Social sustainability – concepts and benchmarks

The European Parliament has published a study recently completed by Milieu looking at the concept of social sustainability. The study, entitled ‘Social sustainability: concepts and benchmarks’ (Main study and Study in Focus), explores the history and interpretations of the social pillar of sustainability, how and where it applies in EU policy-making, and how it is being applied in practice in projects at national, regional and local level.

In terms of EU policy, it looks at how social sustainability applies to the EU’s strategic direction in documents such as the European Green Deal, how it applies to EU policy-making in the Better Regulation Agenda and the European Semester process, and how the concept has been integrated into the EU structural funds.

The study includes recommendations for how the concept could be further integrated into EU policy-making, including how social sustainability indicators could be used to reflect the link between the different sustainability pillars as part of an EU strategic approach to sustainability.
This project was conducted by Milieu in collaboration with the Istituto per la Ricerca Sociale in Italy and Praxis in Estonia.