Project

RURALIZATION - The opening of rural areas to renew rural generations, jobs and farms

Goal: European economic, social and territorial cohesion is threatened by the unequal development of growing urban and declining rural areas. RURALIZATION develops a novel perspective for rural areas to trigger a process of ruralisation as counterforce to urbanisation, that is, a development towards a new rural frontier offering new generations stimulating opportunities for economic and social sustainability within a rural context. These opportunities will serve both existing inhabitants of rural areas, to overcome the dilemma between place attachment and lack of economic opportunities, and rural newcomers who bring novel and innovative perspectives and relational networks to rural areas. RURALIZATION will utilise both quantitative and qualitative methods to develop innovations and to make these transferable to other contexts. Innovative practices will be selected by two methods. First, by the use of statistical data and foresight analysis to find areas that deviate from the general trend of rural decline and distinguish, using a multi-actor approach, the instruments and approaches that may contribute to these trend breaches. Secondly, through the study of new approaches and instruments in practice, and by developing these in a multi-actor context, to be applied in new contexts of application. Based on the call, innovations will be on facilitating rural newcomers,
rural jobs, new entrants into farming and access to land for new generations. In foresight analysis rural dreams of new generations will be investigated and alternative rural futures will be designed and reflected with rural stakeholders and focus groups in terms of possibility, probability and preferability. Actions will be formulated to make positive futures reality. The outcomes of the project will result in novel options for policy makers and practical tools for rural actors.
An extensive communication campaign will disseminate the project and its results.

[The RURALIZATION project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement number 817642.]

Date: 1 May 2019 - 30 April 2023

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Project log

Mathieu Nicole
added a research item
Inside the Budapest conference "Social dynamics" a session was devoted to the conceptual and political results of the EU H2020 project RURALIZATION. Nicole Mathieu tried to present the French CNRS' team contribution to the project in third parts: 1. Long term French methodology and tools; 2. why the French commitment in the project; 3. Main but provisional results. The conclusion focuses on some recommendations: produce a relevant knowledge adapted to the historical and cultural diversity of European ruralities
Mathieu Nicole
added a research item
Inside the book "Un Géographe dans le siècle; Hommage à Armand Frémont" Nicole Mathieu takes a challenge: a posthumous dialogue with A. Frémont about his methodological approach of Norman Peasants. First she pinpointed Fremont' original and sensitive way for describing each individuals and its relation to landscape and métier' values which can be called "sensible geography". But then she criticises some parts of the method giving too much place to statistics and sociological point of views and she proposed a new approach based on the concepts of "nature' culture" and "inhabitance' mode" which seems more relevant for approaching the new farmer generation facing climate, environmental, economical and social crisis, transition and social change.
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
Some research data of the project have been published in the 4TU Data Repository
 
Boldizsár Gergely Megyesi
added a research item
Generational renewal is a core issue in European agriculture. Despite the continuous efforts of governments and the EU Council, the ageing of farmers seems an unstoppable process, accompanied by land concentration, the decrease in agricultural activity and the transformation of the European countryside. Consequently, there is a very rich scientific literature analysing the problem; a great part of it argues that the young farmer problem consists, in fact, in a number of different problems, with these problems showing huge regional differences. Hungary, as a new member state, with a heterogeneous (both fragmented and concentrated) land-use structure offers a good field to analyse generational renewal. Our paper is based on the first results of an ongoing Horizon 2020 project analysing rural regeneration. As a part of the research study, 48 semi-structured interviews were conducted with young farmers, successors of farmers and new entrants into farming. In our paper, we explore how education, access to land and family traditions influenced generational renewal and how it impacts sustainability practices.
Mathieu Nicole
added an update
Animator: Mathieu Nicole, CNRS UMR Ladyss, nicole.mathieu@univ-paris1.fr
Co-animator: Robert-Boeuf Camille, CNRS UMR Ladyss, c.robertboeuf@outlook.com
Apart from analyses based on statistics (Eurostat) which provide localised and evolving data on agriculture and rural areas in the European Union, little research tackles the question of rurality head-on, taking into account the differences in its temporal and spatial definitions, both ideal and real, linked to the historical, geographical and cultural diversity of the states that make up Europe. Bringing together research teams from 12 countries, the RURALIZATION project raises the question of a possible "rural regeneration" and thus provides an opportunity to go further into the study, in time and space, of what ruralities are and will be in Europe. This project allows us to compare the words used for "rural" (and synonymous of “campagne” in French) in the various languages of EU. Beyond the various definitions of rurality it is also important to observe the transformations over time and in the different countries.
By taking up the approach and the objectives of this research project, this IGU session wishes to raise the question of rural regeneration in Europe and the issues that it underlies: young people and their aspirations in rural areas, the renewal of generations in agriculture, the questioning of agricultural models that ignore environmental issues, newcomers in search of a "return to nature", the evolution of relations between farmers and non-farmers, organisations and working methods... The selected papers will also propose a reflection on 'rurality', some of whose characteristics have been modified or reinforced by the Covid-19 pandemic, accentuating multiple crises within the European Union (climate change, agro-ecological and food transition, social transition, including housing and employment, etc.). This “moment” is highlighting several issues around rurality and underlining several issues around the articulation between the "rural" and the "agricultural", the renovation of the relationship between cities and countryside through food and the reconstruction of ruralities through the reform of territories. Comparative perspectives, case studies and field surveys in one or more European countries will be particularly appreciated.
Submission guidelines
Please follow Instructions below for writing your abstract in the submission form: Title: maximum of 255 characters (spaces included)
Resume: Text should be a maximum of 2000 characters (spaces included)
Keywords: maximum of 5
References: maximum of 5
Abstract submission online:
Agenda:
● Abstract submission period: 16 November 2021 - 11 January 2022
● Notification of abstract acceptance: 21 January 2022
● Conference: 18 - 22 July 2022
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added 2 research items
RURALIZATION deliverable D6.3 ‘Technical Report on Quantitative Analysis of Land Holdings and Land Market Trends, short hand out with main results’ Part A provides an overview of relevant developments in land holdings and of land market trends that are relevant for access to land for new generations in rural areas. This fits to the broader aims of RURALIZATION (a project funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement 817642). RURALIZATION is concerned with understanding how to facilitate rural regeneration and generational renewal. In this context, its key focus areas are: rural foresight and trend analysis; the future dreams of rural youth; facilitating rural newcomers; farm succession; new entrants into farming; and access to land.
This report has been compiled as part of the EU Horizon 2002 financed project RURALIZATION (Grant Agreement NO 817642) on ‘The opening or rural areas to renew rural generations, jobs and farms’ and have been prepared by members of the protect team. Access to land is one of the topics, which is addressed by considering, (1) legal and policy arrangements, (2) land holdings and land markets and (3) current and novel initiatives that provide access to land. The current report provides an overview of legal and policy arrangements in the EU Member States (including the UK) based on the work of national reporters who have, based on a questionnaire, provided information on the situation in different Member States. By this method a broad overview is provided. However, reporters may not always be aware of all initiatives in a member state over the whole width of relevant legal and policy arrangements, which means that certain relevant aspects may be missed. Issues that are addressed are the land tenure system, the public protection of farmland and a range of direct and indirect policy instruments.
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
The website https://RuralTrends.eu provides a full documentation of the extensive trend analysis exercise that was carried out in 2019–2020 among the participants of the EU funded Ruralization project.
60 Trend Cards featuring 10 megatrends, 20 trends and 30 weak signals
 
Krzysztof Janc
added a research item
The importance of agri-food systems for global sustainability calls for researching and advancing socio-technical transitions towards environmentally friendly models of farming. These transitions hinge on many prerequisites, one of which is providing access to land for farmers and new entrants who experiment with sustainable farming models. However, for socio-technical transitions in farming to be viable, access to land should be complemented with securing access to “intangible” resources such as skills, knowledge or networks. It seems that increasingly often these resources are being provided by various grassroots initiatives. The goal of this paper is to identify how the strategies employed by grassroots initiatives support farmers and new entrants in transitioning to sustainable farming models. In order to answer that question, we perform case studies of three Polish initiatives—Agro-Perma-Lab, PermaKultura.Edu.PL and the Ecological Folk High School in Grzybów—active in promoting agroecology, permaculture and organic farming. The results show a diversity of strategies employed by these initiatives that reflect the frameworks in which they operate. Considering these strategies from the perspective of transition studies suggests that they can be replicated in other contexts and potentially contribute to advancing socio-technical transitions of agri-food systems.
Anne Kinsella
added a research item
The European RURALIZATION project’s first national conference in Ireland on the theme of:Facilitating our Future Farmers: National and International Perspectives Organised by - The National Rural Network and NUI Galway Rural Studies Monday December 14th from 2.00pm-4.15pm online via Zoom Most farmers in the EU are aged over 55 and only a small proportion are below age 35. Supporting generational renewal is one objective of the CAP post 2020. There are however many complex issues impacting generational renewal, such as farm viability, ease of farm transferability, the need for greater succession planning, access to land and the human dynamics involved. Among the aims of the four-year RURALIZATION project is to identify and assess innovative ways to facilitate new entrants into farming, succession and to access farmland. Now over a year into the RURALIZATION project, this conference brings together researchers and practitioners to explore how we can enable our future farmers gain access to farmland and the farming sector.
Mathieu Nicole
added a research item
Celles et ceux qui n'ont jamais mis le pied dans le département de la Manche, qu'ils y entrent en voiture ou qu'ils descendent à Villedieu-les-Poêles du train Paris-Granville, à Saint-Lô après changement à Caen ou à Avranches en venant de Rennes, ne peuvent que s'étonner de ne pas retrouver les grands contrastes des paysages habités qui caractérisent les espaces environnant les très grandes villes et « métropoles ». Il est vrai que la plus grande, Cherbourg (voir page 14), située à l'extrême face nord du Cotentin, rayonne plus sur la mer et sur un petit nombre de communes péri-urbaines que sur la longue bande de terres avec façade sur mer qui dessine le département de la Manche.
Mathieu Nicole
added a research item
La Manche est un département à part dans le contexte de la Normandie. Il possède une identité spécifique, reflet de l’importance du littoral (355km de côtes), de l’importance et de la diversité des systèmes agricoles, de la densité du semis des bourgs et des petites villes. Saint-Lô, la préfecture, et Cherbourg, la grande ville portuaire, dominent la hiérarchie urbaine. Cette mosaïque de photos et de textes rend compte de cette diversité des paysages et des activités.
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
The 'Impact of COVID-19 on young people in EU rural and urban areas' will be he topic of a webinar organsed by the H2020 project RURALIZATION on September 15th. RURALIZATION seeks to investigate the causes of demographic decline in EU rural areas and identify and implement innovative practices and tools to open opportunities for economic and social sustainability of rural areas and communities.
This first webinar will count with the participation of EC representatives, EU networks like Rural Youth Europe and the European Youth Forum, and other H2020 projects such as RURITAGE and NEWBIE. At the same time we will have the opportunity to hear directly from young people how COVID-19 impacted them and how they adapt and transform their businesses and life to cope with this global health crisis.
If you are interested in participating, please find the registration form here (https://mailchi.mp/ef8d315eb512/ruralization_webinar_registration) and check out further information in the 'News & Events' section at our project website ( www.ruralization.eu).
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
Krzysztof Janc
added a research item
The objective of the present study is to identify rules governing the distribution and thematic structure of creative activities, using the region of Lower Silesia in southwestern Poland as an example. This empirical study is based on the data obtained from the Central Registration and Information on Business (CEIDG) as of 2018. Rural areas (compared to cities) generally display a lower level of economic activity. Analysis results confirm that craft-based activities are usually carried out outside large cities. A clear structure of specialisation among creative activities indicates that rural areas should mainly undertake activities that are consistent with the character of a particular local setting and are strongly connected with local conditions.
Mathieu Nicole
added a research item
Through a collection of articles from 1973 to 2016 this book attempt to renew as well as to built a solid theoretical basis on the old and recurrent question of rural/urban relationships.
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
Maura Farrell
added a research item
Repositioning rural areas in response to problems of decline means overcoming complex, interconnected challenges. The RURALIZATION project is exploring innovative ways to overcome issues of rural regeneration and support generational renewal. Aisling Murtagh and Maura Farrell from the Rural Studies Cluster, Discipline of Geography, National University of Ireland, Galway tell us more.
Maura Farrell
added an update
Rural Dialogues: RURALIZATION
Article published in the ARC 2020 Magazine- By Dr Aisling Murtagh and Dr Maura Farrell
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
Aisling Murtagh and Maura Farrell have published an article on the project in the Rural Dialogues series by Arc2020. See: http://www.arc2020.eu/rural-dialogues-ruralisation/
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
The project has been presented (with 13 other projects) in the Agricultural, rural and urban policy session at SC2 H2020 coordinatorsday in Brussels on June 6th 2019. See: https://ec.europa.eu/info/files/agricultural-rural-and-urban-policy_en
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
The RURALIZATION project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement number 817642.
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added an update
The economic, social and territorial cohesion of the EU is threatened by the unequal development of urban and rural areas. Population is expected for instance to grow of 12% in urban areas between 2014 and 2020 while a decline of 7% is expected in rural regions. Significant differences are registered as well as in per capita GDP. All in all, rural areas are faced with specific constraints related with depopulation and apparently poor development opportunities and the transition from primary sector focused areas.
The RURALIZATION project, funded by the European Commission under H2020 programme, aims at developing knowledge and support policy making in answering some of the challenges above mentioned and more specifically to facilitate rural newcomers and new entrants to farming. In particular the project will improve understanding of rural regeneration, including the issue of access to land, define innovative instruments and strategies to facilitate generational renewal in agriculture and rural development and support policy making to make rural dreams for new rural generations true.
The projects counts with the participation of 18 organizations from 12 European countries, including Universities, research institutes, SMEs and other practitioners such as five members of the Access to Land Network. This multi-disciplinary consortium will put in place research and innovation activities ensuring the involvement of farmers, young people and rural entrepreneurs, following a multi-actor approach.
RURALIZATION will last for 48 months starting from May 1st this year. Representatives from the project partners and from the Stakeholders Advisory Board convened to Barcelona for the kick-off meeting on 15th and 16th May to discuss plan further in details project activities and distribute responsibilities. The kick-off meeting has been enriched by the participation of the European Commission services (DG AGRI) and the Research Executive Agency, as well as from the contribution of some of the members of the Advisory Board. 
 
Willem K. Korthals Altes
added a project goal
European economic, social and territorial cohesion is threatened by the unequal development of growing urban and declining rural areas. RURALIZATION develops a novel perspective for rural areas to trigger a process of ruralisation as counterforce to urbanisation, that is, a development towards a new rural frontier offering new generations stimulating opportunities for economic and social sustainability within a rural context. These opportunities will serve both existing inhabitants of rural areas, to overcome the dilemma between place attachment and lack of economic opportunities, and rural newcomers who bring novel and innovative perspectives and relational networks to rural areas. RURALIZATION will utilise both quantitative and qualitative methods to develop innovations and to make these transferable to other contexts. Innovative practices will be selected by two methods. First, by the use of statistical data and foresight analysis to find areas that deviate from the general trend of rural decline and distinguish, using a multi-actor approach, the instruments and approaches that may contribute to these trend breaches. Secondly, through the study of new approaches and instruments in practice, and by developing these in a multi-actor context, to be applied in new contexts of application. Based on the call, innovations will be on facilitating rural newcomers,
rural jobs, new entrants into farming and access to land for new generations. In foresight analysis rural dreams of new generations will be investigated and alternative rural futures will be designed and reflected with rural stakeholders and focus groups in terms of possibility, probability and preferability. Actions will be formulated to make positive futures reality. The outcomes of the project will result in novel options for policy makers and practical tools for rural actors.
An extensive communication campaign will disseminate the project and its results.
[The RURALIZATION project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement number 817642.]