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Growth and cohesion in Europe

Structural and Cohesion Funds are normally portrayed as a potential solution to Europe’s growth problems at a time when national governments face significant budgetary constraints. At the same time, the literature that has tried to assess the growth potential of EU Funds is rather inconclusive. How to square the circle?

The working paper “The growth effects of EU cohesion policy: a meta-analysis” by Benedicta Marzinotto reviews the methods used to evaluate the impact of Structural and Cohesion Funds on economic growth and cohesion, explains why the results have been so diverse and at times even contradictory, and offers some suggestions to frame the question in a different way. The most important message is that the assessment of EU cohesion spending should really fit the declared policy objectives .

The report benefits also from some empirical evidence on convergence trends in Europe over the last decade and some tentative conclusions about the most appropriate allocation method, the type of investment that should be supported and the role of domestic institutions.


Benedicta Marzinotto, Research Fellow, Bruegel

Chair - Guntram Wolff, Deputy Director, Bruegel

Event materials

  • Event summary here
  • Benedicta Marzinotto, The Growth Effects of EU Cohesion Policy: a Meta-Analysis, presentation here

Practical details

  • Venue: Bruegel, Rue de la Charité 33, 1210 Bruxelles
  • Time: 11 October 2012, 12:30 (lunch) for 12:45 (event starts) - 14:00
  • Contact: [email protected]

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