Labour mobility in the Euroregion Galicia-Norte de Portugal: constraints faced by cross-border commuters

Iva Pires, Flavio Nunes

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10 Citations (Scopus)


Removing barriers to labour mobility is expected to contribute to processes of spatial integration in cross-border regions, by an efficient allocation of labour and consequently a convergence between territories separated by a common border. Nevertheless, despite the de-bordering process within the European Union, administrative, legal and language barriers still hamper cross-border labour mobility, preventing the process of labour market integration. The aim of this paper is to identify obstacles to the mobility of cross-border workers commuting within the Euroregion Galicia–Norte de Portugal. The methodology employed combines the analysis of official data on labour mobility with qualitative data gathered from interviews with cross-border commuters, aimed at finding explanations for the different attitudes towards cross-border mobility inside this Euroregion. While traditional push and pull factors remain relevant in explaining cross-border labour flows, the qualitative information offers new insights into different levels of indifference from cross-border workers. The result is a fragmented labour market where Norte de Portugal is providing low-qualified, low-wage labour, whereas Galicia is contributing with well-paid, qualified labour.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)376-395
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Planning Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2018


  • Cross-border
  • labour mobility
  • drivers and barriers
  • Euroregion Galicia-Norte Portugal

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