In October 2023, 20,000 invitations were sent across the Catalan population and 100 Catalan citizens were randomly selected to ensure representativity of the diverse social profiles in terms of age, gender, educational level, territory or origin. The Assembly comprised an initial 100 randomly selected citizens, 83 of whom participated in the six meetings that took place throughout the Catalan region between November 18, 2023 and February 10, 2024.

Applying a dilemma-based approach during the whole assembly, participants worked first with experts and other stakeholders, before initiating discussions that ended up with a total of 48 (forty-eight) recommendations.

The selected topics were the following ones:

  • Climate change and the deployment of renewable energies,
  • Climate change and gri-food model for the future.

The Catalan Climate Assembly ended in February 2024 and now is the time to draw some lessons. We interviewed the Government of Catalonia organizing team: Pablo García Arcos (Head of Strategic and Transversal Projects) and Núria Pérez Milán (consultant) from the Subdirectorate of Citizen Participation.

Political committment: a key factor

According to Pablo and Núria, although political commitment is a key factor when organizing a Citizens’ Climate Assembly, the participation of political party representatives in the debates and deliberations was not allowed, since the debates must provide an outcome of a well-informed and positioned citizen input. Organising such a large and delicate participatory process for citizen’s deliberation is challenging, that is why there were some elements that could not be anticipated, which were addressed while in the process.

An example of this was the methodological design of the sessions to ensure a more prominent citizen positioning in the most controversial debates, something that provides key learning for other assemblies in approaching a concrete and specific debate.


Read more on:

CLIMAS Blogpost: How does the Citizens’ Assembly work?

Generalitat Catalunya official page: Assemblea Ciutadana pel Clima de Catalunya.

Promotional media on YouTube, public TV, radio and official social media channels.

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