ESPON transnational conference "Southern Europe at the crossroads"


Rome, Italy

Italian Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport

3 October 2017

via Nomentana 2, Rome
"Parlamentino" Room (IV floor)
00161 Rome
Email: [email protected]

Over the last decade, South European regions have seen considerable investments in transport. The efforts to increase and improve the accessibility to markets and public services for citizens and businesses in Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Italy, Greece, Malta, Portugal, Romania and Spain have benefitted from European funding and lending. Within the period 2007-2013, transport spending in the Southern convergence regions of Greece, Spain, Italy and Portugal alone amounted to 18.7 billion EUR or 23% of the overall budget earmarked for transport by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the Cohesion Fund (CF) for that period. This figure represents nearly a third of the total ERDF and CF resources that were made available to these regions. Under the broader theme of “Network Infrastructures in Transport and Energy”, 21,5 billion EUR of ERDF and CF funding have been secured for the 9 Southern Member States in the period 2014-2020. In addition, loans worth over 50 billion EUR in total have been made available by the European Investment Bank to leverage the transport and infrastructure investments in the Southern EU regions between 2007 and 2017, reaching 38% of the total lending capacity of the EIB for transport investments across Europe within that period.

These investments have certainly made an impact on the accessibility dynamics in Southern Europe. Monitoring these dynamics over time seems essential to help guide future decision-making.

Yet, measuring accessibility might be a challenging endeavour. For more than a decade, the European Territorial Observatory Network ESPON has been accompanying transport investment policies by designing accessibility models. ESPON has become the main source for comparative accessibility indicators for European regions, supporting a number of strategic decision-making processes on European, national, regional and local level.

The aim of this transnational conference was to provide cross-modal snapshots, drawing attention to challenge zones for both passengers and freight transport in Southern Europe. It examined different modes of transport: road, rail, air and seaborne. The conference, furthermore, addressed accessibility scenarios for 2030 (road, rail and air) as well as for 2050 (seaborne) and provided insights into the future of instruments for strategic infrastructure investments, particularly the Connecting Europe Facility

The conference took place on 3 October 2017 at the Italian Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport in Rome.


South Europe at the Crossroads: Investments in Road, Rail, Air and Seaborne Transport for the Future (EN)

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L’Europa meridionale a un bivio: stiamo prendendo le decisioni giuste in materia d’investimenti per l’accessibilità del futuro? (IT)

  • Acrobat Document | 4.09MB

Conference programme

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Poster - Rail potential accessibility: prospects and scenarios 2030

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Poster - Road potential accessibility: prospects and scenarios 2030

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Poster - Seaborne accessibility: prospects and scenarios 2030

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'Aligning accessibility investments with asset-based competitiveness strategies' speech by Ilona Raugze, Director of ESPON EGTC

  • Acrobat Document | 294KB

'Accessibility evidence: TEN-T and air transport' by Klaus Spiekermann

  • Acrobat Document | 4.41MB

'Learning from ESaTDOR - Some issues for policy makers' by Professor David Shaw, University of Liverpool

  • Acrobat Document | 6.78MB

'The access to services of general interest in the PROFECY project' by Francesco Mantino, CREA - Policies and Bioeconomy, Rome

  • Acrobat Document | 2.81MB

'Risks of territorial marginalization and policy design in the South - why decision making is at the crossroads?' by Rusu Alexandru, UAIC, Romania

  • Acrobat Document | 3.77MB

'TEN-T Network in Croatia and future possibilities' by Marinko Ajduk, Ministry of Sea, Transport and Infrastructure, Croatia

  • Acrobat Document | 1.69MB

'Attractiveness of the islands and maritime transport services (EUROISLANDS)' by Maria Lekakou, University of the Aegean, Greece

  • Acrobat Document | 2.16MB

'Insular territories of the EU and financial regulations concerning accessibility issues' by Athena Foka Head Officer of Executive NSRF for the Ministry of Maritime Affairs & Insular Policy, Greece

  • Acrobat Document | 1.19MB

'Sound knowledge base for better decisions: Focus on maritime, ports and land-sea relationships' by Lucienne Meilak

  • Acrobat Document | 1.26MB

'Territorial scenarios for potential accessibility for the years 2030 and 2050' by Klaus Spiekermann

  • Acrobat Document | 2.80MB

'Reflections on future accessibility scenarios' by Prof. Pierluigi Coppola, Department of Enterprise Engineering, University of Rome Tor Vergata

  • Acrobat Document | 2.19MB

'Delivering TEN-T Infrastructure Connecting Europe' by Frédéric Versini, Deputy Head of Unit Transport Network DG MOVE – European Commission

  • Acrobat Document | 2.29MB

Conference Report - Rome

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List of Participants

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