Between 15 and 18 September 2020, Ecologic Institute together with ZOE Institute for future-fit economies and other partners convened a "closed-doors" EU online conference on long-term challenges from the COVID-19 crisis for the EU's economic governance and the implementation of the Green Deal.
Over 120 policymakers from the European Commission and other selected guests attended this high-level conference. Panelists included top EU officials such as Valdis Dombrovskis (Executive Vice-President) or Maroš Šefčovič (Vice-President). In addition, several director-generals or directors of various DGs (e.g. Jean-Eric Paquet from DG Research and Innovation or Astrid Schomaker from DG Environment) as well as distinguished scholars and leading thinkers such as Tim Jackson or Kate Raworth contributed to the conference.
The conference aimed to identify key questions and policy solutions for the long-term challenges of COVID-19. Further, it helped strengthening cross-institutional collaboration and knowledge-sharing as well as creating a space for public sector innovation. The key questions were: What recovery compass does the EU need to bounce forward? Hoe to identify and deal with complex interactions between policy objectives? How to implement recovery plans to ensure that investments unfold their transformative potential for a just and green transition deal?
The conference included four policy labs with various sessions. The topics of these policy labs were the following:
- Ensuring a Green Recovery;
- Towards a Just Transition;
- Governance for Resilience;
- Fiscal Policy revised.
Through a suite of interactive online tools and methods - including digital whiteboards, frequent and rapid break-out groups and design thinking elements - the conference developed a co-creative approach to boost public sector innovation. It produced transformative proposals for the review of the EU's economic governance, the implementation of the Green Deal and relation to Just Transition Plans, National Recovery and Resilience Plans, and the Annual Sustainable Growth Strategy as well as the improvement of better regulation in the EU.