CAAC remarks on ATTREG project

A brief by Tamara Guirao, CAAC Coordinator

The ESPON – ATTREG Project focusing on “The attractiveness of Regions and Cities for Residents and Visitors”, has recently reached its conclusion and is currently in its dissemination stage. So, a Dissemination Event was held in Brussels on October 10th, at the HQ of Eurocities (Square de Meeûs 1), and in concomitance with the CoR’s Open Days. ATTREG project, tackles human mobility between and within European regions, its past determinants and future foreseeable developments, its spatial impacts and the policy challenges that it arises,

In her intervention, Tamara Guirao, CAAC coordinator, has identified several key issues to be taken into account:

1) Significance, novelty, accuracy: Some concepts seem missing

– Crisis period: migration movements have inversed
– “Ryanair effect”: contactability vs accesibility
– “Active attractiveness”: Universities that sign (or not) Erasmus Charters, involvement of private sector, “City of the Year” contests, (active) participation in international / European organizations…
– Expulsion effects in the coast or at “livable suburbs”: i.e. high rent /retired people moving to the coast, making the prices (real state above all) rise. Seen in the Mediterranean in the 80-90’s it started to be very significant in the Atlantic Area as from the late 90’s.

2) Transferability:

– The report has to be readable in average English
– Fill in the knowledge dissemination gap between EU and local level (i.e. through city networks)
– Role of Local Communities: Build on the local groups created by LEADER, FARNET, URBACT

3) Policy implications for the EU Cohesion Agenda: A bottom-up conceptual framework

– Territorial Capital as a balance before a too strict “smart specialization”.
– Need for a concrete list of indicators of territorial capital that can work as a check list
– FSE: balances to be found between the brain drain (and youth unemployment) and an ageing population (and long unemployment for the 45+)

4) Areas of EU policy: CSF in general but also focusing on European territorial cooperation (i.e. macro-regions) It is a question of scale.

5) Development of research: make the above-mentioned points workable (and measurable) concepts

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