What this is about
In a blog post published on Bruegel Zsolt Darvas, Jan Mazza and Catarina Midoes analyse the performance of 1,337 European regions and local districts in terms of economic growth. However, the authors do not focus on per-capita growth indicators per se. Instead, drawing on economic theory and data ranging from 2003 to 2015 they take into consideration region-specific growth drivers to obtain a benchmark of potential growth. Consequently, they compare the latter indicator with actual growth rates to grasp which regions have experienced “unexplained economic growth”. Two heatmaps highlight the difference between actual and expected growth rates.
Why we like it
Bruegel’s analysis provides new insights to the issue of growth across Europe. More than that, the blog post can become a starting point to detect newsworthy stories in regions that experience “unexpected growth performances”. Also, the study highlights the relevance of research focusing on the local and regional dimensions. Last but not least, the story shows how maps are a fundamental visualisation tool to share on the spot academic and journalistic pieces of information.