Social Innovation, the key to face challenges in Rural Areas

An advanced course on Social Innovation in Rural Areas will be held at the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Zaragoza (Spain) on 18-22 November 2019.

This course is an inherent part of the EU-funded project Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas (SIMRA) (, which is aiming at making better use of social innovations to encourage the development of less-favoured rural areas.

Since the economic crisis in 2008, social innovation has been reported to play a key role for surmounting this situation, of particular importance to rural areas, where multiple problems of dwindling and ageing populations, environmental quality decline and lower levels of economic activity have been recursive.

In these areas, the state and municipalities often struggle to support basic public services, opening space for opportunities where civil society can take on an increasingly important role in sustaining and improving conditions. There are multiple examples on how stakeholders in civil society have taken the lead in community economic development, revitalising social capacities in fragile territories and supporting environmental improvements.

The H2020 Project, Social Innovation in Marginalised Rural Areas (SIMRA) has been working in this arena over the last three years aiming to advance understanding of social innovation and innovative governance in agriculture, forestry and rural development, and their implementation in rural areas. In order to spread the knowledge gained along this path, SIMRA has organised, together with the project partner the Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Zaragoza (IAMZ-CIHEAM), an advanced course on Social Innovation in Rural Areas. The course will take place in Zaragoza (Spain) and will be developed by expert lecturers from international organisations, research centres, universities and the practice community.

Designed for 25 professionals, this activity will be held from 18 to 22 November 2019. The the deadline for submitting applications is 6th September 2019. All participants will be exempt from the registration fee payment and candidates from Europe and Mediterranean countries may apply for financial support to cover travel and accommodation costs. Simultaneous interpretation into English, French and Spanish will be provided.

More information is available on the website:

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