Achievements to date


  • In March, ECOLISE secured funding for the recruitment of a part-time policy coordinator. Prior to this, all ECOLISE policy development work was undertaken by volunteers, supported by the part-time executive director.
  • Co-hosted a conference in Brussels with the EESC to mark the first ever European Day of Sustainable Communities on 23rd September. Participants included EU policy-makers from the European Commission, members of the European Parliament and of the EESC, government representatives, and community leaders, including ECOLISE members, partner organisations, associations and NGOs.
  • Applied to and was accepted as a member of Climate Action Network and Sustainable Development Watch Europe.
  • Participated at COP23 in Bonn, promoting the need for governments and policy makers to engage with and support the thousands of grassroots, community-led initiatives on climate action that are currently acting in a policy vacuum.
  • Input to the European Network for Rural Development’s 2nd thematic meeting on Smart Villages
  • Input to the EESC’s opinion on Advantages of the Community-led Local Development approach (CLLD) for integrated local and rural development.


  • Contributed to the EESC’s survey on Building a coalition of civil society and subnational authorities to deliver the commitments of the Paris Agreement
  • Invited to participate in the Multi-stakeholder Coalition (coordinated by the EESC/Committee of the Regions) on the implementation of the Paris Agreement
  • Awarded observer status at the COP, with ECOLISE delegations already participating in COP21 (Paris) and COP22 (Marrakech)
  • In November 2016, ECOLISE organised a policy training event in Brussels, in which seven ECOLISE member organisations participated. This included presentations on EU policy making and programmes, with a contribution from Tony Long, the former director of WWF-Europe, followed by meetings with senior officials at DG CLIMA, DG AGRI and DG REGIO, a meeting with Benedek Javor MEP, at the European Parliament, and rounded off with a meeting with the president and vice president of the EESC’s Sustainable Development Observatory (SDO)


  • Mobilised ECOLISE members to develop a common response to the European Commission consultation on reducing GHG emissions in the Member States, and to the consultation on emissions in the agricultural sector.
  • Participated in the European Network for Rural Development (ENRD) working group and conference on the green economy, where it continued to highlight the important role of community-led action.
  • Contributed to an EESC public hearing and Opinion on Community-Led Local Development (ECO/314 EESC-2012-1040).
  • Awarded membership status in the EU’s Structural Dialogue on the European Structural and Investment (ESI) Funds.


  • Contributed actively to the development of the European Commission’s Community-Led Local Development (CLLD): guidance document for beneficiaries, and to an Opinion of EESC on CLLD. In both cases, ECOLISE succeeded in achieving the inclusion of important references to the role of CLLD in addressing climate change and sustainability.
  • Contributed to a UN consultation on the new Sustainable Development Goals, and to a related European Parliament report on the Global Framework Beyond 2015.