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How to engage civil society? Learning from the Austrian Citizens’ Climate Assembly

February 9, 2023

One of the key challenges for climate assemblies is to engage the broader public and civil society. Learning from previous assemblies, the European Climate Foundation funded two Civil Society Engagement Officers - Laura Grossmann and Paula Spilauer - to act as liaisons between the Austrian Citizens’ Climate Assembly (Klimarat) and civil society.

The key objectives of the Officers were to:

  • Inform the general public about the assembly and deepen theunderstanding of the method and the process
  • Inform established (climate) actors about the assembly andbuild relations for further cooperation
  • Support the organisation of the assembly’s official stakeholder board
  • Support the assembly participants in spreading the word aboutthe assembly and become active in their home regions
  • Ensure transparency about the process on different levels,e.g. on the website and in communication with civil society
  • Support the PR team in their work, e.g. in social media,organising interview partners.

As the Assembly came to an end, the work of the two Officers shifted focus to assist the founding of the association of members of the assembly and to support the association and civil society in promoting the recommendations.

Laura and Paula have produced a report on their experience, drawing important lessons for future assemblies. The report provides valuable guidance and insights for commissioners and organisers on the challenges, opportunities and impacts of engaging different publics and supporting assembly members once the assembly has made its recommendations.

Report of the civil society engagement officersDownloadReport of the civil society engagement officers (short version)Download

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