Growth and Regional Development in an Enlarged European Union
Edited by Gertrude Tumpel-Gugerell and Peter Mooslechner
Gertrude Tumpel-Gugerell This volume comes out of the Oesterreichische Nationalbank’s East–West Conference 2001 which took place in Vienna from 4 to 6 November and was entitled ‘Convergence and Divergence in Europe’. Experience with convergence and divergence in the European Union as well as the challenges raised by the convergence of Central and Eastern European countries with the European Union are central to this volume. The chapters focus not only on convergence at the country level, but also deal with the development of regions within individual countries. The Introduction sketches important issues illuminating the background to this volume. The income-per-capita levels of the Central and Eastern European countries are generally far lower than those in the European Union and at the same time far from homogeneous among these countries themselves. Moreover, in recent years real growth rates in the accession countries have stood at relatively moderate levels; unemployment rates are still high or have increased even further in some countries. It is stated that economic policy should aim at fostering real growth in a stability-oriented environment and warned against premature eﬀorts to comply with the Maastricht nominal convergence criteria. Part I starts with an overview of the history of convergence and divergence in Europe, by Ivan T. Berend. The author stresses that, as a result of the industrial revolution, the gap between the locomotive-driven cores and horse-driven trudging peripheries widened tremendously during the ﬁrst 60 years of the nineteenth century. After eradicating illiteracy, Scandinavia was the only former peripheral...