A year ago this week, I adopted an olive tree. I called it Carmen, after my grandmother. Whenever I want to know about my tree I just need to open an app that I have installed on my mobile phone. I can see pictures of it and whether it has been pruned, or what the local weather’s like, etc.… Once a year I receive two bottles of delicious olive oil. But what I love most, is that for only 50€ per year I am helping to employ people at risk of exclusion, I am helping young people to have a future in their village so they don’t have to migrate to the city, and I am preventing the closure of a local school in a village that, like so many others in inner Spain, have had to face the monsters of depopulation, ageing and loneliness. All at the same time as I am helping to recover hundred-year old olive trees and local traditions and conserve landscapes, care for the land, and support environmental, social and economic sustainability.
The book “Social capital and local development: from theory to empirics” has been published by Palgrave Macmillan (Springer Nature) and is available for purchase here.
SIMRA project coordinator Prof. Maria Nijnik and project partner Bill Slee wrote the Foreword; and SIMRA results were directly used in the following chapters: Chapter 5 “Social capital, network governance and social innovation: towards a new paradigm” (83-105) and Chapter 19 “What future of LEADER as a catalyst of social innovation” (417-438), while also contributing to other chapters.