Politics of Innovation for Empowerment and Sustainability in Rural Communities

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 15:30
Oral Presentation
Georgios TSOBANOGLOU, University of the Aegean, Sociology Department, Greece
The paper addresses the issue of local (rural) development in Greek areas, a source of diachronic labor migration (exodus) both rural and international and locates this issue within the present attention given to Greece under the “economic” crisis in Europe. The Debt Crisis in the Eurozone brought into the surface parameters of “governance” capacities of the Greek State to manage the unemployed, minorities, youth, excluded populations in poverty in rural communities.In some successful cases, diffused industrialization was combined with other forms of economic activity, e.g. agriculture and tourism to produce zones of work opportunities.

Our Project aims to detect and register the hindering factors for rural development within the politico-administrative frameworks on a sub-EU level (Greece) and seek to establish the role and actions of social entrepreneurs within that sector. The importance of rural communities in defining local gastronomy, culture and employment innovation, as they engage in local community cooperative action, will be compared in areas with direct top-down political promotions and areas whereby endogenous local cooperative assemblies manage, as bottom-up social enterprises, steering the community into social development. The Ruraction H2020 –MSCA-ITN-2016 Project of the European Union addresses, in a comprehensive manner, the future of rural spaces in Europe. Our approach here will be an examination of EU policies and their interaction with the Greek socio-political structures.