EU POLICIES AND PROJECTS
Learning outcomes of the course unit
Competences to be developed and expected outcomes
a) Knowledge and understanding : at the end of the course the student will have a thorough understanding of the EU institutions and the way they work, of economic policies of the European Union, of the problems related to the development of the territory, of the regional policies of the European Union,of the regional database of Eurostat. The student will acquire the capacity to understand the main issues of the present debate on the European economic and political crisis
b) Applying knowledge and understanding: the student at the end of the course will be able to design a research project on the topic of regional development; to collect, process and interpret regional statistics; to make comparisons between different regions; to suggest projects of local development; to write reports and to present the results of his own work
c) Making judgments: the student will be able to understand critically the issues related to the institutional functioning of the European Union and in particular the policies of the European Union in the field of economic development and social and territorial cohesion.
d) Communication skills: the student will improve his written communication skills through the reports and the oral communication skills through the public presentations.
e) Learning skills: the student will be able to manage databases, to produce and elaborate statistics, set up tables and graphs, using statistical software for the drafting of economic reports on local economies.
Basic knowledge of economics both micro and macro. Basic knowledge of statistics. There are important intersections with the courses in European economy, Development economics and Cooperation and competition among firms.
Course contents summary
The content of the course is as follows:
- Guide to the use of the Eurostat Regio Data Bank for the study of the regional economies
- Economic and social disequilibria in the European Union
-The theories of spatial agglomeration of economic activity
The Europe 2020 growth strategy
- The cohesion policy of the European Union
- The policies of local economic development
- The cycle of a local economic development project
- The economic and statistical analysis of regional economies
- The design of a local development project
- Institutions of the European Union
Cohesion policies have been implemented in the European Union since 1988 to reduce the huge economic and social disparities at regional level. These policies have acquired importance over time to become the most important item in the European Union budget. The aim of the course is twofold. The first aim is to illustrate the rationale of these policies, the way in which these policies have been implemented, the projects realized, the results achieved, the problems left unsolved. This will be done through the analysis of the theories of agglomeration, of the official EU, national and regional planning documents, the main assessments of the evaluation units and some “best practice” projects.
The second aim of the course is to train students in the design of development projects at local level. Each student, under the supervision of the teacher, will be required to carry out an economic and social analysis of an identified area, to outline a local strategy of development for that area and to suggest few key projects. The content of the course in detail is as follows:
- Institutions and policies of the European Union
- Economic and social disequilibria in the European Union
- Cohesion policy of the European Union
- Local economic development policies
- Cycle of a local development policy
- Design of a local development project
ATTENDING STUDENTS: didactic material will be delivered all along the course and made available in the website.
NON ATTENDING STUDENTS
Topic 1: History and Institutions of the European Union
1) Michelle Cini, Nieves Perez-Solorzano Borragan, European Union Politics, Fourth Edition, Oxford University Press, 2013, Chapters 2, 3, 4, 10, 11, 12, 13, 15
2) Richard Baldwin and Charles Wyplosz, The Economics of European integration, Mac Graw Hill, Third edition, Chapter 13
These books are available in the Department library
Topic 2: Cohesion policy
The Barca Report contains the most important elements of theoretical debate on cohesion policy. You should study:
From the main report:
1. An Agenda for a reformed cohesion policy- A place based approach to meeting European Union challenges and expectations by Fabrizio Barca from pag.1 to pag. 59
From the annexes:
2. Cohesion policy in the E.U.: growth, geography, and institutions, by Farole-Pose-Storper
3. The turning points of E.U. cohesion policy, by Manzella and Mendez
4. Towards a territorial social agenda for the European Union, by Fabrizio Barca
Very useful summaries of the debate are contained in:
5. What do you really know about European cohesion policy, by Dirk Ahner
6. The case for regional development intervention: place –based versus place-neutral approaches by Barca, Mc Cann and Pose
For a criticism to the place based approach look at this contribution by a member of the World Bank
7. Improving regional development policies, by Indermit Gill
You can find all these texts in the item "didactic material" (materiali didattici)of this web site
Topic 3: European growth strategy
1) Europe 2020- A strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, Communication from the Commission, 2010
This is the official document by the Commission on European growth strategy that can be downloaded from the website
Topic 4: The architecture of cohesion policy
The simplest way to study how the cohesion policy works is to look at the European Union web site in the policy area of “regional policy.
Chapter 13 by Baldwin (see above) can complement your knowledge of the topic
Finally, you can also use the slides and the notes on the lecturer’s web site. But exams will be based only on the text books
The Course is based on a project of innovative didactic which includes teamwork and public presentations. The distribution of hours will be approximately as follows:
- 8 hours in a Computer-Lab for the description of the Data Bank and for practice
- 30 hours of lectures for the theoretical and institutional part
- 25 hours of team work for the public presentation of the team-works
Assessment methods and criteria
The final assessment will be different for attending and non attending students. Attending students are those who follow the project work. For them attendance is compulsory.
For attending students, the final mark will be the outcome of:
a) an evaluation of the written report on the regional economy and on its public presentation in front of the class (70% of the basic mark)
b) an evaluation of the draft of the project of local development and of its public presentation, in front of the class (30% of the basic mark)
c) an evaluation of a public oral presentation on a theoretical issue to which a score between -2 to + 2 will be attributed over the basic mark got in the two previous test
Knowledge and understanding will be evaluated in the theoretical oral test, and in the design of the report and of the project of local development.
Capacity of applying knowledge and of making autonomous judgments will be evaluated in the written report on the regional economy and on the design of a local development project
Oral communication skills will be evaluated in the presentation of the report in the classroom, in the presentation of the local development project and on the theoretical discussion. Written communication skills will be evaluated in the written regional report.
For non attending students there will be a written exam with three open questions on the three main topics of the course: European Union institutions and policies; the aims and the governance of cohesion policies; the Europe 2020 strategy of growth. Time available will be 90 minutes.
The answer to these questions will assess knowledge and understanding of the issues addressed, the ability to make independent judgements and written communication skills.