Stream side (extract), Edward Mitchell Bannister. © INRA, EM Bannister

Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)

In the framework of its research activities and the support it provides in policy-making, INRA is launching a cycle of internal seminars beginning in September 2017 on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP).

Each seminar is focused on a specific theme related to the CAP and its evolution in the context of the CAP after 2020. It reviews related scientific knowledge with presentations by researchers from INRA and partner academic institutes. The purpose is to identify top-priority research needs and glean useful insight which can support policy-making.

To this end, a summary of each seminar will be published.

This blog covers this cycle of seminars and, more broadly, INRA research on the CAP and its future. Available on the blog are all seminar-related documents and other material, which can be used to understand and analyse the challenges, objectives and instruments of Europe’s first common policy project : the CAP.


In a short video, INRA CEO Philippe Mauguin presents the cycle of seminars and more generally, the objectives of INRA research on the CAP. We also provide the INRA contribution to the European Commission consultation on modernising and simplifying the CAP (May 2017). This contribution defines five priorities for the (next) CAP. These five priorities will be presented and discussed in the cycle of seminars.

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Seminar 1: Summary of discussions

Published on 02/14/2018

A summary of discussions was written by Hervé Guyomard (INRA Bretagne-Normandie and Paris, the Scientific Directorate for Agriculture) and Cécile Detang-Dessendre (INRA Bourgogne-Franche-Comté and Paris, the SAE2 Division and the Scientific Directorate for Agriculture).

Cap seminar 1 : summary of discussions


Payments for environmental services, public goods and fiscal federalism: CAP challenges

Published on 02/14/2018

In EU legislative proposals in October 2011, the European Commission recalled that market prices do not reflect the provision of public goods and considered that “providing environmental public goods” was the most important of the CAP’s ten specific goals. However, new European regulation strives less to “remunerate collective services” than to encourage “the improvement of environmental outcomes in agriculture”, which becomes one of several goals. At the same time, farmers and...

2nd Seminar's program: October 16, 2017

Published on 02/14/2018

“CAP and Environment”, the second seminar hosted by INRA on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP), took place in 16 October 2017.

Introduction by Hervé Guyomard et Cécile Detang-Dessendre:

Introduction 2eme séminaire

Seven subjects were presented and discussed:
1-    Payments for environmental services, public goods and fiscal federalism: CAP challenges, by Alban Thomas (INRA Toulouse-Occitanie and the SAE2 Division);
2-    Econom...

For a truly greener CAP: rethinking Ecological Focus Areas for biodiversity and farming

Published on 02/13/2018

Ecological Focus Areas (EFAs) are one of three heavily criticised criteria governing the green direct payment scheme introduced when the CAP was last reformed. A joint European study assessed the ecological effectiveness of the different EFA types and how farmers perceived them.

Our comparative analysis revealed a disparity between the objective and on the implementation of EFA-based greening criteria: 1) EFA-declared surface areas globally exceed the minimum percentage required, and 2) the EF...

CAP and the environment: Good intentions and false pretences

Published on 02/12/2018

Though the CAP addressed environmental concerns quite quickly, it has not succeeded in halting the destruction of natural resources and biodiversity in agro-ecosystems. Reform measures in 2014 focused attention on the “greening” of the CAP, but initiatives fell short of initial ambitions, and are criticised for their ineffectiveness. 

Debate over CAP reform in 2020 is already under way. This presentation reviews ideas for action on the environment and climate, related controversy, and some...