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ENRD Overview



The European Network for Rural Development (ENRD) is the hub that connects rural development stakeholders throughout the European Union (EU). Its mission is to contribute to the efficient implementation of the rural development policy.

A short introduction to the ENRD [PDF ]

Rural Development in the European Union

The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development

What is the ENRD?

How the ENRD Helps

Networking Updates

The ENRD Contact Point


The aims of the European Network for Rural Development are to:

  • collect, analyse and disseminate information on EU rural development measures and practices;
  • provide information on developments in rural areas;
  • organise meetings and seminars;
  • set up and run networks to facilitate exchange of expertise, support implementation and evaluation of rural development policy;
  • support the national networks and transnational cooperation initiatives.

Stakeholders and beneficiaries

The network's activities are intended to support and benefit:

  • relevant administrations and institutions;
  • rural networks;
  • relevant organisations at European level;
  • Local Action Groups;
  • Other bodies and actors concerned with rural development.


Leader Sub-committee Coordination committee Thematic working groups European Commission DG AGRI European Evaluation Network Local Action Groups ENRD Contact Point National Networks EU Organisations National Authorities

The structure of the ENRD includes:

A Coordination committee which

  • assists the Commission in the preparation and implementation of the ENRD's annual work plan and activities;
  • ensures coordination between the ENRD, the national rural networks and organisations active in rural development;
  • coordinates thematic work carried out by the ENRD;

A LEADER subcommittee which

  • advises the Commission on the annual work programme of the ENRD concerning the LEADER axis;
  • contributes to coordination of thematic work;
  • supports the Commission's monitoring of the implementation of transnational cooperation projects.

A European Evaluation Network for Rural Development to exchange expertise and establish best practice on evaluation of the rural development policy. This network is coordinated by an Evaluation Expert Committee.

The Contact Point

The ENRD Contact Point provides the European Commission (Directorate General for Agriculture and Rural Development) with technical assistance in support of the European Network for Rural Development. As the primary support mechanism for the ENRD, its main activities include:

  • Support to the Coordination committee, LEADER Subcommittee, Thematic Working Groups;
  • Support for ENRD cooperation, information exchange, networking and publications;
  • Support for analysis/summary of rural development programmes and monitoring indicators;
  • Collection and dissemination of relevant experience on programme implementation;
  • Organising European level meetings and seminars.

In operational terms the Contact Point is organised in three Groups which reflect the three main elements of the ENRD strategy, namely:

  • Knowledge development (analysis)
  • Knowledge sharing (communication)
  • Exchange and cooperation (networking)

Legal basis for the ENRD

The essential rules governing rural development policy for the period 2007 to 2013 are based on Council Regulation (EC) N° 1698/2005 of 20 September 2005 on support for rural development from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD). These rules also govern the policy measures available to Member States and regions. Under this Regulation, rural development policy for 2007 to 2013 is structured along 3 thematic and one horizontal axes.

Chapter II of this regulation is devoted to technical assistance. Its Article 68 specifies that "each Member State shall establish a national rural network, which groups the organisations and administrations involved in rural development".
With the aim to ensure the networking of these national networks, organisations and administrations active in the field of rural development at Community level, the establishment of a network named "European Network for Rural Development" was foreseen in Article 67.

Relevant documents

  • Activity Report 2008-2010 [PDF ]
  • Annual Work Plan 2009-2010 [PDF ]
  • Annual Work Plan 2010-2011 [PDF ]
  • Annual Work Plan 2011-2012 [PDF ]
  • Summary working plan 2013-2014 [PDF ]