Romania was the first European country to ratify the Kyoto Protocol and has reached its 2020 European objective in renewable energy ahead of time. Environment protection was one of the most painstaking processes in Romania’s EU accession and the one which required the longest transition periods. Reversing the damage caused by the pre-1989 disregard for sustainability takes time – and in healthcare and education, the unfinished reforms prompt public innovations such as inclusion networks of mediators and a strong development of civil society and private alternatives to the public system.
During communism and shortly thereafter sustainable development was a rather unknown term. From a highly resource-intensive and labour-intensive economy, the Romanian state has had to transition to a free market and the knowledge society, careful with its environment and natural resources and the quality of life of its citizens. From the first national strategies in the field in the late ‘90s to the current post-Horizon 2020 policy, the Romanian government, private companies, civil society and regular citizens were all enablers of sustainable development. Now Romania has the highest improvement in the EU in the past 10 years in household energy efficiency and highest allocation of EU funds to Sustainable Urban Development. Beyond policy changes in areas directly linked to sustainable development, Romania has also looked at health and education as key drivers to innovation and a responsible use of all types of resources available. With much reform still needed, Romania’s public and private universities have joined a global trend of diversifying their offers to better suit the demands of the labour market. At the same time, Romania still struggles to modernise its public health system, despite a modern emergency response mechanism and technological advances with regards to the patient’s interactions with the system.
We invite you to explore the database of Romanian institutional and individual experts in each of the specific sub-fields below.