The aim of this paper is to map the spatial variations in the size of the shadow economy
within Brussels. Reporting data provided by the National Bank of Belgium on the deposit of high denomination banknotes across bank branches in the 19 municipalities of the Brussels-Capital Region, the finding is that the shadow economy is concentrated in wealthier populations and not in deprived or immigrant communities. The outcome is a call to transcend the association of the shadow economy with marginalized groups and the wider adoption of this indirect method when measuring spatial variations in the shadow economy.
This synopsis is the first attempt until now to make a global assessment of the role and importance of higher education in Brussels in its interactions with the city and urban development.
This synopsis includes three distinct parts. The first part defines the Belgian institutional and political framework of higher education institutions in Brussels. The second establishes a series of observations. The third part discusses some major challenges and debates regarding higher education institutions in Brussels.
Knowledge brokers have emerged as a new type of actors shaping scientific production, influencing science–policy relationships, and thereby contributing to regional competitiveness. Yet, the spatial dimension of these knowledge brokers has received little attention. Using Framework Programme participations in European cities, we analyse and discuss the location strategy of knowledge brokers, highlighting the importance of co-location with the funding source. Our findings show that knowledge brokers are clustered in Brussels, and not elsewhere, to be closer to the European Commission in order to access strategic, informal and tacit information, while contributing to the construction of transnational R&D networks. While this ‘local buzz’ has positive side effects on the regional innovation system of Brussels; knowledge brokers emerge as a new type of spatially clustered actors shaping the distribution of EU funding for ‘European knowledge pipelines’.
In order to promote “cohesion, competitiveness and cooperation” across Europe, the EU has established a common regional policy to support underdeveloped territories. This EU regional policy required to set up a very complex mechanism to implement such a huge effort to coordinate many interventions across highly differentiated territories. However, those territories are provided with very different institutional settings, and then the mechanism to coordinate all of them becomes particularly complex. The aim of this paper is to discuss the EU multi-level governance for structural funds (SFs), revising the origin, rationale and evolution of this policy in order to identify the limits of the institutional mechanism for the implementation of this policy. These limits will show their effects on the unstable distribution of SFs across the EU regions on a long-term perspective. Results show that the intervention of the EU is neither constant nor stable across regions, independently from their development paths. This instability should provide further arguments on the discussion about the SF policy and governance in order to take into considerations also institutional limits of the EU.