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8th Evaluation Conference of EU Cohesion Policy - 20-21 June 2019, Bucharest, Romania


With its strategic orientation aimed at fostering shared prosperity across Europe, EU cohesion policy invests in the social, economic and environmental fabric of Europe's regions. It harnesses creativity and cooperation across more than 270 regions, touching the lives of about 500 million European citizens.

Over the last three decades, EU cohesion policy has been evolving and modernising, inspired by good practices in the Member States and shared investment challenges. Cohesion policy not only invests in development, but also encourages participatory planning, social responsibility, accountability and transparency for its investments. It promotes an inclusive vision of a common future, building upon sound principles of performance-oriented governance, EU added value, and durable benefits. Evaluations performed at the European Commission and Member States level have been instrumental to gather evidence to support cohesion policy transformation.

In this event, we invite policy makers, national, regional and local authorities, managing authorities, evaluation experts, academics, civil society and other stakeholders to reflect on the role and exchange views on the contribution of the policy to promoting performance-oriented public investments and to developing a culture of evaluation in Member States. Join us in this dialogue on how the policy can contribute further to the consolidation of a result-oriented approach of EU-wide investments to the benefit of European citizens.

Agenda en pdf

A poster exhibition of evaluations undertaken by the Member States will run in parallel to the conference.

The plenary sessions of the conference will be moderated by Jacki Davis, with interpretation in Romanian, German, French and English

Programme booklet en pdf

Thursday, 20 June 2019

8:30 - 09:45

Registration and welcome coffee

09:45 – 10:30

Session 1: Opening

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Keynote speech:

  • Corina Creţu, European Commissioner for Regional Policy

Welcoming addresses

  • Vasile-Daniel Suciu, Vice Prime Minister of Romania, Minister of Regional Development and Public Administration
  • Michael Schneider, Member of the European Committee of the Regions, Envoy of the State of Saxony-Anhalt to the Federal Government of Germany

10:30

Family photo and press conference

10:30 - 11:00

Coffee break

11:00 – 11:30

Introductory speech
EU Focus on Performance in the 2021-2027 Multiannual Financial Framework
Maria Rosa Aldea Busquets, Deputy Director-General for Budget, European Commission

11:30 – 13:00

Session 2: Evaluation of cohesion policy – role and reach

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Introductory remarks:

  • Roxana Mînzatu, Minister of European Funds of Romania

Panel discussion:

  • Mihaela Virginia Toader, Secretary of State, Ministry of European Funds of Romania
  • Andrey Novakov, Member of the Committee on Regional Development, European Parliament
  • Michael Schneider, Member of the European Committee of the Regions
  • Duarte Rodrigues, Vice President of the Agency for the Development and Cohesion of Portugal
  • John Bachtler, Professor and Director of the European Policies Research Centre, University of Strathclyde and the Technical University of Delft
  • Eric von Breska, Director for Policy, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

13:00 - 14:00

Lunch break

14:30 – 16:00

Session 3 – Parallel workshops

Workshop 1: Evaluation of public policy – state of the art

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Chair: Ioana Cristina Condurat, Deputy Head of Evaluation and Impact Assessment Unit, Secretariat-General, European Commission

Speakers:

  • Christiane Arndt, Head of Programme, Measuring Regulatory Performance, Regulatory Policy Division, OECD en pdf
  • Frauke Hoss, Policy Officer at Evaluation and Impact Assessment Unit, Secretariat-General, European Commission en pdf
  • Jeff Chelsky, Manager of Economic Management and Country Programmes, Independent Evaluation Group (IEG), World Bank en pdf

Workshop 2: Smart specialisation strategies – monitoring and evaluation

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Chair: Carlo Amati, Evaluation Officer at Evaluation and European Semester Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

Speakers:

  • Pierre-Alexandre Balland, Assistant Professor of Economic Geography at Utrecht University and visiting Professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Media Lab), The Netherlands and USA en pdf
  • Attila Varga, Professor of Economics, Faculty of Business and Economics, University of Pécs, Hungary en pdf
  • Mara Giua, Researcher at Department of Economics and Rossi-Doria Centre, Roma Tre University, Italy en pdf

Workshop 3: Territorial integrated strategies – monitoring and evaluation

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Chair: Marek Teplanský, Head of Inclusive Growth, Urban and Territorial Development Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

Speakers:

  • Adri Hartkoorn, Programme Secretary of the Managing Authority of the ERDF Operational programme ‘Opportunities for the West’ 2014-2020, The Netherlands en pdf
  • Alessandra de Renzis, Public officer at Tuscany Regional Government, Managing Authority of ERDF Regional Operational Programme Tuscany 2014-2020, Italy en pdf
  • Sérgio Barroso, Director of the Centre for Studies and Urban and Regional Development (CEDRU), Portugal en pdf

Workshop 4: Impact evaluation and the data revolution

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Chair: John Walsh, Team leader at Evaluation and European Semester Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

Speakers:

  • Dirk Czarnitzki, Professor at Faculty of Economics and Business, KU Leuven, Belgium en pdf
  • Anda Berényi, Client Development Advisor, McKinsey & Company, Belgium en pdf
  • Simona De Luca, OpenCoesione coordinator, Evaluation Unit, Department for Cohesion Policy, Presidency of the Council of Ministers of Italy en pdf
  • Dario Buono, Team Leader at Methodology, Innovation in Official Statistics Unit, EUROSTAT en pdf

16:00 - 16:30

Coffee break

16:30 – 18:00

Session 4 – Parallel workshops

Workshop 5: Cohesion policy: what works well and what does not?

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Chair: Mariana Hristcheva, Head of Evaluation and European Semester Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

Speakers:

  • John Bachtler, Professor and Director of the European Policies Research Centre, University of Strathclyde and the Technical University of Delft en pdf
  • Riccardo Crescenzi, Professor of Economic Geography at London School of Economics, United Kingdom en pdf
  • Silvia Vignetti, Director of Evaluation Studies at Centre for Industrial Studies (CSIL), Italy en pdf

Workshop 6: Challenges and opportunities of evaluation of cohesion policy in Member States

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Chair: Claudia Magdalina, Head of Programmes Evaluation Unit, Ministry of the European Funds of Romania

Speakers:

  • Terry Ward, Director of Studies, Applica, Belgium
  • Balázs Pichler, Head of Evaluation Unit, Ministry for Innovation and Technology of Hungary
  • Jana Drliková, Head of Evaluation Unit, Ministry of Regional Development of Czechia

Workshop 7: Exploiting the European Structural and Investment Funds open data

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Chair: John Walsh, Team leader at the Evaluation and European Semester Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy en pdf

Speakers:

  • Alain Vanden Borre, Team Leader and Webmaster at Communication Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission
  • Gabor Toth, Evaluation Officer at Evaluation and Impact Assessment Unit, Directorate- General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, European Commission

Workshop 8: From administrative registers to impacts of the European Social Fund operations

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Chair: Maria-José Cueto Faus, Head of Evaluation and Impact Assessment, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, European Commission

Speakers:

  • Nuno Crato, Professor at University of Lisbon, Portugal en pdf
  • Andrea Naldini, Director for Policy Analysis and Evaluation, Ismeri Europa, Italy en pdf
  • Ann Coenen, Statistical Analyst at International Relations and Socio-economic Studies Division, Federal Public Service Employment, Labour and Social Dialogue, Belgium en pdf

18:30

Social event – classical music concert and cocktail dinner at Romanian Athenaeum (offered by the Romanian Ministry of European Funds)

Friday, 21 June 2019

9:00 - 9:30

Welcome coffee

9:30 – 11:00

Session 1: Policy evaluation for the EU: learning, accountability and communication

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Introductory remarks:

  • Iliana Ivanova, Dean of Chamber II ‘Investment for cohesion, growth and inclusion’ in the European Court of Auditors
  • Veronica Gaffey, Chair of Regulatory Scrutiny Board, European Commission

Panel discussion:

  • Iliana Ivanova, Dean of Chamber II ‘Investment for cohesion, growth and inclusion’ in the European Court of Auditors
  • Veronica Gaffey, Chair of Regulatory Scrutiny Board, European Commission
  • Philip McCann, Professor of Urban and Regional Economics, Sheffield University Management School
  • Mariana Hristcheva, Head of Evaluation and European Semester Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

11:00 - 11:30

Coffee break

11:30 - 13:00

Session 2: Wrap-up and conclusions

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Feedback from workshops

  • Chairs/rapporteurs from the parallel workshops

Q&A

Concluding remarks

  • Mariana Hristcheva, Head of Evaluation and European Semester Unit, Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy, European Commission

Closing remarks:

  • Mihaela Virginia Toader, Secretary of State, Ministry of European Funds of Romania

13:00 - 14:30

Lunch

  • Organisation responsible: Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy of the European Commission
  • Contact: If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the DIRECTORATE-GENERAL FOR REGIONAL AND URBAN POLICY, unit B.2. For this purpose, please send an E-Mail to: regio-eval-conference@ec.europa.eu
  • Privacy statement en pdf

Posters on evaluations from the Member States

The conference hosted an exhibition of posters on evaluations carried out by the Member States on cohesion policy programmes in the recent years. The presented evaluations cover interventions co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund/Cohesion Fund (ERDF/CF), the European Social Fund/Youth Employment Initiative (ESF/YEI) or both. The exhibition includes 32 posters submitted by 13 Member States.