Around 80 commitments have been submitted so far, half of which are formal commitments and the other half ideas for actions that the participants are still elaborating.
Approximately 30 % of commitments come from individuals and 70 % from organisations.
Most of the organisations are non-governmental organisations (NGOs), public authorities, academic/research institutions and company/business organisations coming from 15 countries. The first three countries in numbers of commitments are Spain, Italy and Belgium, followed by Sweden, France, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Slovakia, the Netherlands, Austria, Bulgaria and Germany.
The majority of the organisations deal with rural development, regional policy, agriculture and research and innovation.
What did they commit to?
The commitments cover a wide range of issues, reflecting the diversity of actors and areas involved in the Rural Pact. Social issues, labour market, enhancement of digital skills, knowledge sharing and fostering participation in local development activities feature prominently.
We list below some examples of the submitted commitments:
- “I commit to help strengthening the voices of young, rural people in Europe. I can help by connecting with young people and think of communication strategies to get rural voices across to the European Commission and vice versa. This also means that the EC will sometimes have to listen better and be open to change its position.”
- “I commit to understand how rural development policies and general digitalisation policies have influenced rural digitalisation and to share the findings with the relevant stakeholders, so the future policies allow for a more inclusive strategy.”
- “Providing studies and scientific reports on the sustainable use of agricultural land under climate change and current social economic and political challenges.”
- “I want to make the first pilot regenerative village that will have in its heart a BIO FAB LAB in order to research and produce living soil and renewable raw materials, bio enterprises and an additive manufacturing facility so youth can get employed in the rural area.”
In their submissions, rural pact participants outlined the importance of rural development, cooperation, territories, community activities, social dimensions of rural areas and the integration of rural areas in the different European policies. Participating in local forums, strengthening the positions of local labour market, building new models of governance, putting emphasis on digital skills and training are a crucial component of rural development. They highlighted knowledge sharing and workshops on regional and local level would contribute to the successful implementation of the Rural Pact.
How will participants be supported?
From early 2023 onwards, the Rural Pact Support Office will provide facilitation services to the Rural Pact community to help them to achieve their objectives. The office will interact with people who committed to the Rural Pact to evaluate their needs and accompany them. It will also build synergies with networks and governing bodies such as the EU CAP Network and interact with stakeholder networks such as the European Rural Parliament.
Last update: December 2022