Greek ESPON2013 Contact Point, Panteion University



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Public Consultation on the ESPON 2020 Cooperation Programme

The ESPON programme 2014-2020 is currently being developed and through this consultation your feedback would be very welcome.

The intention is to use the results of this consultation to fine tune the draft Cooperation Programme for ESPON 2020 before submission to the European Commission for approval.

Renewal of ESPON

EU Member States have, together with four Partner States (Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland), been working on shaping the Cooperation Programme for ESPON 2020 and a draft version of the Cooperation Programme has now been prepared.

The ambition is to renew, refocus and upgrade ESPON, learning from the experience from the ESPON 2013 Programme implementation. This is proposed to include the establishment of a new administrative structure, the ESPON EGTC that will be contracted to carry through the content of the new programme. The ESPON EGTC will dispose of more in-house capacity to swiftly produce territorial evidence with the right timing to ongoing policy processes.

Administratively, the ESPON EGTC will launch calls for tender and make use of service contracts only, as part of ensuring a lean setting.

Thematic Objective

EU Cohesion Policy for 2014-2020 proposes eleven common thematic objectives in order to ensure it delivers a real impact. The ESPON 2020 Cooperation Programme will address Objective 11 as follows:

“Enhancing institutional capacity and an efficient public administration by strengthening of institutional capacity and the efficiency of public administrations and public services related to implementation of the ERDF, and in support of actions in institutional capacity and in the efficiency of public administration supported by the ESF”.

However, in addressing this theme and in providing high quality territorial evidence to policy development, the ESPON 2020 Cooperation Programme is envisaged to indirectly support all eleven thematic objectives for European Structural and Investment Funds covering the Europe 2020 priorities for Smart, Sustainable and Inclusive Growth.

Mission & Objectives

The mission for ESPON during 2014-2020 is as follows:

ESPON 2020 shall continue the consolidation of a European Territorial Observatory Network and grow the provision and policy use of pan-European, comparable, systematic and reliable territorial evidence.”

Building on this overall mission statement, the draft Cooperation Programme sets out five specific objectives for activities during 2014-2020 in order to: (1) produce territorial evidence through applied research; (2) upgrade knowledge transfer and support to users in targeted analyses and policy briefs/working papers; (3) improve territorial observation of Europe and tools for analyses; (4) widen outreach and uptake of territorial analyses; and (5) deliver a more streamlined administrative structure to promptly inform policy processes.

Geographical Scope and Preliminary Budget

The programme covers the entire territory of the European Union (EU) plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

The programme is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) with an amount of €41.3 million. Member and Partner States are envisaged to add their financial contribution making a total budget of slightly above €50 million for the 2014-2020 period.

Public Consultation

Through this public consultation ESPON Member and Partner States wish to consult all relevant stakeholders throughout Europe, e.g. local, regional and national authorities responsible for territorial development as well as other relevant policy fields; authorities responsible for implementing ESI funds; organisations promoting different regional/urban interests at EU level; policymakers and public planners at national, regional and local level; university academics and researchers; the private sector; economic and social partners as well as bodies representing thematic groupings and civil society, including environmental partners, non-governmental organisations, etc.

Your answers will contribute to improving the shape of the future programme and ensuring its sound implementation.

The survey is open from 4th March 2014 until 2nd April 2014.

Download the ESPON 2020 draft Cooperation Programme document.

We advise all interested to consult or read the draft Cooperation Programme before completing the questionnaire. You may download the PDF version of the questionnaire to prepare your answers. Answers may only be submitted online, in English.

For any difficulties completing this questionnaire, please contact, stating 'Public Consultation' in the subject line.

Start the online questionnaire

Name Type Size
ESPON 2020 draft Cooperation Programme PDF 1.02 MB
Questionnaire PDF 189.94 KB

USESPON Workshop in Greece, 7 November 2013

The workshop is organized by the Greek ECP and will be held in Athens on 7 November, at the Ministry of Administrative Reform.This interactive workshop aims to support regional governors, policy makers and practitioners at regional level by promoting a strategic thinking for territorial development in their regions. Sustainable, inclusive and smart growth will be projected by means of the NEXUS methodological tool, towards an integrated development approach, the delivery of more efficient ESIF regional schemes and the achievement of the objectives of EU2020. ESPON Projects  reflecting the priorities of the Greek presidency to the EU Council will be presented and discussed. DownloadFinal Agenda

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USESPON Workshop in Greece, 7 November 2013

The workshop is organized by the Greek ECP and will be held in Athens on 7 November, at the Ministry of Administrative Reform.

This interactive workshop aims to support regional governors, policy makers and practitioners at regional level by promoting a strategic thinking for territorial development in their regions. Sustainable, inclusive and smart growth will be projected by means of the NEXUS methodological tool, towards an integrated development approach, the delivery of more efficient ESIF regional schemes and the achievement of the objectives of EU2020. ESPON Projects  reflecting the priorities of the Greek presidency to the EU Council will be presented and discussed.

For more information please see :


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ESPONTrain Final Transnational Conference, 3&4 April 2013, Panteion University

ESPONTrain Final Transnational Conference

Are European planners familiar with ESPON findings?

Integrating ESPON in higher education and policy making at central, regional and local levels

Athens, Greece

3 - 4 April 2013

The Greek  ESPON  Contact Point organized, in cooperation with the ESPON Coordination Unit and the ESPONTrain Partners, the Final Transnational ESPONTrain Conference“Are European planners familiar with ESPON findings? Integrating ESPON in higher education and policy making at central, regional and local levels”. The  Conference took place in  Athens (Greece) on 3-4 April 2013 and brought together 298 participants representing the ESPON CU, ESPON Monitoring Committee, ESPON Contact Points, ESPONTrain Tutors and Trainees as well as stakeholders participating in  ESPONTrain and previous TNAs (e.g INTERSTRAT), mainly Universities and training centres (e.g the National Center of Public Administration) but also ministries and regional/local authorities. Postgraduate and graduate level students in territorial development fields were also present.

As recent ESPONTrain implementation showed and this is widely reported, the best part of the teaching/learning experience is the fact that ESPONTrain largely neutralized some of the skepticism surrounding the ESPON projects, clearly marked their limits and highlighted the benefits from their use in every-day planning and policy making.

Purpose of the event

The purpose of the Seminar was two-fold:

  • Enhance transnationality of the ESPONTrain Project, bringing together the ESPON Coordination Unit, 10 ESPONContact Points (ECPs) participating in the ESPON Programme as well as trainers and trainees involved in the  ESPONTrain Virtual Learning Environment Project. This first day  focused on the issue of using ESPON findings in higher education and in territorial development strategies. Participants  mostly came from higher education institutions, both professors and students as well as from state and regional authorities.
  • allow policy makers and practitioners to discuss themes for further integration of the ESPON knowledge in the implementation of territorial development and cohesion in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean.

The ESPONTrain Conference succeeded in promoting dialogue between political leaders, policy makers, academics and professionals on the field of territorial development and cohesion and  was structured around the following topics:

  1. The progress of the ESPONTrain Project, its results, its evaluation as well as the perspectives of further development of the ESPONTrain VLE model in the ESPON countries;
  2. The use of ESPON findings in spatial planning and in territorial development focusing on European cities and regions;
  3. The ongoing spatial and urban planning reform in Greece and in other ESPON countries and particularly in relation to the use of the ESPON findings
  4. The profile of European planners (qualifications, skills, etc.) required to meet the challenges of territorial development and cohesion in Europe and the necessary innovation that ESPON can bring in its education.

Welcome and Opening Speeches

Participants were welcomed by the Vice Rector of Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences of Athens and the Greek ECP. Salutations were given by : the Minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change, the Vice Rector of the National Technical University of Athens, the Greek representative in the  ESPON Monitoring Committee, Representatives of the Region of Attica, members and experts of the Greek ECP.

The opening speeches by Peter Billing ( ESPON CU) and Stella Kyvelou (ESPONTrain LP)  identified the ESPONTrain Project in the larger context of ESPON and its concept, structure, achievements, results and lessons learned by its implementation in the ESPON countries.

Followed 4 Round Tables that gave the opportunity to explore the degree of appropriation of the ESPON Findings both by the academic community and the state, regional and local authorities and the great potential of ESPON knowledge demand by higher education and stakeholders  that the ESPONTrain could efficiently respond to, in the near future. These round tables also gave the opportunity to present ESPONTrain Project’s implementation in each participating country from different points of view, the one of the ECPs and this of the Trainers and the Trainees involved in the educational cycles which inspired the discussion on future ideas and demands for further implementation.

Priorities for further development of ESPON education activities

There is indeed a large potential in ESPON education, a fact that was clearly revealed by the ESPONTrain  Final Transnational Conference and the participating ECPs asked for the continuation of the Project in order to reach more target groups  of potential trainees and add more knowledge coming from the ESPON Projects in the existing ESPONTrain Virtual Learning Environment.

The ESPONTrain project contributed to the familiarization of specific target groups with ESPON results and vocabulary, but has also been a major input to the strategic goals of ESPON: on the one hand forming the next academic generation in ESPON related research, and on the other hand contributing to the “European territory of tomorrow” by developing learning efforts towards higher education institutions.

Furthermore, Since a large majority (70%) of the countries involved in the ESPONTrain Project were Mediterranean and Balkan (Greece, Italy, Slovenia, Cyprus, Malta, Romania, Bulgaria) and due to the positive response of the trainees and trainers in this region, a new initiative based on the ESPONTrain VLE Project could be considered in form of an educational ESPON “pole of competence” in the Mediterranean region, which also would contribute to the extension of ESPON towards neighboring countries.   The location of this “pole” could be Greece or Cyprus which can have significant results for the extension of ESPON towards neighboring countries. This strategic goal of ESPON can be facilitated by and based on the ESPONTrain VLE Project.

The above proposal has been assisted by all Greek Universities and Training Centres present at the Conference as well as by Greek politicians.

Another important continuation, capitalization and synergy effect of the ESPONTrain Projects’ philosophy and successful implementation is the new TNA entitled “USESPON” whose Lead Partner is the UK ECP (RTPI) and partner with tasks mainly related to VLE further development mainly on ESPON Tools and the use of ESPON findings by regions is the Greek ECP (Panteion University) that is the Lead Partner of the ESPONTrain Project.

More information

  • Considering that the theme is interesting to a wider audience, ESPON Contact Point will produce a report which aims at disseminating the main outcomes of the event based on the discussions registered during the Conference.
  • Please find below the programme, the press releases and the presentations made during the event.
  • Should you have questions please do not hesitate to contact the Greek ESPON  Contact Point at
  • Photos: Efi Apostolopoulou and Nikos Apostolopoulos. More photos are available in the Gallery.

· Also visit : Facebook, USESPON Website, Greek ECP Website

Poster of the meeting here !

Conference Programme

Press release (before Conference)

Press Release ( after Conference)

Salutation of the Minister of Environment, Energy and Climate Change

Presentation, Peter Billing, 3.4.2013

Presentation, Peter Billing, 4.4.2013

Presentation, Stella Kyvelou



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Invitation - 8th ESPON Financial Managers Seminar, 7 March 2013

We are pleased to announce to you that the 8th ESPON Financial Managers Seminar will be organized by the ESPON Coordination Unit on 7 March 2013 in Athens, in cooperation with the Greek ESPON Contact Point, Panteion University of Social and Political Sciences of Athens. Invitees of this 8th ESPON Financial Managers Seminar are:· Financial Managers of the Lead and Project Partners of the approved ESPON 2013 Projects· Representatives of centralized First Level Controllers· Representatives of decentralized and designated First Level Controllers For more information please contact:Jozsef SzarkaESPON Financial ExpertEmail:

ESPON Newletter No 29 - January 2013

ESPON 2013 Programme, Newsletter – Issue 29, January 2013. Please use the following link to download full content:Word Format PDF Format

Newsletter_No29_Jan_170113.doc1.96 MB
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Announcements for the ESPONTrain Virtual Learning Environment

Το Πάντειο Πανεπιστήμιο- Εθνικό Σημείο Επαφής ESPON αναζητεί εξωτερικούς συνεργάτες για την ανάπτυξη του Ψηφιακού Μαθησιακού Περιβάλλοντος ESPONTrain.

Για τις αναλυτικές ανακοινώσεις παρακαλούμε διαβάστε τα παρακάτω έγγραφα :

1. Ανακοίνωση10.7.2012

2. Ανακοίνωση10.7.2011


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ESPONTrain "TRAINING THE TRAINERS" Workshop, 24.1.2012, Panteion University, 10h00am-18h00pm

New !!

In the framework of the ESPONTrain Project, a "Training the Trainers" Workshop is being organised by the Greek ESPON Contact Point, at Panteion University, on january 24th 2012, 10h00-18h00

Please see the Agenda of the meeting here.



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2nd ESPON-INTERSTRAT meeting,8.11.2011,"ESPON findings in service of a new paradigm of regional development in Greece"

Τhe 2nd ESPON-INTERSTRAT Workshop is organized by the Greek ESPON* Contact Point, on the 8th November 2011, at Panteion University (Sakis Karagiorgas Amphitheatre), in the framework of a joint programme of capitalisation and dissemination of the ESPON2013, entitled ESPON-INTERSTRAT. The ESPON-INTERSTRAT transnational networking activity deals with integrated territorial development strategies (ITDS) in Europe. This meeting is structured around three Round Tables which will be moderated by journalists and will discuss the following topics :

§ regional organisation based on the new geography created by the administrative reform «Kallikrates» and how this new reality can integrate strategic planning and integrated territorial development strategies in favour of the new municipalities and the new regions, especially in the framework of the post 2013 cohesion policy.

§ the ESPON findings deriving from the ESPON Project and their potential contribution in Greek policy making at regional and local levels.

§ The future orientation and the role of cities as driving forces for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth in Europe, through the procedure of strategic planning and regulation.


*European Observatory for territorial Development and Cohesion

2nd INTERSTRAT meeting final agenda ( PDF )

2nd INTERSTRAT meeting final agenda (Word)


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ESPON 2013 Project Overview

ESPON published its Project Overview which presents the ongoing projects by October 2010. The Overview presents for each priority of the ESPON 2013 Programme some key facts on ongoing projects as well as a glimpse of our intentions in the near future.
The ESPON Project Overview will be updated in autumn 2011 and in 2012 when all larger projects are contracted and in the process of implementation. Download the Project Overview at the ESPON Website<>.

Pre-Announcement - Call for Expression of Interest

A Call for Expression of Interest for the Knowledge Support System (KSS) will open on 23 November 2010. The deadline for submitting Expressions of Interest is 21 January 2011. The pre-announcement is published in the Official Journal of the EU (C 278, 15/10/2010)

ATTREG international workshop

ATTREG is an ESPON Priority 1 project which is economically focused and looks at the process of agglomeration within city regions across Europe. The project aims to create a better understanding of optimum scales for urban form and agglomeration. The first international workshop entitled 'Exploring Attractiveness' will take place in Leuven, Belgium on 19 November 2010. Contact Loris Servillo for more details and registration.

ESPON Territorial Observation - Trends in Economic Performance of European Regions

ESPON has recently published the third edition of "Territorial Observations". This latest publication is looking into Trends in Economic Performance of European Regions. The publication, including maps and datasets, is now available.

Piera Petruzzi from the ESPON CU informs us :

ESPressON: Latest News for ECPs, July 2010

According the Draft Final Report of DEMIFER, decisions on competitive-oriented policy or a cohesion-oriented policy may influence demographic developments in Europe

The aim of ESPON DEMIFER - DEmography and MIgratory Flows for European Regions - is to assess future changes in population growth, the size of the labour force and the ageing of the population, and to explore different policy options aiming at regional competitiveness and social cohesion.

The project has developed four sets of population scenarios that take into account alternative future economic developments in combination with alternative policy options. Each of these scenarios is associated with a set of policies that may impact, to a greater or lesser degree, future patterns of mortality, fertility and migration.

The scenarios show that there is a complex interrelationship between implications of one policy option and another. Policy makers may have to make difficult trade-offs between different goals. Demographic developments will be influenced by policy decisions such as whether to pursue a competitive-oriented policy or a cohesion-oriented policy. At the same time demographic developments are also affected by long-term economic growth rates and environmental developments. The effects of alternative policy options therefore will vary by economic and environmental developments.

The scenarios show what may be expected to happen if certain policy combinations are followed within the drivers of mortality, fertility, migration and labour markets.

ESPON DEMIFER, produced by Netherlands Interdisciplinary Demographic Institute (NIDI) as Lead Partner, University of Vienna, International Organization for Migration/Central European Forum for Migration and Population Research, University of Leeds, Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, NORDREGIO, National Research Council (CNR) as Project Partners shall deliver its Final Report on 30 September 2010.

Read the Draft Final Report as well as all background documents at the ESPON Website.

The ESPON 2013 Database is now online

The ESPON 2013 Database, designed and developed by the ESPON Database 2013 Project, is now available at the ESPON website. This database provides fundamental regional information (NUTS 3, NUTS 2, NUTS 1 and NUTS 0) provided by ESPON projects and EUROSTAT. The data and indicators included in the ESPON 2013 Database cover the entire European Union plus Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein (ESPON space) and uses the Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics (NUTS) references: Version 2006.

Please note that this is the first version of the ESPON 2013 Database. This means that on the one hand this version is still under development and therefore not completely bug-free and not completely filled. On the other hand all users can influence the further development of the ESPON 2013 Database by testing it and giving feedback. More information on the testing can be found on the webpage.

Download from the ESPON 2013 Database is free and can be done upon your acceptance of the pre-defined terms and conditions of use.

Calls for Proposals 3 May 2010 / Facts & Figures

Latest ESPON Calls attracted 24 proposals and 138 partners from 30 countries

The Calls for Proposals closed on 28 June 2010 and generated 24 project proposals involving 30 European countries and 138 partners. All the project themes in the Calls received proposals.

The distribution by the Priorities of the ESPON Programme was as follow: 6 proposals for Applied Research Projects under Priority 1, 15 for Targeted Analyses under Priority 2 and 3 for Transnational Networking Activities under Priority 4.

Of the applicants, 12%came from Italy, 9% from Germany, Spain and the UK, 5% from France and Slovenia, 4% from Hungary, Netherlands, Portugal, Romania and Sweden. Applicants came from all countries involved in the ESPON 2013 Programme, except Liechtenstein.

Evaluation of the 24 project proposals will run during July 2010 and the results will be tabled for the Monitoring Committee meeting in September. More reading

ESPON Annual Report 2009

The Annual Report 2009 was approved by the Monitoring Committee on 7-8 June 2010 in Alcalá de Henares and submitted to European Commission on 30 June 2010 for approval.

The Annual Report has the purpose to summarize the activities implemented by the Programme during the specific year and to give further information on projects and Programme implementation.

More reading: ESPON Annual Report 2009

TeDI - The Final Report and the Handbook are now online

The Targeted Analysis “ESPON TeDi” deals with the territorial diversity of the European territory. The project explores the development opportunities in territorial diverse regions in. Based on a series of case studies, including regions from Cyprus, Finland, Romania, Sweden, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, the study explores the capacity of regions with geographic specificities to contribute to the achievement of the Lisbon and Gothenburg Strategies. As such it focuses on the comparative advantages and development opportunities, and the policies that need to be applied to trigger them.

The Final Report includes an analyses based on European wide ESPON data. On this basis the report formulates a characterization of the so-called TeDi regions and indicates the relevance of the geographic specificities for economic growth and social sustainability.

The ESPON TeDi Handbook deals with the social and economic development of areas characterised by geographic specificities, i.e. islands, mountain ranges and sparsely populated areas. Much of the debate on these Territorial Diversity or “TeDi” areas is limited to the identification of structural constraints and obstacles to development. However, the purpose is to introduce alternative approaches, focusing on their growth opportunities and on the policy measures that could help contribute to the full exploitation of their development potential.

Read the Final Report as well as all background documents at the ESPON Website.

CAEE - The Draft Final Report is now online

The CAEE draft Final Report sets out the emerging project findings. The primary purpose of the project has been to examine the relationship between agglomeration economies and city-regional/metropolitan governance.

As noted in the study team’s inception and mid-term reports, any attempt to examine this relationship has to address significant conceptual as well as empirical challenges. However these challenges are worth facing because of the importance of linking together two vigorous debates that have taken place, in academia and policy-making circles, largely independently, in recent years. The first focuses on the importance of ‘new’ agglomeration economies to patterns of European spatial economic change and especially the apparent ‘stretching’ of national and international urban hierarchies (i.e. growing differences in the economic performance of urban areas). The second concerns claims that are made for the emerging importance of governance arrangements for ‘natural economic areas’ in facilitating effective adaptation to economic change.

Read the Draft Final Report as well as all background documents at the ESPON Website.

Map of the month : Economic Performance 2006

For comments on the map, please click on it