Maria Nijnik honoured with IUFRO Scientific Achievement Award

SIMRA’s Scientific Coordinator, Dr. Maria Nijnik, has been honoured with the Scientific Achievement Award given by the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), organisation that gathers more than 15,000 scientists in 700 member organizations from 125 countries. Nijnik wishes to thank IUFRO for the prize and has stated that she feels “truly happy bringing this award to the James Hutton Institute and to the SIMRA team”.
Continue reading

A song to fight rural depopulation

Molina de Aragón is located at the heart of the biggest European demographic desert. Re-named as ‘Serranía Celtibérica’, this desert unites rural territories from different Spanish provinces, such as Saragossa, Teruel, Cuenca, Soria or Guadalajara. Having an area double that of Belgium, this desert hosts only 487,417 inhabitants at a density of 7.72 hab/km2. Moreover, this area has the largest ageing index and the lowest birth rate of the European Union, with a population density lower than Lapland.
Continue reading

SIMRA’s brochure update!

SIMRA project has passed its half-way point! And over these two years we have been working hard: we have agreed on a definition for social innovation, characterised marginalised rural areas across Europe and the Mediterranean region and collected hundreds of examples of social initiatives, 50 of which are public in our database. We have also launched 12 case studies and 6 innovation actions that will activate rural territories and disseminate new knowledge to policy-makers and practitioners.

Continue reading

Social innovation and other forms of innovation: experiences from the Forum Carpaticum meeting, Eger 2018

The Forum Carpaticum brings together the science community interested in social and biophysical sciences in the Carpathians every two years. In the programme notes it is stated that “the 5th Forum Carpaticum will specially highlight prioritized topics on biodiversity conservation and sustainable tourism development and education for sustainable development (ESD).” Overall, there was an emphasis on the biophysical sciences, especially ecology, forestry and fluvial geomorphology, but there was a range of social scientists represented and some of the natural scientists are now moving towards interdisciplinary work with social scientists and also transdisciplinary work.
Continue reading

Fostering local development in the Mediterranean via tourism and cultural heritage

Tourism and cultural heritage are two strong vectors of local development, which was explained at length during a session of the European Week of Cities and Regions 2018. The European Commission, a Greek regional authority and a social entrepreneur participated in this session to share their experiences and the solutions they try to implement each at their own scale.
Continue reading

SIPARTE, the first rural Hackathon in Italy!

What’s the perfect recipe for a successful Rural Hackathon? Here are the secrets to a memorable experience: the Rural Hackathon “SIparte”, held on the 4th and 5th October 2018 in Feltre (northeastern Italy).

hackathon2Ingredients: a beautiful, lively historical building, six teams – 24 future entrepreneurs – that aim to value and contribute to the local development of their territory in the province of Belluno, a group of experts to mentor them, the warmth of the sun, fresh mountain air, and great food.
Continue reading