Policy Brief 4 Bridging the gap between territorial, economic and social cohesion calls for flexible and meaningful units that are able to capture the specificities of localities and through this process to grasp the way place matters at different scales.

Research output: Book/ReportReportResearchpeer-review


The part of WP 4 that is being worked on at present focuses on how location matters in the relation between policies aimed at promoting economic growth and social well-being and the context of local territorial cohesion. It is based on the hypothesis that local conditions such as territorial cohesion, here broken down to the elements of patterns of collective efficacy, governance and the capacity of the community sector to engage are often neglected conditions impacting on the waythat policy programmes are able to alleviate inequalities and generate economic growth and social well-being.
The claim guiding this part of the project is that the elements of territorial cohesion could impact both in a positive sense by boosting local innovation and ownership of forms of intervention, and in a more problematic sense by creating local inertia and resistance to local development and sustainable change. A cross-national comparison of territorial cohesion in different types of areas and related to different scales (Rural, Suburban, Metropolitan) has been conducted in order to develop knowledge about these relations, which will form the basis of policy recommendations. It is central to explore how citizen involvement is a contribution to strategic development sustainable economic growth and how this relates to territorial cohesion. Hence, interviews with stakeholders, civil society representatives and citizens focused on the relation between local attachment and participation in policy programmes. The data material consists of interviews in 21 localities. In each locality, 20 interviews have been conducted with stakeholders and engaged citizens focusing on firstly the themes of local attachment and cultural interaction at a local scale, secondly on experiences of policy programmes and strategies to create economic growth.
The preliminary findings call for redefining territorial scale and the way it is used in academic analyses and policy programmes that seek to alleviate territorial inequality and generate economic growth and social cohesion.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages15
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019

Cite this