Membership at GEN Europe

Do you have a longing deep down to be part of an international family based on love, trust and solidarity?

Do you and your community need support to make your regenerative vision reality?

We welcome ecoprojects, ecovillages, networks and individuals as members of our Europe-wide network.

Hear what members have to say about GEN Europe

To date, over 110 ecovillages, 20 national networks and dozens of individuals have joined us, benefitting from unique networking opportunities at our Gathering and National Network meetings, funding opportunities, training and education, and much more. 

Why join GEN Europe?

Want support and advice from groups who have overcome the challenges you’re facing?

Want to access resources, training and funding opportunities directly designed for ecovillages and their networks?

With over 25 years of experience connecting ecovillages, GEN Europe understands the unique joys and challenges of starting a project and living in community. Our membership scheme is designed to help members find support, develop new friendships and partnerships with others walking the same path, and to offer tools and guidance to help make your dreams come true.

Ecovillages, national and bioregional ecovillage networks and individuals can all join GEN Europe. According to your membership type, benefits include:

Events

Members receive access to our annual Gathering, online events and more

Publicity

Publicise your events and courses to an engaged, relevant audience

Networking

Connect and exchange with like-minded individuals and communities

Capacity Building

Members can benefit from our capacity building programme and receive training and mentoring

Resources

Access exclusive resources like our ecovillage education video library

Solidarity

We’re a family and we pull together to support communities in need

Membership categories and benefits

We offer a range of membership categories and benefits depending on the kind of ecovillage, project or network.
If you’re an individual, visit our individual membership page.

Membership criteria

Explore the membership criteria for ecovillages, networks and ecoprojects below. When you’re ready to join us, visit the Member obligations, pricing, application process and more page and find answers to potential questions covered by our FAQ! If you have any doubts or other questions, you can always contact us.
If you’re an individual, visit our individual membership page.

We welcome ecovillages in two membership categories: Aspiring Members and Full Members.
See below for an explanation of each category.

Aspiring membership is a way to encourage potential members to meet our full membership criteria via observing the General Assembly and building human relationships. We aim for a high quality of work in the GEN family and the aspiring membership provides a facilitated access to the full membership.

Criteria:

  1. Aspiring members are communities & eco-villages that do not (yet) meet the criteria for full membership, but consist of at least five permanent** and non-family related adults*** living together in a place, intending to become full members within the next 5 years. If they don’t apply for full membership within those 5 years they automatically become ecoprojects.
  2. Have a common purpose and vision that is aimed at the creation of a culture that considers a balance of ecological, social, economic and culture aspects within their own communities
  3. Support and written endorsement by one buddy community/network* at the time of application.
  4. Exercise community policies of care; protective of free will. Have practices that do not harm or promote harm to community members or external groups/individuals and are in full compliance with the Statement of Tolerance
  5. Have the motivation and take actions to make a positive impact in the the world
  6. Have existed for at least one year
  7. Utilise a participatory decision-making model which is transparent, inclusive, and empowers all its members to make decisions about the community and take on leadership roles
  8. Completed ecovillage impact assessment (optional, but appreciated)

*buddy community/network = full ecovillage or national network member as seen here on this map which support, mentor and act as role models for new & aspiring members to enable a facilitated access to the full membership.
Find more info about the buddy communities/networks here.
**permanent = A member is considered as permanent if the community is their physical home and/or has its official address registered. Community members that are spending a lot of time outside of their community due to work commitments and travels etc., are only considered permanent if the community is their single and regular place of return upon travels.
***family related adults = adults that are first-degree relatives by blood

Full ecovillage membership is a way to actively be part of steering the GEN movement, engage in international projects and collaborations and to access the wealth of knowledge of the many communities and individuals that make up the network.

Criteria:

  1. Have at least 10 community members of which 7 should be permanent non-family related adult*** residents living together on the chosen site for at least 2 years
  2. Have a common purpose and vision that is aimed at the creation of a culture that considers a balance of ecological, social, economic and culture aspects within their own communities
  3. Manage the land and/or real estate in joint legal form (association/cooperative etc.) that is, as an independent legal entity, while exceptions can be made when the legal environment of the – community does not allow for joint legal forms
  4. Include environmentally friendly building, consumption, production and recycling practices
  5. Have attended the General Assembly as an aspiring member at least once
  6. Exercise community policies of care; protective of free will. Have practices that do not harm or promote harm to community members or external groups/individuals and are in full compliance with the Statement of Tolerance
  7. Have the motivation and take actions to make a positive impact in the the world
  8. Utilise a participatory decision-making model which is transparent, inclusive, and empowers all its members to make decisions about the community and take on leadership roles
  9. Renewed their ecovillage impact assessment (optional, but appreciated)
  10. Renewed written endorsement by their buddy community/network*

*buddy community/network = full ecovillage or national network member as seen here on this map which support, mentor and act as role models for new & aspiring members to enable a facilitated access to the full membership. Find more info about them and their role here.
**permanent = A member is considered as permanent if the community is their physical home and/or has its official address registered. Community members that are spending a lot of time outside of their community due to work commitments and travels etc., are only considered permanent if the community is their single and regular place of return upon travels.
***family related adults = adults that are first-degree relatives by blood

Full National- and Transnational Network membership is a way to actively be part of steering the GEN movement, engage in international projects and collaborations and to access the wealth of knowledge of the many networks, communities and individuals that make up the network.

  1. Have at least three established GEN Europe ecoproject and/or ecovillage members associated
  2. Have elected representatives
  3. Are registered as an organisation
  4. Have an organisational email address and website
  5. Organise network activities such as an annual gathering
  6. Have existed for at least 6 months
  7. Have a common purpose and vision that is aimed at the creation of a culture that considers a balance of ecological, social, economic and culture aspects within their networks
  8. Exercise policies of care; protective of free will. Have practices that do not harm or promote harm to their members or external groups/individuals and are in full compliance with the Statement of Tolerance
  9. Have the motivation and take actions to make a positive impact in the world
  10. Utilise a participatory decision-making model which is transparent, inclusive, and empowers all its members to make decisions about the network and take on leadership roles
  11. Written endorsement by one buddy network/community*

*buddy community/network = full ecovillage or national network member as seen here on this Map (https://gen-europe.org/networks/gen-europe-members-map/) which support, mentor and act as role models for new & aspiring members to enable a facilitated access to the full membership. Find more info about them and their role here (link membership FAQ) on this page.

Please note the following exemption: Based on the approval of the Membership Manager and the Council, exceptions can be made for networks that are not classified as national or/and transnational networks and/or fulfil the following criteria (have at least three established GEN Europe eco-projects and/or eco-villages as members; are registered as an organisation; have elected representatives), but fulfil the other criteria, serve their network and create significant activities and value within the GEN network. After approval by the General Assembly, they can even become full members of the network.

The membership for ecoprojects is a way to create visibility and to support the growth of the many projects of our movement which do not meet (and will never meet) the criteria to become a full member since their focus is rather on the promotion and education or other more specific ways of fostering the ecovilllage lifestyle & principles. It also refers to e.g. urban and cohousing communities that are actively living in community, but may not be able to meet our definition of an ecovillage.

  1. Ecoproject members are physical projects of various sizes led by at least 2 people that are not set up with the intention to meet the criteria for the full ecovillage membership, but actively live, inspire, educate and foster the ecovillage lifestyle and ecovillage principles of the social, ecological, cultural and ecological dimension of the Map of Regeneration.
    1. The following types of projects are considered as ecoprojects:
      1. (Urban) co-housing projects & communes
      2. Learning and demonstration centres
      3. Green schools
      4. Permaculture centres and farms
      5. Restoration sites
      6. Holistic Centres
      7. Eco Tourism Sites
  2. Have a common purpose and vision that is aimed at the creation of a culture that considers a balance of ecological, social, economic and culture aspects within their own project
  3. Exercise policies of care; protective of free will. Have practices that do not harm or promote harm to members or external groups/individuals and are in full compliance with the Statement of Tolerance
  4. Have the motivation and take actions to make a positive impact in the the world
  5. Have existed for at least one year
  6. Utilise a participatory decision-making model which is transparent, inclusive, and empowers all its members to make decisions about the ecoproject and take on leadership roles.

Please note: we are currently updating our membership form!
If you’d like to become a member in the meantime, please contact our membership manager Carolin via the contact form.

Want to learn more?

Still wondering if membership of GEN Europe is right for you?

Discover more about our members on our membership page and ecovillage map, or contact our Membership Manager Carolin Waldmann, if you can’t find what you’re looking for!