Cross - national policy transfer in regional and urban policy
In a globalising world, many countries and regions face similar challenges. As a result, governments and
policy-makers increasingly look for policy solutions, ideas and ‘good practice’ examples from other countries,
seeking to adapt them to their domestic contexts. At the same time, certain states or supranational and
international organisations are keen to export their policy approaches and tools to other countries for
pragmatic or normative reasons striving to project some of its policy norms and values beyond its borders.
This is exemplified by the increasingly prominent dialogues on regional and urban policy between the EU
and the major developing countries, including China, Brazil and other Latin American countries. Such
processes of transnational learning, import/export of models and exchange of knowledge on policy
approaches are embedded in international relations, diplomacy or para-diplomacy, and relate to an
expanding range of policy areas, involving governmental and non-state actors at multiple territorial levels.
While this phenomenon appears increasingly commonplace, there are few studies looking at the policy
transfer in the field of regional and urban development policy, even though such transfer does take place, as
illustrated by the diffusion of place-based approaches to regional policy among the OECD countries,
adoption of shared regional policy practices across the EU Member States through processes of
Europeanisation, or cross-national cooperation on development of industrial parks and eco-cities in East
We invite paper proposals exploring this under-researched topic from both theoretical and empirical
perspectives, looking at cross-national transfer and learning in the fields of regional and urban development
policy but also spatial planning and related topics in the EU context and in other parts of the world to enable
insightful comparisons and reflection on common trends and factors affecting those processes. We
encourage in particular submissions that examine motivations for engaging in these types of activities, the
mechanisms of influence, as well as the characteristics of transnational learning in the regional and urban
policy fields, which make it more successful in some contexts than in others.
The workshop will be hosted by the Chair of Spatial Planning & Strategy (Department of Urbanism, Delft
University of Technology) and co-organised by the European Policies Research Centre (University of
Strathclyde) and the Department of European Studies at Poznań University of Economics, in collaboration
with the partners within the RSA Research Network on EU Cohesion Policy.
The RSA Research Network on EU COHESION POLICY
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