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How can Interreg help in global crises? - A COVID-19 perspective
Event report available
Join the event & learn how key stakeholders can benefit from Interreg cross-border cooperation during the COVID-19 pandemic, and how Interreg can help ease the situation in a global crisis. The session will demonstrate how Interreg has proven to be a relevant and agile tool for citizens during the pandemic, when national borders were temporarily closed and cross-border cooperation was challenged due to a change of priorities to save lives. However, global crises know no borders and neither should the solutions. There was a need to implement quick, efficient methods to handle the new reality. Two projects will demonstrate the innovative approach to treating patients at home with professional healthcare outside hospital environments. The speakers will present their experiences of working with Interreg as a tool during a global crisis with a focus on COVID-19. As a participant, you will be able to learn how local and regional authorities can handle future global crises. Our aim is to “build back better” and create new opportunities for citizens in an uncertain situation. The lessons learned will be converted into 5 simple guidelines in a document for each participant to take home and apply in their own region or city.
Event reportInfo session at European Week of Regions and Cities, 12/10 2021 How can Interreg help in global crises? - A COVID-19 perspective The night before our session we were informed that CoR member Ulrika Landergren was not able to participate. This resulted in a minor adjustment in the programme of the info session, giving more time for discussion and involvement of the participants. The two speakers were given extra time of a few extra minutes for their presentations which we believe was good, as more in-depth knowledge could be shared with the audience. One of the speakers represented two individual projects dealing with the consequences of Covid-19 for the citizens. Ms. Elise Burmeister shared their experiences of engaging the health proffessionals (doctors, nurses) in a critical situation as the health system was under enormous pressure due to the pandemic. One of the projects are treating patients in their own homes instead of coming to the hospital. The second project is dealing with the long-term consequences of having been diagnosed with Covid-19 in Sweden, Denmark and Norway. The programme director of Interreg Öresund-Kattegat-Skagerrak Mr. Magnus Schönning presented the strategies implemented by the programme. This included involving the deci-sion-making bodies to allow for a quick and flexible adjustment of the programme, making it possible for actors to apply for 75 per cent co-financing from the programme for Covid-19 projects. The Q&A session was introduced with a live poll (Mentimeter) and was followed up by ques-tions from the audience, as well as questions prepared by the programme Secretariat. We have a fruitful dialogue with the audience and the speakers acted as a panel, responding to the questions. As a result of the content of our session, we presented 5 takeaways for each participant to take home and implement in their own regions or citites. We feel that the choice of topic for our info session was relevant, due to the amount of participants registered and a lively debate. 5 takeaways from the info session: 1. Keep working across borders during crises Even if borders are closed, and you are forced to work from a distance, you should continue to focus on common challenges that require common solutions. 2. Programme flexibility is important Establish flexible Interreg cross-border programmes, where it is possible to handle common challenges as they occur. How you write your programme can be crucial for the agility. 3. Involve the decision makers Establish close relations with relevant politicians and organisations who are part of the Monitoring Committee. Prepare the decision-making bodies to be responsive to new challenges that require cross-border solutions. 4. Be proactive and play your part When a crisis strikes, consider how you can become an active part of the solution. If you represent a programme, simplify the administrative process for applicants. If you are a region or a city, establish new partnerships in other countries. 5. Show the relevance of Interreg Demonstrate how cross border cooperation has provided added value; for example, new types of treatment and lives saved. Communicate the results to relevant stakeholders. This way, you will make Interreg more relevant for regions, cities, and citizens - now and in the future. Demographical background of participants: In total we had 104 registered participants and out of these 68 were women, and 36 were men. However, we estimate that around 50 per cent of the registered participants actually participated on the event. We were not able to determine the age of the participants, as these details were not included in the registration process.
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