Inner and Internal Areas in the European Cohesion Policies
Keywords:inner areas, internal areas, cohesion policy, Region of Sardinia
Taking as its point of reference the growth objectives of the Horizon 2020 project, the present study aims to present a new approach to identify policies for local development that are useful for promoting territorial cohesion in areas that represent spatial and/or functional peripheries. Beginning from a precise conceptualisation of these zones, based on definitions of inner and internal areas, the study first assesses the results that have been achieved with the funds that have been spent so far. It then focuses on specific indicators – mapped on the NUTS 2 and 3 levels to the end of applying the STeMA-TIA model – which are relevant to those factors of Smart, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth considered important for both geographical categories. Quantitative and qualitative analysis of these indicators, supported by pertinent graphic representations, produced a picture of local conditions which allowed us to pinpoint those objectives which still must be achieved and to identify developmental axes which should be given priority for the implementation of even more ‘localised’ policies. In presenting a reading that is fundamentally geographical and economic, based on place evidence, these findings have further relevance when referred to the analysis conducted on the Region of Sardinia, which was carried out by means of scrutiny of the main strategic documents adopted for the 2014-2020 programming cycle. This analysis led to policy recommendations for the efficient implementation of measures funded by EU cohesion policies.