Access ESPON TIA Tool

developed by OIR and Laurentia

What is the ESPON TIA tool? 

The ESPON TIA tool is an interactive web application that can be used to get a quick impression of possible territorial impacts of EU Legislations, Policies and Directives (LPDs) that are in the makingThe tool is meant to help a moderator in a workshop setting to steer an expert discussion on possible asymmetric territorial impacts of concrete LPD 

How does the ESPON TIA tool work? 

The participants of the workshop are guided through the different steps of an impact analysis. The policy impacts are assessed using a vulnerability approach. This approach uses three elements: a) exposure, b) sensitivity and c) impact. The tool combines expert knowledge on exposure (a) gathered in the workshop with a set of statistical data describing the sensitivity (b) of the regions. The resulting maps visualise the impacts (c) on the various territories and serve as input for discussion among the experts. The maps can serve as a starting point for further discussion of different impacts of a concrete EU policy on different regions. 

The tool allows to do a TIA for Europe as a whole, but one can also focus on cross-border regions, urban areas and even on custom made areas.  

What is new in the ESPON TIA tool? 

The new version of the TIA tool gives access to the following innovative functionalities: 

  • Necessity check: In case you’re not sure if it is necessary to assess territorial impacts in more detail, you can use ‘NECESSITY CHECK’. This is a checklist to support the decision whether it is necessary to conduct a Territorial Impact Assessment (TIA) or not.  
  • Demo version: Everybody can explore the TIA tool, without the need to register, using the ‘TRY DEMO’ option obtaining access to almost all functionalities.  
  • Urban and cross-border TIA: The tool allows a TIA for Europe as a whole, but one can also focus on urban areas, cross-border regions and even on custom made areas. 
  • Aggregating impacts: A region can be affected in multiple thematic fields and to obtain an impression on the collective positive (or negative) effects on regions, positive (and negative) impacts can be aggregated and visualised in one map. 

Has the ESPON TIA tool been used in practice? 

The ESPON TIA tool has been used in multiple TIA workshops organised by the Committee of the Regions (CoR), DG Regio and Interact. The CoR, for example, has used TIA workshops to assess the potential territorial impacts of legislative proposals involving stakeholders from regions and cities. Each of the workshops resulted in a report providing their rapporteurs with an analysis of the potential territorial impact of EU legislative proposalsA long list of workshops using the ESPON TIA tool can be found HERE. 

When to use the ESPON TIA tool? 

The Territorial Impacts Tool #34 of the Commission’s Better Regulation guidelines mentions the following: 

“The territorial dimension may be relevant for impact assessments for many sectoral legislative proposals and initiatives for two reasons:

  • First, the impacts associated with the problem are often heterogeneously distributed across the EU. This means that the design of effective policy options will also bring about an uneven geographical distribution of impacts (costs and benefits);
  • Second, a policy option may act unevenly to produce heterogeneous territorial impacts even where a problem is not necessarily unevenly distributed across the territory of the EU.”

It is important to identify if this is the case, at an early stage of policy development. Although policies do not affect all European regions to the same extent, it is not necessary to assess them all for potential asymmetric territorial impact. 

To decide whether or not it is necessary to assess in more detail if regions are effected substantially different, a checklist has been developed. You can access this Necessity Check by using the “NECESSITY CHECK” button on the home page of the ESPON TIA tool. You can also download the Necessity Check in pdf-format below.  

Who can access the ESPON TIA tool? 

Everyone can access the tool using the “TRY DEMO” button on the home page of the ESPON TIA tool. Via this access almost all functionalities of the tool are available. Detailed information, including an explanation on the rules of the game, a moderators guide and slides, can be found in step “1.SETUP TIA” under “+INFO”. The demo access is sufficient to get to know the tool and its functionalities. In case you want to use the ESPON TIA tool in a workshop setting, then it’s best to contact the ESPON EGTC.  

Do you want to learn more about the ESPON TIA tool? 

An interesting opportunity to learn a bit more about the ESPON TIA tool and the TIA methodology used is to view one of the e-learning activities that are available online. A first video explains the concept of TIA itself, the objectives, functionalities, capabilities of the TIA tool and how the tool can be applied in a workshop setting. The second video presents a selection of TIA workshop examples and their results as well as discusses how workshop results can be documented and usedThe two e-learning activities can be found HERE (March 2018) and HERE (October 2018) 


The ESPON TIA tool is designed and developed by OIRand Laurentia. 


TIA tool’s moderator guide.pdf

  • Acrobat Document | 2.58MB

TIA necessity check Handbook.pdf

  • Acrobat Document | 696KB

TIA necessity check Guidance_extended version.pdf

  • Acrobat Document | 675KB

TIA necessity check Guidance_short version.pdf

  • Acrobat Document | 646KB