Rethinking governance in the EU

Changing the ‘how’ of policymaking through new methods and tools

The EU has been built on foundations which emphasise economic convergence, GDP growth and competitiveness as goals of higher importance than social and environmental outcomes. With today’s complex challenges which span multiple policy areas, such as climate change, and economic and global health crises, solutions are needed for designing policies which are cross-cutting and leave no one behind. In short, the European Commission needs to rethink the way policies are drafted, designed and who is involved. Only then will the Commission find solutions that are up to the complexity and systemic character of a green and just transformation.

In this project, we aim to develop and create buy-in among the Commission for a new policy design process that promotes systems thinking, inspires new policy ideas, and works to resolve policy tensions by taking a holistic perspective.

To achieve these objectives, we use an iterative and co-creative approach for developing new ideas for how policies are designed based on design thinking. This will ensure impact by creating ownership through participation of policymakers and tailoring outputs to their needs. At the core of this work is a co-creative ‘Governance Innovation Process’ with representatives of the EU Commission. Through this, together we will develop innovative and feasible ideas of how to improve the EU’s governance to better deal with interactions and trade-offs between policies and policy outcomes in preparation for the next Commission. The focus will then shift to implementing the ideas that emerge from this process and applying them to address the social implications of selected policies brought about by the European Green Deal and other environmental policies.

Associated topics
Rethinking Policy Design

Project team