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Going further, together

Sep 05, 2017
There is an African saying that goes: “If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go with others.” And the trail to sustainable development in the Alps and to preserving the alpine natural environment, its habitat and its economic area is a very long one indeed. It is one the Alliance in the Alps network of municipalities and CIPRA International have been trekking along together since 1997.

In February 2016 the Executive Boards and Management of CIPRA International and the Alliance in the Alps met in Innsbruck/A to take a look at the future together. In a memorandum of understanding they renewed the foundation for their collaboration and specified a number of common objectives: a strong role in Alpine policy; a vibrant network beyond linguistic and cultural boundaries; and the exploration of new joint venture and topic areas. The agreement is trendsetting for their continued co-operation in the future.

Further networks like Alparc are also supporting CIPRA loyally along the way. One glittering highlight of that co-operation was organising the 4th AlpWeek from 11 to 15 October 2016 in Grassau, Germany (p. 4–9). Together with the EU’s Alpine Space Programme, the Alpine Town of the Year Association, the International Scientific Committee for Alpine Research (Iscar), the network of Alpine associations, the Club Arc Alpin and Germany’s chairmanship of the Alpine Convention, CIPRA drew more than 400 people to Grassau, under the motto of “Alps & People”. One key finding emerged from the many lectures and discussions: sustainable development in the Alps can only be achieved together and one small step at a time.

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“CIPRA and the network of municipalities are like siblings: we have the same background and value the same ideals, but we also have our own minds, our own ideas and talents. By co-operating, we benefit from each other’s strengths; at the same time we’re able to consider and tackle problems from different perspectives.”

Katharina Gasteiger, Alliance in the Alps, Übersee am Chiemsee/D