ENERGY@SCHOOL wins REGIOSTARS award for youth empowerment

On 14 October, the European Commission has announced the winners of the 2020 edition of the REGIOSTARS Awards, which reward the best cohesion policy projects across Europe. The Interreg CENTRAL EUROPE Programme is proud that our project ENERGY@SCHOOL is one of the winners. It proves that #cooperationiscentral indeed for giving youth greater responsibility in transition to a carbon neutral continent.

For the first time ever, this year’s edition of the REGIOSTARS ceremony, happening during the 18th European Week of Regions and Cities, was fully digital and it counted the highest ever number of applications (206) and a high number of votes for the public choice category (33,000).

The REGIOSTARS 2020 focussed on five areas that are crucial for the future of EU regional policy:

  • Industrial Transition for a Smart Europe
  • Circular Economy for a Green Europe
  • Skills&education for a Digital Europe
  • Citizens engagement for cohesive European Cities
  • Youth empowerment for cooperation across borders - 30 years of Interreg

Our project ENERGY@SCHOOL has been awarded in the REGIOSTARS category “Youth empowerment for cooperation across border - 30 years of Interreg” for developing a scheme to train school students to become responsible for monitoring their school energy consumption.

Youth will play a crucial role in Europe’s transition to a carbon neutral continent. Energy@School trained pupils to become ‘junior energy guardians’. Forty-one primary and secondary schools in seven countries (Italy, Poland, Croatia, Slovenia, Germany, Austria and Hungary) took part in the project. Pupils and teachers were appointed as junior and senior energy guardians and made responsible for reducing their schools’ energy consumption. After three years, 24 training programmes had been completed, three digital learning applications created and 241 pupils trained as energy guardians.

"The innovative and key idea is to improve energy efficiency in schools by creating energy guardians to get students, teachers, staff and experts involved in creating “energy smart” schools. Energy@School’s approach guarantees the engagement of all stakeholders, from families and students to schools and municipalities. "

Rita Ricci, Project Manager, Unione dei Comuni della Bassa Romagna 

Six European Commissioners hosted the event remotely. Commissioner for Cohesion and Reforms, Elisa Ferreira, commented: “I want to warmly congratulate the best EU Cohesion policy projects of 2020. Project beneficiaries are the stars of the EU Cohesion policy because they are the ones making our mission a reality, that is to say, an EU more fair and cohesive, ensuring convergence across living standards and increasing everyone’s wellbeing. The REGIOSTARS Awards show that we can achieve excellent results when the EU, Member States, regions and cities work together for the best use and implementation of EU funds and projects.” 


The REGIOSTARS are Europe’s awards to EU-funded projects that demonstrate excellence and new approaches in regional development. The European Commission started the awards in 2008. With the goal of inspiring other regions and project managers across Europe, participating projects are in the spotlight of communication activities at the European level. Five categories and a public choice award are up for grabs every year. 

For more information visit:

REGIOSTARS 2020 Finalists
YouTube playlist dedicated to the winners
Interreg - 30 years together

Or contact us: