High Trust Network for Ambitious Climate Action

The project is completed. Through the establishment of a Hight Trust Network (HTN) of leading conservative think tanks and climate policy makers, primarily in Central and Eastern Europe, the project wanted to enable dialogue on climate issues throughout all segments of society, forming the discursive basis for effective climate action.

Climate Policy Climate Strategies and Plans


Project info


Hungary, Poland

Project duration:

12/19 - 05/21

Target groups:



112,226.60 €

Contact info


Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf

Implementing organisation
  • Századvég Foundation

To achieve effective climate action, all segments of society need to be included in the respective dialogue. This holds especially true for actors whose opinions on climate change issues are not necessarily congruent, namely conservative parties and climate policy makers. The project aimed to promote an informed dialogue between them.

It did so by setting up the High Trust Network (HTN), which included primarily Central and Eastern European stakeholders. The HTN was led by three research institutes: the conservative think tanks Szazadveg Foundation (Hungary) and Sobieski Institute (Poland) on the one hand, and Ecologic Institute (Germany) on the other hand. The members of the HTN were selected by consensus, the implementing research institutes agreed on criteria and suggested and discussed candidates accordingly.

Warsaw, Photo: ©Pixabay

The project contributed to anchoring climate and energy issues firmly in the conservative debate across Central and Eastern Europe, was able to build trust between the parties, and promoteed mutual understanding. The Network members acted as multipliers by passing on the discussion and insights to their constituencies, and thus fostered ambitious and effective climate policy of conservative parties.


EU climate action has been fairly successful. It has reduced emissions by 23 per cent between 1990 and 2016, while its economy grew by 53 per cent during the same period. Still, these mission reductions are insufficient for the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

To achieve further reduction, we need a broad societal consensus on climate action. This requires the inclusion and cooperation of conservative players with climate policy makers: to increase conversation, counter polarization, and lead to more successful, effective climate action. The project wants to demonstrate that dialogue between conservative groups and climate policy makers is possible and productive, aiming to inspire fellow policy makers to follow this example of communication – not only in the field of climate action.

State of Results

  • The project partners created the High Trust Network with 13 participants during the project period. Highly respected politicians and scientists from the project countries Germany, Poland and Hungary could be recruited for the High Trust Network.
  • The Hight Trust Network prepared, discussed and published a total of four publications:

Europe’s economic recovery – climate neutral, fair and innovative

Europe’s Economic Recovery – How can the Recovery and Resilience Facility support achieving climate neutrality?

Preliminary Considerations for Establishing more Ambitious 2030 EU Climate Goals

Implementing new EU climate targets for 2030 and 2050: Preliminary considerations on ETS extension

  • The project outcomes and the High Trust Network views on EU climate policies were presented at the ImpactCEE Conference – one of the largest conferences Poland’s, addressing economic development and many related issues.

Last update: May 2024

More about this project