Placing citizens at the heart of the green and just transition to achieve a REAL DEAL for people and planet

  • European researchers in deliberative democracy and some of Europe’s largest civil society organisations have teamed up to reshape citizens’ participation and deliberation for the European Green Deal, as part of an EU-funded research project.
  • The project will build and nurture a community of Europeans promoting active participation and deliberation in the green and just transition around the online platform:

REAL DEAL is a brand new research project, funded by the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme, that aims at reshaping the active participation of citizens and stakeholders around the European Green Deal (EGD).

Building on recent experiences of pan-European deliberation processes, such as the Conference on the Future of Europe, the REAL DEAL’s main research objective is to analyse, test and validate innovative citizens’ participation and deliberation tools, formats and processes in the context of the green and just transition.

The research partners have started to lay out the conceptual foundations for a future protocol for deliberative decision-making at European and national level in the context of the European Green Deal. This will be followed by the testing and validation of innovative deliberative formats and tools across 13 countries and at EU level, including digital, hybrid and physical events and processes.

In parallel, the REAL DEAL partners have started to identify and mobilise a pan-European network of stakeholders, with more than 500 organisations working in the areas of deliberative democracy and climate action across Europe. The first meeting of this stakeholder network took place during the “Civil Society Forum for Sustainability: Shaping the European Green Deal”, last week.

To meet the ambitious objectives for its research and citizen outreach activities, REAL DEAL brings together sixteen partners, including researchers of deliberative democracy and Europe’s largest civil society organisations (CSOs). The project takes a dedicated transdisciplinary approach, with joint work between the partners throughout: from the project proposal and refining the research questions, to the execution of the work packages and the internal review.

From a citizen outreach perspective, the REAL DEAL is set to engage with citizens and other stakeholders by building a community of Europeans who promote participation and deliberation in the green and just transition. The digital hub where citizens can get involved and take action is:

The project is jointly coordinated by the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS), a research organisation, and the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), a civil society organisation.

More about the partners

The REAL DEAL research project involves:

  • Researchers and practitioners of deliberative democracy from a wide range of fields, including sustainability studies, participatory democracy, environmental rights and the law of public participation, ethics and responsible innovation, gender studies and ecofeminism, psychology, geography, urban planning.
  • Europe’s largest civil society networks advocating on the environment, climate, sustainable development, women’s rights, local and European democracy and youth environmental organization

The full list of partners is:

  • Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS)
  • European Environmental Bureau (EEB)
  • Alleanza Italiana per lo Sviluppo Sostenible (ASviS)
  • Association des Agences de Démocratie Locale (ALDA)
  • Central European University (CEU)
  • Climate Action Network Europe (CAN Europe)
  • Dialogik
  • European Movement International (EMI)
  • Global Climate Forum (GCF)
  • Nyt Europa
  • Technical University of Berlin
  • Trilateral Research
  • Wageningen University & Research
  • Women Engage for a Common Future (WECF)
  • Youth Environment Europe (YEE)


Contact and additional information

For inquiries on the REAL DEAL research project, please contact:

Ingeborg Niestroy, IASS:

Manuela Gervasi, EEB:


For any press-related enquiries, please contact:

Sebastián Rodríguez – European Movement International

You can read more about the REAL DEAL project here.


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 101037071.


Placing citizens at the heart of the green and just transition to achieve a REAL DEAL for people and planet
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