ESBA General Assembly

The general assembly decides on the most important matters of the association and it’s actions, it also elects the board. Full member organisations have a right to vote. The general assembly gathers at least once a year.

“The General Assembly is vested with all the powers necessary for achieving the realisation of  the object of the Association.” For more information please refer to the Statutes of ESBA.

Archive of documents from ESBA meetings is available at: https://my.pcloud.com/


The 5th ESBA General assembly took place on 25th November 2020 via Zoom (Online)

Program of the General Assembly / The highlights:

Summary of ESBA situation 2019-2020

  • Straw Bale House map/database: in cooperation with UP STRAW, map/database links to national websites if organisations have their own databases-page, a form allows builders/owners to enter their straw bale houses in ESBA database. ESBA is partner in the UP STRAW Interreg project
  • Research: about 400 positions in the UP STRAW Zotero database, it is possible to link on ESBA website, as there is an English summary
  • ESBA-website is mostly focused on English, but in future translations are necessary
  • there is a need for cooperation with members in translation
  • STEP course: The year 2020 was difficult, but due to the Online Learning platform and Erasmus+ project ACTeco it was possible to setup the STEP course partly online, ESBA is partner in the project.
  • there will be an upgrade of STEP course books and presentation (will be available to full members in 2021)
  • ESBA was partner in the JUMP! Training for change www.trainingforchange.eu

Members presentations on their organisations’ situation

Belgium (Jean Luc de Wilde): Struggled with publication for ESBA. Market reaction during covid was surprisingly good. Paille-Tech ​​is in a better situation than in previous years.
Estonia (Mikk Luht): Competence center project is in the final phase. Sven built 2 small houses with courses. Sven ran 5 different sb courses – good for a Corona year. He also participated in STEP training in Austria.
Germany (Dittmar BiWeNa): BiWeNa ​​is a partner in several projects, offers different level courses and has a permanent exposition. This year​’s​ courses were also full, although there was some rescheduling.
Wiebke​ (presenting UP STRAW update instead of FASBA): The biggest sb project in Germany, kindergarten by the abbey part of UP STRAW. Documentation on ARTE.
Spain (Rikki RCP): RCP – with new website – is going to offer full STEP in Spanish, collaborative effort of 7 te​a​ching centres. First public building in straw planned with public tender procedure.
UK (Cypren SBUK): going through the pandemic trying to maintain their position. The organisation is stable, mostly busy with UP STRAW – developing visitors’ centre near Hastings.We are also working on standards and also will be in charge of translating French rules into English. Phil: Project Hastings is nearly complete, some landscaping to do.
Slovakia (Zuzanna, ArTUR): No STEP course, no day of open sb houses instead of this started to make an online platform. Ecocon HQ has moved to Slovakia. We work mostly as a communication platform. 85 members, not all of them active, different professions. Normally 3-4 meetings a year, this year only once face-to-face, one planned as an online meeting. At the moment working on the website, including a database of houses…
Poland (Maciej, OSBN): Single family housing is going strong, members have work. Meetings have been canceled, so that was a drawback for OSBN as an organisation.
Belgium (Hugues, EcoCluster): There was no organisation in Wallonia, so they initiated one in the frame of UP STRAW. It consists of about 10 people, mostly architects. There is also a Flemish association, and they are in contact. The Wallonian association is not formalized, no status or membership, members are members of ecocluster. Jean-Luc: There is no legal structure but it is a factual organisation with ​a​ charter.
The Netherlands (Wouter, SBN): Quite a change and struggle after the death of Marcel and trouble in his company. But SBN is stable. Related problems in UP STRAW were also overcome. Covid stopped courses. In the UP STRAW renovation project of the sports hall in Roomley has been completed. Since the Tilburg project there is more interest in blown-in straw. 10 projects have been done last year in this technology. Wouter supports the idea of multi-location ESBG.
Austria (Herbert​ – ASBN): The year started with 27 people wanting to participate in STEP. Had to switch to online platform ACTeco, later in summer it was possible to meet. It was not possible to make workshops on clients’ sites, but a new building was built in the training centre. There are also more courses offered besides STEP (tiny house, off-grid, introductory courses and in the future Jump!). asbn made the crowd f​u​nded magazine “20 years of SB building in Austria”.

ESBG 2021 – European Straw Building Gathering: date fixed for 30./31. August/1. September, directly after the ESBG: 2 days straw bale house tours.

Communication group: new volunteers Zuzanna, Herbert, Dittmar, Michael, Marian, Smiatek, Phil Christopher, next Meeting in January.

New Associate Members: RBfCP – Réseau belge francophone de la constructionpaille and Ecococon

The complete ESBA board was re-elected.

ESBA future and strategy (Summary): more meetings (quarterly), more cooperation in EU projects with ESBA members, STEP training development, synchronization of activities, parts of UP STRAW project will become part of ESBA, lobbying at European level, ESBA Newsletter can reach a lot of people if it is distributed to all subscribeers of member organisations, JUMP offers the possibility to improve “soft” skills of sb trainers, there is a chance of a second application for Jump! We want to establish ESBA as an European straw and clay building organisation. We are mostly addressing people who know about sb, but we should address all the others too. We need a magazine and we need to communicate better and establish a more closely knitted network with more planning.

Next meeting: General Assembly or Online Meetings will happen every quarter of the year 2021.


The 4th ESBA General assembly took place on 18th and 19th August 2019 in Todmorden.

Program of the General Assembly / The highlights:

  • we have elected a new co-president: Zuzana Kierulfova
  • we have decided to lower the fees, and  start a new financial strategy
  • there are new action groups
  • we have planned to change ESBA seat (official adress)
  • sky is the limit, and everyone is invited to participate;)

The 3rd ESBA General Assembly took place on December 8-9, 2018 in London.

Program of the General Assembly:

  • Report of the previous work (Action Groups, STEP-Training, UpStraw)
  • Report of the Treasurer: finances
  • ESBA Budget
  • The future projects (STEP-Training, Communication)
  • Withdrawel of board members (Audrey van der Heuvel, Manas Melliwa)
  • Election of new board-members (president(s), secretary, treasurer, members)
  • Decision of the board about new (associated) members
  • Singing of the 3rd Memorandum of Understanding for STEP Training

The 2nd ESBA General Assembly took place on Sunday, June 18th, 2017
in Venice during the ESBG (European Straw Bale Gathering), Terminal 103.

Program of the General Assembly:

  • Report of the previous work (Skills database, preparation,…)
  • Report of the Treasurer: finances
  • The future projects (Interreg-project UpStraw, STEP-Training database, European Straw Bale Magazine, European Map, Research database,…)
  • Withdrawel of board members (Sissy Hein, Zuzana Kierulfova, Stefano Soldati)
  • Introduction of new members
  • Introduction of new board-members (Alejandro Lopez, ES; Manas Melliwa, FR; Michael Fischer, DE, Marcel Zwart, NL, Wouter Klijn, NL, Eileen Sutherland, UK…)
  • Election of new board-members (president(s), secretary(ies), treasurer(s), members)
  • Decision of the board about new (associated) members
  • Singing of the Memorandum of Understanding for STEP Training