GEF in Athens – local economies, workers’ rights and growth/degrowth

In November GEF travels to Athens for the European Green Party (EGP) Council hosted by the Greek Green Party, Ecologoi Prasinoi. As well as presenting its latest publications, GEF will organise three events focusing on the Green debate around the euro-zone crisis at this biannual gathering of European Greens.

Athens will be the perfect venue to advance green political discussions to talk about the Green solutions to the eurozone crisis, taking in account the social and economic impacts that the this crisis has had on this country. The location is a clear statement of the Greens’ commitment to finding a workable way out of the crisis that also involves Greece and to tackle the debate on the future of Europe, which is one of GEF’s focus topics for 2012.

Working rights, alternative economy and beyond growth in focus

The Green European Foundation will organise three seminars as part of the EGP’s parallel sessions.

Workers’ rights: Is the crisis creating a race to the bottom?

The first workshop (Friday, November 9th, 14.00 – 15.30, Room Macedonia B) is dedicated to working rights in Europe and how the crisis has negatively impacted on working condition across Europe. This workshop is organised together with the Greek Green Institute, in order to have also have a reflection on how the crisis and the massive austerity measures impacted on labour law in Greece. Speakers in the workshop include Greens Member of the European Parliament Marije Cornelissen, Petros Rylmon from the Labour Institute of the Greek Workers General Confederation and Stefan Clauwert, Senior researcher at the European Trade Union Confederation (to be confirmed). GEF Co-President Pierre Jonckheer will moderate the workshop.


Beyond Growth/Degrowth

The second workshop is hosted by GEF’s Green European Journal and will discuss growth/degrowth, the topic of the GEJ’s third edition. Speakers will include GEJ authors Aurélie Maréchal and Jaakko Stenhäll, who will present competing ideas as to whether economic growth is compatible with green ideals. This session will take place between 15.00 and 16.30 on the Saturday of the Council in room Olympia A.


The politics of local transition movements

Finally, the GEJ will also be organising a workshop on the theme of resilient local economies, which in Greece especially are emerging as alternatives at a time of economic crises. Speakers confirmed include Orestes Kolokouris, who is working on the ground with such initiatives, and Dick Pels from the Dutch Green foundation Bureau de Helling. This workshop will take place between 16.30 and 18.00 on the Saturday of the Council in room Macedonia B.


Apart from the political discussions, the Council participants will elect a new Committee for the European Green Party, which will be in place for the fast-approaching 2014 European Parliament elections.


More information:

Interviews with the EGP Committee nominees