Evaluating EU regional policy. How might we understand the causal connections between interventions and outcomes more effectively?

Author (Person)
Series Title
Series Details Vol.28 No.4, December 2007, p295-308
Publication Date December 2007
ISSN 0144-2872
Content Type

Article forms part of a special issue of Policy Studies: Industrial and regional policies in an enlarging EU.

This article presents a challenge to the ways in which EU regional policy has been evaluated in the past. Given the complexity of the 'policy framework' and its objectives, it is argued that existing evaluation methodologies are not only inappropriate but create a real risk of misleading policy-makers in their search for identifying which programmes and initiatives are the most effective in tackling the scale of regional disparity that exists across the European Union. For example, the search for an 'average effect' of intervention, whether in terms of jobs created or GVA generated, does not adequately recognise the context within which policy operates. The article argues that only by attempting to adopt a realist evaluation framework can the discourse on effective regional policy be advanced. Examples are provided from a body of work on the evaluation of business support interventions in the UK as well as a broader study of the way in which regulations impacts upon firm performance and growth. This methodological approach provides an opportunity for the evaluator to identify the causal mechanisms which connect the range of policy interventions and their outcomes. In brief, it has greater potential to inform the policy-maker as to what works and, more importantly, in what contexts.

Source Link https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/13501760210138778?needAccess=true
Subject Categories
Countries / Regions
Record URL https://www.europeansources.info/record/?p=409370