Multilevel Governance in EU Cohesion Policy
The original inspiration for the development of Multilevel Governance (MLG) as a concept stemmed from the observation on the way the European Union (EU) Structural Funds operate. Since 1988 the EU Cohesion Policy (CP) was a tool to foster further EU integration and to compensate for the liberalising impact of the Single European Act and Maastricht. The principle whereby Local and Regional Authorities are involved in the design, delivery and evaluation of the EU Structural Funds has long been a defining cornerstone of CP, indeed one of the closest practical expressions of both the principle of subsidiarity and of MLG. The proactive Polish EU Presidency was also instrumental in securing a wider appeal to this idea as Community-Led Local Development was seen as achieving at the local level what the Common Strategic Framework aimed to do as to integrate the five ESI funds.