Interest Group on Sustainability Research and Solutions (IG EPAS)

The EPA Network Interest Group on “Establishing a European Platform for Actionable Knowledge and Solutions for Sustainable Development” (IG EPAS) facilitates strategic research collaboration among EPAs and between EPA Network and its partners, which is dedicated to support the policy priorities across Europe that seek the urgent, transformative sustainable changes in society and the economy. The group was established in 2022.

Science to policy

IG EPAS PhotoEuropean Green Deal and Just Transition policies, as well as UN Agenda 2030 goals, require science and policies to interpolate various interactions and sensitivities on a multitude of operational levels for generating evidence.

EPAs have an extraordinary position on building such coherent science-policy interfacing capacities, with footing in both research valorisation and shaping policy-relevant science.

By capitalising on the unique understanding and capacities of EPAs, joint EPA research shall improve and facilitate knowledge creation on a systemic, actionable and transversal level and anticipate the research and innovations questions of tomorrow (re. Supporting and connecting policymaking in the Member States with scientific research, EC, October 2022).

Importantly, in this regard, joint collaboration will also allow to close the gaps in our understanding of the interaction between the national and European environmental and sustainable development research agendas. To this end, IG EPAS works to enhance and consolidate research-oriented collaboration of EPAs through

  1. providing a platform for regular mutual exchange and learning for actionable projects and knowledge provision activities;
  2. sharing research strategies and helping to connect objectives in transnational and European-level joint settings;
  3. supporting transdisciplinary research collaborations of EPAs addressing next-level questions of sustainability science; and,
  4. setting-up an institutional network (beyond the Interest Group) to facilitate strategic and operational collaboration with short, mid and long-term common goals

Recent work

  • A first institutional stakeholder meeting introducing IG EPAS and expectations regarding sustainability research – Brussels, 20th March 2023
  • Submission of a proposal for a coordination and support action “Collaborative Action coordinating and enhancing systemic, actionable and transversal Sustainability Research and Innovation (CASRI)” to a Horizon Europe call to support programme level collaboration between national R&I policy-makers
  • Letter DG RTD European Partnership for Actionable Sustainability Knowledge and Solutions
  • Contribution to #RIdays 2021 with a session and a workshop on “Systemic approaches towards sustainability transitions: Circular economy as a transversal need”. Follow the links to watch the Session and Workshop


Current members of IG EPAS are representatives from the following countries and institutions:

  • Austria (Environment Agency Austria)
  • England (Environment Agency)
  • Finland (SYKE)
  • France (Ministry for ecological transition)
  • Germany (German Environment Agency)
  • Ireland (Irish EPA) (observer)
  • Italy (ISPRA)
  • Netherlands (PBL)
  • Norway (Norwegian Environment Agency) (observer)
  • Slovakia (Slovak Environment Agency)
  • Spain (Ihobe)
  • Switzerland (FOEN)
  • Wales (Natural Resources Wales)
  • European Environment Agency (EEA)

IG EPAS is currently co-chaired by the German Environment Agency (Contact: Stephan Bartke, President’s Office) and the European Environment Agency (Contact: Ronan Uhel, Executive Director’s Office. For more information, please contact

Photo: EPA Network Interest group on EPAS, Brussels 2023. Photo: Private