People in Münster can live to be almost 82 from birth, compared to 85.5 in and around Madrid and just over 73.5 in Severozapaden in northwestern Bulgaria.
This is just one of the comparisons in Eurostat’s regional comparison in Europe, which examines various factors in more than 330 different areas.
Eurostat, the European Commission’s data analysis division, has examined a wide range of life-related factors for its regional handbook, including comparisons in areas such as broadband access, higher education, car ownership, employment and tourist overnight stays.
Currently, data shows that across Ireland, 27.5% are considered urban, while 72.5% are either rural or predominantly rural.
Southern Ireland, which mainly comprises the six Munster Counties as well as Wexford, has more than 1.62 million inhabitants and is 150th out of 331 regions in all of Europe.
In comparison, the Île-de-France region, which surrounds the capital Paris, has the most in the EU with more than 12.25 million, while Åland, an autonomous archipelago in south-west Finland, is also a member of the EU with only 29,000 .
Åland leads the EU regions in terms of employment, with 86.5% of the population aged between 20 and 64 in employment.
In southern Ireland, just over 72% of 20 to 64 year olds are employed, while Sicily, the island off mainland Italy, has the lowest employment rate in the EU at just 44.5%.
When it comes to car ownership, which environmentalists have warned is a major obstacle to eliminating the emissions that worsen the climate crisis, the south of Ireland is viewed as below the EU average.
The number of passengers per car is 468 per 1,000 residents in Southern Ireland, compared to 540 in the block’s regions.
The highest concentration in the EU is found in the Alpine region of Valle D’Aoste, Italy, with 1,488 per 1,000 inhabitants, while in Peloponnese, Greece, it is only 179 per 1,000.
Other transport-related data shows that the Italian region of Lombardy had the highest number of passenger cars in any region of the EU, at 6.2 million.
Among the EU regions, Prov Luxembourg in Belgium had the highest incidence of road fatalities in road accidents in 2019 with 171 deaths per million inhabitants, while Paris-Charles de Gaulle in France was the busiest passenger airport in the EU with 76.1 million passengers in 2019.
In terms of online connectivity, almost 90% of households in the south of Ireland have internet access. This is compared to 99% of the inhabitants of Limburg in the Netherlands and Severozapaden, Bulgaria with 71%.
Those who say they have never used a computer in the south and east of Ireland are around 16%, while in Puglia, the heel of the Italian boot, almost half of the people say they have not used a computer.
Given the enormous connectivity rates, it is not surprising that only 1% of the population of Zeeland in the western coastal region of the Netherlands said they had not used a computer.
According to the regional handbook, there are 19 regions in the EU where the population is expected to increase by at least 15% over the next three decades.
A particularly high forecast growth of more than 25% is targeted for the east of Ireland and the Midlands as well as for the Swedish capital Stockholm.
Some of the most economically disadvantaged regions in the EU had the highest death rates, as the Regional Handbook shows.
“In 2017, the Região Autónoma da Madeira in Portugal had by far the highest proportion (20.5%) of deaths from respiratory diseases. The next highest shares were recorded in the Spanish capital region of Comunidad De Madrid (14.5.). %) and Ireland (14.2%). In more than three quarters of the EU’s regions, respiratory diseases accounted for less than 10.0% of all deaths, ”it said.
In 2020, just over two-fifths of the EU’s population aged 25-34 had a college degree, while Dublin was among the highest in the bloc.
“In 2020 there were nine regions in the EU where at least six in ten people between the ages of 25 and 34 had a tertiary education. These included the capital city regions of Lithuania, Poland, France, Luxembourg, Denmark, Sweden and Ireland, as well as Utrecht (a research center with one of the largest universities in the Netherlands) and País Vasco in northern Spain (where the regional economy specializes in innovation, research and high-tech manufacturing “, It says in the manual.
Relatively high proportions of third-level participations were also recorded in several other regions that specialize in research and high-tech manufacturing – including Münster, according to Eurostat.
“For example, Prov Brabant Wallon (Belgium), Southern (Ireland) or Midi-Pyrénées (France). Regions like these seem – together with the capital city regions – to act like a magnet for the highly qualified, as they exert considerable ‘pull effects’ through the diverse educational, employment and social / lifestyle opportunities they offer “, it says .