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This paper targets to juxtapose the points of view of citizens, as be-neficiaries of the European programmes – on the one hand, and of practitio-ners – as designers and experts in charge of implementing the Cohesion Policy programmes – on the other. The study was conducted at the level of a sample consisting of 9 NUTS II regions of the European Union, which were selected to be representative for the com-plex and heterogeneous reality of the EU Cohesion Policy. The analysis of data collected from the case study regions demonstrated that, regardless of the status of the regions (competitiveness or convergence regions), there are overlaps as regards points of view of the two categories of regional actors only for a part of regional priorities. At the same time, the study revealed that the citizens’ trust in the effectiveness of the EU in targeting regional issues is higher in the case of those regional needs that are on the agenda of both categories of regional actors and it drops for those regional issues for which perceptive divergences exist between citizens and practitioners.


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