“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead (1901-1978)
TESS (Towards European Societal Sustainability) was a European research project active from November 2013 to November 2016, which explored the role of community based initiatives in creating a sustainable, low-carbon Europe. We aimed to contribute to the growing body of academic research on grassroots social innovations. We also developed advice and reflective material for both policy-makers and community activists who are working on the low-carbon transition.
TESS’ primary academic outputs are the Research Deliverables. For more details on the research process and to contextualise the deliverables, please refer to our Research Approach pages. A number of academic articles are in preparation and will be published in various academic journals after the project finishes.
Public decision-makers can access policy briefs highlighting the main findings of the project. In addition, the TESS booklet on “Community Climate Action across Europe” provides a more narrative introduction to a wide diversity of initiatives across 6 countries, based on the 62 TESS case studies.
Community activists can get inspired with our booklet of 62 case studies of Community Climate Action Across Europe. They can also try our self-assessment tools to estimate their impact on their community’s resilience and on carbon emissions. These are accompanied by information sheets and video tutorials.
TESS produced a final video entitled “The Diverse Impacts of Community-Based Initiatives”. In it, we present our main results as well as our self-assessment tools. Watch the video here.
Communications & Events
TESS disseminated results electronically via newsletters and social media. TESS also organised two face-to-face events: a mid-term (un)conference entitled “Can the Transition to a Sustainable Future be Locally Led?” and a final conference entitled “Sustainability transitions towards low-carbon societies”.
The complete overview of TESS outputs can be found on our resources pages.