Workshop “Assessing Indicators for Territorial Cohesion”

Brussels, 20 October 2011

Timing: 9h30 - 17h00


INTERCOworkshopmRegional indicators for territorial cohesion, smart, inclusive and sustainable growth are increasingly in demand. While current debates on the understanding of Territorial Cohesion do not lead to definitive answers on how this should be achieved, they contribute to the formulation of a policy agenda and help raising awareness of the variety of approaches of this subject across Europe.

However, these discussions are hampered by lack of available evidence. In many ways, the European territorial policy community is facing a “Catch 22”-situation in which the lack of a shared understanding of territorial cohesion makes it difficult to propose corresponding indicators, while the lack of indicators limits the advances of debates over this issue.

The people attending the workshop debated concrete indicators that could be used to better understand and illustrate different facets of territorial cohesion. And while discussing territorial cohesion related issues the participants also learned how to make better use of indicators and ESPON results.

The workshop has been organised in cooperation with the ESPON project INTERCO regarding Indicators of Territorial Cohesion. The ESPON INTERCO team offered first hand insights on their preliminary results, which will be presented in their Draft Final Report in the end of 2011. The remarks and reflections voiced during the workshop will be taken on board when finalising the project work. 


The aim of the workshop was to acquaint the participants with the INTERCO proposal of main indicators which can be used for different facets of territorial cohesion. But also to explore which indicators are most useful, relevant and meaningful for policy making, to identify key indicators which can be symbolic for certain facets of territorial cohesion and to discuss how these indicators can be used in practice.

Different facets of territorial cohesion

INTERCOworkshopoThe five different facets of territorial cohesion that have been distinguished by the INTERCO project and for which the usefulness, relevance and meaningfulness of the presented indicators will be discussed are the following:

(1) Smart growth in a competitive and polycentric Europe
(2) Inclusive, balanced development and fair access to services
(3) Local development conditions and geographical specificities
(4) Environmental dimension and sustainable development
(5) Governance, coordination of policies and territorial impacts

Target Groups







 The workshop welcomed a mix of policy makers, regional practitioners and scientists from Europe and neighbouring countries. Around 35 participants attended the workshop.

More information

Please find below the programme of the Workshop and all the presentations given.
For more information, contact the ESPON Coordination Unit at [email protected]

This Workshop was organised within the framework of the ESPON 2013 Capitalisation Strategy
(Actions related to European Seminars and Workshops).


(*) Photos: courtesy to Chao Yang (ITC, Enschede)


Final Programme

  • Acrobat Document | 259KB

List of participants

  • Acrobat Document | 32KB

Practical Information

  • Acrobat Document | 115KB

Background Document

  • Acrobat Document | 350KB

Hy Dao - What this day aims to bring

  • Acrobat Document | 723KB

Kai Böhme, Erik Gløersen, Carsten Schürmann – Facets and Indicators

  • Acrobat Document | 4645KB

Carsten Schürmann – Additional Material

  • Acrobat Document | 5976KB