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Demography - Demographic Change Regions Network (DCRN)

In 2006, several European regions established a European demography network to cope with the challenges of demographic change: the »Demographic Change Regions Network« . Initiated by the German states of Saxony and Brandenburg, the network now consists of a number of European regions with one thing in common: they are already being visibly affected by demographic change. As this is becoming increasingly prevalent in more and more regions, the network itself is also expanding. It is open, and based on the structure of »flexible geometry«, meaning that it serves as a platform for exchanging information, without restricting members in terms of their own projects outside the network. The members of the DCRN are in close contact with the European commission in order to alert the relevant people in Brussels of the problems on the spot.

Network aims

  • To establish a national exchange of information and experiences relating to demographic change
  • To develop and carry out joint projects, and help arrange project partnerships
  • To raise awareness amongst EU institutions when it comes to the short-term, mid-term and long-term consequences of demographic change
  • To intensify co-operations with the EU institutions
  • To strengthen co-operations among regional agencies in Brussels in relation to issues of demographic change
  • To promote co-operations between the regions, and among public and private institutions, such as universities and NGOs

Network activities (excerpt)

The network’s members utilise the regular exchanging of information on projects and events carried out and held by network members – either individually or together with other regions. The following are examples of specific co-operations:

  • Joint event held on 8 October 2013 as part of the Open Days – the European week of cities and regions, entitled »Debate on the future demographic landscape – How to neutralise the negative effects of demographic crises in Europe?« with presentations on topics such as the modern civic services provided by the Free State of Saxony (»Bürgerterminal« (citizen terminal) and »Bürgerkoffer« (citizen kit)).
  • Joint event held on 27 September 2013, which included a presentation of the »Special Demographic Zone« project run by the Polish voivodeship of Opole (in accordance with the Polish special economic areas)
  • Joint seminar run as part of the »Knowledge and Innovation Communities« – KIC of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), entitled »Knowledge Innovation Communities (KICs): Preparing for the next round. Innovation for healthy living and active ageing« at the Permanent Representation of Spain on 19 June 2013
  • DCRN presentation at the 4th Demography Forum run by the European Commission on 6 and 7 May 2013
  • Two requests to amend the European Commission’s proposals for the future cohesion policy 2014-2020
  • Working visit to the Demography Network in the Dutch province of Limburg with presentations of projects on nursing courses and modern aged-care homes, on 19 July 2012
  • Presentation of a position paper on the cohesion policy and demographic change, made by the Network in the European Parliament on 16 May 2012, supported by Ms Elisabeth Schroedter, MdEP (Grüne/Brandenburg)
  • Participation by certain Network regions in INTERREG projects (INTERREG IV A – »Working together for the Lower Silesia-Saxony border area« project, INTERREG IV B – »ADAPT2DC« project, INTERREG IV B – »Best Agers« project, INTERREG IV C – »DART« project)
  • Joint statement as part of the public consultation on a »European year of active ageing and intergenerational solidarity« (Brandenburg, Castile and Leon, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Eastern Finland, Saxony-Anhalt – 2009)
  • Joint statement as part of the public consultation on the European Commission’s memorandum »Growing regions, growing Europe: Public consultation on the future of the European cohesion policy« (Brandenburg, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, North Karelia, Eastern Finland, Kainuu, Southern Finland, Galicia, Limburg, Limousin, Lower Austria, Lebus, Mazovia, North West England, Southern Bulgaria, West Greece – 2008)
  • A joint seminar entitled »Demographic change in Europe – political opportunities and regional solutions« (Saxony, Eastern Finland – 2008)
  • Statement on the Committee of the Regions regarding Europe’s demographic future (Brandenburg, Committee of the Regions – 2007)
  • Conference on demographic change in Europe as a regional challenge – Potsdam Declaration (Committee of the Regions, Brandenburg – 2007)
  • Joint declaration entitled »Facing Demographic Change as a Regional Chance« (Brandenburg, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt, Central Bohemia, Reichenberg [Liberec], Lower Silesia, Silesia, West Pomerania, North West England – 2006)

Forum of the European Commission on the demographic future, held on 30/31 October 2006



11th OPEN DAYS 2013 Brussels


Demographic Change Region Network


Saxony Liaison Office Brussels

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