Re-Imagine PLANET
Narratives, Climate and the Future

In December 2019, President Ursula von der Leyen outlined her vision for a European Green Deal, announcing the Commission’s commitment to tackling climate and environmental-related challenges, describing it as “this generation’s defining task”. The battle for a new model of environmentally sustainable growth has become existential. Europe is still in the early stages of a deep transformation in energy, industrial and agricultural processes: reaching a climate-neutral economy by 2050 is feasible from a technological perspective, but it requires profound societal and economic changes to be achieved within a generation. Success will require a reduction in emissions from current levels to a neutral balance over the next few decades while continuing to deliver the needed energy at affordable costs.

Task Force on Sustainable Agriculture and Innovation

You can read an overview of the Task Force’s objectives and timing here

The European Green Deal has opened the way to a new, sustainable model of growth for Europe, with the aim of moving towards a fair and prosperous society that responds to the challenges posed by climate change and environmental degradation, thus improving the quality of life of current and future generations. With the Task Force on Sustainable Agriculture and Innovation, Re-Imagine Europa has engaged its Strategic and Knowledge Partners as well as a network of experts to ensure that the work can build on leading expertise from organisations and individuals already active in the debate.

In this regard, the Expert Committee, as the main constituent body of the Task Force, brings together a wide range of expert and stakeholder perspectives. Stakeholder and wider public engagement are crucial here, to ensure ample consideration of the role that science and innovation can play in tackling these key issues.

Agriculture occupies a unique position at the heart of the European Union’s society, environment and economy. With the European Green Deal committing to climate neutrality by 2050, agriculture and the Common Agricultural Policy should play a key role in promoting social, environmental and economic sustainability. Noting the current diversity of interpretations of “sustainable agriculture”, the aim of the Task Force is two-fold:

  1. To develop a shared understanding of what is meant by sustainable agriculture including what values and goals should be prioritised.
  2. To assess how innovations can support the transition to a European agricultural model promoting social, environmental and economic sustainability, starting with genome editing.

In line with the pursuit of these two objectives, in July 2021 two reports were published to reflect the results of the Task Force’s first year of work: “Beyond the Apple of Discord: Existing Narratives and Ways Forward” and “White Paper on the Regulation of Genome Editing in Agriculture“.

Follow all the latest updates on the Task Force’s activities and events on the Planet home page and our social media channels (Twitter, LinkedIn).




Prof. Anne Cambon-Thomsen, Emeritus Research Director, French National Centre for Scientific Research; Member, European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies

Prof. Maria da Graça Carvalho, Member of the European Parliament

Prof. Paolo De Castro, Member of the European Parliament

Mr Garlich von Essen, Secretary-General of Euroseeds

Prof. Dirk Inzé, Full Professor at Ghent University, Scientific Director of the VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology; Coordinator, European Sustainable Agriculture through Genome Editing (EU-SAGE)

Dr Peter Kearns, Special Adviser to Re-Imagine Europa; former Principal Administrator, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

Prof. Urs Niggli, President of

Mr Pekka Pesonen, Secretary-General, Copa-Cogeca

Prof. Pere Puigdomènech, Board Member, ALLEA; Institute of Catalan Studies & Royal Academy of Sciences and Arts

Mr Nils Torvalds, Member of the European Parliament




Prof. Warwick Anderson, Secretary-General, Human Frontier Science Program
Dr. Ana Atanassova, Global Regulatory Policy Manager, BASF Agricultural Solutions
Prof. Janusz Bujnicki, Head, Laboratory of Bioinformatics and Protein Engineering, International Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, Warsaw
Ms Céline Charveriat, Executive Director, Institute for European Environmental Policy
Mr Peter Chase, Senior Fellow, German Marshall Fund of the United States
Mr René Custers, Secretary, European BioSafety Association; Regulatory & Responsible Research Manager, Flemish Institute for Biotechnology (VIB)
Mr Bertrand Dagallier, Acting Principal Administrator, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Mr Jens Degett, President, European Union of Science Journalists’ Associations
Mr Philippe de Jong, Partner, ALTIUS
Dr. Joost Dessein, President, European Society for Rural Sociology; Associate Professor, Ghent University
Dr. Alain Deshayes, Member of the Board, Association Française des Biotechnologies Végétales
Dr. Oana Dima, Science Policy Manager, VIB-UGent Center for Plant Systems Biology; Coordinator, European Sustainable Agriculture through Genome Editing (EU-SAGE)
Mr Philippe Dumont, Member of the Board, Association Française des Biotechnologies Végétales
Mr Saïd El Khadraoui, Special Adviser, Foundation for European Progressive Studies
Dr. Dennis Eriksson, Researcher, Department of Plant Breeding, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Ms Mella Frewen, Director General, FoodDrinkEurope
Dr. Steffi Friedrichs, Director, AcumenIST
Mr Csaba Gaspar, Programme Manager, Forest Seed and Plant Scheme, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Mr Bernd Halling, Head of Corporate Strategy and Advocacy, Bayer
Mr Dirk Hudig, Secretary General, European Regulation and Innovation Forum
Prof. Peter Jackson, Co-Director, University of Sheffield Institute for Sustainable Food
Dr. Petra Jorasch, Manager Plant Breeding and Innovation Advocacy, EuroSeeds
Dr. Gijs Kleter, Senior Researcher, Microbiology and Novel Foods, Wageningen University & Research
Dr. Marcel Kuntz, Research Director, Laboratory of Plant and Cell Physiology, French National Centre for Scientific Research
Dr. Martin Lema, Adjunct Professor in Biotechnology, Quilmes National University
Mr Paul Leonard, Director, EU Government Affairs, BASF Agricultural Solutions
Ms Doris Letina, Vice-President, European Council of Young Farmers
Mr Norbert Lins MEP, Chair, Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development, European Parliament
Prof. Ewa Łojkowska, Head of Department of Plant Protection and Biotechnology, University of Gdansk
Mr Michele Lucherini, former President, Fédération des Barreaux d’Europe
Mr Mark Lynas, author and journalist
Prof. Michaël Matlosz, President, EuroScience
Prof. Monika Messmer, Group lead, Plant Breeding, Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL)
Dr. Marcin Napiórkowski, Assistant Professor, University of Warsaw 
Prof. Andrzej Nowak, Chief Narrative Scientist, Re-Imagine Europa; Professor of Psychology, University of Warsaw & Florida Atlantic University
Prof. Mario Enrico Pè, Institute of Life Sciences, Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna; President, Italian Society of Agricultural Genetics
Mr Marco Perduca, Founder & coordinator, Science for Democracy
Ms Annick Pleysier, Head of Seed and Trait Policy Advocacy, Bayer Crop Science
Prof. Kai Purnhagen, Director, Centre for German & European Food Law, University of Bayreuth
Dr. Karel Říha, Deputy Director for Research, Central European Institute of Technology, Masaryk University
Dr. Claire Skentelbery, Director General, EuropaBio
Prof. Joyce Tait, Co-Director, Innogen Institute, University of Edinburgh
Ms Irène Tolleret MEP, European Parliament
Prof. Piet van der Meer, Guest Professor, Vrije Universiteit Brussel and Ghent University
Dr. Wouter Vanhove, Researcher, Laboratory of Tropical and Subtropical Agriculture and Ethnobotany, Ghent University
Dr. Sander Vandendriessche, Researcher in the department of Energy & Circular Economy at Inagro Research Centre
Dr. Karen Wagner, Head of International Relations, acatech
Prof. Andreas Weber, Chair, Institute of Plant Biochemistry, Heinrich Heine University
Prof. Justus Wesseler, Chair, Agricultural Economics and Rural Policy Group, Wageningen University & Research
Ms Erika Widegren, Chief Executive Officer, Re-Imagine Europa
Mr David Winickoff, Senior Policy Analyst, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
Dr. Fabian Zuleeg, Chief Executive, European Policy Centre

Here you can find the Task Force on sustainable Agriculture and Innovation’s first Evaluation Report (2021)

Carlos Moedas
I fully support you in this endeavour. Your strong commitment towards Europe is very much welcomed.
Genome editing has the potential to make a critical contribution to make food systems more sustainable and more resilient to climate change.