European Commission logo
English English
CORDIS - EU research results

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

Project description

Rejuvenating rural life and economy

European territorial cohesion is threatened by the unequal development of urban and rural areas. The EU-funded RURALIZATION project aims at triggering a process of ruralisation, that is, a development towards a new rural frontier where new generations find economic and social opportunities. It will analyse trends, make an inventory of rural dream futures of the youth, study promising practices enabling rural newcomers, new entrants to farming and farm successors and analyse rules, policies and actions to provide access to land. The outcomes will be discussed with stakeholders in regional rural contexts to upscale positive experiences; to jointly formulate novel options for policymakers and practical tools for rural actors.


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.

Call for proposal


See other projects for this call

Sub call



Net EU contribution
€ 990 092,50
2628 CN Delft

See on map

West-Nederland Zuid-Holland Delft en Westland
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 990 092,50

Participants (23)