One of the founding principles of the European Union is the freedom of movement of workers (Article 39 of the Treaty establishing the European Community). The free movement of workers is essential for the creation of an area without internal frontiers, and for the strength-ening of economic and social cohesion and active citizenship.
Taking an economic perspective, geographic mobility can have major positive effects by bringing about economic growth in countries with labour deficits and prosperity in countries with labour surplus. Hence, the diffusion of skills through occupational and geographic mo-bility is a central factor to enhance the productive capacity of firms and put regions or na-tional economies on a higher growth path. Taking a social perspective, geographical mobility has the potential of fostering social-cultural integration in the European Union, and strength-ening European identity and inter-cultural networks.