Dreaming of an escape to the country? Rural living in Europe is currently on the decline, but why? What tools and dynamic approaches are needed in rural areas to stimulate innovation and create opportunities for newcomers and established communities alike?
The EU–funded RURALISATION project has identified a series of ‘innovation stories’ to better understand the problems associated with rural living, the importance of sustainable and inclusive farming practices, and how new thinking (dream scenarios, foresight activities) can help to transform rural communities.
The ultimate aim? To open up ‘rural areas to renew rural generations, jobs and farms’.
On current trends, urban regions are expected to grow by some 12% between 2014 and 2050, while rural areas could see a 7% decline. In response, so–called ‘generational renewal’ is one of the nine proposed objectives of the future Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and is also one of the main concerns of many Member States.
RURALISATION is working on a series of actions to support this objective with ambitious new approaches and clear options for policymakers in different contexts. These are backed by novel research methods and practical tools to create what the project calls a ‘new rural frontier offering new generations stimulating opportunities for economic and social sustainability within a rural context’.
INCULTUM and RURALIZATION projects have in common this important focus on empowering marginal and rural areas with participative approaches and policies that enable communities-driven sustainable development. For this reason the newly established collaboration will lead to synergies and cross-dissemination and reuse of outcomes and initiatives.