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Spatial Development in Europe

ESPON 2.1.3: Spatial Impacts of Agricultural and Rural Policy (2002- 2004)

In 2002 the European Commission launched the European Spatial Planning Observation Network (ESPON) as a comprehensive transnational spatial monitoring and forecasting system

  1. to identify the factors relevant for a more polycentric European territory,
  2. to develop territorial indicators and typologies for identifying and measuring development trends,
  3. to develop analytical tools to identify structural problems and potentials,
  4. to investigate territorial impacts of sectoral and structural EU policies and
  5. to develop integrated tools to promote a balanced and polycentric territorial development in line with the European Spatial Development Perspective (ESPD).


ESPON 2.1.3 is to analyse the territorial impacts of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and the Rural Development Policy of the EU. The Common Agricultural Policy faces a number of internal and external challenges: internal challenges include the risks of growing surpluses, budgetary constraints, consumer interests, the need to revitalise rural economies, growing environmental concerns and the need to simplify and decentralise decision-making; external challenges include the enlargement of the EU, the new round of World Trade Organisation (WTO) negotiations and the need to compete in global markets. In 1999 a new Rural Development Regulation was agreed as the second pillar of the CAP foreseeing a shift in agricultural policy from market support towards structural spending to enable multifunctional agriculture and rural development.
The project will develop a methodology for the policy impact analysis, develop territorial indicators, typologies and concepts and a corresponding database, analyse territorial trends, potentials and problems at different scales and in different parts of the enlarged European territory and make recommendations for further policy development in support of territorial cohesion and the ESDP.

ESPON 2.1.3 is a co-operation of eight research institutes from Austria, Germany, Ireland, Spain, Sweden, Hungary and the United Kingdom under the co-ordination of the Arkleton Centre for Rural Development Research of the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

Contact: Günter Kroës und Martina Hülz

Further information: http://www.espon.public.lu/fr/

Other projects in this research area: