April 17, 2014

MOT Conference – “The Integrated Economic Development of Cross-Border Territories”

The Centre for Cross Border Studies was represented at a conference of the Mission Opérationnelle Transfrontalière (MOT) in Paris on the 15th April 2014.

The event, which brought together more than 150 people, focused on “The integrated economic development of cross-border territories”, and was the setting for the launch of a European project, led by MOT, on this topic.

Transfrontier cooperation between companies located on opposite sides of borders is a major factor in the potential for development of cross-border territories; it remains, however, relatively underexamined.

The conference aimed to initiate discussion on this important topic and develop practical proposals through the launch an eighteen-month-long project which has the aim of developing territorial diagnostics and supporting the stimulation of partnerships and economic development projects on the borders of France.

The conference was an opportunity to take a holistic view of the main issues, obstacles and needs encountered by those involved in cross-border cooperation. Several topics were raised by the speakers and participants, including employment, training, clusters, innovation, internationalisation of SMEs, public-sector contracts, state aids, and institutional and economic governance, from a cross-border perspective.

The Centre for Cross Border Studies was represented by economist Maureen O’Reilly, who presented on the topic of public action for cross-border economic development in the context of the Ireland/Northern Ireland border.

The project “Instruments for the facilitation of the cross-border territories integrated economic development”, led by the MOT, is a launch project of the European Union’s cohesion policy 2014-2020 programme, and is strongly oriented towards the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. With this project, the MOT intends to contribute to the preparation of new tools for European project and programme managers, in order to support cross-border economic development.