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19 J. Common Mkt. Stud. 1 (1980-1981)

handle is hein.journals/jcmks19 and id is 1 raw text is: 





Journal of Common Market Studies
Volume XIX, No. i September 1980


         Spatial change and economic

               divergence in the EEC

                         JUDITH  MARQUAND*
                         Department of Industry

DIFFERING  national trends and policies between EEC Member  States and,
more  recently, between EEC Member  States and the applicant countries, are
often discussed. They tend to be discussed both at a macro-economic level and
in relation to certain specific industries.
   By contrast, the relative performance of regions rather than nations,
differences in broad regional economic structure and the possible effect of
varying  locations and urban structures are subjects which rarely leave the
pages of sp.'cialist monographs. It tends to be taken for granted that any form
of strong EEC regional policy with a large European Regional Development
Fund  will reduce regional inequalities and will benefit the three poorest
members  of the Nine-Ireland, Italy and the United Kingdom-and   in due
course Portugal, Greece and Spain as well.
   This paper does not assume that the national level is the only appropriate
one for the analysis of divergence. Instead, it examines briefly the problems of
regions at different stages of development, the broad sectoral distinctions
between  agriculture, industry and services, and the spatial pattern of growth.
It is often assumed implicitly that changes in these can be subsumed within the
national trends. Whilst these assumptions and omissions may turn out to be
justified, it is worth inquiring whether this is indeed the case, or whether there
are broad sectoral and spatial patterns which cut across trends in national
economies, and  whose incidence may  be such as to make convergence, as
measured  by macro-economic indicators, difficult to achieve in the absence of
specific spatially differentiated policies.
   In this paper are considered in turn: the extent of regional variation in
macro-economic   indicators; patterns of regional development; patterns of
urban and  industrial organization; implications and conclusions.

The extent of regional variation
It is a commonplace that variations in such quantities as GDP per head, or
unemployment,  are quite as wide between regions within most EEC Member

  * This paper represents a personal view and should not be taken in any way to reflect the position
of the Department of Industry.

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