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First European Sustainability Award: “Empowering People and Ensuring Inclusiveness and Equality”

Monday, March 11, 2019

Following the adoption of the Reflection Paper: ‘Towards a Sustainable Europe 2030’ a more optimistic outlook for the future of Europe has emerged. Building up on this momentum, the European Commission is organising the first ever EU Sustainability Award on the 8th April 2019, to which CSR Europe has contributed by shaping the designing process of the awards. CSR Europe’s President, Étienne Davignon and members of the network will preside over as jury.

The EU Sustainability Award is aimed at rewarding women and men from different organisations that practically collaborate on solutions to improve sustainable living inside and outside Europe.

The awarded projects have to take into account the theme for this year “Empowering People and Ensuring Inclusiveness and Equality.” However, they should respect the cross-cutting nature of the SDGs, addressing all their three dimensions, namely environmental, social, and economic ones. Seven projects will be awarded: two from Public Authorities (one below and one above 100.000 inhabitants), two from Private Entities (SMEs and Large Enterprises), two from Civil Society (for projects inside and outside Europe), and one from Youth Organisations.

The European Commission received in total 148 projects, of which only a few came from Youth Organisations; there was a deficiency of candidatures coming from Central-Eastern Europe, too.

The Secretariat General did the first selection, shortlisting 21 finalists, whose proposals were evaluated by a Jury. The Jury – chaired by Ms. Gauer (Secretariat General) - was composed of four experts coming from the High-Level Multi-Stakeholder Platform of the SDG: Mr. Davignon (CSR Europe), Mr. Bojanic (European Youth Forum), Ms. Dieskens (Coface- Families), and Mr Potočnik.

The Jury met last February 20th, to decide upon the winners of the Awards. The debate inside the Jury was intense, but the members reached a full compromise on the winners, that will be announced next April 8th. The ceremony will take place during the conference organised by the European Political Strategy Centre: “Sustainable Europe 2030. From Goals to Delivery”.