Smart Villages conference: Policies needed for a smart transition of rural areas

Meeting topic: 

The term Smart Villages refers to the networking of different sectors (housing, mobility, supply, administration, etc.) by means of new information and communication technologies in order to make the best possible use of synergy potentials. Smart Villages projects involve partnerships of decision makers, service providers, citizens and other relevant actors. Since 2018, the Interreg project SmartVillages has initiated about a dozen projects in 9 test regions throughout the Alpine Space, ranging from village coworking spaces to car-sharing applications and from digital village plateforms to the installation of public Wlan transmitters and the realisation of fibre optic networks. The interim conclusion of this project phase: new technologies can indeed trigger a revolution in rural areas, but only if the technical component and the social component are well combined. Which means, firstly, that the digital infrastructures must be available and secondly, projects must be organised in such a way that citizens and residents can actively participate in the development of new services. Politicians at local, regional, national and European level are called upon to create good framework conditions for this. The conference offers participants the opportunity to learn more about good SmartVillages examples and to contribute to policy recommendations aimed at improving the conditions for digitisation and social innovation in mountain regions.

Regitration under till the 2nd of November 2020.


Thomas Egger, Director Center for mountain regions (SAB)

Maria Lezzi, Director of the Swiss Federal office for Spatial Development

Peter Niederer, SAB

Emilija Stojmenova, University of Ljublijana

Franc Bogovič, Member of European Parliament

Eric Jakob, Head of Economic Promotion, Swiss federal state secretariat for Economy

Esther Schlumpf, Regional economic agency Oberwallis (Switzerland)