Interreg project:

Towards sustainable and resilient societies through empowered civil society and collaborative innovation

Our societies face complex ecological and social challenges. Regional and local authorities have a crucial role in driving resilience – societal ability to adapt and react – but they need to mobilise all levels of society to enable sustainable transition.

Various civil society actors have an important role in helping public services to cope with external disturbances. Local and regional authorities however lack efficient methods for systematic bottom-up interaction with various civil society actors to better enable their potential to enhance societal resilience and sustainability.

A key challenge is to integrate civil society actors in innovation efforts and adapt the support structures to encompass also the eco-social dimension. To tackle this the project will engage a great number of regional and local authorities, civil society and other innovation actors from partner regions and beyond to learn, pilot and adapt a so-called Transition Arena method – a strategic tool of transition management.

In this project the method is adapted to co-create a transnational inclusive sustainability vision, and at local levels pathways and concrete steps to sustainability transition focusing on the role of civil society organisations. The project will provide eye opening experiences to regional and local authorities in the partner regions and beyond on how to utilise Transition Arena method in a practical way in participatory strategy and innovation processes towards transition.

In Estonia, to strengthen collaboration between civil servants of local government, civil society actors (including Russian communities) and local entrepreneurs in Estonia, with the aim to foster the transition to the ecologically and socially sustainable society (degrowth). Collaboration will be strengthened through preparing and organising transition arenas in two pilot regions, and supporting the implementation of the initiatives arising from these arenas.


Martin A. Noorkõiv

Project lead for DD

martin (at)

Martin is the CEO of DD and the manager of this project.