Event: How to bring back human potential to rural areas - ‘you need to offer them more than just a plot of land’

count me in

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Hello @noemi
based in rural Polish countryside I am a researcher in a field of management studies (main topics: alternative management, critical management, permaculture management, eco-villages). Having small permaculture garden, I am part of local food cooperative. Hope to hear you soon!

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Hi @aleks.jaszczyk, very nice to e-meet you!
I am now emailing you the link to tonight’s session, let me know if you get it and see you in a few hours!

The obvious question to ask you, reading your introduction, is: how is your life in the countryside and how do you combine your research work with gardening and other more ‘rural’ activities? Does this work for you, and do you still go to the city a lot to meet other people?

Thanks for telling us more!

Thanks for asking and zoom invitation: received!
Working in the garden is ideally involved in research work as a moment of self-reflection and disconnection from online work, as I conduct my interviews and study mainly online. I rarely visit the city for the most urgent matters. Classes are fully online. My closest friends do not live in cities, but are rather scattered around rural areas, so we usually see each other in small groups at home.

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Hello everybody :slight_smile:

It is nice to meet you. I cannot wait our today discussion and I would like to say sorry for late presentation. I am mostly interested in the first topic “Rural areas are not attractive, not vibrant. How could we have more farmers or do more farming?”.

You can find here my page https://foodlaw.business.site/ where I describe my scientific and professional interests. I have been committed to European food sovereignty for two years but interested in the subject of food for many years. I was inspired by living in Italy. I have also attended interesting training courses in France, Spain, and Austria, which has drawn me so much in that I have spent my entire life supporting peasants and producing good food. Recently, I have been very interested in the issues of social and solidarity economy, especially local activities and relationship economics. I am involved in a scientific approach to cooperatives and seed law.



Hello @Slow_Karolina, welcome on board and lovely to see your enthusiasm !

Not sure if you are the same Karolina as the one I have been emailing with (from Poland?), so let me know if you have received the link to the event? If not, I will email it to you asap.

I’m so sorry I couldn’t come in the end. hope it went well and looking forward to another occasion.

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It went very well Simon. I think the group got on well enough that everyone wants to keep talking - hopefully that materializes here on the platform.

Thanks to everyone who joined or couldn’t in the end, but are participating

On my to dos:

@All: From yesterday: what you think were the most relevant ideas discussed? Did someone said something you consider very important? I will make sure to include that in the summary!

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@jasen_lakic, L’Alveare (it means The Hive) sounds similar to the one you were talking about. It’s a web platform plus a series of physical pop-up locations (maybe some of them are fixed?). There are a few of them in Tuscany, I’m looking forward to visit/try it this Christmas.

It is basically, as I understand it, a digital marketplace where local producers can promote their products, and there is a weekly physical market in various location where you go and pick up your shopping (or you can even ask for home delivery).

Still based on standard market economy, but it promises to be a much better alternative to large distribution nonetheless.

…having said that, in Tuscany in particular and as far as I know, even the large distribution is quite sensitive to local, sustainable, and healthy options.

All in all, what I am getting at is that certain places are quite far ahead in the mainstream acceptance of certain choices, and now that there are even marketplaces for direct producer-to-consumer is encouraging to me.

Perhaps there are geographic and historic reasons for that, but let’s leave that thought for another time…

On the other hand, I also noticed we talked a lot of entrepreneurial solutions to revitalise the rural communities, and I wonder if imagining something structured more like the Catalan Integral Cooperative would be even possible, especially in regions where so much is already existing that fits within the comfort levels of conscious consumers.

Or taking this even further, I wonder what a healthy combination of virtuous marketplaces and alternative economics could look like, and what it would take to sparkle such initiatives


The closest I’ve read about this is @matthias’s idea of self-sovereign units, but I’m not sure what it would take to sparkle this other than of course a committed group of people with skills to produce, and some sort of community organisers that can build it into a platform. @aleks.jaszczyk and @Emblotka123: do you have thoughts on this?

Thanks for the link Alessandro.

Yeah, it’s a straightforward online marketplace it seems. Well done and super responsive. The platform I was working on was not focused only on that, local marketplace was just a part of it. Each producer had a profile on which he could place and job offers, seasonal or permanent. Tell his story, have a promo video etc. It also gave a direct way of contacting producers who want such communication. Connection with google maps, showing the address of the producers. Recommended tours like cheese tour/wine tour or similar. Translated in 4 languages to start with.

The whole purpose was to bring closer the rural communities to urban population with a special focus on making it very easy for tourists or visitors from other parts of Croatia to get anything they need directly from the locals - eliminating the middle man. Also it would offer to tourists a great platform to discover all aspects of local life, not only products…cultural events, hidden gems etc. Inspirock does something similar in spirit. They plan personalised vacation in detail. I wasn’t aiming for that, but the idea in both cases was “Have a platform which feels like you are getting info/advice from a local”.


These are the kinds of experiences my wife and I look for when we travel, which we have done in Tuscany and Croatia. Platforms such as you describe would make the research as to where and when to go someplace, easier.

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Yes, my initial idea was something different. Then one summer I had 4-5 friends going to Croatia from Belgium and all of them told me “hey, we want to go to X area, can you give me some tips about best local restaurants, special places to visit, is there a little traditional festival or similar?” That made me start thinking in the direction of giving people that experience on a bigger scale. I pivoted, keeping just essential things from my initial idea (initial idea was focused on B2B).