The promise of prosperity, inherent to the European Single Market, is not realized evenly across Europe. Strong and persistent economic imbalances between states and regions exist, endangering the cohesion of the European Union and undermining its competitiveness.
These disparities exist as Europe is undergoing a once in a generation twin transition. The structural changes that come with making Europe greener and more digital will bring new opportunities to European citizens and businesses. But they will also require huge adjustments to its economies, and the readiness and innovation capacities differ enormously across the EU’s member states and regions. This puts European cohesion – a long-term political goal of the European Union – squarely back on the map.
The project drives forward the Bertelsmann Stiftung’s work on Europe’s economy. The team investigates which economic, social and territorial disparities matter for the EU. It analyzes how structural changes that come with decarbonizing and digitizing Europe will affect its economy and its cohesion. This includes identifying the resources and potential, but also the vulnerabilities, of European countries and regions. Against this background, the project develops proposals on how to improve the EU Single Market and on how the EU can better use its policies and resources to strengthen cohesion across Europe.