Over the past few decades, rural areas have experienced profound socio-demographic transformations, driven by their roles in ecological, digital, and bio-economic transitions. These transformations, further accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic, have led to significant diversification, rendering rural regions complex and unequal—similar in many ways to major cities. Thus a key problem concerns our knowledge about- and perception of these places because the tools, concepts, and above all the public policies traditionally applied are no longer suited to address the increasing diversity of contemporary rural areas. Our consortium, RURALITIC, is academically armed and well-prepared and to tackle these challenges. The first step, involves rethinking ’the rural’ and examining the intricate relationship between social groups and geographical spaces. This conceptual requalification of what rural areas are, and can be, will enable the production of new scientific concepts and tools, including new data, surveys, indicators, knowledge and typologies, enabling a new and synthesized view of the current dynamics and processes of change and aid in foresight for public authorities. Secondly these new concepts and typologies will then be deployed to analyze the drivers of attractiveness, existing public policies, and innovative initiatives within rural areas. By implementing pilot projects and creating an initiative library, we’ll tailor recommendations to diverse social and rural contexts. Finally, RURALITIC aims to envision and produce various scenarios for Europe’s rural future. The main outcome will be a reorientation of public policies, from general policies to policies tailored to different rural areas, while maintaining the main orientations of European policies, focusing on sustainable prosperity, resilience, connectivity, and infrastructure.


Duration 01/10/2025 - 30/09/2028
Funding EU

Department for Migration and Globalisation

Center for Migration and Globalisation Research

Principle investigator for the project (University for Continuing Education Krems) Mag. Dr. Anna Faustmann
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