The Citizens’ Observatory Forum was a meeting on the transformative Green Deal Financing that took place on 24-29 September 2023 in Collevecchio, Italy. Participants discussed and jointly worked on the manifesto for the next European Parliament and European Commission’s elections. The manifesto represents the common vision of our coalition for the future of the EU public finance and its role in the just transformation of the EU economy and addressing public needs. In total 38 participants from 14 countries attended the event.
A discussion on trends and challenges in the EU and international financial institutions’ funding was initiated during the Kick-off event of the project in January 2023. The face-to-face Citizens’ Forum was an opportunity to further develop our vision, key demands and priorities for the next 5 years in relation to climate change, biodiversity, social needs, corporate power and the global south. Smaller-groups-work on the manifesto enabled participants to reflect more in depth on the presented issues as well as possible solutions and asks in the 5 different areas. Forward looking solutions on transformative EU public finance that will lead to environmentally and socially just economies and societies were further developed in the plenary. To finalise the document and collect valuable input and feedback from other relevant actors, it has been shared with a wider NGO community, internal and external partners.
The event was also good opportunity for the participants to learn about the different country specific issues related to energy transformation in recovery and cohesion funds and biodiversity financing, as well as plan further steps for cooperation. Participants of the Forum had also a chance to improve their media skills by joining a dedicated training focused on social as well as traditional media. The aim was to strengthen their capacities to communicate their work effectively and strategically. Participants enhanced their skills in public speaking and camera presence, storytelling and identifying topics and thus learned how to make their work more appealing, and lastly in messaging and target audience identification.
Project partners present at the Forum discussed further plans for the upcoming months of the project and exchanged best practice examples related to organisation, implementation and promotion of their activities, such as virtual tours, online webinars and national events. Discussion on possible ways of future cooperation beyond the duration of the project was initiated and will continue during regular online meetings.