New Evidence on the Effects of EU Regional Policy
BIG-DATA-BASED ECONOMIC INSIGHTS
- We present a novel approach to assess the effect of EU cohesion policy on economic activity
- Project-level data on EU funding is combined with nighttime light emissions data
- Higher EU funding is associated with increased economic activity at the municipal level
- Remote sensing data can provide an effective way to model local economic development in Europe
- Improved access to data on EU-funded projects would enhance transparency of EU regional funding
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.
Julia Bachtrögler-Unger, Mathias Dolls, Carla Krolage, Paul Schüle, Hannes Taubenböck and Matthias Weigand: “New Evidence on the Effects of EU Regional Policy,” EconPol Forum 25 (1), CESifo, Munich, 2024.