Event - Seminar

EU funds paving the way to the rural vision

This Policy Lab, organised by the Rural Pact Support Office, suggested orientations to enhance the design and use of EU policy instruments in order to better support rural communities in the future.

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  • Online
Policy lab

The event built on the reflections initiated at the Sigüenza High-Level Rural Policy Forum. It capitalised on the collective knowledge and feedback of the Rural Pact Community to suggest orientations to enhance coordination among policies, streamline support to integrated local development, and mobilise and combine different funding opportunities through innovative ways.


Building on the reflections of the High-level Rural Policy Forum of September 2023, the Policy Action Lab aimed to:

  • Boost dialogue among policy-makers and practitioners at all levels to explore ways to enhance actual access to funding by  local rural actors and communities;
  • Build reflections on possible orientations for enhanced support action and financing for rural areas, as well as on the ways forward.

The audience consisted of policy-makers and networks at EU, national and regional levels involved in EU funds, including CAP and EU cohesion policies, representatives of regional and local stakeholders, such as civil society organisations and public authorities, as well as relevant academic and research and innovation organisations.


The long-term vision for rural areas (LTVRA) covers a wide and complex range of issues which need to be addressed in a holistic way with diverse funds such as those financing  the Common Agricultural Policy and Cohesion Policy but also other sources at EU, national, regional and local levels. The vision also outlines the importance of all funds at all governance levels to work in synergies to support rural development. 

In the High-level Rural Policy Forum (27-29 September 2023) organised in Sigüenza (Spain), the Rural Pact Community emphasised the importance of facilitating access to financial opportunities by local actors and communities to help them implement their projects and ambitions and contribute to a more cohesive development of rural territories, leaving no rural area behind. 

The Rural Toolkit on EU funding being developed by DG REGIO and the Joint Research Centre (JRC) of the European Commission under the Rural Action Plan will help in this respect. The tool will assist rural actors in accessing and utilising EU funds effectively. It will provide practical guidance, tools, and best practices to enhance the territorial  development of rural areas, contributing to the objectives of the Long-Term Vision for the EU’s Rural Areas.

English language


(PDF – 186.49 KB)

Additional info


Rural Pact Support Office



English language

Introduction to the day. Enrique Nieto, Rural Pact Support Office

(PDF – 513.09 KB)

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Key messages from the Council conclusions on the rural vision. Isabel Bombal, Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Fisheries, ES presidency of the Council of the EU

(PDF – 350.96 KB)

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The Rural toolkit dashboard for EU funding and the SAT4TER tool to support the financing of local action. Giulia Testori, Joint Research Centre

(PDF – 1.57 MB)

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Village d’avenir programme: Supporting rural municipalities in applying for funding in France. David Armellini, Agence Nationale de la Cohésion des Territoires (ANCT)

(PDF – 1003.12 KB)

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The use of Simplified Cost Options (SCOs) in Finland. Noora Pehkonen, Finnish Food Authority

(PDF – 206.1 KB)

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Bank support to implement LEADER funded projects in Extremadura (Spain). Diego Curto, Manager of the Local Action Group Valle del Ambroz

(PDF – 1.46 MB)

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Jointly supporting innovation projects in municipalities. Elias Kappner, Landkreistag Rheinland-Pfalz

(PDF – 357.2 KB)

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LEADER as one-stop-shop for local capacities in Austria. Stefan Niedermoser, LEADER Forum Austria

(PDF – 648.41 KB)

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Simplified Cost Options supporting rural entrepreneurship in Asturias (Spain). Juan Lazaro, LEADER Network Asturias (Spain)

(PDF – 268.06 KB)

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The use of umbrella projects in LEADER in Sweden. Tjitte de Vries, CAP Network Swenden

(PDF – 296.63 KB)

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UK credit union loans for fishers. Heather Emberson-Marl, Animator

(PDF – 10.22 MB)

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The coordination of funds and support in the implementation of Catalonia’s rural vision (Spain). Arnau Queralt, Advisory Council for Sustainable Development of Catalonia

(PDF – 639.88 KB)

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Multifunding CLLD with ESF+ in Czechia. Renáta Kučerová, Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs

(PDF – 389.31 KB)

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Combining crowdfunding and EU funds. Mauricio O’Brien, European Crowdfunding Network

(PDF – 12.65 MB)

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Coordination of Funds at regional level – Experiences in Finland. Salme Pihlajamaa, Center for Economic Development

(PDF – 204.18 KB)

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Experience in Lower Saxony coordinating EU-funds (Germany). Barbara Fährmann, Lower Saxon Ministry for Federal and European Affairs and Regional Development

(PDF – 964.01 KB)

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Strengthening LEADER with the Recovery & Resilient Fund in Estonia. Olavi Petron, Ministry of Regional Affairs and Agriculture of Estonia

(PDF – 88.69 KB)

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Enhancing FLAG budget through private contributions in Finland. Janne Ruokolainen, FLAG Central Finland

(PDF – 268.17 KB)

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Cooperative of Karditsia support rural actors in Greece. Panagiotis Tournavitis, CEO

(PDF – 2.75 MB)

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Reflections of the day. Edina Oscko, vice-chair of the Rural Pact Coordination Group

(PDF – 991.76 KB)

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Next steps. Pascale Van Doren, Rural Pact Support Office

(PDF – 1 MB)