Regional quality of living in Europe

  • Piet Lagas PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency
  • Frank van Dongen PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency
  • Frank van Rijn PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency
  • Hans Visser PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency
Keywords: Quality of Living, Regional policy, Economic growth, Competitiveness, Population density, GDP per capita, European regions

Abstract

This article sets out the conceptual framework and results of Regional Quality of Living indicators that were developed in order to benchmark European NUTS2 regions. Nine non-business-related indicators are constructed to support the goal of policy makers to improve the attractiveness of regions and cities for people or companies to settle in, and by doing so create economic growth. Each of the constructed indicators represents a pillar of the Quality of Living. The highest indicator scores are found for regions within Switzerland, Sweden, Norway and the Netherlands. Some countries show a wide divergence between regional scores. The southern regions of Italy and Spain, for example, have significantly lower scores than those in the north. In addition, capital city regions have better RQI scores. A positive correlation was found between the average RQI scores and both GDP per capita and weighted population density. Compared to GDP per capita, weighted population density has a modest influence on the RQI score. The European regions are divided into 11 clusters, based upon GDP per capita and weighted population density in order to benchmark a region with its peers.

References

Annoni P, Dijkstra L (2013) EU regional competitiveness index (RCI 2013). Joint Research Center of the European Commission, report EUR 26060 EN, Brussels

Charron N, Lapuente V, Dijkstra L (2012) Regional governance matters: A study on regional variation in quality of government within the EU. European Commission, DG Regional Policy, WP 01/2012

Cherchye L, Moesen W, Rogge N, van Puyenbroek T (2007) An introduction to ‘benefit of the doubt’ composite indicators. Social Indicators Research 82: 111–145

CIRI – The Cingranelli and Richards Human Rights Data Project (2012) The Cingranelli and Richards Human Rights Data Project. http://www.humanrights.com

DG Regional Policy (2010) Measuring quality of government and sub-national variation. Report for the EU Commission of Regional Development, European Commission, DG Regional Policy, Policy Development Directorate

Dijkstra L, Annoni P, Kozovska K (2011) A new regional competitiveness index: Theory, methods and findings. European Commission, DG Regional Policy, WP 2/2011

Dobbs R, Smit S, Remes J, Manyika J, Roxburgh C, Restrepo A (2011) Urban world: Mapping the economic power of cities. http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/urbanization/urban_world, McKinsey institute

EIU – Economic Intelligence Unit (2012) Global food security index. http://foodsecurityindex.eiu.com/

EIU – Economic Intelligence Unit (2015) Global liveability ranking. http://www.eiu.com/public/topical_report.aspx?campaignid=Liveability2014

ESPON (2011) Territorial dynamics in Europe: Trends in accessibility. http://www.espon.eu/main/Menu_Publications/Menu_TerritorialObservations/trendsinaccessibility.html

ESPON (2013) Territorial Dynamics in Europe: Natural hazards and climate change in European regions. Territorial observation no. 7, http://www.espon.eu/main/Menu_Publications/Menu_TerritorialObservations/TO7_June2013.html

ESS – European Social Survey (2014) European Social Survey, open ESS round 6. http://nesstar.ess.nsd.uib.no/webview/velocity?v=2&mode=documentation&submode=abstract&study=http://129.177.90.83:80/obj/fStudy/ESS6e02.1

Eurofound (2014) European quality of life survey, 2011-2012. https://www.eurofound.europa.eu/news/spotlight-on/quality-of-life/overview-quality-of-life-citizens-and-public-services

European Commission (2010) Europe 2020: Commission proposes new economic strategy in Europe. http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-10-225_en.htm

Eurostat (2015a) Eurostat database. http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/data/database

Eurostat (2015b) Landscape diversity expressed as Shannon Evenness Index. http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/File:Landscape_diversity_expressed_as_Shannon_Evenness_Index,_by_NUTS_2_regions,_2009.PNG

Glaeser E (2011) Triumph of the city: How our greatest invention makes us richer, smarter, greener, healthier and happier. MacMillan, New York

Hyslop D (2013) Global peace indicator. Personal communication, 6 February 2013, Institute for Economics and Peace, Sydney, Australia

IenM – Ministry of infrastructure and environment (2012) Planning vision for infrastructure and landscape. Dutch ministry of infrastructure and the environment, The Hague

International Living (2010) 2010 Quality of Life Index: 194 countries ranked and rated to reveal the best places to live. http://internationalliving.com/publications/reports/quality-of-life-report/

Katz B, Bradley J (2013) The metropolitan revolution. http://metrorevolution.org/, Brookings Institution

Lagas P, Kuiper R, van Dongen F, van Rijn F, van Amsterdam H (2014) Regional quality of living in Europe. Report nr 1271, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency. http://www.pbl.nl/sites/default/files/cms/publicaties/PBL-2014-Regional-Quality-of-Living-in-Europe-1271_0.pdf

Mercer (2010) Defining quality of living. http://web.archive.org/web/20110705043507/http://www.mercer.com/referencecontent.htm?idContent=1380465

Michelin (2013) Michelin-starred restaurants – the Michelin Guide selection. http://www.viamichelin.com/web/Restaurants

Monocle (2011) Most liveable cities index. http://monocle.com/magazine/issues/45/thelliveable-cities-index-2011/

Morais P, Camanho AS (2011) Evaluation of performance of European cities with the aim to promote quality of life improvements. Omega 39: 398–409

Nardo M, Saisana M (2008) OECD/JRC Handbook on constructing composite indicators. Putting theory into practice. European Commission, Joint Research Centre. https://composite-indicators.jrc.ec.europa.eu/?q=content/oecd-jrc-handbook

NCIS – National Center for Education Statistics (2012) Programme for international student assessment (PISA). OECD

NUMBEO (2012) Cost of Living. http://www.numbeo.com

OECD (2006) OECD territorial reviews: Competitive cities in the global economy. OECD Publishing, Paris

OECD (2011) Sustainable Governance Indicators. OECD. http://www.sgi-network.de/, OECD, Bertelsmann Stiftung

OECD (2012a) Better Life Index. http://www.oecdbetterlifeindex.org/

OECD (2012b) OECD health statistics. http://www.oecd.org/els/health-systems/health-data.htm

OECD (2013) Definition of functional urban areas (fua) for the OECD metropolitan database. http://www.oecd.org/gov/regional-policy/Definition-of-Functional-Urban-Areas-for-the-OECD-metropolitan-database.pdf

QS – QS topuniversities (2013) World university rankings; ranking of universities of Europe. http://www.topuniversities.com/

Raspe O, Weterings A, Thissen M (2012) De internationale concurrentiepositie van de topsectoren. PBL report number 500210003, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague

Raspe O, Weterings A, van Oort F (2010) De economische kracht van de Noordvleugel van de Randstad. OECD publishing, SBN nr 9264027092 November 2006, PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague

Sharpe A, Andrews B (2012) An assessment of weighting methodologies for composite indicators: The case of the index of economic well-being. http://www.csls.ca/reports/csls2012-10.pdf, Centre of Study of Living Standards

S&P – Standard and Poor (2014) Standard and Poor ratings. http://www.tradingeconomics.com/country-list/rating

Stiglitz J, Sen A, Fitoussi J (2009) Report by the commission on the measurement of economic performance and social progress. http://www.stiglitz-sen-fitoussi.fr/documents/rapport_anglais.pdf

TI – Transparency International (2012) Global corruption barometer. http://www.transparency.org/

van Kamp I, Leidelmeijer K, Marsman G, De Hollander A (2003) Urban environmental quality and human well-being. towards a conceptual framework and demarcation of concepts; a literature study. The Netherlands Landscape and Urban Planning 65: 5–18

VoH – Vision of Humanity (2012) Global peace index. http://www.visionofhumanity.org

WEF – World Economic Forum (2013) Eu28 -– analysis of EAPI performance. http://reports.weforum.org/global-energy-architecture-performance-index-2014/eu28-analysis-of-eapi-performance/

Weterings A, Raspe O, van den Berge M (2011) The European landscape of knowledge-intensive foreign-owned firms and the attractiveness of Dutch regions. PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague. http://www.pbl.nl/sites/default/files/cms/publicaties/002823_european_landscape_knowledgeintensive_firms.pdf

WHO (2011) Global health observatory data. http://www.who.int/gho/database/en/

Wikipedia (2014) List of International schools 2014. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_international_schools

Worldbank (2012) World governance indicators. http://www.govindicators.org

Yager R (1996) Quantifier guided aggregating using owa operators. International Journal of Intelligent Systems 11: 49–73
Published
2015-07-27
How to Cite
Lagas, P., Dongen, F., Rijn, F. and Visser, H. (2015) “Regional quality of living in Europe”, REGION, 2(2), pp. 1-26. doi: https://doi.org/10.18335/region.v2i2.43.
Section
Articles