Cohesion Policy, Regions, and the Perception of Europe

(A) Presenter

Maria Rosalia Vicente, University of Oviedo

(B) Category

Mature proposal corresponding to concrete call

(C) Partners needed

We are looking for institutions with experience in international research projects in the field of European Cohesion policy, regional development and impact assessment of European funds, and those who have already managed such projects. One partner is sought. 

(1) Description

This is a tailor-made, multidisciplinary, geographically balanced and comparative research aiming at exploring the interplay between European regions, the application of cohesion, regional and urban policies and the contribution of these policies to a positive identification with the European project.
Three points of special interest are identified:
  1. the role of transmitters (public and private actors involved in the planning and execution of cohesion policy initiatives)
  2. the construction of territorial entities (regions) as key elements of the cohesion process
  3. the comparison between urban and rural regions
While regional policies have a large share in the European Union’s budget and they have been constantly monitored and critically analysed in recent years, little is know on how these policies are contributing to the development of a Pan-European identity among the beneficiary population. The proposed project aims to assess such contribution and thus it  will offer an unprecedented view of the role played by the European Cohesion Policy.

(2) Consortium

This proposal is currently under development and the consortium includes partners from Hungary, Spain, Poland, Greece, Romania, Italy and Serbia.

(3) Methods 

The research will start with the development of a comprehensive method of analysis. The proposed methodology will be discussed on a conference and implemented in a common website.
Regarding the organization, working packages are to be define around the following thematic fields: 
(a) the impact assessment of  European Union’s funds, (b) the overview of the cohesion and regional policy processes, and (c) analysis of the different actors involved in the policy (planning, operators, recipients). The dissemination of results will be assumed as a common task, shared by all the partners.

(4) Expected results

The expected results are both theoretical and empirical. A key contribution of this project will be the development and implementation of a common methodology for the assessment of (i) how the perception of Europe and the territorial entities are affected by cohesion policy, and (ii) how the territorial entities themselves shape the perception of Europe. Moreover, the empirical results should provide statistical evidence about the role and contribution of the different actors involved in the cohesion process and their perception of Europe."