Publications & Media
ENRD Main Stories Archive
NRN of the Month: Romania
The recently established Romanian National Rural Development Network (NRDN) is taking big strides in 2012. Driven by the vision of harnessing the energy of all actors in the rural development process and of promoting an effective flow of information, exchange of ideas and good practices, the new network is particularly interested in stimulating and supporting inter-territorial and transnational cooperation projects.
The Romanian NRDN has its headquarters in Bucharest and became operational at the end of 2011. The network is also supported by eight regional offices around the country. Their main objective is to disseminate the network’s activities at a regional level and to adapt implementation activities to specific regional needs that have been identified.
The network brings together the Romanian Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, which acts as the Managing Authority; the Network Support Unit (NSU), which animates the exchange of information, cooperation and connection to the ENRD; the National Steering Committee, which consists of representatives of all main groups involved in the rural development process; and a membership of over 1 000 rural stakeholders. Members include universities and research institutes, Local Action Groups (LAGs), professional associations, socio-economic organisations, agricultural and forestry businesses and other relevant actors.
Covering 87.1% of the country’s territory and 45.1% of the population (9.7 million inhabitants), Romania’s rural areas have substantial growth potential and play a vital social role – but they also face many challenges and have many needs. Over the past 3 months, the NSU has therefore already organised seminars and conferences on innovation, good practices, job creation and the CAP post-2013. Future plans include events on short food supply chains, agri-environment measures and high nature value farming, and social inclusion.
“In all our events we meet people who bring new ideas and vitality to the village. Some make a living from traditional jams or from honey, or have set-up accommodation facilities for tourists – often in very beautiful locations. Others are continuing the tradition of crafts that made Romanian village life so full of meaning and beauty. We are trying to show that rural Romania has a great opportunity to grow with the help of EU funds and with innovative approaches, but whilst keeping what is most authentic. Romanian villages are unique and splendid – and they deserve both to develop and keep their soul in the process,” says Viviana Vasile, Team Leader of the NSU.
There are currently a total of 81 LAGs and they are also beginning to benefit from the new network. A specific training programme has been prepared for the LAGs which covers the principles and practice of the LEADER approach, and aims to empower and build the capacity of the LAGs to implement their Local Development Strategies.
The NSU has produced several thematic publications, including the magazine România Rurală and the online newsletter RNDR INFO - both of which are available on their website (www.rndr.ro). The website also features an events calendar, news feed and virtual community, as well as key tools such as a ‘good practices’ database and a section for Cooperation Project proposals. Some sections of the website are available in English and Hungarian too.
The other major area of work is cooperation. The Network Support Unit has a specialised Cooperation Department which aims to stimulate the exchange of experience and good practice between different actors – including other National Rural Networks – on specific topics related to the implementation of the Romanian Rural Development Programme. There is also a major focus upon the development and engagement of actors in transnational and inter-territorial cooperation projects.
If you have ideas for shared initiatives, would like to post transnational cooperation proposals or just get more information, you can get in touch with the Romanian RNDR through their website (www.rndr.ro) or by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org).