ELARD Knowledge Exchange Platform


Providing Technical Assistance on Sustainable Energy Action for Rural Energy Communities in Rural Areas in the Context of the Covenant for Mayors and Energy Community Repository.

The Rural Energy Community Advisory Hub is an initiative on behalf of the European Commission that has the mission of empowering the development of community energy action in European rural areas. The key activities of the Advisory Hub are supporting rural community and energy transition projects to identify best practices, providing technical assistance to selected rural energy communities, and providing networking opportunities to local stakeholders. The rural energy communities that will receive technical assistance from the Advisory Hub will serve as examples of rural energy communities that should inspire widespread, socially inclusive energy transition efforts in the rural areas. The Advisory Hub will work in tandem with the EU Covenant of Mayors network, the European Network for Rural Development, and the EU initiative Energy Communities Repository. For more detailed information about the Advisory Hub and its activities, you can learn more here

The Advisory Hub will provide direct technical assistance to rural energy communities selected via one call for applications. The technical assistance in the form of expert support will help improve the development and implementation of projects in a variety of areas, depending on the need of each individual rural energy community.

ELARD main role in the project is to engage stakeholder on national and local level and provide extensive networking expertise (local, national, international level), data and best practice collection, analysis, communication and dissemination activities.

The project implementation period: 2022-2023. Total budget – 1,919,036 €

Project website

Cowork4YOUTH is an Analysis and Research project aiming to increase knowledge on the impact of existing poilcies and offer policy suggestions to enhance youth employmnet oppotunitiesin less developed EEA regions.

The project adopts a transnational/ regional perspective by focusing on a binary of non-metropolitan regions across all study countries, especially Greece, Italy, Spain, and Ireland: tourism-dependent, island or remote coastal regions, on the one hand, and regions facing energy transition, decarbonization or intense industrial decline on the other.

This binary suffers from relatively high NEET rates and its comparative study will allow for deeper understanding of the impact of employment policies on youth and for designing more effective policies through socially oriented platform economy and collaborative work practices. The latter are seen as a way of providing alternative means of access to a living wage.

Cowork4YOUTH will deliver 14 outputs, including a Research Network, an Observatory, papers, and policy suggestions. Through an integrated multi scalar methodology, these outputs will help accomplish 5 outcomes. The direct target groups are the, usually ignored, NEETs aged 25-29; particular emphasis is put on young mothers and the long-term unemployed.

The project implementation period: 2021-2024. Total budget – 1,899,985 €

Project website

RUSTIC  Rural Sustainability Transitions through Integration of Knowledge for improved policy processes

HORIZON-CL6-2021-COMMUNITIES-01 — Grasping rural diversity and strengthening evidence for tailored policies). RUSTIK is to enable rural communities’ actors and policy makers to design better strategies, initiatives and policies fostering sustainability transitions of rural areas, through advancing our understanding of different rural functionalities, characteristics and future scenarios of rural areas, their potentials and challenges. RUSTIK is a transdisciplinary research project that will be jointly implemented by scientific and practice partners and will closely work with rural communities’ actors and policy makers at different levels.

The project focusses on co-creating process innovation on data collection, integration and analysis, and on improving governance and policy frameworks. RUSTIK will establish a network of 14 Living Labs in Pilot Regions across ten countries covered by the consortium. Each Living Lab will be co-convened by a research and a Pilot Region practice partner ensuring work balances both needs.

The project implementation period is 2022-2025. Total budget – 6 776 500€

FLIARA  Female-Led Innovation in Agriculture and Rural Areas

HORIZON-CL6-2022-COMMUNITIES-01-01. The FLIARA  project aims to create a European-wide ecosystem which supports women-led innovative practices in farming and rural areas.

The project will increase the understanding, the needs and challenges facing women leading innovative environmental and rural development practices in EU farming and rural areas. In doing this, the project will heighten visibility and awareness of current female-led innovations, and their centrality and importance to achieving EU environmental and inclusion policies.  It will create a Community of Practice (CoP) supporting innovative ecosystems and smart solutions endorsing and encouraging future female innovations and entrepreneurship, until such practice becomes more the norm than the exception.

The project implementation period 2022-2025. Total budget – 2 999 914€

RENOVERTY  Home Renovation Roadmaps to Address Energy Poverty in Vulnerable Rural Districts LIFE-2021-CET-ENERPOV.

The project will foster energy efficiency building upgrades in the Central and Eastern Europe (CEE)/Southeastern Europe (SEE) countries, as well as Southern European countries (SE), by setting the methodological and practical frame to build renovation roadmaps of vulnerable rural districts in a financially viable and socially just manner.

The project will design operating single or multi-household roadmaps for rural areas, and a scalable model to ensure the wide geographically replicability and take-up of the roadmaps, at both the CEE/SEE and SE regions and scale it up for the entire EU. Specifically, the project activities aim to deliver tools and resources to support local actors to build and implement financially viable roadmaps with the participation of all actors involved to be then synthesised in a replicable model to be taken up by different actors. Strategically the project will contribute to minimize logistical, financial, administrative, and legal burdens caused by a complex and multistakeholder home renovation process and ensure that building retrofits consider the social dimension by incorporating security, comfort, and improved accessibility for citizens to further improve the quality of life of the vulnerable population. In the long run the project will contribute to a wider integration of rural and peri-urban development.

The seven pilots will take place in : Sveta Nedelja (Croatia), Tartu (Estonia), Bükk-Mak & Somló-Marcalmente-Bakonyalja Leader (Hungary), Zasavje (Slovenia), Parma (Italy), Coimbra (Portugal), and Osona (Spain).

The project implementation period: 2022-2025. Total budget – 2 027 104€

RURBEST 22 – “Rural Youth in action from local to the European level

Erasmus+ for European Rural Parliament (ERP) and Youth activities, EU programme for education, training, youth and sport.

The goal of the project RURBEST22 is to empower, engage and connect rural youth from Belgium, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Spain, and Sweden.

The participants will be part of an international network, exchange good practices, and get a chance to influence rural policies of The European Union.

The project implementation period: July 2022 – January 2023  Total budget – 23 689 €.