Rural areas around the world face many structural challenges, and Europe is no exception. This policy brief examines the support programs in place within the EU that seek to address the urban-rural divide and foster socio-economic development in the countryside.
EU funding mechanisms for rural development range from centrally managed programs such as the Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) to the decentrally managed LEADER projects. Drawing on citizen participation and local competencies, the latter have proven particularly effective in promoting the development of Europe’s rural areas. The brief sheds light on the mechanisms and funding structures of the EU’s LEADER program and presents a number of successful case studies from rural Germany.
Author: Thomas Tanneberger