In the framework of the BIOEASTsUP project the current situation of the bioeconomy sector in the 11 Central and Eastern European (CEE) BIOEAST member countries were mapped. EIHP (Croatia) and Luke (Finland) performed country specific analyses and derived evidence based policy options for each of the BIOEAST member countries. In order to present these findings, discuss them with the stakeholders and support the process on the national strategy development for transition to circular bioeconomy, 8 national round tables for Hungary, Lithuania, Estonia, Croatia, Bulgaria, Latvia, Romania and Slovenia were organised virtually in the period 5 to 13 October 2020.
FNR (Germany) and IUNG (Poland), as partners responsible for the development of National Platforms for Strategy Development, supported the organisation of the round tables and, together with the National Contact Points (NCP) of BIOEAST, mobilised the stakeholders in the target countries. The round tables were mainly addressed to bioeconomy stakeholders already actively involved in different bodies of the BIOEAST initiative at macro-regional and national level such as: the BIOEAST Board members, BIOEAST National Contact Points (NCP), BIOEAST Advisory Council, BIOEAST Foresight Task Force members, National Representatives in the BIOEAST Thematic Working Groups (TWG), BIOEAST Ad-hoc Inter-ministerial Groups (BAIMG) and National Stakeholder Groups (NSG) (respectively BioHubs) and BIOEASTsUP Project Partners. The aim was also to attract other stakeholders from business, research and civil society and motivate them to get involved in the BIOEASTsUP project.
In total 164 people (52 % from research sector, 35% from policy sector, 7 % from civil society (NGOs, public bodies etc.), and 6 % from the business sector) registered for the round tables; the attendance rate was higher than 90 %. The round tables were held in very constructive atmosphere and were found very beneficial by the attendees. FNR and IUNG collected the immediate feedback of the participants on the proposed policy options using the mentimer app.
The current situation in each of the countries in focus is different as they have different natural resources, development stages of the economy and different policies, but there is an unexplored potential for transition to circular bioeconomy. All European countries will need to comply with the ambitious decarbonisation aims of the European Commission published with the European Green Deal. National policies based on solid statistical data may pave the way to smooth transformation of economy and society and contribute to achieve this goals. The presented methodology and data analyses demonstrated the possibility to support the decision making process with solid statistical evidence, when deciding about potential future development options.
After the last three virtual roundtables for the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia (planned for the last week of October 2020) the presented materials will be disseminated to the participants and particularly to the BIOEAST Ad-hoc Inter-ministerial Groups (BAIMG), where they will have the possibility to reflect and comment on the findings. The information exchanged in the country specific roundtables will directly feed into the drafting of national bioeconomy action plans and Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda for bioeconomy.
The project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 862699.
FNR contact person: Dr. Boris Vashev