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Better communication for cohesion policy

05-11-2019

Cohesion policy is a major EU investment tool aimed at reducing regional disparities and achieving economic, social and territorial cohesion. It delivers a wide range of results in areas such as new infrastructure, training, job creation, support for small businesses and environmental protection. Communication is key when it comes to making the public aware of existing funding opportunities and informing them of the results of cohesion policy investments. It can also affect public perception of the ...

Cohesion policy is a major EU investment tool aimed at reducing regional disparities and achieving economic, social and territorial cohesion. It delivers a wide range of results in areas such as new infrastructure, training, job creation, support for small businesses and environmental protection. Communication is key when it comes to making the public aware of existing funding opportunities and informing them of the results of cohesion policy investments. It can also affect public perception of the EU and raise awareness of the positive impact of EU support on people's everyday lives. Improving the visibility of cohesion policy is therefore a salient issue for the EU. Communication measures range from requirements for fund managers and beneficiaries on the basis of EU legislation to more informal initiatives such as information campaigns, events and web portals aimed at publicising the policy's achievements. In the framework of multi-level governance, communication activities bring together a wide variety of actors including EU institutions, Member States, regional and local authorities and members of civil society. The ongoing negotiations on the new multiannual financial framework for 2021 to 2027, including new regulations on cohesion policy, and the upcoming conclusion of the 2014-2020 programming period provide a good opportunity for reflection on the issue of cohesion policy communication. This briefing updates an earlier edition, of March 2019. It was originally produced at the request of a member of the European Committee of the Regions, in the framework of the Cooperation Agreement between the Parliament and the Committee.

EU policies – Delivering for citizens: The fight against unemployment

28-06-2019

By promoting a high level of employment, the European Union (EU) has been involved in the fight against unemployment since as long ago as the early 1950s. The issue was brought to the top of the European agenda with the onset of the 2008 economic and financial crisis, and the consequent rise in unemployment rates in all European Union (EU) Member States. In its Europe 2020 strategy, the European Commission set a target to get 75 % of 20 to 64 year-olds into employment by 2020. EU labour market conditions ...

By promoting a high level of employment, the European Union (EU) has been involved in the fight against unemployment since as long ago as the early 1950s. The issue was brought to the top of the European agenda with the onset of the 2008 economic and financial crisis, and the consequent rise in unemployment rates in all European Union (EU) Member States. In its Europe 2020 strategy, the European Commission set a target to get 75 % of 20 to 64 year-olds into employment by 2020. EU labour market conditions have significantly improved in recent years, and most labour market indicators have strengthened steadily. Since mid-2013, the unemployment rate has continued to decline, and the EU is back to its pre-crisis level (6.5 % in February 2019). Despite the recovery in economic growth and its positive impact on the labour market, the EU still has to face unemployment challenges, particularly concerning differences between Member States, youth unemployment and long-term unemployment. Since 2014, efforts have been made in a number of areas, including to help young people enter the labour market, to combat long-term unemployment, upgrade skills, and facilitate workers' mobility in the European Union. The improvement in labour market indicators has been reflected in citizens' improved evaluation of the EU's involvement in the fight against unemployment, but there is still a very high demand for even more EU intervention in this policy area (76 % of EU citizens). In the future, new or updated legislation relating to employment could modernise work to help in adjustment to a digital world, support sustainable transitions from unemployment into employment and between jobs, increase labour mobility and create closer coordination between economic and social policies. This is an update of an earlier briefing issued in advance of the 2019 European elections.

European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) 2021-2027

29-03-2019

In preparation for the upcoming Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027, the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation on the European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) on 30 May 2018. In the same spirit as the current European Social Fund 2014-2020, the ESF+ will provide the main EU financial instrument for improving workers' mobility and employment opportunities and strengthening social cohesion, improving social fairness and increasing competitiveness across Europe for the 2021-2027 ...

In preparation for the upcoming Multiannual Financial Framework for 2021-2027, the European Commission published a proposal for a regulation on the European Social Fund Plus (ESF+) on 30 May 2018. In the same spirit as the current European Social Fund 2014-2020, the ESF+ will provide the main EU financial instrument for improving workers' mobility and employment opportunities and strengthening social cohesion, improving social fairness and increasing competitiveness across Europe for the 2021-2027 period. With a provisional budget of €101.2 billion (current prices), the ESF+ should merge the existing European Social Fund (ESF), the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI), and the Fund for European Aid to the most Deprived (FEAD), the Employment and Social Innovation Programme (EaSI) and the EU Health Programme. The new fund will concentrate its investment in three main areas: education, employment and social inclusion. At the European Parliament, the file was assigned to the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL), which adopted its report on 3 December, 2018. On 16 January 2019, the committee’s amendments to increase the funding and make youth and children the main beneficiaries were approved by plenary. No trilogue meetings have taken place, and so Parliament is now due to conclude the first reading during the April I plenary session. Third edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Common Provisions Regulation: New rules for cohesion policy for 2021-2027

22-03-2019

For the next EU budget, covering the 2021-2027 period, the European Commission proposes to update EU cohesion policy with a new set of rules. The proposal for a Common Provisions Regulation (CPR) sets out common provisions for seven shared management funds: the European Regional Development Fund, the Cohesion Fund, the European Social Fund Plus, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Asylum and Migration Fund, the Internal Security Fund and the Border Management and Visa Instrument. Additional ...

For the next EU budget, covering the 2021-2027 period, the European Commission proposes to update EU cohesion policy with a new set of rules. The proposal for a Common Provisions Regulation (CPR) sets out common provisions for seven shared management funds: the European Regional Development Fund, the Cohesion Fund, the European Social Fund Plus, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Asylum and Migration Fund, the Internal Security Fund and the Border Management and Visa Instrument. Additional specific regulations add certain provisions needed to cater for the particularities of individual funds, in order to take into account their different rationales, target groups and implementation methods. The proposed CPR is of the utmost importance as it will set the main rules that govern the above-mentioned funds for the forthcoming period. While the proposal builds upon the previous sets of rules covering the 2014-2020 period, it nevertheless introduces a number of innovations. It aims, amongst other things, to simplify and improve synergies between the different EU policy tools. Third edition. The 'EU Legislation in Progress' briefings are updated at key stages throughout the legislative procedure.

Research for REGI Committee – Gender Dimension of the EU Cohesion Policy

19-02-2019

The study analyses how the gender dimension and the principle of gender equality are taken into account in the EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020. The aim is to provide inputs for the discussion on how to improve the promotion of gender equality and non-discrimination in the post-2020 programming period. In detail, the study considers how gender equality has been mainstreamed in ESF and ERDF in the programming, implementation, and monitoring phases with focus on eight selected country case studies. It ...

The study analyses how the gender dimension and the principle of gender equality are taken into account in the EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020. The aim is to provide inputs for the discussion on how to improve the promotion of gender equality and non-discrimination in the post-2020 programming period. In detail, the study considers how gender equality has been mainstreamed in ESF and ERDF in the programming, implementation, and monitoring phases with focus on eight selected country case studies. It also provides an assessment of the present and future challenges together with policy indications from relevant stakeholders at both European and national level.

Autore esterno

Istituto per la Ricerca Sociale: Manuela SAMEK LODOVICI (Project manager), Serena Marianna DRUFUCA, Elena FERRARI, Monica PATRIZIO, Flavia PESCE, Eleonora De SILVIS, Cristina MOJA. CASE STUDIES: France: Chiara Crepaldi (Istituto per la Ricerca Sociale) Germany: Bernhard Boockmann (Institute for Applied Economic Research -IAW) Italy: Flavia Pesce (Istituto per la Ricerca Sociale) Ireland: Dorota Szelewa (University College Dublin) Poland: Malgorzata Druciarek and Izabela Przybysz (Institute of Public Affairs, Warsaw) Romania: Cristina Vasilescu (Istituto per la Ricerca Sociale) Spain: Ruben Carrandi Cortina (Istituto per la Ricerca Sociale) Sweden: Malin Hellström Samuelson (Oxford Research, Stockholm)

Research For REGI Committee - Territorial Needs and Ring-fencing Requirements: Experience with Implementation in ERDF and ESF

15-02-2019

The aim of this study is to assess the implementation of EU-level ring-fencing requirements during the period 2014 to 2020, including a minimum ESF as well the thematic concentration shares. Based on different information and data collection sources, the study finds that the requirements continue to be relevant. There is evidence that the ring-fencing played a key role in ensuring a higher concentration of funding on targeted social cohesion priorities. The study also highlights variations in implementation ...

The aim of this study is to assess the implementation of EU-level ring-fencing requirements during the period 2014 to 2020, including a minimum ESF as well the thematic concentration shares. Based on different information and data collection sources, the study finds that the requirements continue to be relevant. There is evidence that the ring-fencing played a key role in ensuring a higher concentration of funding on targeted social cohesion priorities. The study also highlights variations in implementation between programmes and thematic objectives, the need for more flexibility in the implementation of programmes, and the continuing need to foster synergies between ERDF and ESF.

Autore esterno

TECHNOPOLIS GROUP BELGIUM: Jacek WALENDOWSKI, Laura ROMAN, and Sebastian OTTE ; CARDIFF UNIVERSITY: Reviewed by Dr. Adrian HEALY

Employment barriers in border regions: Strategies and EU funding

15-01-2019

This study draws primarily on available literature, as well as on information gathered from interviews to examine barriers to employment in border regions. The study first outlines cross-border labour mobility trends and drivers. It then looks at barriers to cross-border labour mobility before assessing measures - including legislation, key programmes and initiatives, and funding structures - adopted at EU-level to address them. The study concludes by presenting a series of recommendations on ways ...

This study draws primarily on available literature, as well as on information gathered from interviews to examine barriers to employment in border regions. The study first outlines cross-border labour mobility trends and drivers. It then looks at barriers to cross-border labour mobility before assessing measures - including legislation, key programmes and initiatives, and funding structures - adopted at EU-level to address them. The study concludes by presenting a series of recommendations on ways to facilitate cross-border labour mobility going forward. This analysis has been produced by Policy Department A at request of the EMPL Committee to feed into its work on the European Social Fund Plus.

Research for REGI Committee - Externalities of Cohesion Policy

15-10-2018

The study investigates the effects of Cohesion Policy (CP) which occur in a country other than the one in which CP resources were actually spent. The study estimates that macroeconomic spillovers significantly contribute to the impact of CP. Spillovers directed to EU countries represent around 9% of the total annual CP expenditure. Other spillovers to Non-EU countries are around 8% of the CP expenditure. Macro and micro spillovers together arrive at the 21% of the annual CP expenditure 67% of which ...

The study investigates the effects of Cohesion Policy (CP) which occur in a country other than the one in which CP resources were actually spent. The study estimates that macroeconomic spillovers significantly contribute to the impact of CP. Spillovers directed to EU countries represent around 9% of the total annual CP expenditure. Other spillovers to Non-EU countries are around 8% of the CP expenditure. Macro and micro spillovers together arrive at the 21% of the annual CP expenditure 67% of which is distributed among EU countries. Around 20% of the CP expenditure can trigger sectoral spillover effects in the environment, transport and higher education sectors. The analysis demonstrates that externalities reinforce EU growth and competitiveness without CP deserting its convergence objective.

Autore esterno

Andrea Naldini, Alessandro Daraio, Gessica Vella and Enrico Wolleb, Roman Römisch

European Social Fund Plus and European Globalisation Adjustment Fund

08-10-2018

The Commission proposes to establish a European Social Plus (ESF+) by merging different funds and programmes, and a strengthened European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF). These proposals would contribute to implement the European Pillar of Social Rights and enhance social Europe. The impact assessment report (IA) concerning the proposals explains the challenges of funding and the defined objectives of the proposals. In relation to the proposed measures, risks and mitigating measures have also ...

The Commission proposes to establish a European Social Plus (ESF+) by merging different funds and programmes, and a strengthened European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF). These proposals would contribute to implement the European Pillar of Social Rights and enhance social Europe. The impact assessment report (IA) concerning the proposals explains the challenges of funding and the defined objectives of the proposals. In relation to the proposed measures, risks and mitigating measures have also been discussed. It can be noted that the IA essentially concentrates in providing a thorough assessment of the selected measures, rather than discussing possible alternatives and comparing and assessing them. In addition, it would have benefited the analysis, if the link with the specific objectives had been elaborated more, as the description of social impacts is quite limited, and health impacts are not discussed although the Health Programme is merged into the ESF+. It would have been useful to have further explanation on the merger of the Health Programme into the ESF+ and its expected synergy impacts. A more detailed description would have been welcome concerning the results of the targeted stakeholder consultations.

Regional governance in the EU

03-10-2018

The quality of public institutions has a major impact on social and economic development at regional level. Regions with high government effectiveness, low corruption and high-quality public services tend to have higher outcomes in terms of economic performance, social inclusion, environmental sustainability, education, health, and subjective well-being. Administrative capacity-building is therefore crucial, as it has a positive impact on creating conditions conducive to economic and social progress ...

The quality of public institutions has a major impact on social and economic development at regional level. Regions with high government effectiveness, low corruption and high-quality public services tend to have higher outcomes in terms of economic performance, social inclusion, environmental sustainability, education, health, and subjective well-being. Administrative capacity-building is therefore crucial, as it has a positive impact on creating conditions conducive to economic and social progress. The 2017 European Quality of Government Index (EQI) shows that institutional quality still varies across EU regions, but the traditional north-south and east-west divisions seem to be slowly blurring. While northern countries remain at the top, the eastern regions have made the most improvement compared with previous editions of the index. Some southern regions, meanwhile, have experienced a decline over the past few years. In the 2014 to 2020 period, EU cohesion policy has offered a variety of funding sources and instruments to support local and regional authorities. Investments are available for enhancing the management of EU funds and for building long-term institutional capacity. Specific actions include training for civil servants, cross-border cooperation, e-government tools, efforts to optimise procedures, and modernisation of public service delivery.

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