Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE EU Cohesion Policy Implementation and Management

LEVEL 02 - Years 2, 3 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT European Studies

DESCRIPTION The objective of this study-unit is to study Regional Economics and Regional Policy in the European Union, particularly structural and cohesion funds, and to provide a direct learning experience on the management of EU funds in a Maltese context.

The theoretical part of the study-unit covers a range of relevant topics, including the theory and practice of a European integrated regional policy system, economic theories used to analyze how regional disparities emerge and why they persist over time, the role of regional policy intervention and use of regional policy instruments, and policy evaluation. The practical part of the study-unit, which is taught by experts working within the Maltese Managing Authority PPCD which aims to ensure the efficient absorption and management of European assistance, both EU and bilateral, through effective coordination across Government Departments, Authorities, Agencies and other stakeholders.

EU project management requires a sound, diligent and accurate execution which will be scrutinized at various levels of verification checks. Through this unit the students will have a sound knowledge on different processes carried out by the different stakeholders within the EU structures, and will also be familiar with the standards of implementation expected and the risks attached to any level of non-compliance.

The study-unit also contains a fieldwork where the students present their work at PPCD.

Study-unit Aims:

The objective of this study-unit is to acquire a more in-depth knowledge of EU regional policy from an economic perspective and to gain detailed know-how on its implementation and management processes at project level.

An additional objective of the study-unit is to provide BA students with a solid theoretical, as well as practical, background to understand the basic economic and policy principles behind EU structural and cohesion funds.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Define regions;
- Identify regional disparities;
- Identify causes for regional economic disparities;
- Describe policy instruments applied to counteract regional economic disparities;
- Describe the history of European regional policy and its current legislative setting;
- Describe the EU's policy cycle applied to implementation of EU regional policy;
- Describe the EU's priorities in terms of addressing regional disparities and how changes are reflected in new policy cycles;
- Describe the implementation of European Union structural and cohesion funds;
- Identify tools for the implementation, management and evaluation of EU regional policy;
- Identify relevant project information from a management perspective;
- Place a project in context vis-à-vis funding criteria and assimilate the lessons learnt and experiences in project management through practical examples;
- Give an overview of the mechanisms used to implement, monitor and verify projects.

2. Skills
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Apply economic models that can be used to explain regional disparities;
- Analyze economic consequences of implementing regional policy instruments;
- Analyze EU's regional policy in the light of EU's current growth and jobs strategy;
- Design and develop a project proposal within the context of the applicable OPs.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Armstrong, H., and Taylor, J., 2000. Regional Economics and Policy. Blackwell Publications.
- Molle, W. (2015), Cohesion and Growth, Oxon: Routledge.

Updated official documents of relevance (Malta’s Partnership Agreement, Reform Programme, Operational Programme descriptions etc.)

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Fieldwork, Lecture, Independent Online Learning

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Analysis Task SEM2 Yes 25%
Presentation (20 Minutes) SEM2 No 20%
Assignment SEM2 Yes 55%

LECTURER/S Daniela Grech
Therese Spiteri
Susanna Thede

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2021/2. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.