The 11th OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) Rural Development Conference was held in Edinburgh on 9-12 April 2018. Prior to the main conference, a series of interactive sessions, led by the European Network for Rural Development, showcased projects and approaches already launched by rural communities to face 21st century challenges and opportunities.
The SIMRA project has completed its profile on the EIP-Agri website. Check it out here! Our profile sets out the objectives of SIMRA and details of our activities, while giving our team a new way to share what we do with others and make sure we are aware about other relevant projects.
On 13th April 2018 in Bled, Slovenia, a joint conference between the European Commission and the European Parliament was organised on “European Action for Smart Villages: for a brighter future of rural areas in the EU” (for more information and to see the streaming of the plenary session, click here).
This high-level conference shows an appetite for Smart Villages to be developed in the future programming period and the wish to put the concept into practice, as shown in Slovenia. If an EU project is currently developing a proper definition for Smart Villages (our blog post here), several high-level speakers shared their views about this concept and how to develop it in the coming months.
The concept of “Smart Villages” is gaining more and more attention at EU level and is likely to play a role in future policy. In light of this, a Pilot Project has been launched on smart eco-social villages or “Smart Villages” in short. The aim of the Pilot Project is to explore strategies to become a “Smart Village” and refine a definition to clarify what a “Smart Village” is or can be.
SIMRA’s newsletter has just been published. The partnership has been busy over the past few months working hard on a policy brief for DG Agri, training the case study teams and publishing collections of examples of social innovation. So, stay tuned to learn more about interesting social innovation initiatives all over Europe and the Mediterranean area! You can read the newsletter here (also available in French and Spanish).