Workshop "Running for Green Development at Local Level", 2 - 4 June 2022


The scope of the workshop was to provide scientific knowledge on the different climate, environmental and economic aspects of the organisation of running events in remote areas. 

The design of the workshop was done in a way to allow the establishment of the theoretical basis of the project’s objectives and then to trigger a discussion among participants adding facts from the experience of the sport organisations. More specifically, the priorities of this workshop were to provide easy to digest knowledge on several aspects suitable for different type of audiences (academic, practitioners, other stakeholders) and also highlight policy related elements that should be taken under consideration during the design of a running event in rural areas. 

There was a big participation from all project partners and some of the AUEB students who posed relevant questions on how to overcome socioeconomic barriers that affect the sustainability of the running events in rural areas (i.e. more expensive local suppliers, profitability of the organisation etc). 

The elements discussed are mostly replicable in the organisation of almost any type of sporting events, since these are related with increasing the organisation’s local economic impact and reduce its environmental footprint (i.e. waste, air, energy, water resources, biodiversity etc). 

The event took place at the Mount Parnitha Shelter – several running events are being organised every year in the wider Parnitha mountain, which is the mountain with the biggest number of running and mountain biking trails in the region of Attica. 

The guest speaker discussed evidence from a study on the effects of physical exercise in highly polluted areas – the results of this study highlight the added value of any kind of physical exercise in remote areas where the air quality characteristics are better compared to those of a big city. 

A roundtable discussion on the project’s policy implications was initiated. The scope was to identify the project’s strong elements with regards to the lessons learnt and any potential sustainability. Each partner contributed to the discussion highlighting how the capitalisation of the RUNDEAL’s results will take place.