About CONSOLE Project

The CONSOLE project focuses on promoting the delivery of Agri-Environmental-Climate Public Goods (AECPGs) by agriculture and forestry through the development of improved contractual solutions.

The (difficulty in the) provision of public goods is related to major challenges such as trade-offs between environmental performance and farm profitability, the time lag between action and impact, and the potential mismatch between the scales of actions and effects. As a result, several AECPGs, such as water and air quality, control of soil erosion, carbon sequestration, animal and plant biodiversity and recreation are characterised by under-provision.

Agricultural policy in the EU has partially re-oriented its objective towards the provision of public goods in rural areas acknowledging today’s societal demands. However Agri-Environmental Schemes (AES), the actions aimed at the delivery of AECPGs are still considered unsatisfactory in terms of longevity, effectiveness and efficiency.

Improvements may come from a flexible mix of promising new instruments, such as new environmental-related tenure systems (e.g. environmental lease), results-based payments or collective approaches, as well as by better value chain strategies, but these have been so far poorly tested in practice in the EU.

The general objective of CONSOLE is to boost innovation in the lasting delivery of AECPGs by EU agriculture and forestry, by building a Community of Practice (CoP), by designing and testing effective and efficient cooperation models and by developing a contractual framework supporting implementation by multiple actors.


Specific objectives are to:

  1. Develop an operational contractual framework which would serve the development of improved and new contracts, accompanied by solutions tailored to local contexts to facilitate policy making, stakeholder interplay and to incentivise contract uptake;
  2. Distil lessons learned from past and ongoing experiences through the structured qualitative assessment of successful innovative and effective contract solutions in the EU and in third countries for the delivery of specific or multiple AECPGs;
  3. Develop understanding of the acceptability and ease of implementation of innovative contract solutions through surveys involving a wide range of farmers, rural landowners and other key contract actors in 12 EU Member States;
  4. Assess the economic, social and environmental performance of new and innovative contract design options by in-depth empirical exploration and model simulation;
  5. Build a CoP with practitioners and actors involved and interested in AECPG provision to facilitate co-constructing, testing and implementation of new solutions, as well as contributing to impacts through participatory co-training;
  6. Making CONSOLE results operative and easily accessible for a wide target audience of interested actors and stakeholders (farmers, farm advisors, administration, business along value chains, NGOs, etc.), hence contributing to a major transition in the way AECPGs are delivered in Europe.


CONSOLE project is based on the mobilization of 25 institutions, covering a broad range of actors (farmers, organizations, researchers, public administration, consultant companies.