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SHERPA Discussion Paper on rural governance


SHERPA published a new Discussion Paper on “Empowering rural areas in multi-level governance processes”! This Discussion Paper provides a synthesis of key European policies and scientific evidence on the topic of governance in rural areas. This paper can be used to trigger discussion around rural governance and co-create new possible solutions. 

Stronger rural areas

It is an epoch of unprecedented changes and constant transformation. To catch future opportunities, rural areas require stronger governance at all levels. They require institutions, stakeholders and rural citizens to come together, identify common challenges and share their knowledge, ideas and good practices to overcome them. 

Multi-level governance can be part of the solution. How? By creating specific structures that integrate local with regional knowledge, and linking it to policy making.Yet, at the basis of this process stands a holistic approach to policy making and inclusive participation of citizens. So how?  

Future governance for rural areas

The paper begins with an overview of how European policies – such as  the Cohesion Policy, the LEADER Programme, and the Long-Term Vision for Rural Areas- addresses rural governance. 

Hence, it deepen four sub-topics relevant to rural governance: 

  • Place-based policy making
  • Enhancing urban-rural interconnections and interdependencies
  • Inclusive and participatory governance
  • Collaborative Rural Network Governance

What is next?

In the coming months, SHERPA MAPs will reflect how governance affects their rural areas. This discussion paper will be a starting point to trigger their discussions. The outputs of their discussions will be condensed in a set of MAP Position Papers on this topic and help to identify concrete recommendations for policy makers and researchers. 

Stay tuned to our website to learn more about it! 

“…to fully address the needs of rural areas and to fully realise their potential, we not only need strong actions and strong funding; we also need strong co-operation.”

EU Commissioner for Agriculture Janusz Wochiechowski at the Rural Pact Conference, 15 June 2022

Published by Carla Lostrangio

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