(3), pages 734-755.
    15. Jan Nevima & Ingrid Majerová, 2015. "Application of ß – Convergence Approach in Visegrad Four Regions," Working Papers 0004, Silesian University, School of Business Administration.
    16. Boll, Christina, 2010. "Mind the gap!: The amount of German mothers' care bill and its game theoretical issues," HWWI Research Papers 1-29, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
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    18. Fürst, Dietrich & Hirschfeld, Markus & Jung, Hans-Ulrich & Lammers, Konrad & Nischwitz, Guido & Salow, Sven-Olaf & Sempell, Guido & Skubowius, Alexander, 2012. "Ausgestaltung der EU-Strukturpolitik der Förderperiode 2007 - 2013 in den nordwestdeutschen Bundesländern," Arbeitsmaterial der ARL, Akademie für Raumforschung und Landesplanung (ARL) - Leibniz-Forum für Raumwissenschaften, volume 127, number 358, April.
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    21. Tomas Konecny, 2014. "Linkages between the Financial and Real Sectors across Interest Rate Regimes: The Case of the Czech Republic," ACTA VSFS, University of Finance and Administration, vol. 8(2), pages 113-131.
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    24. Niebuhr, Annekatrin & Schlitte, Friso, 2008. "EU enlargement and convergence: Does market access matter?," HWWI Research Papers 1-16, Hamburg Institute of International Economics (HWWI).
    25. Justyna Supińska, 2013. "Does human factor matter for economic growth? Determinants of economic growth process in CEE countries in light of spatial theory," Bank i Kredyt, Narodowy Bank Polski, vol. 44(5), pages 505-532.

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    JEL classification:

    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models

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