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This conference was organized by AEIDL, the European Association for Information on Local Development, to mark the 25th anniversary of the Association. Held in Brussels, with plenary sessions at the European Parliament, the conference attracted 155 participants from 27 countries.

It was enlivened by presentations of 25 highly varied local initiatives, drawn from 17 countries and covering a full geographic range from metropolitan centres to the most peripheral rural regions. Keynote speakers provoked debate about the political perspectives for Europe and for local development, and the counterpoint between local initiatives and the prevailing governmental and commercial systems.

More than 150 people participated in the conference, ‘Reinventing Europe through Local Initiative’, in Brussels on 19-20 February by the European Association for Information on Local Development (AEIDL) on the occasion of its 25th anniversary.

Presentations, discussions and networking focused on 25 ‘promising initiatives’, which have shown that local, citizen-led and participative initiatives for sustainable development are needed more than ever.

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“Reinventing Europe through Local Initiative” is obviously a long-term project.

Here at AEIDL, we would like in the course of the coming years to play a significant role in this new project, working hand in hand with all those who, within our beautiful Europe, are working on promising initiatives helping to shape the future.

Why not join us?

Act 1

The buzz of conversation, and the intense discussions, at this conference revealed a strong commitment to the European project.

The participants deeply appreciate what this international endeavour has achieved – almost 70 years of peace; the great boon of freedom which continues to attract so many migrants into the European Union; and the free movement of people and goods within Europe.

We celebrated together, during the conference, Europe’s wonderful diversity of landforms, climate, ecosystems, wildlife, human history, culture, language, customs, costumes, food, drink, music and so much else. We recognised the contribution which the European Union has made - through LEADER, URBAN, EQUAL and other programmes – towards the encouragement of local initiatives.

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