CHIOS Lab will focus on planning and developing a strategy to strengthen the ability to respond to crises that currently merge, as well as considering those that might need to be addressed in the future. This will be accomplished by considering multiple areas for action (social protection, community engagements, health provision, schooling, financial considerations and budgeting), contributing to strengthening the resilience of the administrations but also the society. 

Key Features

Chios is the 5th largest island in Greece, located in the North and East Aegean. Along with the smaller Islands Psara, Antipsara and Oinousses, Chios constitutes one of the Regional Units of the North Aegean Region. This island has a rich natural and build environment, a large variety of agricultural products, including the famous Chios mastic, along with olive oil, figs, wine and citrus fruits. It has a long tradition in shipping and ship-owners. 

With an international airport and links to major Greek ports,  Chios has a notable tourism sector. It is characterised by several wonderful beaches, old stone-built mansions, Byzantine churches and villages on picturesque, located seaside and on the rocks of steep mountains.

Main Challenges

As an insular landscape, Chios presents very specific demographic, economic, political and social characteristics. It is an interesting case as multiple crises overlap and impact the local communities. The pilot will work on complementary challenges:

  • Cascade and multidimensional crisis. Chios became the centre of attention during the 2015 migration and refugee crisis. A huge number of migrants reached the island by sea, having narrowly escaped drowning, including children and women, completely without any belongings. This crisis was followed by a humanitarian crisis, attracting the attention of International and Human Rights Organizations, the European Union, Governments, Local Governments, Non-Profit Organizations (NGO’s), the Church and citizens. This was a critical aspect added to the already unstable political and social environment in Greece due to the socioeconomic crisis ongoing since 2008. The continuous state of crisis hitting increased the pressure on local communities to address these complex and multi-dimensional challenges.
  • The implementation of environmentally sustainable policies is relevant to building resilience for Chios and the insular Greek area. These policies should be supported by reliable data. Thus, it is essential to collect data on the well-being, equality and social cohesion of the region, evaluate to what extent the economic, social and environmental sustainability is affected and identify good practices that serve as a basis for appropriate policy design. 


The methodological approach of CHIOS lab adopts a dual strategy. Firstly, it involves identifying and engaging stakeholders through the development of a comprehensive list encompassing all relevant parties affected by or influencing the migration crisis. Stakeholders comprise numerous organisations on Chios Island, such as the Ministry of Immigration and Asylum, Chios Omogeneia Union, Regional Vice Governor, educational institutions, tourist offices, governmental bodies, healthcare facilities, commerce chambers, development agencies, and local associations like the Union of Mastic Producers of Chios and Red Cross. This first strategy also includes strong engagement with stakeholders on the island, establishing direct and continuous dialogue with a team based in place.

Secondly, the approach entails designing a Greek-language website to serve as a project reference point for stakeholders. This platform will facilitate the completion of dedicated surveys to gather insights into the underlying factors of the crises. These insights will inform co-creation workshops and foresight implementation aimed at bolstering crisis management and fostering long-term resilience.