Case Study

OPEN Neighbourhood – Communication for a stronger partnership: connecting with citizens across the Eastern Neighbourhood

Client: Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR), European Commission | Sectors: Social Policy, Security and Justice, Natural Resources, Economic Growth

The ‘EU NEIGHBOURS east’ is the main regional communication project of the European Commission covering the Eastern Neighbourhood region and part of the EU OPEN Programme. 

We implemented the project since November 2015 and it will last until October 2020. The main goal of the project is to contribute to the improvement of the perception about the EU and a better understanding of the EU support to the Eastern Neighbourhood (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine). The project covers few areas of expertise, and especially: 

(a) Design, development, implementation and reporting on thematic campaigns under the four EU-EaP priorities by illustrate the impact of this cooperation on the people’s daily life. The campaigns are run online, on the media and trough people-to-people contact. A special initiative “Young European Ambassadors’ (YEAs initiative) was designed and is implemented by the project whose goal is to organise dialogue driven public diplomacy activities in the six countries. As part of its communication component the project participated in the development of the new ‘EU NEIGHBOURS’ website and is responsible for all content on the ‘east’ side of the website. All communication products and EU-EaP related materials are available (in 8 languages) on the website: 

(b) Coordinate and provide communication support to the HQs institutions, as well as the Delegations of the European Union to the six Eastern partner countries 

(c) Carry out opinion polling in the six EaP countries in order to understand better people’s perceptions. 
In addition, the project also includes communication and awareness activities focused on energy-related EU-funded assistance in Eastern Neighbourhood countries (EU4ENERGY). 

The initial budget of the project was EUR 4.2mln and following the additional financing obtained from DG NEAR, the current value of the project is EUR 8mln. 

‘EU NEIGHBOURS east’ is producing high-quality, sharable content, such as Audio-visual products (videos, photo-films, photo-albums, etc); Articles and feature-stories, published in local media and on the ‘EU NEIGHBOURS east’ website (see above); TV Reportages and Radio Programmes/podcasts as a results of media outreach efforts; Thematic factsheets (80+); User-generated content, especially produced by the YEAs; More than 400 on-the ground YEAs civic engagement activities; Opinion polling reports (21+) and factsheets (63+) presenting the results in a visual manner; News Aggregator; Communication DigiTool (an internal communication platform for the EUDELs); etc. 

Annual opinion surveys in the 6 Eastern Partnership Countries: Here

Featured stories: Here 

Short videos (a few examples of many):  
1. Here 
2. Here 
3. Here
4. Here

EU Neighbours News aggregator: Here

Flickr account: Here

Facebook account: Here

Instagram account: Here 

Vkontakte account: Here

Key Experts

Giada Trucco Communication Consultant