December 21, 2022 | Elsbeth Bembom

Highlights of 2022: What a start!


The Christmas holidays are approaching, which sets the perfect timing to reflect on the many developments and events of the past year. 2022 has been of immense significance for REGROUP. In February, the fantastic news that our project was granted Horizon Europe funding was announced and a few months later, in October, REGROUP was publicly launched in Groningen by the RUG team in the company of its consortium partners, as well as two Advisory Board members. On behalf of the REGROUP team, we are pleased to share more details of our flying start in this blog article. Enjoy reading about the REGROUP highlights of 2022!

After hearing the news that REGROUP had received funding from Horizon Europe in February this year, the project partners could not wait to get their hands dirty and put all the ideas and plans from the proposal into practice. A Twitter account was launched, the first introductions and press releases to announce the project were distributed, and additional team members were hired. 

In September, the project officially began, with the Project Management Team at the University of Groningen producing a project logo and website, organising kick-off events, and disseminating news on Twitter and eventually also on Mastodon

Figure 1: Introducing the consortium on Twitter

Kick-off events

During the kick-off events on 13 and 14 October, REGROUP project partners and team members met in Groningen to discuss the initial practical and research aspects of the project. Luckily, Covid-19 did not stop us from meeting physically to kickstart our project together as a team. The schedule was filled with a General Assembly and Executive Board meeting, a research workshop, a networking dinner, and a public event where everyone was invited to hear Advisory Board members Professor Ilaria Capua and Professor Joshua Tucker present their views on the nexus of knowledge, information, and democracy after the Covid-19 pandemic. Read more about the events and insights in our very first blog here


Witness meetings

Besides project management and dissemination tasks, the initial steps for conducting research were also set in motion from the very beginning. As part of the project’s milestones, at the start of two subsequent work packages, a witness meeting was organised, in which  the REGROUP team, Advisory Board members as well as external stakeholders, such as civil society actors and policy-makers, participated to discuss plans, strategies, and directions of the upcoming research. 

Figure 2: Screenshot of witness meeting 2

LUISS University and Istituto Affari Internazionali were responsible for hosting the first witness meeting for work packages 1 and 2. A total of 20 people participated, including an external expert and two EU policy-makers, who provided feedback on the directions to be taken for the two work packages. On November 22, the second witness meeting took place for work packages 3 and 4, organised by European University Institute and the University of Groningen. In it, 25 participants, including two policy-makers, explored the main purposes and methodologies of the upcoming research. 


Website, logo, and infographics

Besides aiming to influence the EU’s policy-making, and contributing to the scientific debate on (post-)pandemic politics, REGROUP wants to generate societal impact for its research. To achieve this, we will reach out to the general public mainly by using digital platforms, such as our project website and social media channels, and by sharing engaging content supported by visual elements, such as infographics, using REGROUP’s recognisable visual identity.

For instance, on our website’s “about” section we briefly describe our project objectives, analytical framework, and structure of the work packages, using infographics to better convey the descriptions to a wider audience. 

Figure 3: The objectives of REGROUP on the project website

The website will function as the main information hub for everyone who wants to find more information about our project. On multiple social media channels, we will share the latest project updates, newest publications, and relevant news. You can find our profiles on Twitter, Mastodon, and LinkedIn here. With our recently delivered Dissemination, communication, and exploitation plan, we have produced a detailed and effective strategy to identify our key target audiences and ways to best reach them.  


Connecting with sister Horizon Europe projects

REGROUP believes in collaboration as a way to foster impact and maximise reach. That is why we established a dialogue with the other two projects funded within the Horizon topic “Politics and governance in a post-pandemic world”. These are the LEGITIMULT project (Legitimate crisis management and multilevel governance) coordinated by the University of Friburg and Eurac, and ROBUST (Crisis Governance in Turbulent Times – Mindset, Evidence, Strategies) coordinated by the University of Roskilde.

During our first online meeting in December, the project management teams and scientific coordinators of the three projects met up to start exploring cross-project synergies and common initiatives. To be continued! 


Towards 2023

2023 will be the year where our academic research gains momentum. Our results will be published from May onwards as part of our paper series, and will become available as open access articles on our website and our upcoming profile on Zenodo. 

Next year, REGROUP will also organise three academic workshops to discuss work in progress and analytical and methodological matters. These will be held, respectively, in March (organised by Jacques Delors Institute, in Paris), June (organised by the University of Cyprus, in Nicosia), and September (organised by the Jagellonian University, in Krakow). More on these in the forthcoming months. For now…   


…REGROUP wishes you Happy Holidays!