Promoting social cohesion and convergence

Upward convergence in the EU: Definition, measurement and trends

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30 september 2020
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The uneven impact of the 2008–2013 economic crisis on Member States brought upward convergence to the fore in EU political debates. The focus was on orienting social policy towards getting the EU back on track, as encapsulated in the European Pillar of Social Rights. However, the meaning of the cRead more

The uneven impact of the 2008–2013 economic crisis on Member States brought upward convergence to the fore in EU political debates. The focus was on orienting social policy towards getting the EU back on track, as encapsulated in the European Pillar of Social Rights. However, the meaning of the concept was unclear. Eurofound filled this gap, defining upward convergence as an improvement in performance alongside a reduction in disparities among Member States in a given socioeconomic indicator. Taking this definition as a starting point, this report illustrates the different ways that upward convergence is typically measured. It also summarises convergence patterns in six important socioeconomic indicators over a decade, from the start of the economic crisis to the height of the recovery. The analysis finds that upward convergence patterns are unstable and that Member States need to strengthen their resilience in the economic and social policy domains to achieve sustainable upward convergence.

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Forskning som genomfördes före Förenade kungarikets utträde ur Europeiska unionen den 31 januari 2020, men som offentliggjordes efter detta datum, kan omfatta uppgifter om EU:s 28 medlemsstater. Efter detta datum tar forskningen endast hänsyn till de 27 EU-medlemsstaterna (EU-28 minus Förenade kungariket), om inget annat anges.

I denna rapport presenteras resultaten från forskning som genomförts före covid-19-utbrottet i Europa i februari 2019. Därför beaktas inte utbrottet i resultaten.

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