Together for Cohesion’s final conference responds to the communication challenges of the cohesion policy

 

“Together for Cohesion: Let’s rEUnite!” started in April 2019 and is getting close to the end with the final event that was held on the 16th of June. The webinar virtually gathered 115 participants including policymakers at various levels of government, project managers, and various stakeholders all involved in the implementation of cohesion policy activities and willing to learn more about its communication.    To this aim, we shared the lessons learned during this project as well as new inputs on cohesion policy through a highly diversified panel of experts involving politicians, regional practitioners, commission officials, and communication experts from across Europe.

Michiel Rijsberman, Regional Minister from Flevoland and Chair of the AER Task Force on Cohesion Policy, opened up the webinar by introducing the cohesion policy and the project ‘Together for Cohesion: Let’s rEUnite!’. He emphasised the importance of the cooperation in order to communicate Cohesion Policy to the citizens.

Jan Pycha, Senior Project Manager and Team Leader at mc Group and partner of the project Together for Cohesion, explained general principles and strategies about communication and their application to cohesion policy. He gave relevant tips on how to communicate challenging and abstract topics such as the cohesion policy.

Chiara Vivaldelli, European Project Manager at the Province of Trento, and representative of the Province for the project Together for Cohesion share their difficulties and successes in informing citizens about cohesion policy. She explained that one of the main challenges is the distance that the citizens can feel between them and the European institutions.

Cornelia Carmen Madaras, Advisor at the Foreign Affairs Office of the Alba County Council, and representative of the County for the project Together for Cohesion, shared her experiences with partnership and its importance and implementation in the communication of cohesion policy. She explained that partnerships allowed for better access to knowledge and the sharing of best practices in their contribution to a common goal.

Finally, Diego Villalba de Miguel, Deputy Head of the Communication Unit of DG-REGIO European Commission presented the citizens’ knowledge of the policy and the current and future use of cohesion policy funds. His presentation shields light on how cohesion funds have been deployed to respond to the current COVID-19 crisis, as well as the perspective of the next budget.

What’s next?

To know more about the webinar’s outputs, you can download here the presentations of our panellists!

Citizens’ awareness and the current and future use of cohesion policy funds, Speaker: Mr. Diego Villalba de Miguel (Deputy Head of the Communication Unit of DG-REGIO European Commission)

General principles and strategies about communication and their application to cohesion policy, Speaker: Mr. Jan Pycha (mc Group)

Difficulties and success factors in informing citizens about cohesion policy, Speaker: Ms. Chiara Vivaldelli (Autonomous Province of Trento)

Partnership: Its importance and implementation in the communication of cohesion policy, Speaker: Cornelia Carmen Madaras (Alba County Council)

Stay tuned, for those of you who missed the webinar or would like to have a sustainable takeover of the lessons shared, we will soon circulate an e-learning video summarising the inputs of the webinar!

Lastly, in the coming weeks, more activities will be organised by the regions involved in the project. We invite you to check out our Cohesion Calendar to be updated on upcoming events! You can also have a look at the success stories gathered from projects funded by the Cohesion policy around Europe.