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Here you can find all articles published during 2010.

Refereed articles


European Cohesion Policy and Territorial Cooperation with Neighbouring Countries: Towards Deeper Coordination? (#41)

Nicolas Gaubert & Yann Richard


The European territory cannot remain isolated from what happens beyond its borders. Many interactions currently exist with neighbouring countries. However, European institutions have not yet successfully understood the consequences of this reality. It is clear from the official documents relating to cohesion policy reveal a closed vision and inward looking concept of the European territory. Into the 2000s, such a vision, combined with a lack of coordination between the various DGs of the European Commission, has hampered the development of many regions located on the external borders of the European Union. Recently, the Commission has tried to come up with a new modus operandi in terms of better coordination between the cohesion and neighbourhood policies, with new regulations in respect of the structural funds and the financial instruments pertaining to external cooperation. These new regulations introduce real improvements to the previous instruments. However, the new instruments still suffer from significant shortcomings. This paper addresses the important issue of territorial cooperation with third countries by raising three main questions. What is the content of the new regulations released by the Commission in December 2006? What kind of improvements did they bring to the former regulations? And, what kind of obstacles to these reforms have emerged?

24pp (Refereed Articles, October 2010, no 41)

Gaubert, N. & Richard, Y. (2011). European Cohesion Policy and Territorial Cooperation with Neighbouring Countries: Towards Deeper Coordination? European Journal of Spatial Development, 41


Human capital in the German urban system - patterns of concentration and specialisation (#40)

Anna Growe


In the knowledge economy human capital plays a crucial role in various economic processes and thus also in spatial development. But human capital is an economic resource that is distributed unequally in space. Some regions show a higher density of human capital than others. This paper discusses questions relating to the spatial concentration and specialisation of human capital in the German urban system. Due to an increasing interest in human capital the questions are asked, where is human capital located in the German urban system and how does the distribution change over time. The paper relates to geographical theories of concentration and specialisation. It will be shown that human capital is a heterogeneous category containing different occupational groups showing different spatial patterns. Some display increasing spatial disparities; others are fairly balanced over space.

23pp (Refereed Articles, August 2010, no 40)

Growe, A. (2010). Human capital in the German urban system – patterns of concentration and specialisation, European Journal of Spatial Development, 40


The Process Architecture of EU Territorial Policy (#39)

Andreas Faludi


When preparing the European Spatial Development Perspective (ESDP), Member States were supported by the European Commission but denied the EU a competence in the matter. Currently, the Treaty of Lisbon identifies territorial cohesion as a competence shared between the Union and the Member States. This paper is about the process architecture of territorial cohesion policy. In the past, this architecture resembled the Open Method of Coordination (OMC) which the White Paper on European Governance praised, but only in areas where there was no EU competence. This reflected zero-sum thinking which may continue even under the Lisbon Treaty. After all, for as long as territorial cohesion was not a competence, voluntary cooperation as practiced in the ESDP process was pursued in this way. However, the practice of EU policies, even in areas where there is an EU competence, often exhibits features of the OMC. Surprisingly effective innovations hold the promise of rendering institutions of decision making comprehensible and democratically accountable. In the EU as a functioning polity decision making is thus at least part deliberative so that actors’ preferences are transformed by the force of the better argument. This brings into focus the socialisation of the deliberators into epistemic communities. Largely an informal process, this is reminiscent of European spatial planning having been characterised as a learning process.

18pp (Refereed Articles, August 2010, no 39) Award-winning paper Regional Studies Association Annual International Conference 2010.

Faludi, A. (2010). The Process Architecture of EU Territorial Cohesion Policy, European Journal of Spatial Development, 39


EU territorial governance: learning from institutional progress (#38)

Umberto Janin Rivolin


EU territorial governance is a concept now familiar to European planners and decision makers. However, the lack of an official definition makes its relationship with planning activities and processes in the EU member countries unclear. Looking back at the recent history of various attempts to factor territory into the EU policy agenda, this article proposes a systematic review of institutional documents regarding, in a direct or indirect manner, EU territorial governance. The aim of the article is to assess the positioning of this concept in an institutional perspective from direct sources, in order to discuss possible implications for planning in the context of European integration.

28pp (Refereed Articles, April 2010, no 38)

Janin Rivolin, U. (2010). EU territorial governance: learning from institutional progress, European Journal of Spatial Development, 38