Maria Toptsidou

analyst & policy adviser
+352 691 87 32 06


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Maria Toptsidou is analyst and policy adviser at Spatial Foresight. She joined the team in 2013. Among her main professional interests lie the European Cohesion Policy and the European Territorial Cooperation, with a particular interest in macro-regional strategies.


So far, Maria has worked on projects for DG Regio, the European Parliament, the European Committee of the Regions, for Interact, ESPON and on several Interreg Programmes’ ex-ante and ex-post evaluations, as well as for the European Investment Bank for the development of the fi-compass platform for advisory services on financial instruments. She has been involved in the drafting of numerous ESPON publications, such as ESPON Policy Briefs, ESPON Territorial Observations and a number of ESPON Synthesis Reports, giving particular emphasis on policy relevant recommendations. Up to now, Maria has also been involved in several projects on the four EU macro-regional strategies, presented at macro-regional strategies’ Annual Forums and supported the preparation of the EUSAIR and EUSALP macro-regional strategies.


Maria Toptsidou holds a master degree in European Spatial and Environmental Planning from the Radboud University of Nijmegen (The Netherlands) and a bachelor degree in International and European Studies (Panepistimio Makedonias, Greece). She is fluent in Greek (native language), English, German and French.


Böhme, K. & Toptsidou, M. (2020) Scenario snapshots of a post COVID-19 EU: Recovery strategies shaping new normals. Spatial Foresight Briefing 2020:14. Luxembourg. Read
Zillmer, S., Hans, S., Lüer, C. Toptsidou, M., Hsiung, C-H., Stroissnig, U. Münch, A., Le Moglie, P., Kruljac, D. (2020). EGTC monitoring report 2018-2019. European Committee of the Regions, Brussels. Download.

Böhme, K., Toptsidou, M., (2019) Macro-regional Integrated Territorial Investments: How to break out of Interreg. (Spatial Foresight Brief No. 12). Luxembourg. Download.


Haarich, N., S., Salvatori, G., Toptsidou, M. (2019), Evaluating Interreg programmes. The challenge of demonstrating results and value of European Territorial Cooperation. Spatial Foresight Brief 2019:10. Luxembourg. Download.


Böhme, K., Toptsidou, M., Lüer C., Toto, R., Ciro, A., Shutina, D., (2019), The Western Balkans in the Territorial Agenda post-2020: An opportunity not to be missed. Spatial Foresight & Co-PLAN Institute for Habitat Development Brief 2019:9. Luxembourg. Download.


Böhme, K., Lüer, C. & Toptsidou, M. (2019). ‘Towards a European Geography of Future Perspectives: A Story of Urban Concentration’. In: Medeiros, E. (ed.) Territorial Cohesion. The Urban Dimension. Springer. Download.


Toptsidou M., Böhme K., (2018). The EUSBSR after 2020. Governance remastered?, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia and Interreg Baltic Sea Region, Publication for the preparation of the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region 9th Annual Forum. Download.


Zillmer, S., Lüer, C., Toptsidou, M. (2017). Der EVTZ aus raumentwicklungs- und kohäsionspolitischer Sicht. In: Krzymuski, M., Kubicki, P., Ulrich, P. (ed.). Der Europäische Verbund für territoriale Zusammenarbeit. Instrument der grenzübergreifenden Zusammenarbeit nationaler öffentlicher Einrichtungen in der Europäischen Union. NOMOS, Baden-Baden, pp.447-476. The book is available at NOMOS.


Böhme, K., Gløersen, E., Toptsidou, M. (2017). The European Dimension of Europe's Future - Veni, vidi, ... .Nordregio News. 20 years of regional development, 2017, no.2. Nordregio, pp.17. Download.


Zillmer, S., Haarich S., Holstein, F., Toptsidou, M., Le Moglie, P. (2017) Implementation of the Decision and the Framework on SGEIs: involvement of LRAs in the reporting exercise and state of play as regards the assessment of social services as economic activities. European Committee of the Regions. Download.


Haarich, S., Zillmer, S., Holstein, F., Montán, A., Wergles, N., Toptsidou, M., Gorny, H., Brkanovic, S., Celotti, P. (2017), Entrepreneurship on islands and other peripheral regions. European Committee of the Regions. Download.


Zillmer, S., Hans, S., Lüer, C., Montan, A., Toptsidou, M., Schuh, B., Hsiung, C., Celotti, P. & Le Moglie. P. (2017). EGTC monitoring report 2016 and impacts of Schengen area crisis on the work of EGTCs. European Committee of Regions. Download.


Toptsidou, M., Böhme, K., Gløersen, E., Haarich, S. & Hans, S. (2017). Added Value of macro-regional strategies. Interact Programme. Download.


Böhme, K., Holstein, F., Toptsidou, M., Zillmer, S. (2017). Gold-plating in the European Structural and Investment Funds. European Parliament. Policy Department B: Structural and Cohesion Policies. Download.


Böhme, K. & Toptsidou, M. (2017). The future of Europe. and its territories? - A response to the EC White paper on the future of Europe. (Spatial Foresight Brief No. 7). Heisdorf: Spatial Foresight. Download.


Böhme, K., Holstein, F. & Toptsidou, M. (2015). Report on the Assessment of Territorial Cohesion and the Territorial Agenda 2020 of the European Union. Luxembourg: Luxembourg Ministry of Sustainable Development and Infrastructures on Behalf of the EU Trio Presidency.


Böhme, K., Zillmer, S., Toptsidou, M. & Holstein, F. (2015). Territorial Governance and Cohesion Policy. Brussels: European Parliament. Policy Department B: Structural and Cohesion Policies. Download.


Lüer, C., Böhme, K., Jæger, S., Hans, S., Madeira, N., Holstein, F., Toptsidou, M., Tulumello, S., Bina, O. & Ferrão, J. (2015). Report on territorial impact projections. Final deliverable (D7.2) of work package 7 on Territorial Governance. FLAGSHIP project, 7th Framework Programme (FP7).


Zillmer, S., Lüer, C., Toptsidou, M., Krzymuski, M., Dallhammer, E., Kintisch, M., Schuh, B., Celotti, P., Colin, A., Preku, A., Brignani, N., Waterhout, B., Zonneveld, W. & Stead, D. (2015). European Grouping of Territorial Cooperation as an Instrument for Promotion and Improvement of Territorial Cooperation in Europe. European Parliament. Policy Department B: Structural and Cohesion Policies. Download.


Böhme, K., Zillmer, S., Toptsidou, M., Holstein, F., Lüer, C. & Gløersen, E. (2014). A Territorial Perspective on the Europe 2020 Strategy: Contribution to European Public Consultation Process (Spatial Foresight Brief No. 4). Heisdorf: Spatial Foresight. Download.


Lüer, C., Toptsidou, M. & Zillmer, S. (2014). Calculating regionalised scenarios meeting Europe 2020 objectives. In ESPON (Ed.), Science in support of European Territorial Development and Cohesion (Vol. 2), pp. 164–168. Luxembourg. Download.


Zillmer, S., Lüer, C. & Toptsidou, M. (2014a). Transnationale Perspektiven für grünes und blaues Wachstum. Wie Kommunen und Regionen im Rahmen von INTERREG IVB nachhaltiges Wachstum fördern und marine Ressourcen nutzen können (BBSR Sonderveröffentlichungen). Bonn: Bundesamt für Bauwesen und Raumordnung. Download.


Zillmer, S., Lüer, C. & Toptsidou, M. (2014b). Transnational perspectives for green and blue growth. How municipalities and regions can promote sustainable growth and use marine resources in the context of INTERREG IV B (BBSR Special Publications). Bonn: Bundesamt für Bauwesen und Raumordnung. Download.


Zillmer, S. & Toptsidou, M. (2014). Potential and Limits of the EGTC Instrument for Enhancing Integration across Borders (Spatial Foresight Brief No. 5). Heisdorf: Spatial Foresight. Download.


Dr Kai Böhme

partner & director of Spatial Foresight

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Dr Sabine Zillmer

partner & head of Berlin office

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Dr Erik Gløersen

partner & head of Paris office

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Dr Silke N. Haarich

analyst & policy adviser

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Sandra Spule

analyst & policy adviser

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Dr Jean Claude Zeimet

process facilitator & policy adviser

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Maria Toptsidou

analyst & policy adviser

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Frank Holstein

process facilitator

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Sebastian Hans


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Clément Corbineau


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Flavio Besana

research assistant, PhD student

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