EU regional policy continues to be based solely on the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of each region. As is now accepted by many, there are serious flaws with the concept of GDP, such as its emphasis on economic production over other factors as, for instance, social equality. However, how else can regional policy be decided if not by the GDP of each region?
This publication comes to the conclusion that the usefulness of GDP means it will continue to play a major role in shaping EU regional policy. However, its shortcomings can be compensated for by taking into account other factors, such as health and social cohesion.
As the European Commission prepares to review regional policy for the 2014-2020 period, this publication makes the case for a more nuanced regional policy that ensures European money is put to the best possible use.