Complementarity & COBEN

21 April 2021 - Published by Deirdre Buist
Every new project is an opportunity to learn, to figure out problems and challenges, to invent and reinvent – not the wheel, but perspective. One of the self-set tasks in the Stronghouse project is to investigate complementarity and share relevant results from other EU funded projects within the consortium. Partners reach out to ongoing cross-over ‘sister’ projects, dealing with similar themes, to discover what we can learn from each other and expand on these lessons. One such project is COBEN, also under the Interreg NSR Programme. Like Stronghouse, COBEN deals with the theme of Eco-innovation: Stimulating the green economy.

Individual homeowners

Stronghouse wants to (re)design measures to motivate and facilitate homeowners – individually and on a neighbourhood level – to invest in the energy renovation of their homes. By investing and reducing the environmental footprint of 15,000 homes, Stronghouse wants to support homeowners on their journey from initial interest, to planning, financing and contracting energy renovation. While the ultimate goal is to reduce CO2, motivating homeowners to invest in energy retrofitting with financial stimulants is key.

Community benefits

The COBEN strategy focusses on facilitating individual citizens to register with a local energy cooperative. This way civic society and community spirit is their key driver in the energy transition to a renewables-based future.  COBEN’s efforts are concentrated on developing instruments and tools that enable individual homeowners to invest in solar energy, making it possible to generate community benefits from large-scale solar parks. By formulating a clear goal – 20% or 50% citizens ownership of solar installations – it is easier to organize the necessary scale and drivers to invest.




By comparing both projects’ perspectives we can increase our learning in terms of:

  • Supporting active community participation

  • Generating community benefits

  • Planning a phased approach

  • Involving local companies

    Read the full paper on Stronghouse: Complementarity & COBEN,  written by Ugo Leever of the Province of Drenthe.


Visit the COBEN website for more: