rss_2.0European Countryside FeedSciendo RSS Feed for European Countryside Countryside 's Cover in Assessing the Level of Plant-Based Food Self-Sufficiency Using Publicly Available Data in the Regional Context of Slovenia<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Methods for assessing regional food self-sufficiency are poorly developed worldwide, while knowledge of the characteristics of regional food self-sufficiency could help in designing more sustainable and resilient regional food systems. This paper addresses the challenge of defining and assessing food self-sufficiency at different geographical levels and provides a detailed presentation of the method for assessing the regional plant-based food self-sufficiency rate using publicly available data from administrative sources, taking the Slovenian development regions as an example. The results indicate the need to improve the reliability of the data used to identify the characteristics of regional food self-sufficiency and to a more effective coordination between existing agricultural databases.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Nomadtown, Manifesting the Global Village Hypothesis: A Case Study of a Rural Resilience Hub Within an Educational Milieu in North Karelia, Finland<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>NomadTown a resilience hub based on learning for emergency prevention, positive impact creation, and adaptation is presented. The educative background of the sub-culture found there are outlined. A thick description of the educational milieu NomadTown is situated in is given. A contextualization of this milieu is provided with a Foucauldian awareness of the dispositif (apparatus). Whether the social ecology of associations, this resilience hub is becoming embedded in, is a suitable way to make the great transition needed to deal with climate change; and how organizational learning, manifesting as network learning, is taking place are considered. Such functioning connections are embodying the networked village concept of Nahrada’s Global Village Hypothesis. I conclude that working through connected networks, in NomadTown’s educational milieu, is an effective way to make change for resilience in our human survival situation when faced with climate change. However, NomadTown needs better connections to industry and government.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00The Major Relationships in the Economic Growth of the Rural Space<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>In this study, we aimed to overview the relationships of the most significant international theories dealing with the spatial economy, with special regard to the endogenous resources. We examined the effects and the development trends of economic and social capital because we believe that they may determine the future directions of strategic planning. Spatial capital (being the focus of our research) is proven to have outstanding influence on the society. In this study, we compare the development paths deriving from international models with the endogenous resources of rural space, considering the new development paths deriving from new paradigms. Based on all this, related to the most important international spatial economic theories, we define the strategic directions that are built on local endogenous resources, including the relations between tourism, infrastructure and environment.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Local Horizons of Governance. Social Conditions for Good Governance in Rural Development in Poland<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The last thirty years have radically changed the nature of local resource management in rural communities throughout Poland (as well as in some other Central and Eastern European countries). New metamorphosis, policy, and funding mechanisms related to Poland’s political transformation and accession to the European Union have radically changed the character of institutions and tools available in rural development. Local communities have evolved along with improved education levels, decline in agricultural employment rates, and increased migrations to cities and Western Europe. This article presents the social conditions for the good governance processes in a selected region of Poland. Based on their extended quantitative and qualitative research, the authors discuss a number of phenomena such as the low effectiveness of collective actions, dense networks of informal relations, and the lack of trust in public service institutions despite the deregulation of certain powers. The ethnographic study reveals that while their overall picture may seem quite uniform, local rural communities in Poland tend to differ depending on the economic structure, history, and cultural identity of their inhabitants. Finally, the article analyses difficulties in the implementation of the good governance mechanisms within the country’s local rural communities.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Changes in the Role of Agriculture from the Perspective of Innovative Agricultural Entrepreneurs. The Case of Szeklerland, Eastern Transylvania<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Relying on an interview-based research carried out in Szeklerland (Eastern Transylvania) between 2011 and 2020, the present study investigates the impact of the new rural development paradigm on the first level indicated by Van der Ploeg et al. (2000): changes in the relationship between agriculture and local society. The analysed region does not form an administrative unit, it is the eastern region of the former Austro-Hungarian monarchy. It consists of rural settlements and small towns, the population of which is mostly of Hungarian ethnicity. More than half of the households have a small amount of land and are engaged in farming as their main or supplementary activity. Following a brief overview of the regional context, our paper analyzes the essential changes that have been taking place in the relationship between agriculture and the regional society over the last one or two decades. The focus of the analysis is how changes in the relationship between agriculture and the regional society appear in the innovative agricultural entrepreneurs’ practice and interpretations.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Food Self-Sufficiency in Slovakia from the Perspective of Land Use and Production Approach<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>If a country cannot secure a sufficient amount of quality food from the domestic market for various reasons, it is necessary to import it from abroad. This is the case in Slovakia, which lags behind the EU average in food self-sufficiency. Therefore, this contribution aims to point out the development of Slovakia’s food self-sufficiency in basic agro-commodities in the past two decades. We strive to do this by applying two approaches to self-sufficiency research – the land use approach and the production approach. While the first is based on assessing the availability of resources where agricultural production can be implemented, the second approach considers agricultural production, consumption and the foreign trade balance. The results show that although a few decades ago, Slovakia was a self-sufficient country in most agri-food commodities, at present, it is not self-sufficient even in the basic ones (such as vegetables, fruits, pork and poultry). The indicated trend of agro sector development conflicts with the Concept of Agricultural Development of the Slovak Republic for 2013–2020, the goal of which was to achieve food self-sufficiency at an 80% level by 2020. Later, therefore, we discuss what lies behind the success or failure of attaining food self-sufficiency in Slovakia and point to the complementarity of self-sufficiency goals at the EU and national levels.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Changes in (Sustainable) Development of Slovenian Small Towns<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Considering the settlement pattern in Slovenia, small towns with a population of 5,000 to 15,000 are very important for balanced regional and local development, especially for the achievement of sustainable development goals. This paper presents findings from a study of the level of sustainability in 32 Slovenian small towns, as assessed using a set of twelve economic, social, and environmental indicators of sustainable development. A comparison of the results for the years 2002 and 2018 shows that over the past two decades, Slovenian small towns have for the most part successfully advanced towards the goals of sustainable development. The small towns that lag behind in these efforts were identified, as were the development areas where sustainability trends are less favorable.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00The Contribution of Leader to the Empowerment of Rural Areas: The Case of the Brkini Region, Slovenia<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The paper focuses on the local delivery process of the LEADER programme over two programming periods (2007–2013 and 2014–2020). We tried to find out whether the LEADER method and projects implemented have contributed to the empowerment of the Brkini region (Slovenia), which has characteristics of a lagging and structurally weak region influenced by peripheralization processes. Quantitative and qualitative analysis of LEADER projects underlined that the Brkini region was quite successful in <italic>integrating</italic> different actors and sectors in joint projects and establishing cooperation between stakeholders. Cooperation is reflected in (1) partnerships and networking between existing and new actors and stakeholders, (2) LEADER funds being mostly used for “smaller projects” and networking within the region, (3) the synergies between LEADER and existing local aspirations as it supports several areas of the multi-sectoral approach (i.e., tourism promotion, agricultural production and processing), (4) enhanced recognisability and promotion of the Brkini region at sub-regional, regional, national and cross-border levels. In the context of <italic>empowermen</italic>t, we were able to identify some incentives, but also some bottlenecks (local clubs/societies/associations lack institutional, administrative and financial capacity, etc.). Decision-makers should pay special attention to this and also promote a culture of reflexivity when preparing new animation strategies for the next programming period.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Tourism in a Peripheral Setting: A Case Study of Farm Tourism Development in Lika, Croatia<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Considering the multi-layered issues of rural peripheries and tourism development, we explore actors’ views regarding farm tourism development in the historical/geographical region of Lika. In spite of the fact that important flows of goods and services pass through Lika, it is largely regarded as a peripheral area. Via semi-structured interviews with tourist farm owners and institutional actors involved with farm and rural tourism, we examine how their views relate to characteristics associated with peripherality. In a setting with very few family farms that have developed a farm tourism product, the regional actors see both potential and limitations in characteristics linked to peripherality, general development trends, and local specificities.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00Overtourism Hotspots: Both a Threat and Opportunity for Rural Tourism<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Overtourism is relatively rare in rural regions of Czechia, in the form of lonely “hotspots” surrounded by areas that suffer from undertourism. Therefore, the article aims to analyse whether these hotspots could be used to develop tourism in the surrounding regions and whether it is a desirable and sustainable situation. The paper examines the reasons that lead to overtourism in the rural environment and explains the concept of three dimensions of overtourism: objective, subjective and temporal. Based on experience from overtourism-affected locations in Czechia, we describe how to know whether a site can be a positive center for tourism development and whether it is desirable or, conversely, dangerous for the surrounding region. We use data obtained through a questionnaire survey, narrative interviews with local people, and field research.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2022-04-10T00:00:00.000+00:00An Index to Measure Rural Diversity in the Light of Rural Resilience and Rural Development Debate<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>Diversity has been extensively studied in ecological systems and its relationship with resilience has been well recognized. In social and ecological systems, in fact, diversity is considered key to determining resilience where resilience is defined as system’s capacity to learn and adapt in the face of internal or external perturbations. However, although human and ecological systems are dynamic, interacting and interdependent, little attention has been given to social systems diversity and its implications. The interest in diversity and resilience of social-ecological systems is increasingly growing, particularly in the rural contexts, due to its possible effects on social and economic development and livelihoods. In this paper we define an analytical tool, the Rural Diversity Index (RDI), to assess the role of natural, economic and social diversity in determining alternative rural socio-ecological developmental patterns. The application of the RDI in pilot areas of Southern Italy showed that, in specific socio-ecological systems, higher natural-socio-economic diversity leads to higher degree of rural development, as measured through standard socio-economic indicators.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2014-05-27T00:00:00.000+00:00Rural-Urban Multiplier and Policy Effects in Finish Rural Regions: an Inter-Regional Sam Analysis<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The paper studies rural policies in two Finnish regions, and whether the policy benefits would accumulate to the rural or urban areas. Rural-urban social accounting matrices were built and used as a base data for the SAM multiplier analysis. The output multiplier values demonstrate the important role of agriculture and food industry in both of the study regions. In the urban areas, however, services and construction were among the industries with the highest income generating potential. Whilst urban and rural industries had almost an equal potential for stimulating the whole economies, the results indicate that urban activities spill over welfare to the surrounding rural areas and thus can back up the development of the whole regions. Due to their different economic structures, South Ostrobothnia responded stronger to the agricultural policies while North Karelia was more responsive to the infrastructure and tourism policies.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2014-05-27T00:00:00.000+00:00The Survival and Growth Rates of Woody Vegetation in the Man-Made Radějov Biocorridor During the Period of 1993 - 2012<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p>The first biocorridors were established in the territory of the Czech Republic in the 1990s. One of them, planted on a former agricultural land, was the Radějov biocorridor. This paper deals with the growth and development of trees and shrubs on three permanent research plots in 1993 - 2012. Repeated inventories of trees as well as monitoring of their biometrical parameters were carried out in both tree and shrub layers. The number of trees decreases with the increasing level of stand canopy. Moreover, mean heights, diameters and crown projection areas of selected woody plants were compared. Under the given conditions, the growth of these woody plants can be positively evaluated.</p></abstract>ARTICLE2014-05-27T00:00:00.000+00:00Naturbanization and Urban – Rural Dynamics in Spain: Case Study of New Rural Landscapes in Andalusia and Catalonia<abstract><title style='display:none'>Abstract</title><p> The early 20th century saw the beginning of a process of urbanizing rural space (Berry, 1976a; 1976b), described as counter-urbanization (Champion, 1989). The creation of Protected Natural Areas (PNAs) has defined some rural spaces, relatively far from large urban metropolitan areas, where the ecological and scenic value is a magnet for urbanization (Prados, 2005). Thus, PNAs make rural areas more attractive to new economic and leisure activities and can promote a more positive type of development that has been called naturbanization (Prados, 2009). We address this topic in six sections: (1) Introduction; (2) Conceptual framework of naturbanization; (3) Methodology to analyse the process of naturbanization; (4) Processes of naturbanization in Andalusia and in Catalonia; (5) Comparative analysis of two case studies, and (6) Conclusions and Recommendations</p></abstract>ARTICLE2014-05-27T00:00:00.000+00:00Collaboration Perspectives Developing Sustainable Agriculture: The Case of Lithuanian Farmers<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Sustainable agriculture and active collaboration between farmers are important concepts that have a significant impact on the development of sustainable agriculture, in striving for social and economic development, as well as supporting the reduction of impact to environment. Based on a systematic and comparative analysis, this study highlights the role of collaboration towards developing sustainable agriculture. The overall results imply that more active farmers collaboration requires more active sharing of experience, knowledge and information through meetings or seminars by creating an information portal or platform. These measures could lead to more qualitative communication, more open information sharing, mutual trust and risk reduction, which would ensure the development of sustainable agriculture.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-12-26T00:00:00.000+00:00Community Acceptance of Wind Energy: Lessons from a Case Study on a Local Participatory Project in Pays Des Mauges (West France)<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This article focuses on the community acceptance of wind parks in a rural territory in western France, in a country where they are not much developed yet. We hypothetise that their set-up stems from a specific pattern, embedded in the territorial rural context of the case study. Semi-structured interviews with 30 actors aimed to analyse this citizen-led project, in line with their representations of this territory and its sustainable development. Results show that citizen-led investment is not a prerequisite for community acceptance in this case. The sense of a rural place that is fit for technologies kept up to date by the green industry, and the fairness of the process, are the strongest drivers for acceptance of wind energy, <italic>in general,</italic> in this case. Subsequently, the confidence obtained from previous fundraising actions can foster new participatory wind projects. An early communication with inhabitants, and a construction fit for a rural development that makes sense to the locals can bring an essential sense of trust for energy projects within the community. However, given the different definitions, it seems also critical to assess their true community dimension in order not to jeopardise the sense of fairness if the outcomes are not largely shared.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-12-26T00:00:00.000+00:00Rural Experiments with the Management of Basic Resources. Key Characteristics of European Ecovillages Aiming at Partial Self-Sufficiency in Water, Food and Energy<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The goal of this paper is to provide a preliminary analysis of European ecovillages considered as rural grassroots experiments with the sustainable management of the Water-Energy-Food Nexus. The article presents empirical data on the management of basic resources in 60 European ecovillages collected with an online survey in 2020. The results show that a vast majority of ecovillages pursue some self-sufficiency in food, water or energy, and that 50% of them seek some self-sufficiency in all three of these resources. However, ecovillages do not try to be completely self-sufficient but rather aim at achieving feasible levels of self-sufficiency complemented with local and regional cooperation. While the role of ecovillages in driving conventional rural growth is limited, they can help in guiding sustainability transitions by illustrating opportunities and difficulties of reducing resource consumption of settlement units without reducing personal and communal well-being.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-12-26T00:00:00.000+00:00Barriers to Start and Develop Transformative Ecotourism Business<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>This article aims to fill the cognitive gap by providing evidence for different barriers hampering the innovative activity in ecotourism which concerns the promotion of the so-called transformative tourism concept. The research is devoted to identifying what are the most important barriers in the two areas: i) policy and regulation; ii) regional economic development. The observed absence of appropriate representative data for defining the state of the art in the field of transformative ecotourism as a new phenomenon is evident; therefore, it is suggested to use an expert survey for barriers identification in the field. The expert survey was done in the four post-socialist Baltic Sea countries/regions: Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and the St. Petersburg region (Russia) in autumn 2020. Research results disclose the existing similarities among barriers in researched regions and highlight the key areas for improvement in policy and regulation and economy-related fields, aiming to create a more favorable environment for promoting transformative ecotourism as prosperous innovation of future tourism.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-12-26T00:00:00.000+00:00Visitors’ Happiness and Loyalty in the Moravian Wine Region<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, tourists’ loyalty is more pronounced than ever. It is therefore inevitable to know what factors can contribute to the higher levels of loyalty among potential visitors. Since none of the previously researched factors are reflecting visitors’ feelings and emotions, and because wine tourism can build long-lasting emotional ties with tourists, this study focuses on Moravian wine region visitors’ happiness within the context of loyalty. Overall, seven loyalty factors influence the happiness indicators: quality of wine, relaxation, information about wine, natural attractions, friendly acceptance by the locals, wine culture and traditions, as well as vineyard excursions. Furthermore, this study also confirms the dependence the happiness perception has on visitors’ characteristics, such as gender, income, or with whom they visited the destination. The results of the study can be used to restart and support the development of sustainable tourism in the regions.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-12-26T00:00:00.000+00:00Successful Management of Settlements to Boost Rural Development<abstract> <title style='display:none'>Abstract</title> <p>The paper summarizes and provides and overview on the economic and social processes influencing and supporting the successful management of settlements, focusing on Hungary. The role of leadership and settlement management is inevitable in the everyday operation as well as in the definition and realization of development concepts and strategies. The basis of stable operation and development is the financial independency and stability, thus we need to call the attention on the importance of economic development functions of settlements as well as on the important role of mayors and leaders in the economic and spatial development. The approaches, the ideas as well as the way how the leaders think are all determining factors in development. Nowadays, settlement development and regional economic development raise such key issues that are also the main research questions in our paper, like „What does a good municipality/a good settlement look like? How can ‘good’ be described?” What are the main characteristics of a suitable leader in the case of settlements? It is known that there are no targeted trainings, courses for mayors/heads of municipalities to prepare them to be good leaders, there are no nationally or internationally acknowledged skills, competences that could be applied to select the most suitable leaders for the positions. Therefore, we believe that we must call the attention to this shortage and motivate the experts in public administration, the researchers and scientists, as well as trainers and coaches to cooperate and work on the solution. In this paper, through the dimension of leadership/management, we intend to discover the characteristics of successful community leaders and to focus on the importance of the activities of ‘local heroes’, who prove to have strong commitment to the development of settlements.</p> </abstract>ARTICLE2021-12-26T00:00:00.000+00:00en-us-1