Sections are the standard working groups of the ESEC. Each comprises 27-30 members appointed by the Bureau based on proposals by the Groups and affiliated to the latter where possible. Section members elect their section president and vice-presidents.
Sections are tasked with preparing studies and draft opinions, each within their relevant field as determined by decree. They hold one half-day session per week. These meetings take place in private to allow members to speak freely.
- The section for Sustainable Management of Territories covers decentralisation, regional development, land planning and organisation, local development, urban planning, housing, public facilities, transport, communications and tourism.
- The section for Economy and Finance covers economic and financial policies, the annual report on the state of France, distribution of and change in national income, economic and financial information, issues related to savings and loans, banking and insurance, public finances and taxes.
- The section for Education, Culture and Communication covers initial training, guidance for and integration of young people, higher education and research, citizenship, access to rights, the information society and knowledge sharing, along with cultural, sports and leisure pursuits.
- The section for Environment covers environmental protection and awareness, climate change, biodiversity, seas and oceans, energy transition, prevention, environmental risk management and remediation, and habitat quality.
- The section for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food covers agriculture, rural affairs, the social economy for agriculture, maritime fishing and aquaculture, forestry, food security and self-sufficiency, food processing industries and non-food agricultural production.
- The section for Economic Activities covers raw materials, energy, industry, trade, craft industry, services, the social economy, manufacturing and consumption, consumer protection, research and development, technological innovation and competitiveness.
- The section for European and International Affairs covers development aid and cooperation, bilateral and multilateral issues, international relations, population migration, European affairs and relations with international institutions and the European Union, and French-speaking countries.
- The section for Social Affairs and Health covers issues related to population growth, family, social security, health and healthcare facilities, prevention, loss of independence, solidarity, social action and exclusion.
- The section for Labour and Employment covers labour relations, employment policy, organisation, content and quality of work, mobility, working conditions and the rights of salaried and non-salaried workers, as well as vocational training and continuing education.