Webinar on the Impacts of Cohesion Policy on the Trade-Off Between Employment and Productivity

The second EPRC webinar of the 2023 Autumn semester was held on 8 November (11:00 – 12:00 UK) over Zoom. Prof Sébastien Bourdin (EM Normandie Business School) presented on “What are the impacts of Cohesion Policy on the Trade-Off between Employment and Productivity?”. The presentation was based on the co-authored paper with Sergio Destefanis and Gianluigi Coppola (Universitá degli Studi di Salerno) and Maria Kubara (University of Warsaw).

Bourdin and colleagues examined the heterogeneous effectiveness of EU Cohesion Policy in fostering regional growth, considering the potential trade-off between productivity improvement and job creation. By analysing the impact of European Structural and Investment Funds on regional development at the NUTS 2 level, the study contributes to the literature on productivity and employment trade-offs at the regional level.

A novel empirical approach, based on a multi-input multi-output transformation function was employed to explore the differing impacts of EU Cohesion policy on GDP per employee and employment rate. The findings suggest that there exists a spatial heterogeneity in the effects of Cohesion Policy on the trade-off between employment and productivity. Bourdin and colleagues consider it crucial to strike a balance between productivity-boosting investments and job creation is crucial in ensuring sustainable economic development and social inclusion and in reducing regional disparities.


Sébastien Bourdin is Professor in Economic Geography at EM Normandie Business School. Holding a PhD in Geography and an Accreditation to Supervise Research, he specializes in the study of the European Union and issues related to Cohesion Policy, Territorial Development, Public Policies Evaluation, and Ecological Transition. In his research, he uniquely combines quantitative methods such as Spatial Econometrics, Statistics, and Modelling– and qualitative methods to provide an in-depth perspective on his favourite topics. Sebastien Bourdin has led several notable research projects on current topics such as Energy Transition and Circular Economy.


Bourdin’s presentation can be accessed here, and the webinar recording can be viewed on the EPRC’s YouTube page here.

Future EPRC webinars will delve into sustainability, regional policy and development topics.

If you would like to attend, watch out for updates and registrations by following @eprc_eu on Twitter, European Policies Research Centre on LinkedIn, or register for our webinar mailing list via marina.murray@strath.ac.uk.

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