Eurodiaconia: Rebalancing Economic and Social Priorities Conference

In the course of only a few weeks, the discussions on the next seven-year budget of the EU underwent a complete transformation. Red lines defended for a decade became distant memories. The shape of the final MFF and Next Generation EU is dramatically different from what might have been expected only six months before.

Central to the new national recovery and resilience plans is the European Semester. The previously non-negotiable spending rules that were the backbone of the Semester have been shelved. Investment is now the order of the day. To access recovery funding, national recovery and resilience plans must be centred on reforms based on the European Semester recommendations. The Semester is now supposed to be aligned to the ambitions of the Green Deal and is also consistently referred to as the vehicle for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the European Pillar of Social Rights.

The Semester is fast becoming the lynchpin of many different strands of EU policymaking. However, can it truly be compatible with the objectives of the economy of wellbeing that are inherent in the SDGs, the EPSR and the Green Deal whilst still remaining true to the Stability and Growth Pact?

In this conference, we will explore the evolution of the European Semester and what the recent changes to the MFF and recovery fund will mean for the process. COVID-19 has increased the pressure to consider people’s quality of life and wellbeing as key determinants in the development of our society and fundamental factors in driving economic growth, rather than just GDP growth. How can the Semester best respond? Is it time for a Stability and Wellbeing Pact? What changes need to be made in order to create an economy that works for the people and the planet?

How to book 

Please have a look at the draft agenda and register online as soon as possible.

The conference will be hosted online with ZOOM on Thursday 24 September from 10am until 1230pm. 

If you have any questions, please contact Laura Rayner at