RDP project database
Installation of Wireless Networks for Rural Internet Access in the Azores
Lack of internet access is a major obstacle to the development of poor rural communities in isolated regions. EAFRD was used to co-finance the installation of wireless networks in 2 rural parishes on the Portugese island of São Miguel in the Azores.
The municipality of Ribeira Grande on the Portuguese island of São Miguel (Azores) has the youngest population of the entire archipelago. Within the municipality, the rural parishes of Maia and Rabo de Peixe are among the most disadvantaged in the country - indeed, Rabo de Peixe has been identified as the poorest parish in the whole of Portugal. Consequently, several initiatives have been launched in recent years to combat the widespread problem of social exclusion.
The project aimed to: 1) Increase the accessibility and use of basic information and communication technology services for local rural people; 2) Use the internet to promote access to people, institutions, goods and services to improve the social, cultural and economic integration of the community, and; 3) Increase the potential for promoting and publicising these parishes on the island of São Miguel.
The main activities of the project were: a) the acquisition and installation of wireless network equipment (for Internet access) for the centres of Maia and Rabo de Peixe, and; b) raising public awareness, in particular amongst the rural communities, of the existence and benefits of this new resource.
Results & Benefits
The initial results include an increased demand for wireless internet access points with a tangible boost to the local economy as demand for a range of local services has increased. In the longer term it is anticipated that an even greater awareness amongst local people of the wider world, plus easier access to various information sources, will drive personal and professional development and ultimately help contribute to an improved quality of life.
Access to communication technology and new information empowers local people - but at the same time it generates new needs and demands...which in turn requires new (and possibly unanticipated) responses from public services.
Project location and other information
Island of São Miguel (municipality of Ribeira Grande), west of continental Portugal
Total project cost (€)
EAFRD contribution (€)
National contribution (€)
280 (regional contribution)
Rui Pedro Lucas (Head of Technical Project)
+351 296 470730
Languages for contact
At a glance
Final beneficiary type
Individual farmers, Other
€20 000 - €99 999
Theme / Measure:
Rural Quality of Life & Economic Diversification
Improving quality of life in rural areas
321. Basic services for the economy and rural population
Quality of life, Information technology, Island, Social services, Under-privileged people