Cities and Their Place in the European Union Urban Policy

by Antonescu, Daniela and Ghisa Silea, Maria  
Published in Romanian Journal of Economic Forecasting, volume 8 issue 2, 2007.

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In 2006, the Commission of the European Communities encouraged the incorporation of sustainable urban development in the Cohesion Policy for 2007-2013. These proposals seem to be based on the cities involvement in the framework of the Structural Funds and other European programs. The purpose is that the European Union policy of growth and employment will be more successful if the regions are capable to take on their roles. 
Why are cities really important in terms of regional cohesion policies? They offer the best conditions for economic development - most of the jobs, firms, technologies, universities (higher education). But social and economic differences may appear, and cities are often subject to spatial inequalities. The capacity of the cities to produce innovation and to absorb innovations coming from outside seems to be a key element in competitive success.

Keywords: cohesion, urban development, regional development.
JEL Classification: R58, R11, O18.