In the last decades, most rural areas in the EU have developed at a lower rate than urban areas have; this has hampered the relative social and economic opportunities of this territories, leading to effects such as loss of population. Industries in rural areas tend to be more traditional than those in urban ones, with lower rates of industrialisation 4.0 and innovation achievements, which also limits their potential to generate jobs and economic opportunities. The agri-food sector, key one in rural areas, is the most significative one when addressing this challenge, for it often has a predominant presence in those territories, and – compared to companies in metropolises – those in rural lands tend to be more backwards when considering elements of industrial transition. Aware of this, strategies (including S3) and policies in most EU countries and regions now tackle this domain, including the development of rural areas through industrial transition and innovation, often with an emphasis in the agri-food sector, given its relevance.
ORIGINN’s main goal is to enlarge and improve policy instruments in the involved territories (in EE, ES, IE, IT, RO, SE, SK) seeking to foster innovation-based industrial transition in rural areas, with an emphasis in the agri-food sector. Under this topic, ORIGINN puts special attention to digitalisation, industrial sustainability, social innovation, and soft innovation measures, devoting specific semesters-activities to each of them.
To reach the project’s goal, project partners – all managing authorities – will exchange experiences for 3 years and monitor the results for an extra one. Among the activities, we find 8 partner meetings (including study visits), 56 stakeholder meetings, analyses of good practices, peer reviews, etc. Those will lead to the identification of 47 good practices and the improvement of 7 policy instruments (one per partner), improving their reach and/or efficiency, and enlarging their impact.