Third steering committee will take place on the 11th of April in hotel Colon, Barcelona. When preparing the steering committee and planning the activities for the third semester as well as assessing the progress we turned back to the results achieved in the first year and the interregional conference in Varna 12-14.12.2017. As Henry Ford once said, "Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is a success." This simple quote resembles the work environment and team relationship we strive to create at Land-Sea project. During the second semester, the team members went through a challenging journey. The partners have planned a large Interregional Conference for the beginning of November – the first large scale event of the Land-Sea project to be carried out in Catalonia.
However a crisis in Catalonia began on 1 October 2017 after the Catalan parliament held a referendum on independence which the Madrid government had already declared illegal. Our extremely hospitable Catalan Partners were highly challenged to organize such a conference, presumed that circumstances went beyond their control. The force majeure obstacle would has affected negatively the project activities planned for the second semester IF the Bulgarian partner wouldn’t have reacted quick and proposed to organize the event in Varna. The time was passing and fast partner decisions had to be taken. Time needed to organize such an event had to be minimum 2 months. Teamwork was more than crucial in order to success! Regardless of the short time, the Regional Administration Varna ensured the successful implementation of the Land –Sea Interregional conference.
Topics were kept as planned for Catalonia, stakeholders in all countries organized for travelling quickly, agenda and presentations prepared!
The key words here were cooperation, coordination and shared team work. All three of these were important and all three are aspects of the Land - Sea project team environment. Regional administration Varna was glad to support its Spanish partner and host the organization of the Land-Sea event. Three days of meetings, networking, expert panels and exchange of good practices for more sustainable development of the land-sea eco-systems were launched in Varna city jointly and with the support of all participants from Italy, Spain, Bulgaria and Germany.
The interregional conference welcomed over 80 officials, NGO representatives, policy makers, representatives from public and private sectors and journalists. The event brought together professionals, experts and policy makers to discuss the ways in which the further development of ecotourism strategies can be planned. The Conference has gathered participants from all stakeholder’s groups who contributed to making this event such a success. This is a good example of how team efforts can overcome even political force majeure and even boost the team spirit in the interregional cooperation.
It is a good example also of mutual trust. These common efforts the Bulgarian partner saw as a very appropriate prelude to the moto of the Bulgarian Presidency of the EU Council - United we stand strong!