Overview publications

Why Moving towards a Strong Decentralized Federal State Would Be Beneficial for the European Union


Vesa Kanniainen

Few politicians dare to think aloud about federal models for the European Union. Even as a concept, the federal state is problematic. The perception of an unwieldy organization arises when the goal is a light consensus federation, where the Commission’s power is limited and the member states have more power to run their own affairs. In the European Parliament elections, each state still has its own electoral district. Some member states are divided into several constituencies. There is no need for EU-wide elections at the parliamentary level, nor EU-wide parties.

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New Evidence on the Effects of EU Regional Policy


Julia Bachtrögler-Unger, Mathias Dolls, Carla Krolage, Paul Schüle, Hannes Taubenböck and Matthias Weigand

EU Cohesion Policy constitutes an important item in the EU budget. For the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021–2027, EUR 392 billion is reserved for the promotion of economic and social cohesion among the regions of the European Union. This article presents results from a pilot study that combines official data on projects co-funded by the ERDF and the CF in the programming period 2007–2013, with remote sensing data on night light emission and land cover to assess the effect of EU funding on economic growth at the municipal level, where regional GDP data are not available. Our approach can also be applied in other contexts, for example to study the impact of investment projects funded by Next Generation EU.

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Monitoring the Impact of Sanctions on the Russian Economy

Quarterly Report Vol. 1

Vasily Astrov, Artem Kochnev, Lisa Scheckenhofer, Vincent Stamer, Feodora Teti

 Despite EU restrictions, only around one-third of pre-war exports to Russia are fully sanctioned; most trade remains unaffected or subject to numerous exemptions. While exports have decreased by 32%, imports have increased by 17% due to innovative ways to bypass trade sanctions. China is Russia’s most important alternative country of origin for products under sanction: 61 percent of all products subject to sanctions come from China. The Russian economy shows signs of recovery, driven by robust domestic demand from wartime fiscal stimulus, contributing about 10% to GDP in 2022-23. Real GDP and industrial production have grown by 2.5% and 3%, respectively, indicating recovery from the economic crisis.

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European Defence Spending in 2024 and Beyond

How to Provide Security in an Economically Challenging Environment

Florian Dorn, Niklas Potrafke, Marcel Schlepper

To improve defence capabilities, Europe has to increase defence spending immediately and also to create fiscal space for a permanent rise in defence spending. Many European countries have collected a considerable peace dividend since the end of the Cold War. In the same period, welfare states have expanded to a degree not backed by the general economic development. This Policy Report shows that if European NATO countries shifted around one percent of non-defence expenditure towards defence, this would be sufficient to meet the NATO 2%-target.

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Rethinking Geoeconomics: Trade Policy Scenarios for Europe's Economy

Andreas Baur, Florian Dorn, Lisandra Flach and Clemens Fuest

Rising geopolitical tensions, increasing supply chain disruptions, and falling public support for economic openness have given new impetus to economic nationalism. Governments around the world increasingly give precedence to domestic production and geopolitical considerations over gains from trade and economic efficiency. This policy trend has important implications for the EU, both as a global trading partner and as an important arena for economic policymaking. This policy report investigates possible repercussions of policy-driven de-globalization for the European Union.

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Green Transition: How to Make It Finally Happen?

Niko Jaakkola and Riccardo Rovelli, Lorenzo Forni and Massimo Tavoni, Karen Pittel, Alessio Terzi and Roger Fouquet, Luisa Carpinelli and Daniele Franco, Simone Borghesi and Albert Ferrari, Niko Jaakkola, Frederick van der Ploeg and Anthony Venables, Gianmarco Ottaviano

The devastating effects of climate change are becoming increasingly evident. It is difficult to accurately predict or even quantify the risks. Despite this threat, the pace of change is slow. Why is the world failing to tackle this problem collectively and effectively? What constraints are holding us back? How can we overcome them and contribute to the formulation of a credible and acceptable climate policy? What policy instruments can help pave the way to the green transition?

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Apprenticeship Skills Pay Off on the Labor Market


Christina Langer, Jakob Peiffer and Simon Wiederhold

Workers’ skills are essential to their success on the labor market. However, the empirical evidence on the economic impact of higher skills is still limited due to how skills are measured. In this article, the authors develop novel measures of workers’ skills that are comprehensive, highly detailed, and directly relevant to the labor market. To this end, they leverage the characteristics of the German apprenticeship system, which offers three main advantages for measuring skills and analyzing their labor market potential.

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Emergency Calls Reveal the Importance of Arrests in Reducing Repeat Domestic Violence


Sofia Amaral, Gordon B. Dahl, Timo Hener, Victoria Kaiser and Helmut Rainer

Domestic violence is a serious human rights violation affecting roughly one-third of women worldwide. In addition to the severe humanitarian consequences, there is also a significant economic impact not only for the individual, but also for society and the economy as a whole. This article offers evidence supporting the role of arrests in disrupting the repetitive pattern of domestic violence. They propose that an effective police response involves lowering the threshold for arrests and taking resolute measures against perpetrators.

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Russia’s “Impressionable Years” and Putin’s Inheritance


Michael Alexeev, William Pyle and Jiaan Wang

Just over three decades ago, a new era appeared to have dawned in Europe: The Cold War had wound down, the Soviet Union’s empire had broken apart, and democratic capitalism stood poised to sweep aside ossified communist systems. This article uses geographic markers in the most recent wave of the Integrated Values Survey to show that, within Russia, the drop in a region’s electoral support for Boris Yeltsin between the presidential elections of 1991 and 1996 strongly predicts its degree of illiberalism in 2017. On balance, where faith in the politician who launched marketization and democratization declined most dramatically is where we continue to observe the greatest skepticism for his liberal project. The pattern laid down in the early 1990s persists.

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Thirty Years of the European Single Market ‒ Achievements and Future Challenges

Stefano Micossi, Giuseppe Bertola, Marek Dabrowski, Mehtap Akgüç and Philippe Pochet, Lucia Quaglia and Amy Verdun, Iulia Siedschlag, Andreas Baur and Lisandra Flach

The 30th anniversary of the European Single Market provides an opportunity to celebrate its successes and review what is yet to be achieved. In the future, the European Single Market will play a decisive role in setting a framework of reliable social standards and common goals. It will ensure Europe’s resilience by helping companies adapt their supply chains to future risks and find new business opportunities. The concrete measures of social policy will be left to the member states.

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