Sustainable Communities Programme
The Sustainable Communities Programme (SCP) is a strategic programme initiated and coordinated by ECOLISE and involving collaborators from across Europe. It aims to build capacity for increased engagement of citizens and change-makers across sectors in community-led action within and across European regions, to help meet global climate and sustainability goals.
Through its Sustainable Communities Programme, ECOLISE, the European network for community-led initiatives on climate change and sustainability, supports the development of a community of practice (CoP) of system transition facilitators. Facilitators, researchers and other change-makers resonating with community-led approaches are enabled to support each other in activating and synergizing the transition potential of their respective place (community, city, region), across movements and sectors.
A series of meetings are taking place during 2019, including a series of online meetings and two workshops, in Croatia in May and Brussels in September, enabled by a FundAction grant. Through this, a pilot group is beginning to share experiences, tools and practices, co-creating a joint enabling framework, and making key insights and information resources available through an open access knowledge commons. The pilot group is also working on a resource and governance model for the CoP. After this initial prototyping, the CoP will continue its work from 2020 and open up to further participants, supported by the ECOLISE team, members and partners.
The idea for the Sustainable Communities Programme emerged from extensive consultation with ECOLISE members during 2017 to identify a flagship project on which all members could potentially collaborate.
Momentum was gathered through a series of online meetings during 2018. A small grant awarded by FundAction allowed delivery of two workshops during 2019, one in Croatia immediately preceding the ECOLISE General Assembly in May 2019, the other in Brussels, coinciding with events organised in connection with the European Day of Sustainable Communities.
Existing Regional Cases
Examples of current relevant regional projects:
- Sustainable Neighbourhoods Programme (Brussels, Belgium)
- Bioregional Learning Centre (South Devon, England)
- Living in Sustainable Villages project (Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany)
- Moray ecovillage development: A Model for Sustainable Community Building in Scotland
- Centre for Ecologial Learning Luxembourg
- Trial eco-citizen project (Liege)
- Oresund Region
- Gradinescu (Romania)
Activity streams necessary for delivery of the SCP:
- Facilitating multistakeholder initiatives and netweaving
- Knowledge sharing
- Policy development
(see notes of first SCP workshop)
Frameworks and Methodologies
- System-shifting networks
- Three dimensions of transformative capacity
New translocal collaborations involving representatives of different regional projects
Proposals for new projects currently in development
- Economic and democratic collaboration
- Promoting just, inclusive and creative sustainability transitions: Translocal Transformative Social Innovation Networks as Communities of Practice