Assessing the European Social Fund in the Fight Against Poverty (2014-2020)

This study, commissioned by the Left in the European Parliament, aims to draw lessons from the application of the European Social Fund (ESF+) during the period of 2014-2020 in regards to its goal of combating poverty.

The Regulation for the European Social Fund (ESF) 2014-2020 stipulates in Article 4.2 that, “At least 20% of the total ESF resources in each Member State shall be allocated to the Thematic Objective no. 9 (TO9) “promoting social inclusion, combating poverty and any discrimination”. This article in the regulation responded to the historical decision of establishing a poverty target (reduce poverty by at least 20 million people by 2020) in the Europe 2020 Strategy.

In the 2021-2027 ESF+ Regulation, at least 25% of the funds must be invested in the ‘social inclusion policy area’.

ESF and the Fight against Poverty: The Use of the European Social Fund (ESF) During 2014 – 2020
for Combating Poverty and Achieving Social Inclusion.
Fintan Farrell
85 pages | December 2021

Click here to read the full study (website of The Left in the European Parliament, formerly GUE/NGL).