Reaching new heights, together | 2 Mers Seas Zeeën

Reaching new heights, together

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The 2 Seas Annual Event "Reaching new heights, together" was held on 29 & 30 September 2022 in The Hague.

It attracted close to 300 participants and was an excellent opportunity to showcase the results of 2 Seas cross-border project achievements and help beneficiaries continue the successful cooperation in the 2 Seas area.


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Learn where we are at

Close to 300 cross-border cooperation project partners, experts and professionals of the 2 Seas area gathered on 29th and 30th September 2020 in The Hague to participate in the 2 Seas 2022 Annual Event. Participants had the chance to find out the achievements of the 2 Seas projects that receive ERDF funding through the Interreg 2 Seas Programme 2014-2020. 

The opening session included a warm welcome speech by Astrid Bronswijk, representative of the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate, who then let the floor to Simon Burnett, the representative of the UK National Authority, which had the Presidency of the 2 Seas governance in 2022. 
Next, the Joint Secretariat presented the state of play of the 2 Seas Programme which included a global overview of what the eight calls for proposals have generated: not less than 82 approved projects involving 885 organisations.
You can find the presentation used during this session here
As the key word of the event was “Reaching new heights, together” in order to facilitate immediate contact in the perspective of the matchmaking workshops, representatives from Guest Programmes were invited to present themselves, namely Interreg North-West Europe, North Sea Region, France-Wallonie-Vlaanderen , Vlaanderen-Netherlands, LIFE and Horizon Europe. 



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The heart of the event

One of the highlights of the 2 Seas Annual Event was undoubtedly to discover what the Programme had to offer. Eight project energiser workshops were organised in order to showcase tangible achievements of a selection of projects. For one hour, participants had the opportunity to listen to projects key achievements, but also to discuss challenges and/or opportunities for new collaborations. The selected projects partners took ownership of these workshops and it was really interesting to see the complementarity between our participants; we have no doubts they will lead to future successful projects.

These were followed by six matchmaking workshops that aimed at matching Interreg 2 Seas projects’ interest with Interreg 2021-2027 thematic priorities. The workshops were organised by theme gathering the suitable Interreg Guest Programmes: North-West Europe, North Sea Region, France-Wallonie-Vlaanderen and Vlaanderen-Netherlands. Participants had the opportunity to benefit from this unique “one-stop-shop” for Interreg funding and find answers to their questions in order to enhance the possibility of continuing their activities and strive for cooperation beyond the 2 Seas Programme.

Participants were also included in an information session on other programmes, specifically LIFE, Horizon Europe and Interreg Europe’s Policy Learning Platform who could lead them to carry out different projects in sectorial programmes. You can find the presentations in the Documentation centre below. 

A key moment of the event was the permanent networking opportunity which took place in the exhibition area. The stands of the 2 Seas projects and those of the Guest Programmes were an incentive to develop new project ideas, to exchange about them and to see if they were of interest for another Programme in order to reach new heights. 

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Ready to reach new heights

The closing session started with "Voices from the 2 Seas", a series of testimonies from people who benefitted from 2 Seas projects, click here to listen to their experience.

Next, the “2 Seas Project Video Awards” took place, a thrilling contest involving 25 projects and more more than 1,500 votes where five projects emerged as winners:  BIO4SAFE, COOL TOWNS, NEREUS, MOTION and SIREE. Click here to see the ceremony.

Furthermore, a speech delivered by the Straits Committee showed how cooperation among coastal territories will continue its development based on the networks established within the 2 Seas Programme. It is available here.

The closing session ended with an inspiring conclusion drawn by Noel Farrell, Desk officer of the 2 Seas Programme in DG Regio and Anne Wetzel, Directeur Europe for the Managing Authority, Hauts-de-France region, that you can find here

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The media available from the event has been uploaded to our different channels. 

If you want to relive the experience, a YouTube playlist gathering the salient moments and interventions from the event together with an aftermovie is available here.

Additionally, a series of pictures has been added to the Google Photos account. Check them out here

Don't forget to check out the Documentation centre here below for the presentations and other supporting material used during the event.