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ENRD at Climate change mitigation and adaptation in RDPs: assessing the scope and measuring the outcomes Good Practice Workshop,
10-11 February 2014, Larnaca, Cyprus


The workshop on ‘climate change mitigation and adaptation in RDPs: assessing the scope and measuring the outcomes’ was organised by the Helpdesk of the European Evaluation Network for Rural Development in collaboration with the Cyprus National Rural Network.

The workshop discussed the exchange of good practices and experiences in the assessment of climate change mitigation and adaptation activities within RDPs among Managing Authorities, evaluators and researchers. Part of a series of ‘Good Practice Workshops’ organised by the European Evaluation Network, the event gathered around 70 participants including representatives from national and regional authorities, national rural networks, academics, researchers and evaluators from across Europe.

The two-day workshop focused on:

  1. an introductory session featuring representative from Cyprus Ministry of Agriculture, the European Commission and the Evaluation Helpdesk who provided an overview on the topic of climate change, the role of RDPs and the assessment of RDP impact;
  2. a good practice session featuring case studies about assessing climate change mitigation and adaptation activities; and
  3. an interactive discussion session to identify effective RDP responses to climate change adaptation and mitigation.

For more information about the Evaluation Helpdesk Good Practices Workshops

Main findings

Climate change action is high on the EU policies’ agenda. For rural development policy in particular climate change is a cross-cutting priority for 2014-2020 programmes. A recent survey undertaken by the Helpdesk found awareness level to be strong among national authorities but less so among land managers. It also indicated that national level climate change action mainly focuses on mitigation rather than adaptation.

The workshop confirmed the possible conflicts between climate-related objectives and other priorities (e.g. biodiversity conservation) in climate change programming and the complexity in capturing impacts of climate-related action through indicators, the lack of experiences and methodological gaps as regards to monitoring and evaluation and indeed the challenge of quantifying climate change targets.

The workshop provided insight and practical examples into how climate-change adaptation and mitigation activities can be assessed. Overall the event confirmed the strong interest in the topic and the need – especially for MAs – to further understand the dynamics of climate change adaptation and mitigation through RDPs.

An interesting interactive mapping exercise provided scope for reflections on the use of 2014-2020 RDP measures to address climate change issues and a tentative approach to scoring measures according their low, medium or high potential impact. The exercise confirmed that climate-change issues (and related actions) are very much context specific. It also highlighted the participants’ programming expectations.

Thus the scope of the workshop included both programming and evaluation aspects. The RDP climate change screening exercise undertaken by the Contact Point following the CAP Health Check is still a valid tool in supporting rural development programming. The screening exercise results were shared among participants to help inform a related Helpdesk survey and the DG CLIMA ongoing study on ‘mainstreaming of climate change into rural development policy post 2013’.