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Why European Cohesion Policy Fails in the Mezzogiorno

Development
European Union
Policy Analysis
P143
Mattia Casula
LUISS University
Martin Ferry
University of Strathclyde
Ugo Fratesi
Politecnico di Milano
Laura Polverari
Department of Political Science, Law, and International Studies, University of Padova

Friday 15:30 - 17:00 (17/06/2016)

Floor: First Floor Room: Aula 12

Abstract

The aim of the EU cohesion policy is twofold: to reinforce the economic and social cohesion and to reduce the gaps in the member states. Although Italy has been one of the European countries to receive the greater quantity of structural funds in the five programming periods, the historical gaps between the northern and southern areas of the country have not been reduced. For example, the 2015 SVIMEZ Report pinpointed that in the period from 2000 to 2013, Italy recorded a smaller cumulated growth, even lower than that of Greece. Moreover, the gap is even greater considering the Convergence Regions (the quasi totality of the Mezzogiorno). The same report also emphasized the relative decline of growth both before and after the global crisis. Adopting an interdisciplinary perspective, the panel investigates the reasons for the failure of the EU cohesion policy in the southern Italian regions. Particular attention will be paid to the way in which Italian national and sub-national actors have interpreted European cohesion over the years, looking also at the Europeanisation of national institutions and at the evolution of the role played by the actors during both the ascending and the descending phases of the policy. Moreover, the comparative dimension and the way in which the EU cohesion policy has been interpreted in other European countries represents an added value in the attempt to understand the failure of this policy in Italian Mezzogiorno. Finally, the panel will fit in the historical debate on the theories regarding the long-standing nature of the north-south question. In fact, its aim is also to understand if and how the theories on social capital and on institutional constraints are more or less valid in understanding the inefficient use of the funds in southern Italy.

Title Details
Has Cohesion Policy Failed Italy or has Italy Failed Cohesion Policy? View Paper Details
'So Similar, so Different, so European'. Comparing EU Cohesion Policy in Italy and in Spain View Paper Details
‘Smart Participation’ and Territorial Institutions: Partnership Opportunities in the EU’s New Cohesion Policy View Paper Details