Smart Villages

'Smart Villages' is the sub-theme of the broader ENRD thematic work on 'Smart and Competitive Rural Areas'.

A Thematic Group (TG) has worked on this topic between September 2017 and July 2020.

In its first year, the TG explored ideas and initiatives around revitalising rural services through digital and social innovation. It looked at how rural services – such as health, social services, education, energy, transport, retail – can be improved and made more sustainable through the deployment of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) tools and through community-led actions and projects.

In its second year, between September 2018 and July 2019, the TG acted as a sounding board for developing practical orientations for using all the policy tools available to help Smart Villages emerge and develop. At the same time, it continued to provide a platform for linking the various initiatives taking place, reflecting the growing momentum and interest in the topic at all levels.

In its last third year, between September 2019 and July 2020, the TG turned the considerable momentum that has been created around Smart Villages, into concrete proposals for designing support for Smart Villages in the new programming period, implying at this stage in the programming cycle a reinforced focus on supporting Managing Authorities, alongside other stakeholder groups.

The TG contributed to the EU Action for Smart Villages by enabling exchange on innovative ways of creating more vibrant, sustainable and attractive rural areas and by exploring how the Rural Development Programmes (RDPs), the EU's Cohesion policy and other financing instruments can be best used to support this.

This page provides all the information on Thematic Group meetings and related thematic outputs will be uploaded here on a regular basis.

Visit the ENRD Smart Villages Portal and discover the many inspiring networks and initiatives across Europe. Also, follow the results of the Preparatory Action for Smart Rural 21.

Are you interested in receiving regular updates on the latest around 'Smart Villages'? Please write to us at to express your interest.

Browse through all events under the broader topic 'Smart and Competitive Rural Areas'.