IMAJINE - Integrative Mechanisms for Addressing Spatial Justice and Territorial Inequalities in Europe

The core aim of IMAJINE is to formulate new integrative policy mechanisms to enable European, national and regional government agencies to more effectively address territorial inequalities within the European Union, and to imagine a future for European regions in which the distribution of resources is consistent with principles of social and spatial justice.

Territorial cohesion is a guiding principle for EU policy, alongside social cohesion and economic cohesion, yet in recent years territorial inequalities within the EU have widened as the post-2008 economic crisis and adoption of austerity policies have had an uneven geographical impact. There is, accordingly, a pressing need to re-appraise the appropriateness and efficacy of existing policy instruments for tackling territorial inequalities, and to consider and develop alternative mechanisms. In order to achieve this aim, IMAJINE will adopt a multi-disciplinary approach that combines qualitative and quantitative data and macro-scale analysis and case study research, involving economists, geographers, political scientists, psychologists and sociologists. The University of Helsinki is leading the WP 1 (Conceptual and Policy Review) of the IMAJINE project. In this WP our research team uses interviews and document analysis to outline the development and conceptualisation of ‘Spatial Justice’ and ‘Territorial Inequality’ in academic literature, EU policy, and among regional policy makers.

Project members

Professor Sami Moisio, PI

Dr Mikko Weckroth, post-doc researcher

Example publications

  • Jones, R., Moisio, S. Weckroth, M. Woods, M. (2018) [in press]) Re-conceptualising Territorial Cohesion Through the Prism of Spatial Justice: Critical Perspectives on Academic and Policy Discourses in Lang, T (eds.) Local and Regional Development in Times of Polarisation. Re-thinking spatial policies in Europe, Palgrave McMillan.
  • Weckroth, M. T. K., & Kemppainen, T. T. (2016). Human capital, cultural values and economic performance in European regions. Regional Studies, Regional Science 3: 1, 239–257.