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Blended capacity-building on sustainable energy measures & action plans for European municipalities (BEAM 21)

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BEAM 21 has been developing and implementing capacity-building training programmes for decision makers and administrative staff in European municipalities. Its aims were to encourage them to apply intelligent measures for increasing energy efficiency, reduce CO2 emissions, and install renewable energies in municipalities. Facing the relevance of energy for the economy of the European states and considering the global crises, the question of intelligent energy management is one of the decisive questions to achieve European climate protection targets. Municipalities are among the most important players to reduce GHG emissions and reach the 20–20–20 goals by 2020. BEAM 21 steeped in at this point to support local capacity-building for climate protection and an intelligent use of energy, including local Sustainable Energy Action Plans.The project developed, tested & provided blended (i.e. real and virtual) training sessions to local authorities and other relevant stakeholders (businesses, NGOs) on a range of topics including e-government, procurement, energy saving and renewable energy sources. This multi-lingual training component contributed to enable local and  regional authorities to elaborate or complement their sustainable energy plans in 9 countries.


  • A capacity building training program has been set up adapted to the needs of (1) decision makers and (2) staff. The training modules are available in English, Bulgarian, Czech, German, French, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish & Romanian adapted to the country specific needs. The training modules have been transferred to interactive national e-learning platforms based on Moodle and available freely to the public via guest-account.
  • In total 40 additional trainers have been trained and are able to deliver capacity building training sessions using the methodology & contents developed in the project. It is three trainers each in Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Latvia and Romania and six trainers each from Germany & Poland and ten trainers from France.
  • The capacity-building training has been delivered to much more participants than planned. The project reached 423 participants (municipal decision makers and municipal staff) from 59 municipalities (mostly in the range of 10.000 – 100.000 inhabitants) in the 9 project countries. Throughout the project 87% of the participants completed the course successfully, about 70% of all participants took part in evaluation procedure of which about 90% expressed their satisfaction with the course.
  • Even more than the intended 15 target communities were encouraged to take the necessary decisions and measures towards a smarter and greener local energy management. Almost every second city (i.e. about 30) discussed intelligent energy measures by the end of the project, partly as a result of the project training; 7 develop at least in part a local energy action plan.
  • The informal competence network of partners, experts and trainers has been strengthened. Close links were maintained with relevant initiatives and networks, such as the CoMo, the Climate Alliance and ICLEI.

Lessons learned

  • The selected method of blended-learning is suitable and capable to reach a wide range of participants with different backgrounds and time capacities.
  • The BEAM 21 courses have biggest impact, where staff and decision maker courses were closely interlinked and where networking with other municipalities could be facilitated.
  • Even in cities that already have energy action plans, capacity building courses are very useful to push the implementation process forward.

Partners and coordinator

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Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung Brandenburg - Werkstatt für politische Bildung e.V.
Contact point: 
Ms Inka Thunecke


Key documents

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In brief

01/09/2009 to 31/08/2012
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