Community-led initiatives in Slovenia

From EcoliseWiki


Community-led initiatives have a long tradition in Slovenia. In most cases, these initiatives are organised within non-government organisations (NGOs). In 2020, there were about 27,000 NGOs [1] in a country with the population of 2 million, meaning there is one NGO per every 74 people.

1300 of these NGOs are uninted under the umbrella of The Center of Nongovernment Organisations of Slovenia which serves as the national information, advocacy, training, advisory and project centre.

Plan B for Slovenia[2] is a broad civil society platform for sustainable development, consisting of 37 NGOs that focus on sustainability, ecology, climate change, environmental protection, zero waste, biodiversity, alternative energy etc.

Most NGOs are small and active mostly in their local environment. Umanotera Foundation, the oldest environmental NGO in Slovenia, has been compiling reports on best practices of community-led action for many years. The latest is the web-platform Dovolj za vse (There is enough for everyone), [3] In 2020, the platform had 44 best practices listed of bottom-up action on sustainable spatial planning, sustainable mobility, self-sufficiency in food and organic farming, local circular economy and sustainable consumption, energy efficiency and energy supply from local renewable sources, participatory management or other community-based management of resources. Prior to launching this platform, Umanotera had been publishing A Catalogue of Best Community-based Practices [4]

Transition in Slovenia

Main page: Transition in Slovenia

In Slovenia, there are no real Transition towns or villages. Most activities stemming from Transition movement are taking place under the umbrella of organisations that represent permaculture and ecovillages. In 2020, the 2 Slovenian Transition initiatives[5] listed on The Transition Network website[6] were inactive.

Permaculture in Slovenia

Main page: Permaculture in Slovenia

Permaculture started developing in the mid 1990's and the Slovenian Permaculture Association was established in 1996. The association promotes permaculture through educational programmes and networking with organisations and individuals that share similar interests. Permaculture has a substantial following, dozens of certified trainers and hundreds of trainees that passed the 72-hour Permaculture Design Course.

Ecovillages in Slovenia

Main page: Ecovillages in Slovenia

By 2020, no ecovillage project has met the requirements to qualify as established ecovillage by the norms of GEN Europe. These rural projects mostly consist of one or two families and a few loosely affiliated members, rarely more. In 2020 there were about 20 such projects based on similar principles. Individual groups are well connected and they keep meeting up at least once a year on the Ecovillage Day[7] which has been taking place every year since 2008 and since 2017, the Ecovillage Day is organised on the European Day of Sustainable Communities.

Sunny Hill and Veles farm engage in international projects and partnerships with other members of GEN Europe. Sunny Hill, a member of ECOLISE, serves as an unoficial national ecovillage hub. Ecovillage Mokri potok saw the construction of the first houses in 2019/2020. In the first phase, it will consist of 9 houses, and potentially more in the future.[8]

Community Energy in Slovenia

Main page: Community energy in Slovenia

Solidarity Economy in Slovenia

Main page: Solidarity economy in Slovenia

The SUSY report of 2015 on Social and Solidarity Economy indicates that the concept of social economy is little known or spread in Slovenia. Better known is social entrepreneurship which is attributed in official documents also the role of a " connection factor, as it encourages people’s involvement and volunteer work, and in this way strengthens solidarity in society". The responsibility for the social entrepreneurs sector on national level changed from the Ministry of Labor, Family, Social Affairs and Equal opportunities to the Ministry of economic development and technology in 2015.[9]

Community Food Production in Slovenia

Main page: Community Food Production in Slovenia

Let's do it! World Cleanup in Slovenia

Main page: Let's clean Slovenia in one day.

Let's do it! World movement came to Slovenia in 2009. Slovenia was among the first 10 countries to do a vast one-day national cleanup, engaging a large number of citizens to collect illegally dumped waste. The cleanup on 17 April 2010 had 270,000 participants, or 13.5% of the population of Slovenia. The cleanup was organised by Ecologists Without Borders association. The association had a crucial role in the spread of the movement to other countries in the Southeast Europe and also globally.

Degrowth in Slovenia

Degrowth is represented in Slovenia mostly by Focus Association for Sustainable Development. Focus is involved in national and international projects, conferences and advocacy related to degrowth. In 2019, the book Degrowth, A vocabulary for a new era has been published in Slovenian language.


These are some of the larger relevant movements and projects:

Collaboration with Local Government

Intersections and Interactions