Evaluation of EU cohesion policy helps to:
- Improve the effectiveness and efficiency of programmes
- Provide information about the impacts of cohesion policy
Evaluation of cohesion policy is undertaken on a partnership basis, with Member States responsible for ex ante evaluation and the European Commission for ex post evaluation.
The European Commission:
- Communicates the main achievements of cohesion policy.
- Produces the 2013 and 2010 Strategic reports.
- Publishes the evaluations undertaken by the Commission and Member States.
- Provides guidance on the evaluation of EU cohesion policy, as well as broader issues linked to the evaluation of socio-economic development.
- Coordinates exchanges of experience on evaluation..
- Publishes an annual evaluation plan on EU regional policy.
Jaspers Evaluation completed
The DG for Regional and Urban Policy commissioned an evaluation of the JASPERS initiative which has now reported its main findings and recommendations. AECOM (Ireland) carried out the 1 year long evaluation using a mix of database analysis, case studies, in-country workshops and interviews with Member States, Commission and Jaspers staff. The evaluation covered the 6 years from Jaspers' inception until 2011. The key findings are that the JASPERS initiative has proved to be of substantial value to Member States in the development of projects and applications for funding, that there continues to be strong demand for its services and also that the greatest potential to improve project quality is when JASPERS is involved at the strategic stage, and where JASPERS support helps Member States to develop their project planning capacity.
Regional Focus paper on Counterfactual Impact Evaluations now available online
The latest Regional Focus paper, "What are counterfactual impact evaluations teaching us about enterprise and innovation support?" is now available online. This 16-page PDF report from the Evaluation Unit of DG REGIO examines over EUR 40 billion given to 235 000 firms under 12 support schemes in 7 different EU Member States. Effects are considered in terms of investment, productivity, employment and innovation.
The results show that SMEs have the most to gain from financial support, with an increase in investment and durable employment, although non-financial support such as advice and networking can be just as effective. It is hoped that these findings will inform preparation of the 2014-20 programmes.
The full paper can be downloaded here: http://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/information/focus/index_en.cfm
DG REGIO at Helsinki Biennal Conference of the European Evaluation Society
DG REGIO gave 3 presentations at the Biennal conference of the European Evaluation Society which took place in Helsinki last 3-5 October. The conference gathered 634 evaluators from 84 countries and all continents, with important delegations from USA, UK, DE, IT, NL, SE, India and Canada. DG REGIO presentations cover the rationale for the new intervention logic proposed to Member States for their regional policy programmes and the new opening given by the draft Regulation 2014-2020 for the use of theory-based impact evaluations and counterfactual impact evaluations. The first two presentations are backed by articles by V. Gaffey and M. Riché.
Ex-post evaluation of ten 1994 - 1999 major projects
All ten case study reports are already online in INFOREGIO. The final report with overall conclusions, lessons learnt and recommendations will be available soon.
The investment projects analysed were completed 15 – 20 years ago. They are in the transport (road, rail, seaports) and environment (water supply, waste water treatment, waste management) sectors, across five Member States: Port of Gioia Tauro (Italy); M1 Motorway (Ireland); Egnatia Motorway (Greece); Madrid Metro Line giving access to the Barajas airport (Spain); Mediterranean Corridor (Spain); Water supply in the city of Palermo (Italy); Urban solid waste treatment in Northern Lisbon (Portugal); Solid waste treatment in Galicia (Spain); Waste water treatment in Ría de Vigo (Spain); Dublin waste water treatment (Ireland).
This evaluation addresses the following Evaluation Questions:
- “What” (What long-term effects do these projects bring about?): On average, the cases under review point at uncontroversial direct contributions to economic growth and quality of life, while the strength of each type of effect can differ by sector (transport or environment) or project.
- “When” (When do long-term effects materialise and stabilise?): Overall, the majority of effects detected appear to have already stabilised.
- “How” (How do long-term effects materialise?): Determinant factors of project outcomes such as appropriateness to the context and managerial response generally positively contributed to the projects, regardless of the sector of intervention; another factor had an on-average negative effect (project governance). The infrastructural sector matters in particular as far as project design is concerned, with positive scores recorded on average for transport projects and negative scores for environmental ones.